When plans for a wilderness retreat with her teenage daughter Brooke go awry, Abby Hammond reluctantly pairs up with Brooke’s stepbrother and his dad, Nathan Strom, for the weeklong trek. The only thing Abby has in common with the bad-boy former pro athlete is that their exes cheated with each other. That…and a visceral attraction that’s growing more complicated with every step through the picturesque woods.
Nathan’s wild-card reputation lost him his career and his family. After years of regret, he’s ready to fight for what truly matters—and that includes Abby’s hard-won trust. When Brooke goes missing, Nathan knows he’s her best and only hope of rescue. But the deeper into the rugged mountains they go, the more dangerous the territory will prove—for their safety and for their hearts.
I really enjoyed Backwoods. It was a fun (and intense) mix of family drama, romance and suspense. Abby’s ex-husband is now married to Nathan’s ex-wife, but neither of the exes is on the trip. Instead it is a time for Nathan to reconnect with Leo and Abby is there because there was a good chance that Brooke’s dad will flake on her … which is a good indication of what their relationship is like.
The first half is all about the dynamics of this mixed family – Nathan’s relationship with Leo, Abby’s relationship with Brooke, and all of them in relation to the exes. A little attraction between Nathan and Abby is thrown in to keep it spicy. The second half though is when things crank up.
I’m not going to say anything more than what the blurb does – which is that Brooke goes missing – but it really isn’t a well-kept secret during the early part of the book. There are red flags every step of the way but it isn’t a mystery as much as it is suspenseful. And just because things are blatantly telegraphed doesn’t make them any less interesting.
I’m sure there will be some people who find a few issues with the potential repercussions from their little adventure (I always think of the movie Speed and Keanu’s comment that a relationship based on intense experiences can’t last) but the ride is fun and I was happy at the end … so who cares.