WHEN I FALL IN LOVE
Hawaii was the last place Grace Christiansen ever imagined she’d vacation, much less fall in love. But when her family surprises her with a cooking retreat in paradise, she is pulled—or maybe yanked—away from her predictable, safe life and thrown headfirst into the adventure of a lifetime.
Max Sharpe may make his living on the ice as a pro hockey player, but he feels most at home in the kitchen. Which is why he lives for the three-week culinary vacation he takes each year in Hawaii. Upon being paired with Grace for a cooking competition, Max finds himself drawn to her passion, confidence, and perseverance. But just when Grace dares to dream of a future beyond her hometown, Max pulls away.
Wrestling with personal demons, Max fights against opening his heart to a love he knows he should never hope for. And as his secrets unfold, Grace is torn between the safe path in front of her and what her heart truly desires. If love means sacrificing her ideal happily ever after, Grace’s faith will face its toughest test yet.
First off -- how did I miss the first two books in this Christiansen Family series?! I probably had my nose buried in a book or something but that's no excuse. Now I have to backtrack and get the first two. If you're a slacker like me and haven't read It Had To Be You and Take a Chance On Me, don't despair -- this book reads fine as a standalone. Think the O'Malleys (Dee Henderson) without the suspense. A family saga steeped in deep characterization and emotionally compelling plots. Each book dedicated to one of the siblings but laced with wonderful scenes involving the others.
Rich. Decadent. Almost better than chocolate. That's the kind of read this is. Warren drops her readers into a fictional world that is so real it's believable. And then she pummels them with angst and drama and humour and snappy dialogue until they're begging for more. And she delivers, her readers are hooked and a habit is formed.
But woe to the poor characters who have leapt from her imagination into the pages of this book. She is not kind to them. In fact, she has a distinctly cruel streak when it comes to creating havoc for the Christiansen family. Honestly, there was one secondary plot where I had to read with one eye closed, wincing all the while. In fact, I thought I'd skip those scenes, but the author doesn't play fair. Enticing dialogue, rapier wit, heart crushing angst -- how can a reader resist? Anxiously awaiting future books to see how that particular gnarly mess pans out.
The author's attention to detail enriches the read all the more. Whether it is foodie descriptions or the symbolism in Grace's name, every element adds even more dimension to an already riveting read. And the romance? Prepare your fainting couch. Exquisite.
But honestly, what moved me most about When I Fall in Love is the awesome inspirational thread. This is a story about trusting God -- completely. With your future. With your past. And definitely your present. We can't begin to live until we surrender all to Him. Amen and amen.
If you would like an opportunity to win a copy of When I Fall In Love please leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you post a comment and add your email address, please use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in the address to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email please remember to put the title in the subject line so that it's easy for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday September 7 2014. Offer open to international readers. Good luck!