Snowfall at Willow Lake by Susan Wiggs Release Date: January 29, 2008 Publisher: MIRA Book #4 in the Lakeshore Chronicles Number of pages: 445 Hardcover Source: Warren Public Library Contemporary Romance M/F Rating: R Read 10/28/18 to 10/30/18
International lawyer Sophie Bellamy has dedicated her life to helping people in war-torn countries. But when she survives a hostage situation, she remembers the children she loves back home. Haunted by regret, she returns to the idyllic Catskills village of Avalon on the shores of Willow Lake, determined to repair the bonds with her family. At Willow Lake, Sophie discovers the surprising rewards of small-town life — including a vivid attraction to Noah Shepherd, the local veterinarian. Noah has a healing touch with four-legged creatures, though he’s never had much luck with women.
There are often times that I wish I could sit and read a whole series, one book after another, until the end. I can have some tea or coffee and snacks readily available and I’d just eat, sip, and read. This series really evokes those feelings in me. Unfortunately, life doesn’t work that way and I often go a long time between books in the Lakeshore Chronicles. That doesn’t mean I don’t love this series and miss the characters while I’m not actively visiting them, because I do.
One character I never thought Susan Wigg would get me to like is Sophie. I’ll admit, I was quite resistant and my temper with her would flare up when she would get a bit “woe is me” about how she was being treated by her kids. I especially had a problem with her having a problem with Nina. But in the end, the author was able to tap into something that made me finally come around to giving Sophie a chance. Part of it is the fact that when Sophie would start feeling sorry for herself, she was woman enough to admit to herself it was her own fault. And, although she didn’t want to be anywhere near Nina, she knew it was not Nina herself that was the deterrent. On top of all that, I realized Sophie was beating herself up enough without having me, as the reader, do it to her too.
Of course, I totally fell in love with Noah right away. What a guy! I’m sure part of the reason Noah and Sophie were able to hit it off so quickly is that Noah knew nothing about her. There were no preconceived notions about what kind of woman she was or judgement on decisions she had made in her life thus far. Yet, getting to know Noah, I don’t know that he would have held any of that against her anyway. Like Sophie observed, Noah is like a big puppy that just wants to give and receive love. He’s so open and lives in the moment. Now, as much as I adore Noah, he did make some “in the moment” moves that I had issues with, as a mom. Nothing that would hurt the kids, Noah adores kids. But he overstepped a time or two and I’m glad Sophie called him on it even if he couldn’t quite understand what he did wrong.
Although I loved this story and didn’t want to put it down, I couldn’t ignore some timing issues. I felt like the Winter Carnival was going on for a month the way things were written. And February truly seemed like the longest month instead of the shortest. It really was nothing that most people will pick up on, but it did have me scratching my head a bit. Believe me, I wish such things didn’t stick out to me.
As always, I’m fascinated with Daisy and her part in this epic overall story of Avalon and the surrounding area. Now that Max is getting older, he’s getting to be quite a part of the narrative himself. I’m so curious to see where it all goes. We also got to know some of Noah’s friends that definitely have stories to tell.