Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing), Forever
Date of publication: February 25th, 2020
Series: Sweetwater Springs
A Wedding on Lavender Hill—Book 1.5
Kiss Me in Sweetwater Springs—Book 2.5
USA Today bestselling author Annie Rains welcomes you back to Sweetwater Springs, North Carolina, with a charming friends-to-lovers story between a sexy fireman and the beautiful woman who mends his heart.
Should they fan the flames or douse this fire before someone gets seriously burned?
Firefighter Luke Marini moved to the small town of Sweetwater Springs with the highest of hopes – new town, new job, and new neighbors who know nothing of his past. And that’s just how he wants to keep it. But it’s nearly impossible when the gorgeous brunette next door decides to be the neighborhood welcome wagon. She’s sugar, spice, and everything nice – but getting close to someone again is playing with fire.
Brenna McConnell put college on hold to raise her little sister. Now that Eve is grown, Brenna is ready to leave Blueberry Creek and finish what she started. Moving on isn’t easy, however, when her gruff new neighbor gives Eve a dangerous firefighting job. And yet, even as Brenna is telling him off for putting her sister in harm’s way, she can’t deny the sizzling chemistry between them. She put her dreams on hold once. Is she willing to make that sacrifice again for a chance at forever?
The aroma of sugar, spice, and butter filled Brenna McConnell’s kitchen.Starting Over at Blueberry Creek by Annie Rains
I was curious about who the romance would be centered around in Starting Over at Blueberry Creek. So, I was excited when I saw that it was going to be Brenna’s romance. I had been curious about her backstory, and of course, I wanted to see who her true love would be.
Now, I did like Starting Over at Blueberry Creek. I loved Brenna and Luke’s romance. I loved how they interacted. Heck, I even loved the dog. But, it was Eve and Ryan that almost killed the book for me. Let me explain why.
Eve was a brat. I get that she was a teenager, but she acted like she was a child for most of the book. Eve had zero sympathy for Brenna. She also acted like a child on the job. She wants to be a firefighter, yet on her first call, she runs into a burning building to save kittens. And after Luke told her not to? Oh, and let’s not forget that she was caught drinking underage by her boss. If you couldn’t tell, I didn’t like her.
Ryan is the other one who scenes almost killed the book. He had appeared in previous books, and I know his backstory. I felt terrible for him, and I was thrilled that he got a job. Ryan was one of the most immature, insubordinate secondary characters I have ever read (well, next to Eve). The things he did in this book would have gotten him fired in real life. I knew quite a few firefighters, and I can confidently say that the stuff Ryan pulled would have gotten him fired.
I did like Brenna, and I thought that her character did a lot of growth throughout the book. She was a good person, and it showed. Not a lot of college-aged girls would willingly drop out of college to raise their pre-teen sisters. She dealt with Eve’s crap well, even though she wondered where she went wrong. By the end of the book, she was a better person for her experiences.
I liked Luke. His backstory was so tragic. I knew something was up when he glossed over the fire. But I wasn’t expecting what he revealed. I loved how close he was to his family too. I thought he was a great acting fire chief. I did think he was a little too lenient with Ryan and Eve. While I didn’t like his insecurities, I did like that the author chose to have him realistically handle them.
Luke and Brenna’s relationship was perfect. I liked that they were open and honest with each other from the beginning. I also liked that they both wanted to bring it to the next step. What I liked the most is that they talked through their issues like adults instead of acting like children. The only time they did that was when Eve was hurt, and even then, Brenna’s emotions were all over the place.
The sex scenes in Starting Over at Blueberry Creek were discreetly written. I liked that. Instead of getting graphic, the author let me imagine what was going on in bed. That didn’t take away from the story at all. Instead, it allowed me to focus on Brenna and Luke’s relationship.
I did figure that Brenna was going to go down the path she did with her job. I called it from the beginning. Not that it was a bad thing, I liked seeing her seesaw back and forth before doing what was right for her. Of course, what happened towards the end of that storyline was a given.
Starting Over at Blueberry Creek is the 4th book in the Sweetwater Springs series. You can read this as a stand-alone. But, I would read the previous three books. That way, you can understand the different friendships and everything else.
The end of Starting Over at Blueberry Creek was your typical HEA. I loved it. What I liked, even more, was that epilogue. Talk about making me cry!!! I also like that I think I know who the next book will feature.
I would give Starting Over at Blueberry Creek an Adult rating. There is non-graphic sex. There is mild language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.
I would reread Starting Over at Blueberry Creek. I would recommend it to family and friends.
**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**