ON LOVE`S GENTLE SHORE
Natalie O`Ryan had no plans to return to Prince Edward Island. But when her fiancé books their wedding in her hometown and schedules a summer at Red Door Inn, she sets out to plan the perfect wedding. Yet she can`t possibly plan for a run-in with Justin Kane -- the best friend she left behind all those years ago after promising to stay.
Justin has never forgotten Natalie. He`d been prepared to follow her off the island until tragedy struck, leaving him to run the family dairy farm. He`s done the best he can with the life that was thrust upon him -- but with Natalie back in the picture, he begins to realize just how much joy he`s been missing.
After Natalie`s reception venue falls through she must scramble to find an alternative, and the only option seems to be a barn on Justin`s property. As they work together to get the dilapidated building ready for the party, Natalie and Justin may discover that there is more between them than broken promises and old friendship.
True confession: I really don't like love triangle romances. And I really, really don't like it when either the hero or heroine is engaged to one person while developing a relationship with someone else. So I hesitated reading On Love's Gentle Shore since Natalie is engaged and is getting married in her hometown where her first love just happens to still live.
But, here's the thing -- I adore this series and I trust Liz Johnson to deliver an impactful story so...I took a deep breath and dived in...and loved every emotionally gut-wrenching minute. (Not to mention the Prince Edward Island location softens the blow somewhat.)
Johnson has such an exquisite way with words that she lulls me into a reading stupor even in the gnarly parts. Like this: "Russell's words hung out there like underclothes on the line, too embarrassing to take down after someone else pinned them up for the whole town to see." (p.40) I mean, if you're going to read a tumultuous story you might as well enjoy the prose!
Natalie and Justin reunite after fifteen years of misunderstandings and bitterness. They were seventeen when their respective worlds shattered and acted with as much immaturity as you'd expect teenagers to. I had to keep reminding myself of that as the story unfolded. Especially where Natalie was concerned.
She might have fled the island but the emotional damage she endured as a child stayed with her. She just buried the hurt and uncertainty under a polished facade. Her life is a charade and it starts to unravel the second she sets foot on the island. Justin has allowed bitterness to take hold of his heart. Resentment and anger surface when he lays eyes on Natalie for the first time since they were kids. These two have a lot to work through before they can finally be free to see hope in their future.
Painful and thought-provoking and uplifting. This isn't just an exceptional love story -- it's a cautionary tale on the power words play in our lives. Both words spoken to us and by us. On Love's Gentle Shore would make an excellent book club read because of the depth of discussion starting points.
Book provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications Ltd.
If you would like a chance to read a copy of On love's Gentle Shore, leave a comment below or email me at kavluvstoreadATyahooDOTca. If you add your email to a comment, remember to use AT and DOT instead of @ and . in order to protect yourself from spammers. If you enter the draw via email, please add the title to the subject line so it's easier for me to spot your entry. Draw will be held and winner announced on Sunday July 23 2017. Offer open to International Readers. Good luck.