Format: Bound copy (won on GoodReads)
Release Date: February 28, 2012
Purchase Links: Amazon l Kindle l Barnes and Noble l Nook
Lucy Marinn is a glass artist living in mystical, beautiful, Friday Harbor, Washington. She is stunned and blindsided by the most bitter kind of betrayal: her fiancé Kevin has left her. His new lover is Lucy’s own sister. Lucy's bitterness over being dumped is multiplied by the fact that she has constantly made the wrong choices in her romantic life. Facing the severe disapproval of Lucy's parents, Kevin asks his friend Sam Nolan, a local vineyard owner on San Juan Island, to "romance" Lucy and hopefully loosen her up and get her over her anger. Complications ensue when Sam and Lucy begin to fall in love, Kevin has second thoughts, and Lucy discovers that the new relationship in her life began under false pretenses. Questions about love, loyalty, old patterns, mistakes, and new beginnings are explored as Lucy learns that some things in life—even after being broken—can be made into something new and beautiful.
The Friday Harbor series centers on three brothers, Mark, Sam and Alex Nolan who, throughout their childhood had been used as pawns in their parents' tumultuous marriage, and are now content to live their lives separately with no commitments to each other or women. To worsen matters, they have been dealt a devastating blow; their sister Victoria was killed in an accident and has left her young daughter, Holly, in Mark's care (Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor).
Rainshadow Road is the second book of the series and focuses on Vintner Sam Nolan and glass artist Lucy Marinn.
Lucy thought she had it all, a home in Friday Harbor, a job creating beautiful glass works and a boyfriend she believed was her soul mate. Then in one moment, reality comes crashing down. She finds out her boyfriend Kevin has been cheating on her... With her own sister! Feeling betrayed, Lucy begins to question herself and her ability to make romantic decisions, so when Sam Nolan begins "romancing" Lucy at the request of her cheating ex, she doesn't know what to make of it.
Neither Sam nor Lucy want to begin a relationship but they can't help the sparks that fly between them or the circumstances that are forcing them to spend time together.
I really enjoyed this book, Lucy was more realistic to me as a female character, what she was going through and her doubts were legitimate and ones that almost every woman has felt or thought in at least one moment of her life.
The book was well paced, Sam and Lucy were likable characters and I liked seeing Mark Nolan again too. I loved that Sam wasn't always as confident with regards to Lucy as he liked to believe, he had his moments of insecurity and flat out panic which made him more human to me instead of some perfect demi-god who always knows what he wants and pursues Lucy out of selfishness.
As I said in my review of Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor, this book is NOT like Lisa Kleypas' historical romances but that doesn't mean Rainshadow Road isn't a good book. It is, just in it's own way. Don't pick up either book expecting it to read like her historical romances because it doesn't. What it does do is engage you with two really likable, hurting characters who find themselves stumbling through life, first apart and then together even when they don't realize it.
My only criticism, and really, it's more of a personal opinion at that, is the way Lucy forgave her childish, whiny and all around annoying sister Alice, for what she did. In all honesty, if that had been my sister that had gone behind my back with my boyfriend, well, she wouldn't have any teeth or hair left. It's a trust thing :)
I recommend this book to those who like emotional angst, likable characters and witty dialogue.