Note: This ARC was provided by Give Me Books Promotions in exchange for an honest review.
Author H.C. Bentley's Small Town Hearts trilogy continues with another second chance love story, this time Kari Nelson and Marc Eaddens' in When Love Comes Home. Kari and Marc were young when they spent one summer falling in love. Even with the knowledge that they were going their separate ways--Kari to begin college and Marc to continue pursuing his degree at a completely different one--promises were made, both of them holding on tightly to the knowledge of just how much they loved each other. They didn't think distance could stop what they had, and it didn't. No, it wasn't distance that ended things for them. But it takes over a decade before Marc returns to take care of his father who's fallen ill. Almost immediately, Kari and Marc spot each other again, and while that spark still remains, things are quite different. Kari has a daughter. One who's ten years old. One fathered by Marc...
Can I just say that I love how mature H.C. Bentley's main characters are? In both the currently available novels in her series, they're in their late twenties to early thirties, and there's this maturity to their behavior that I sometimes find lacking in some of the romance novels that I read. They make mistakes, and yes, there are moments where they don't exactly do a lot of thinking before acting on instinct--which doesn't always work out too well--but the couples, more often than not, confront their issues with maturity. In the case of Kari and Marc, there were so many opportunities where they could have been petty and lashed out, but no siree! Maybe it was because they had to think of their daughter, Jenna, but remember that I read the first novel, Her Last Love, before starting this one, and all four main protagonists maintained a level of maturity and decency which I so appreciated.
Kari is a heroine I need to give kudos to. She was self-sufficient, refusing to wallow when she was dealt with a bad hand, choosing instead to move forward and think of what was best for her daughter first. There's a point in the story, though, that I wish had more of a definite resolution to it and it had to do with her parents, especially her father and how he played a part in what happened between Kari and Marc all those summers ago. That was the one thing that's stopping me from giving this book a five-plus-starred rating, but let me stress just how much I enjoyed this book. Engaged couple Lynn Johnston and Carter Mathis' story also continues her but never does it take away the spotlight from Kari and Marc, so I consider that a completely win-win situation. I'm giving When Love Comes Home five stars and am looking forward to reading Bethany Lewis and Jeremy Hall's story in To Love Again. ♥
Release Date: 05 November 2016
Date Read: 05 November 2016
Learn more about H.C. Bentley.