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cover48763-medium“A delicious treat. Don’t miss a visit to Apple Valley!” –Emily March, New York Times bestselling author

In Apple Valley, Washington, true friends are never far, neighbors can help heal the loneliest hearts–and longed-for dreams can unexpectedly become real . . .

Charlotte Garrison’s second chance is falling into place just like she’s carefully planned. A few more sales of her heavenly sweets and she’ll be able to turn the empty shop on Main Street into her own bakery–a plan much more sensible than ever again risking her heart. But when a rambunctious three-year-old girl lands on town deputy Max Stanford’s doorstep, Charlotte finds helping the good-looking deputy care for her is sparking the most impossible dreams . . .

Max has never been much for settling down. But while he finds out if little Zuzu is really his daughter, Charlotte’s warmth and caring makes him want to prove he’s worthy of her trust. And as they struggle to come to terms with their pasts, Max will do whatever it takes to show Charlotte home is where dreams come true–and he and Zuzu are all the love and home she’ll ever need.

I haven’t read any other books set in Apple Valley but I think maybe I should have.  The Cottage on the Corner is super sweet and innocent – with just a few kisses and some lustful thoughts, it is more about the characters’ emotions.  Not only do we have an attraction between Charlotte & Max, McCoy gives us precocious Zuzu for fun.  And there’s a ton of good, old-fashioned friendships thrown in to remind readers that love comes in so very many forms.

I will say that my only complaint is that the ending doesn’t wrap things up in a cute little package.  I know that most series have a little bleed between the books, and maybe I’ll get my resolution in the next one, but I would have liked an epilogue or another chapter.  I mean, it is a romance so you know that the hero and heroine get together at the end (or at least they do in the romances I read :)), but I just needed that little bit more here.

The rest of it, though, was fantastic. The characters are lively with realistic problems and feelings.  The town is quintessential small-town America, where everyone knows your name and pokes their nose in your business.  I found myself engaged right along with Max and Charlotte as they dealt with their fears and troubles, growing and changing as they evaluated what they wanted for themselves and their lives.

With The Cottage on the Corner, McCoy delivers a story with heart-warming impact, an enticing writing style, and good flow.  The charm of her town and characters pulled me right in and will have me keeping an eye out for the next book in the series (and going back to pick up The House on Main Street as soon as I can).