The worlds of thoroughbred racing and high-end wine-making provide a backdrop to this novel that mixes international romance with a mysterious death.
Meredith Montgomery is always racing to something, whether it’s a meeting to talk about her new wine that’s about to launch or to hit the trails in preparation for another marathon. She’s the kind of woman who seems to have it all—but that description also includes breast cancer. A second bout with the disease has Meredith running scared. Before she undergoes surgery, she takes what she hopes will be a quick trip to Edinburgh to do some research on her family’s winery. There, she runs into an intriguing character, thoroughbred breeder Elliott Fraser.
The two are immediately attracted to one another, but their ties to their work and their smartphones threaten their budding romance. The second novel in the Fraser family story proves that author Logan (The Ruby Brooch, 2012) has a smooth, sincere storytelling style that turns what could be an ordinary romance into much more.
The heroes, Meredith and Elliott, are extremely human despite their wealth and power. Meredith is wounded from a bad marriage and her cancer trauma, and Elliott is recovering from a past attack on his life and reeling from a current attack on his horses, which could cost him his family business. When the two ultimately get together, their volatile love is strained by their inability to relinquish control—which is part of the reason the story works, since every time it looks like the couple is going to succeed, a realistic problem gets in their way.
At times, however, the book wanders into typical romance land with silly plotlines (one involving a ghost that interferes in everyone’s lives) and a rather easily solved mystery plot. Despite these minor flaws, though, the amount of rich dialogue, smart detailing and evocative descriptions make it easy to focus on the fun love story being told so well.
A human and humorous look at two headstrong characters battling the challenges that come with falling in love.