Once Upon a Cabin
by Patience Griffin
Sweet Home, Alaska - Book 2
Release Date: November 30, 2021
Reviewed by PJ
Two sisters from Texas find themselves exiled to Alaska...and thrown into the arms of two very different men.
Tori and McKenna St. James have living comfortably on their trust funds in Dallas. But their Uncle Monty, keeper of the purse strings, decides to push them out of their comfort zones by requiring them to spend one year in Alaska or lose their inheritance. Initially the sisters are stunned, but they aren't willing to back down from the challenge.
Tori is sent to a primitive homestead outside the tiny town of Sweet Home. She had been prepared to forego fashion magazines and lattes, but not electricity and running water! Will her rugged wilderness guide, Jesse Montana, teach her to survive, or send her fleeing back to civilization? Meanwhile, outdoorsy McKenna is stuck within the concrete walls of an Anchorage bank. Her sexy boss Luke McAvoy is tasked with teaching her the business but what he's really doing is tempting her. Not that she's the type to fall for a stuffed suit like him.
Tori and McKenna find much needed solace with Sweet Home's Sisterhood of the Quilt. Will this crafty group of women be up to the challenge of teaching two outsides how to sew -- and perhaps how to love?
I love a fish out of water story and this book gave me two for the price of one. Griffin takes readers back to the small Alaska town of Sweet Home for another enjoyable story with very little steam but a whole lot of feelings.
While both Tori and McKenna have journeys of growth, self-discovery, and romance in the book, it's Tori's story that took precedence for me. McKenna has always been a strong and confident woman while Tori's asthma and severe allergies have kept her in a "protected" status within the family. Being thrown into the unknown without her sister by her side tests both women in different ways.
I enjoyed the push and pull between Tori and Jesse as well as the sparks that stayed just at the edge of igniting. I also liked how he advocated for her without undermining her independence. Of course, he's not perfect and there were times I wasn't so fond of him but he comes through in the end. As a couple I was pulling for them all the way but it was Tori's individual journey that really tugged at my heart. I loved her evolution, much of which came about with the support and assistance of the women of Sweet Home. I also enjoyed the shifting dynamic and more equitable relationship between the sisters as a result of that evolution.
I'm already looking forward to my next visit to Sweet Home, especially after reading the teaser at the end of Once Upon a Cabin. I love second-chance romances and it's looking like that will be at the heart of book three. I'm hoping for plenty of community interaction, including Tori, Jesse, McKenna, Luke and other favorite Sweet Home citizens from the first two books.
Readers can enjoy Once Upon a Cabin as a standalone but I also recommend book one, One Snowy Night, featuring Hope McKnight and Donovan Stone. You'll be seeing both of them, especially Hope, in book two.