This book is chock-full of feel goods, perfect for when you want to cozy up and fall madly in love. One of our protagonists, Jesse, has two kids, and works near Pigeon Forge by the Great Smoky Mountains in Tennessee as a jewelry designer. I have to admit, given those stats, it was hard for me to imagine Jesse as the incredibly open-minded man that he is, but he is sort of a rebel, and wonderfully gay. Christopher is oh-my-god delicious. Tall, dirty-blond hair, green eyes, and a signer in a band (also plays guitar and piano)!
Their relationship has it’s hurdles, mainly because both of their families are kinda – to extremely – crappy. Jesse’s kids come into the equation too, and make things difficult. I’ve read some reviews where people have complained about the complexity and near hopelessness of their situation, but really? This is life, people. Life sucks and people are dicks. For me, these horrible moments helped ground me in the reality of the book. If you think about it, do you really want a book where only good things happen? Where’s the conflict? The drama and strife are what makes the victories sweeter and yes, the sex hotter.
Speaking of sex, Leta Blake writes some hot lovin’. She blew me out of the water in “Training Season”, had me dancing in my pants in “The River Leith”, and in “Smoky Mountain Dreams”? I’ll never look at a string of pearls the same again – oh my! I did mention that I want to tie Christopher up and do naughty things to him, right? Right.
I had my honeymoon in the Smokies. We stayed in a log cabin too big for two people, rode horses, and hiked around. National parks are a bit different out east than they are in the west. I wasn’t prepared for the carnival-like atmosphere surrounding the park. I’m glad I visited, however, and my experiences helped ground me in the world of this book. If I hadn’t been there, I’m not sure what I would have made of the jewelry shops or cotton candy or rock stars. It probably would have baffled me to have a national park and a carnival that close together, or I would have pictured something incredibly different. But now I know. You have to see Dollywood to believe it.
But it’s not hard for me to believe that Leta Blake wrote another five-star novel. She’s just that good. Check her out.