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New Release Review and Giveaways! LEAVING LIBERTY by Virginia Carmichael

 A sweet romance!
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Leaving Liberty by Virginia Carmichael
Publication date: July 1st 2013
Genres: Adult, Romance

Synopsis:

At eighteen, Daisy McConnell left Liberty, Colorado and never looked back. The only bright spot in a childhood of neglect and loneliness was the town librarian, Marie. Now settled as a teacher in sunny Fresno, Daisy does her best to forget everything about Liberty including her drunk father, her MIA mother, and the town she hated with every beat of her heart.

Lane Bennett’s life as a small town cop is pretty close to perfect. He’s got his dog, a pretty date when he needs one, and plenty of time to fish on the weekends. No other place can compare to his hometown and he’s happy to devote his life to keeping the folks of Liberty safe. When Marie passes away, Lane knows one of the best parts about living in Liberty is gone, along with the old Carnegie library. It needs repairs the city can’t afford and the city managers won’t pay the new flood insurance. It’s too bad, but safety comes first.

When Daisy comes home for Marie’s funeral and hears the only safe place she knew as a child is going to close, she refuses to let it happen. She hatches a plan to save the old library, run the summer reading program, and keep Marie’s legacy alive.

She once vowed never to come home and he’s vowed never to leave. Daisy and Lane discover together that true love happens when you least expect it and you should never say never in Liberty.

Review:

A very sweet, very clean romance about forgiveness, second chances, and love. With a library. And a book quilt 🙂

Daisy is back in the town she grew up in–and hated–for one reason only: the funeral of her mentor and friend, Marie, the town librarian. She doesn’t want to see her father, she doesn’t want to catch up with her former classmates, she just wants to pay her respects, get the quilt that was left to her, and go back to her home in Fresno, California.

Lane loves his hometown of Liberty, and he’d never dream of leaving. He grew up here, and his younger sister and her family are here too. His parents moved away, sure, but they visit a lot and he returns the favor because his family is as important to him as his hometown and his job as a police officer. He’s already been burned by love once, when he fell for a woman who didn’t appreciate his ties with his family and wanted something more in life than Liberty had to offer. He knows better to be tempted by Daisy–no matter how sweet and lovely she is. He’s a great example of a beta hero–he’s got a “hero complex” as Daisy points out more than once, but it’s mostly because he’s a genuinely nice guy who just wants to help people.

Daisy and Lane spend a lot of the novel tiptoeing around each other–they start out on opposite sides of the save-the-library issue, but Lane comes around to her point of view on that issue fairly quickly. Or at least he stops actively opposing her on it…his biggest concern for much of the book is the deadline to her stay in town and the grudge she’s held against it and her now-sober, once the town drunk father. They share an amazing kiss, but then not much more for a while.

When they finally come, the “I love you”s are pretty quick; I was kind of expecting a bit more drama to prompt them than actually did. Their time together afterwards was very sweet, and I’d like to have seen more of them in “cute couple” mode.

It seemed a little odd that Daisy had no one back in Liberty that she was close to growing up except for the town librarian–not one friend in school? No one?–that part struck me. She didn’t give off the loner vibe that you’d expect from someone who had absolutely no friends, and she has a very close friend now as an adult who we see toward the end, so that part didn’t feel quite right. I expected a bit more from the plotline with her dad as well–there was a measure of forgiveness there, sure, but then it felt as if that thread were dropped for the remainder of the book.

Overall this was a nice, light read from a new-to-me author. One of her historicals, All the Blue of Heaven, is excerpted at the end and definitely has my interest.

If you don’t hear from me for a while, check under my out-of-control TBR pile, ‘kay? 😉

Rating: 3 1/2 stars / B

I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

Purchase:
–Amazon
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AUTHOR BIO
Virginia was born near the Rocky Mountains and although she has traveled around the world, the wilds of Colorado run in her veins. A big fan of the wide open sky and all four seasons, she believes in embracing the small moments of everyday life. A home schooling mom of six young children who rarely wear shoes, those moments usually involve a lot of noise, a lot of mess, or a whole bunch of warm cookies. Virginia holds degrees in Linguistics and Religious Studies from the University of Oregon. She lives with her habanero-eating husband, Crusberto, who is her polar opposite in all things except faith. They’ve learned to speak in short-hand code and look forward to the day they can actually finish a sentence. In the meantime, Virginia thanks God for the laughter and abundance of hugs that fill her day as she plots her next book.

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4 Comments

  1. Sounds like the perfect rainy Sunday read! I love sweet romances and ones that focus on more than the physical attraction. Great review! 🙂

  2. I grew up in a small town. (pop 1800), and have gone back for visits, but could not imagine living ina place anymore where everything is closed by 7pm.

    • It is a little disconcerting, for sure. At least our grocery store, drug store, and fast food chain stay open later in my town–but really, that’s about it. Not that there’s a lot more than that to be open, mind you 😉

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