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Review: Sage Creek

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Sage Creek
Author: Jill Gregory 
Release Date: October 4, 2011
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
ISBN: #978-0425244470
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Format(s): Paperback (304 pgs), e-book
Book Source: Publisher 
About the book:
After her marriage falls apart, catering whiz Sophie McPhee returns to the Good Luck ranch in her hometown of Lonesome Way, planning to steer clear of men and focus on her new bakery, A Bun in the Oven. But she doesn’t expect to see bad-boy Rafe Tanner — her first crush (and her best friend’s brother), now a single father running his family’s ranch. But is Rafe a changed man?
Rafe hasn’t seen Sophie since she was his little sister’s pesky best friend, and he’s stunned to discover she’s grown into an irresistibly beautiful woman. But Rafe has been hurt too. Though they both have their guards up, Rafe and Sophie seem to melt in each other’s company. Can they finally admit that home is truly where the heart is?
What Ang is talking about:
I read this book not knowing it was a part of a series and must admit that I was disappointed to learn there was more to come from Montana, not because the story or characters were bad but because I felt like it took away from the story of Sophie and Rafe.  I felt like the author was taking a wonderful stand alone novel and tacking a few extra paragraphs on the end of it to turn it into a series and continue selling books and that disappointed me given the strength of Sage Creek.
This book was fun filled with rich descriptions right from the get go. The Montana back drop was a stunning and perfect back drop for this story of loss, love and learning to let go in order to find love again.  As a woman who has lived through divorce and betrayal I felt like Gregory captured the heartbreak, confusion, self discovery, rebuilding and healing of loss, divorce and relationships as a whole beautifully in the characters of Sophie and Rafe. The other characters, with the exception of Crenshaw, added lovely layers to the story. I found the themes of forgiveness, learning to trust one’s self and learning when to follow one’s heart and when to follow ones head to be consistent throughout the book and the various characters from Sophie and Rafe to Ivy and Diana all of which wove a beautiful tapestry of home and heart.
My complaints are few but I did feel like the story of Crenshaw was unnecessary at best. Although he provided occasional color and some great hero opportunities for Rafe he did little to add to the actual story line and only stirred up a hornets’ nest of issues that will need to be resolved in other books. This is  perfect I suppose for further books but since I was reading it without realizing there were more stories to come I found it to be distracting. I felt the same way about the way Tanner and Mia’s baggage was tacked on to the end of chapter twenty-eight, it took away from the moment and distracted me from the happily ever after that was beginning.
All that being said I would recommend this to a friend. I found the characters to fun, the story line to be entertaining, the scenery breathtaking and the romance sweet and spicy all at the same time. All of which make for a lovely distraction on a rainy afternoon. I would, however, tell anyone considering a read of Sage Creek to be forewarned, if you are looking for a novel that stands alone stop at the end of chapter twenty-seven if you are looking to start a series keep reading until the end.
Until next time Happy Reading!
Angs Rating:
Liked it a lot – recommend (B+)

Purchase Information:

Sage Creek (Lonesome Way)

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