This is the first contemporary I've read all year. In fact, I think it's the first contemporary I've read since October 2014, which was quite awhile ago. But when I saw this on NetGalley, it was available as a 'Read Now' book and I decided to give it a try.
Autumn Getaway is the first book in the Seasons of Love series by Jennifer Gracen. All four books have been published and continue to follow our main characters from this book.
Publication Date: March 27, 2014
Lydia Powell has just signed the divorce papers and is using her college roommate's wedding as a chance to have a relaxing 3-day weekend at a gorgeous hotel. There, she meets the handsome, charming Sam Forrester, who can't help but catch her eye whenever he's around, and yet the ink is barely dry on her divorce papers. But with some prodding from her girlfriends, Lydia decides to give Sam - and love - a chance.
I was excited to pick this up and have something nice and light to read, after all the Mystery & Thriller books I've been reading and reviewing. The idea of a romantic contemporary appealed to me, and I thought it was about time to pick up another contemporary, seeing as the last one I read was in October, 2014.
The structure of the book confused me for a few moments before I understood what the author was doing. Don't worry, it's nothing super confusing or complicated. Jennifer Gracen simply chose to format her chapters in a more unique method, which makes this book stand out quite a bit. And I ended up liking how she formatted her chapters. That being said, I did get a little confused at times when she switched character POVs really suddenly. One moment, it would be Lydia's perspective, and the next, it would be someone else's. Sometimes the change was as sudden as the beginning of a new paragraph, while other times the transition would be better. But that might just be the fact that I read an e-ARC and it hadn't been fully revised or edited yet.
I liked the plot of the book, seeing as it was the beginning of a new part of our protagonist, Lydia's, life and started off with a very positive feeling. The idea of a 3-day weekend at a beautiful hotel, with a handsome, single man nearby, pulled at the hopeless romantic in me. And after finding out more of the characters' backstories, I was rooting for them even more.
I think that the last chapter has to be my favorite out of all of them. The way things concluded and the set-up for the next book just made me smile so much.
I like Lydia. She's a strong woman, especially seeing how she came out of her recent divorce. Not to mention the fact that she has a son back home, who has mild speech difficulties. But none of that seemed to affect her choice to have a positive outlook on life and her refusal to bear a grudge against her ex-husband. I also loved that she's a avid reader; it made me feel a better connection with her, despite the large age difference between myself and Lydia.
I did also really like Sam, whom I found to be charming, confidant, and an absolute gentleman. Those three qualities are almost guaranteed to make me like any character immediately. And in Sam's case, it just made me like him more and more as the book progressed. I also really liked the fact that he was incredibly supportive of Lydia and didn't shun her because she's a recent divorcee and single mother to a 3 year-old son.
4 stars and very highly recommended if you just want a quick, romantic, sweet contemporary to read. I will warn of some steamy scenes, particularly in the last 1/3 of the book, but nothing distasteful or highly inappropriate
Thank you to NetGalley for hosting this on your site. Thank you also to BookTrope Editions for publishing this and putting this up on NetGalley, accepting my request, and allowing me to review this book.