Saturday, July 12, 2014

Up to Me by Christi Barth

Owner of Mayhew Manor in New York’s Finger Lakes, Ella Mayhew never wanted to be a hotel proprietor, but after the death of her parents, this became her family’s legacy she was obligated to honor.

When sexy Gray Locke books a two week stay at the Manor, Ella is instantly smitten by the chemistry she feels. The two agree to “non-date” and Gray is both enamored and perplexed by her friends and the small town antics, and this is the first time he desires more than just a hook up.

Gray, however, has been lying “by omission” to Ella, as he is actually undercover as a corporate realignment specialist; in other words, his job is to determine if the Manor is a good investment for his company to either take over or destroy. If Ella discovers the truth behind Gray’s visit, she will never forgive him, even though he wants nothing more than to maker Ella happy and help her save the Manor that means so much to her.

The quirky small town atmosphere of Barth’s (Aisle Bound series) first of a planned trilogy delights, and the community journal where town members weigh in on a dilemma you pose only adds to the charm. Even though the outcome is predictable, the journey getting there is romantic and affecting.

Originally published in Xpress Reviews: E-Originals | First Look at New Books, July 31, 2014

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