Wednesday, August 15, 2018
Review - - Set the Night on Fire
Set the Night on Fire
By Laura Trentham
Cottonbloom Series - Book 6
Publisher: St. Martin's
Release Date: July 31, 2018
Reviewed by PJ
Ella Boudreaux has a lot to prove to her family, friends, and foes - and to herself. So when her marriage ends she decides to invest her energy and money into a place that brings back some of Ella's happiest memories: the Abbott brothers' garage. Maybe, if she puts her mind to it, she can teach skeptical, stubborn Mack Abbott how to make the business a true success. Which would be a lot easier if the hunky mechanic didn't make her motor run quite so fast...and hot.
Mack was furious when his brother, Ford, sold his share of the business. He's in no rush to team up with a wealthy divorcée who shows up to the garage in stilettos - and the longest, sexiest legs he's seen in forever. But Ella's grit and determination won't quit...and soon Mack can see that she's been down a few rough roads herself. Neither Mack nor Ella can deny the fierce attraction that's revving up between them. Could it be that true love has been in the backseat all along...and they've finally found the key?
For me, each book in Laura Trentham's Cottonbloom series is like a trip home to visit family and friends. Cottonbloom isn't idyllic, with its divided loyalties between the wealthy Mississippi side of the river and the blue-collar Louisiana side, yet it calls to me. Each side brings something unique to the table and the quirky characters plus the crossover couples whose stories have been told in this series continue to bridge the gap and steer their shared-but-separate communities to a brighter future, making Cottonbloom one of my favorite fictional destinations.
One of the things I most enjoy about Trentham's books is her ability to create multi-layered characters who are intriguing and relatable then place them into situations that challenge them. They have to dig deep, evolve, and overcome the obstacles life places in their path, before claiming their happy ending. With each story, I find myself more immersed in their world. I care about these people and I'm totally invested in what happens to them.
Based on page time in the previous two Cottonbloom books (Mack's twin brothers' stories), I wasn't sure what to expect from grouchy, set-in-his-ways, Mack and the rich, apparently snooty Ella who shocks the Abbotts by buying one-quarter of their family garage and restoration business from their estranged brother. I discovered that there is so much more to both Mack and Ella than first appearances would suggest and watching those layers peel away to reveal the truth of their hearts was pure delight.
Trentham doesn't shy away from tough topics - betrayal, abuse, abandonment - but neither does she allow her stories to become too heavy. There's plenty of spark, humor, and hope...not to mention sensual sexy times...in this story. Love triumphs, as does forgiveness, reconciliation, and breaking free from past emotional chains to claim one's own power and happiness.
If you enjoy quirky small towns, witty banter, rich, emotional stories, plenty of sexy times, and characters who will linger in your mind long after you turn the final page, a trip to Laura Trentham's Cottonbloom should be in your future. While there are six books in the series, they are actually two sets of trilogies. Each trilogy stands on its own but I recommend reading the three books within each trilogy in order.
Have you read any of the books in this series?
Do you have a favorite Cottonbloom couple?
Which secondary character(s) would you most like to see get their own story? (I'm hoping for Clayton and Maggie!)