Series: Hart's Boardwalk #1
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publication date: September 6, 2016
Format: eARC, 382 pages
How I got it: From the publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes
Welcome to Hartwell, a quiet seaside escape where uncovering old secrets could lead one woman to discover the meaning of a love that lasts…
While Doctor Jessica Huntington engages with the inmates at the women’s correctional facility where she works, she’s always careful to avoid emotional attachments in her personal life. Loss and betrayal taught her that lesson long ago. But when she comes across a set of old love letters in the prison’s library and visits the picturesque town of Hartwell to deliver them to their intended recipient, she finds herself unable to resist the town’s charm—and her attraction to the sexy owner of a local bar proves equally hard to deny.
Since his divorce from his unfaithful ex-wife, Cooper Lawson has focused on what really matters: his family and the boardwalk pub they’ve owned for generations. But the first time Jessica steps into his bar, Cooper is beyond tempted to risk his heart on her. Yet as their attraction grows hotter and Jessica remains stubbornly closed off, he begins to realize it will take more than just passion to convince her there’s only one real thing in life worth fighting for….
I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
I loved Samantha Young’s On Dublin Street series and, since it ended, I’ve been waiting to see what she would give us next. I’ve been excited about The One Real Thing since I first read the blurb. I’m such a sucker for small town settings and this one sounded magical and romantic. And you know what? It was.
I was totally wrapped up in this book from the first few pages. I loved Jessica. Her reasons for going to Hartwell might’ve been unconventional, but I enjoyed seeing how she and her life changed as a result of this trip. I know all about finding “home” in a place you never expected and about giving your life a little kickstart, so I felt like I really got her. And, let’s be honest, I fell in love with pretty much everything about Hartwell, myself. From its romantic legend to its colorful characters to the setting in general, I adored it. I understood why Jessica did, too. Of course, Cooper played a part in that, even if Jessica didn’t want to admit it in the beginning. He was so swoony. I’m not sure how Jessica was able to resist him as long as she did. But, that said, I loved how natural things were between them. Their chemistry was intense from the very start, but I still liked that they got to know each other and just … became more.
All that said, there were a lot of secrets being kept in this book. Neither Jessica nor Cooper were exactly forthcoming when it came to the messier parts of their pasts. To some extent, I got it. But there was always a part of me screaming internally because I didn’t want to see them screw things up in the present over their pasts. With those secrets came plenty of twists, too. I’m not often legitimately surprised in romance novels, but I was here.
I enjoyed this book so much. It was sexy and swoony as all get out. The small seaside town won me over – and so did most of its residents – and I can’t wait to see more from both in the coming novels in this series. I’m already looking forward to Every Little Thing… Bailey and Vaughn FTW. Something tells me I might enjoy their story EVEN more. This was such a strong start to a great new series from a beloved author. I hope you’ll pick this one up.
“If you’re destined for true love, you’ll find it on the boardwalk.”
How the hell was I supposed to resist temptation if temptation had every intention of being irresistible?
“People can do extraordinary things to save the ones they love.”
Did you read this book?
Will you be reading the Hart’s Boardwalk series?