Change of Plans
by Dylan Newton
Release Date: August 1, 2023
Reviewed by PJ
Oh my gosh, I loved this book so much. All three Matthews brothers' stories have been fun but Ryker's story, in this third book of the trilogy, is my favorite.
These characters - Ryker, Bryce, and all three girls - will not leave me anytime soon. Newton absolutely nailed all five of them. They are so vividly depicted, and wonderfully developed, that by the time I was halfway through the book I had totally forgotten that they were fictional. They had me laughing out loud, cringing with embarrassment, aching for all of their hurting hearts, and cheering them on to a happy ending.
I loved how Bryce responded to Ryker's war wounds, both physical and emotional, helping him deal with them better instead of burrowing into his previous hermit life. These two developed a strong connection in addition to deepening romantic feelings. The scenes between Ryker and the girls and Bryce and the girls were especially heart-tugging and had me both laughing and crying, sometimes at the same time. Newton guided them through grief, fear, anger, growth, acceptance, and love as they slowly rediscovered their joy and came together to form a solid, united, family unit looking forward to the future. Even the disapproving parents of Bryce's late sister-in-law had enough growth for me to actually like them by the end of the book. Nothing like a full week with the grandkids to alter those feelings of superiority. ;-)
The other members of the Matthews family weave in and out of this book, giving fans of the series a chance to catch up with their favorite couples. However, if you haven't started the series yet you really can jump in at any point without feeling lost or confused. If you enjoy emotional stories brimming with plenty of humor, meddling family members, charming small towns, and heartwarming romance, I enthusiastically recommend Change of Plans as well as the first two books in this series, How Sweet it Is and All Fired Up.