Can love redeem a broken past?
Shelby Kincaid is ready to move forward after the death of her husband left her devastated. With high hopes for the future, she longs to purchase her family’s homestead, Misty Willow, so she can raise her young daughters in the only place she ever truly belonged. She plans to transform the abandoned house into the perfect home of her memories. But she has her work cut out for her.
AJ Sullivan never wanted Shelby’s family homestead in the first place. His grandfather left it to him as punishment for not following his wishes, and he’s let it fall into ruin. AJ’s more than happy to unload it to this spitfire of a woman. But even after angry exchanges over the state of the house, he can’t get her off his mind.
Continue reading for an excerpt from Where She Belongs and for my thoughts on the book.
Where She Belongs is the first in a new contemporary series by Johnnie Alexander, and is also just her second full length novel. Her debut, Where Treasure Hides, was an excellent historical romance so how does this sophomore novel measure up?
Shelby’s memories of the old house determine her course for much of the book. At first, it looks like it’s just a tale of a woman rediscovering life after death, but Where She Belongs goes much further than that. How did AJ’s family obtain Shelby’s old home? Why was his grandfather, Sully, such a bitter man? What’s the connection between the two families? And what does Shelby’s increasingly infirm great-uncle know about her grandfather’s death? These are the questions that kept me reading. There are also two secondary plots: one is about a child in hospital and the other involves AJ’s cousins and a land deal. I didn’t have much interest the first and thought the second was the weakest part of the novel. But together they form the background to the next book in the series.
Where She Belongs is a very different creature to Where Treasure Hides and, consequently, they’re difficult to compare. Where Treasure Hides had so much drama and danger, however, that it makes this contemporary romance look pedestrian. It’s a shame because, beside the issues I had with it, it really is a nice novel about two people trying to find their place in a crazy and hurting world.
Thank you to Revell for my complimentary electronic advance copy of Where She Belongs, which I downloaded from NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.
Have you read Where She Belongs? Do you plan to read it? Let me know your thoughts.
Publisher: Revell (a division of Baker Publishing)
Publication Date: 05 January 2016
Page Count: 368