What it’s about
New York Times bestselling author RaeAnne Thayne brings you back to Haven Point—a place made for second chances…
McKenzie Shaw would do anything for her beloved hometown of Haven Point. It may be small and struggling, but it's never let her down…unlike gorgeous, infuriating Ben Kilpatrick. He was her childhood hero until he closed his family's factory, leaving the town's economy in shambles. Now he's back—his tech firm is considering opening a local facility. For Haven Point's sake, McKenzie has to grit her teeth and play nice.
What could a town filled with painful memories ever offer Ben? He left Haven Point behind years ago, for good reason. Yet seeing the town through the eyes of McKenzie—its fiery young mayor—he suddenly has his answer. If only he can resolve the animosity crackling between them, Ben may have found the place where he can build ties and find healing…a place where love arrives when it's least expected.
2 Stars! Such a disappointment.
As much as it pains me to say this, Redemption Bay was not an enjoyable book. One of the things I love about RaeAnne Thayne's writing is her ability to engage a reader and allow them to feel, see the good in people, and journey with them as they overcome the obstacles that life has thrown at them. Well...I felt alright...I felt a lot of animosity towards the heroine, Mac, and found Redemption Bay to be an exhausting and aggravating read.
I don't know what it is about this series and the judgmental female protagonists and townspeople. I've never gotten that vibe in any of this author's other books and series, and I have read quite a few of them. In her Hope's Crossing series, which precedes Haven Point, I found every book a delight to read. While the main characters might have struggled in the beginning with their relationships, I never felt the hostile attitude from the featured couple, or I should say heroines, that I'm finding here. In Snow Angel Cove, the first book in the Haven Point series, I had issue with this same aspect, but fortunately the heroine redeemed herself, almost to late, but I did end up enjoying the book. Here however, even after Mac finds out the truth about the boat factory, Ben's reasons for closing shop, and what he did for the employees, which I thought was above and beyond his responsibility, Mac still ragged on him. She just couldn't see past her own bitterness and preconceived notions about Ben and allow herself to see what a good man he was. Her expectations of him were ridiculous! I wanted to reach inside the book, grab hold of her and shake some sense into her thick skull. She annoyed the heck out of me as well as a lot of the townspeople. I honestly didn't care if their town fell down around them, that's how much they grated on me, and Mac was their ringleader.
For all that Mac annoyed me, I loved, loved Ben...he was a gem, and so swoonworthy!! For the life of me I can't understand why the author couldn't give him someone who was worthy of this love, because I think he should have run screaming from Mac! I adored him, appreciated his thoughtfulness, and hated that so many people treated him like a leper. He had such a difficult childhood, and the reasons behind it is disclosed, and I found it to be incredibly sad. It's a wonder he had the ability to care so much about others the way he did.
Another plus was watching Ben's growing attachment to Hondo, and revisiting with Aidan, Eliza and Maddie, from Snow Angel Cove.
Unfortunately, I won't remember Redemption Bay as a book that filled me with warmth and hope, as so many of this author's books do, but for the judgmental heroine that I wanted to slap. I understand that not every couple is going to find an immediate attraction to one another, I actually prefer that they don't, it's part of the journey to love and acceptance. But, when it takes nearly 95% of the book for one of the characters to recognize that she's being ridiculous with her unfounded opinion of the person she's supposedly in love with, well that's just a bit too much drama and angst for me.
I'm hoping that the trend I'm seeing in this series takes a turn and the author goes back to writing characters that embrace their differences and help each other to overcome the difficulties that they've faced in the past.
Will I continue to read RaeAnne Thayne's books and the Haven Point series...you bet I will! Not every book is going to please every reader and this author has a proven track record with me. Evergreen Springs (Haven Point, #3) will be out September 2015, and it's definitely on my list of books I'm looking forward to read!
* A copy of the book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley*