Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Return to Willow Lake by Susan Wiggs

Title: Return to Willow Lake
Author: Susan Wiggs
My Rating: B

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Lakeshore Chronicles #9
Main Characters: Sonnet and Zach
Release Date: August 2012
ISBN: 9780778313847
Publisher: Harlequin
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: mild

Story Overview:
Sonnet Romano's life is almost perfect. She has the ideal career, the ideal boyfriend, and has just been offered a prestigious fellowship. There's nothing more a woman wants—except maybe a baby…brother?
When Sonnet finds out her mother is unexpectedly expecting, and that the pregnancy is high risk, she puts everything on hold—the job, the fellowship, the boyfriend—and heads home to Avalon. Once her mom is out of danger, Sonnet intends to pick up her life where she left off.
But when her mother receives a devastating diagnosis, Sonnet must decide what really matters in life, even if that means staying in Avalon and taking a job that forces her to work alongside her biggest, and maybe her sweetest, mistake—award-winning filmmaker Zach Alger. So Sonnet embarks on a summer of laughter and tears, of old dreams and new possibilities, and of finding the home of her heart.

My Review:

This is the first Susan Wiggs book that I've ever read. I know, right? She was a huge romance writer when I was working in the bookstore 20 years ago. I can't believe it's taken me this long to pick up one of her books. But this book is so much more than just a romance novel. This is a book about family and what's really important in life. Just to put it in perspective, the book starts and ends with scenes of Sonnet talking to her mom...not scenes with Zach, although he definitely still plays a big part in the book.

For Sonnet, she doesn't realize it, but her life is at a crossroads. She's had an interesting life that has shaped her into an overachiever. Raised by her single mother and an absent, overachieving father, she has always shaped her life for his approval. She works in NYC at a worldwide agency that helps under-priviledged children. Children are her passion and although the job doesn't put her in direct contact with the children as much she's still convinced herself that she's doing good for them and that's good enough. She has an amazing boyfriend who is her father's senate campaign manager. They met through her father and although they don't have passion, she feels that they are a good match.

When she goes home to attend her step-sister's wedding, she sees her childhood best friend, Zach. They've been best friends since kindergarten although they haven't seen each other in years. In an after-wedding tryst, everything between them changes and not for the better...at least not for the first few months afterwards.

Honestly, I would probably classify this book as women's fiction rather than romance. Yes, there is a romantic element to it and it's a beautiful romantic story, but I did't feel like it was the main bulk of the story. For that, I think it was Sonnet's relationship with both her parents. Her mother who is battling cancer through an unexpected pregnancy and her father who is focusing on winning a senate office and trying to force Sonnet into making all the right moves for HIS career. You definitely start to see a lot of the contrast in Sonnet's life as she begins to realize what's really important. It was an interesting book and is a nice read to while away a quiet Sunday afternoon.

This is the 9th book in this series and while you definitely don't need to have read the other books to enjoy this one, I'm intrigued by some of the other stories (you get glimpses of them throughout this book) and may just pick up a few of them.

I received a complementary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

1 comment:

Ashley Montgomery said...

This sounds like a really awesome read. Thanks for the review.

Ashley @ Dr. Pepper Diva