Blue Hollow Falls #1
by Donna Kauffman
From her free-spirited mother, Sunny Goodwin learned the value of peace, love, and Jerry Garcia. The inheritance from the father she never knew? That’s a little more complicated…
Sunny never expected to find herself owning a centuries old silk mill in the shadow of Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains . . . or becoming a half-sister to a ten-year-old named Bailey. Once the shock subsides, she plans to cash in and head back home. But the overgrown greenhouse she finds on the property calls out to the gardener in her, and she senses Bailey’s need for nurturing too…
And someone else is making it hard for Sunny to leave: Sawyer Hartwell, an Iraq War hero who wants to make the old mill a creative hub for the artisans of Blue Hollow Falls . . . and wants Sunny to share his vision, and his life. But sexy as this ex-soldier may be, she’s not sure she’s ready to give love a chance…
Kauffman’s newest is just as much women’s fiction as it is romance, which works so-very-well. While Sunny and Sawyer dance around their attraction, there is an entire group of adorable characters who are finding their way in a new family dynamic.
Shortly after losing her mother and finding herself pretty much alone in the world, Sunny discovers that she actually has a family and inherited a share of an old silk mill. She’s spent most of her life being a care-giver to her mother and now she’s finally (and guiltily) exploring her freedom. With the addition of siblings and assorted non-blood family, though, she’s got to decide whether she’s ready to get involved again.
Sawyer may find himself drawn to Sunny but she’s dealing with so much and her life is a few hours away. Getting involved can only lead to complications … but he’s finding her hard to resist.
As appealing as these two are, though, it’s the secondary characters that tend to steal the show. I love seeing Bailey, Sunny’s half-sister, reveal her too cute middle-aged woman in a little girl’s body personality. And it’s obvious that both Sawyer’s and Sunny’s delightful best friends are due for their own story (not sure yet if it is together or separate).
As the start of a new series there is a good amount of description and quite a few characters introduced, which may be a bit much for some. But those who enjoy stories with small-town romances and family-dynamics will appreciate the world that Kauffman creates and look forward to what comes next.