Christmas is a time for family…

A mystery brings Ally Monroe to the idyllic seaside town of Cape Hope, North Carolina. On the quest to find out more about the father who abandoned her, Ally has no intention of getting too involved in the community. Only Cape Hope has a way of drawing people in and, before Ally knows it, she’s falling hard and fast in love with the whole town and its old-fashioned, charming ways – and particularly local single-dad Luke Miller and his adorable daughter Stella.

Volunteer firefighter Luke has been single since his wife died in childbirth six years earlier, making Stella his sole priority. But there’s something compelling about the beautiful out-of-towner and, before long, both Luke and his daughter are welcoming Ally into their home.

She came to Cape Hope looking for family and instead Ally found her way to Luke and Stella– but will they still want her when they realize she’s been lying to them about who she really is and what she’s doing in town?

Titles in the Cape Hope series include – Christmas with the Firefighter

Title:  Christmas with the Firefighter
Series:  Cape Hope #1
Author:  Clare Connelly
Genre:  Contemporary Romance, Christmas Romance
Published:  October 22, 2019
Publisher:  Tule Publishing
My Rating:  4 stars

CHRISTMAS WITH THE FIREFIGHTER is an emotional opening story to the Cape Hope series, and I’ll definitely be following this series.  Yet, in order to give a frank review without major spoilers, I do need to say that Ally triggered one of my annoyance reactions quite strongly and that shaded how I saw her throughout this story,  It’s in the Cover Description so it’s not a spoiler but I will immediately react to someone who is lying throughout falling in love with not only Luke but with Stella as well.  I “got” Ally’s reasons, in her mind at least, but it went on for far too long for me to overlook it as “necessary”.  And, again, I understand why it was taking her so long to confess to Luke.  For some people, like me, this fact will matter and have an impact on how Ally is seen.  We all make choices, and this was a choice that could have cost Ally some very important people in her life, even if, at the time, she felt the lie was necessary.  I may sound harsh, yet I despise being lied to, and yes, this is an emotional trigger for me.

Setting aside my reaction to Ally/Amy (yes, I can do that), CHRISTMAS WITH THE FIREFIGHTER brought me a story that is emotional, full of people I fell in love with (try not loving little Stella), a quirky small town that I can’t wait to explore in future stories, and a man who has loved hard and lost through no one’s fault who is beginning to fall for another woman after his wife’s death in childbirth.  I enjoyed Luke and Stella so much – and even though Ally was not my favorite person her interactions with Stella won a smile or two from me along the way.  This is a story that touched me, got reactions from me in far different ways, and that I enjoyed enough to want to go back for more stories in this series.  And in the end – isn’t that what a good story is supposed to do?  Get a reaction?  You’ll have to make up your own mind about Ally but I enjoyed this story, even with my dislike of lies.

*I received an e-ARC of this novel from the publisher, Tule Publishing. That does not change what I think of this story. It is my choice to leave a review giving my personal opinion about this book.*

Available for the Kindle