Classification: Adult Fiction
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Format: Paperback; 368 pages
Publisher: Avon (October 25, 2016)
Author's Website: http://www.toniblake.com/
Notes: I received an eARC loan from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I am also an Avon Addict which means I love the books that Avon publishes enough to volunteer to read as many ARCs and books as they can send my way. So you'll be seeing a lot of books reviewed by me from this publisher. Please note, however, that if I don't like a book, it will be truthfully reflected by a low rating. Please note that as I read and ARC and quotes are subject to change, they will need to be checked and verified against the final version.
Shane's been told his whole life he's bad news and he believes it. When he comes to Destiny he's not looking to do anything other than honor his father's dying wish. Destiny, however, holds more for him than he or his father could ever have imagined. For years Shane and his father seemed to go from city to city, never really settling down. They never had a place they truly considered home. So it was easy to uproot and move after his father's death because there was nothing tying him down. Destiny, however, is the type of small town most believe only exists in Hallmark specials and in eras gone by. Everyone knows and looks out for each other, and it might just hold everything Shane never knew he always wanted.
Candice has lived her whole life in Destiny. The last relationship she was in ended badly, and she's not looking to repeat the experience. Shane seems to be all that her ex was and then some. While the relationship ended five years ago, she hasn't dated anyone since. Though Shane claims to be trouble with a capital 'T', she sees a side of him that makes her think his bark may be worse than his bite, and decides to take a chance on him.
Overall, I gave this one 4 1/2 out of 5 roses. The story had a nice pace with characters that leapt to life on the pages, While the story was at times predictable, it left me with the warm fuzzy feeling of coming home. On the Lisarenee Romance Rating Scale, this one earned a STEAM rating--too hot for a fan, but you still have a handle on things. You should use extreme caution when reading a book with this rating in public. Oh, and if you're wondering how this story relates to 'It's a Wonderful Life', it's not so much in the story line, but more in spirit. The main character comes to the realize he's not as bad as he once believed himself to be. A truly lovely story that is perfect for the holiday season.