Title: The Last in Love (Book 5 in the Ardent Springs series)
Author: Terri Osburn
Release date: 2017
Medium: E-book (Kindle Unlimited)
My grade: B
I believe this is the last book in the series, though the end of it hints that if the author could make it a six book series if she wanted to. This one focuses on Abby Williams, a widow of two years who ends up falling for a man five years younger than her – and someone she used to babysit back in high school. Justin Donovan is recently home after having lost his job, his fiancée and best friend. Both Abby and Justin have some issues to work through.
The book in general is good. The pacing is a little off, but not so much that it really bothered me. It was a nice lazy morning read. Some of the accessory characters (such as Justin’s former fiancée and best friend) are a bit flat as well. It did well to tie up some loose ends from previous books in the series, as well as tie up overall arcs (such as the Ruby Theater, and Carrie’s women’s shelter).
I did like the theme of women discovering themselves, and building each other up. Other then Victoria, most of the women in this novel are friends or at least friendly towards each other. Sometimes when you pick up novels (and definitely tv shows) there is this inclination to make cat fights or have a love triangle where the two women don’t get along because they are fighting over a guy. This novel stays free of that for the most part.
So if you enjoy low-key romances, I can recommend this book. Terri Osburn in general is a good author and I have enjoyed both the series that I have read from her. Many of her novels are available on Kindle Unlimited if you subscribe to that service.
Title: Her Hopes and Dreams
Author: Terri Osburn
Publication: November 15, 2016 (Kindle/Kindle Unlimted Edition)
Please note: This novel contains references to PTSD and other trauma-induced psychological issues (One character has PTSD from military related events, another from being abused by their spouse). If you feel triggered by this, please skip this book.
I was a bit underwhelmed by this addition to the series. Carrie Farmer’s story has been a back plot along most of the first three books. In the first book we are introduced to her as Spencer’s ex-wife, who is being abused by her second husband. In the second and third books she is adjusting to being a widow, a single mother, and being free from abuse. In the last book in particular, she starts to focus on helping others who are in similar situation by creating a shelter for the area with Haleigh and her mother.
In this book, we get her point of view and see how she is adjusting. She seems to have settled into her life, but she is determined, sometimes against her own safety, to help other women. She meets her next door neighbor, Nathan, who happens to be an old childhood friend of her late husband. They get off to an awkward start due to Nate not knowing what had gone on while he had been away at war. There is also the aspect that both of them have trauma-induced psychological issues that they have to deal with.
The story is enjoyable, although it seems at times to be overly optimistic. I do like the fact that Ms Osburn brings up the idea that people with PTSD and other trauma-induced psychological disorders can find a happy life. The idea that it can be relived by finding “the one” seems a little misleading because it puts a lot of pressure on the significant other, but considering this is a romance novel, and the concept that love heals everything is a trope we all tend to find/write into these books.
There is a fifth book in this series, but it won’t be released till May 2017, so look for it under the ‘bookit 2017’ tag on this blog or the Terri Osburn tag.
Title: My One & Only
Author: Terri Osburn
Publication: May 17, 2016 (Kindle Edition/Unlimited Edition)
This is the third book in Ms Osburn’s Ardent Springs Series, and I reviewed the first two books earlier when I was doing my reviews on Bubblews. Sadly since that website is down I can’t link back to those reviews, but I enjoyed the first two books and was happy to see that she had two more books (and one in the works) for this series.
In this particular one, we go to one of my favorite romance novel cliches – old friends who finally notice one another as something more than friends. Although in this case its more they notice they might be able to take the chance more than just notice one another. It also has a focus on a few issues. Haleigh, the main female character, is a recovering alcoholic with relationship issues with her mother, Meredith, who has some issues of her own to overcome over the course of this novel. Abby, the sister of Cooper (the main male character in this novel) is dealing with grief after the death of her husband and it affects the various characters in different way. And a side plot involving a young mother trying to find her own family with the help of Haleigh, Copper and Abby and their Ardent Springs friends.
This book was enjoyable. My only issue was the fact that sometimes the issues seemed circular. Instead of movie along, it just repeated itself. Which I suppose, given the obstacles involved is just the way things work but sometimes It felt like we had just had this scene already. That is why I gave it a B. It also made Haleigh have objections to various things and then have her not explain why or it disappears later in the novel and nothing is said as to why she changed her mind.
My next bookit review is the fourth book in this series, Her Hope and Dreams which should be posted on Wednesday. I am looking forward to the yet unpublished 5th book, which is Abby’s story, which may fill in some of the blanks of this story.