The Home They Built
by Shannon Stacey
Release Date: January 26, 2021
Publisher: Harlequin Special Edition
Book #3 in the Blackberry Bay series
Number of Pages: 283
Source: Warren Public Library
Ages 16 and up
Will their secrets stay hidden when the cameras start rolling?
There’s nothing Finn Weaver won’t do for his incorrigible grandmother, including pose as a live-in handyman for the TV reno show Relic Rehab. Host Anna Beckett knows good and well the Weaver house has never been a functioning inn, but taking the project got her to Blackberry Bay…the only place she’ll ever find answers about her own family. Keeping big secrets in a small town is enough of a challenge—can Finn and Anna’s romance survive the truth?
It was nice to read Finn getting his HEA. While he wasn’t super prominent in the first two books in this series, that was mostly because he lived out of town. He is in the same friend circle as the others and always seemed like a really nice guy. Having read his story, I can confirm the nice guy thing is true. Finn will do anything for those he loves.
The premise of this story is a bit crazy…Finn’s grandma lies to a reality fix-it type show in order to get free repairs done on her old family home. She pulls Finn and his parents, and really the whole town, into her deception and everyone reluctantly goes along in order to keep her from getting in trouble. We all know how secrets tend to play out in fiction (and in real life).
For her part, the reality show host is onto the tricks before she even approves the project. Anna has her own ulterior motives for taking on this home in Blackberry Bay. Her search for her birth mother is very private and hard for her so she’s keeping her plans close to the vest.
That’s a lot of secrets for one small town. As Finn and Anna find themselves more and more drawn to each other, the guilt they each feel for their deceptions keeps growing. This couple has a great connection. They are wonderful as fast friends, finding a comfort with one another that just comes naturally. Both find the sparks an inconvenience to their end game.
In general, the “big lie” trope is not one a enjoy. This one worked, at least for the most part. There, of course, came a point that the lies went on too long and got annoying to me. But honestly, these lies involved so many people it didn’t read as the typical “big lie” story. For me, that’s a good thing.