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I love Christmas in September! After all, the stores are already putting out decorations (I'm looking at you, Costco), so why not? This was a really sweet Christmas romance, getting me in the Christmas spirit and wishing I could find my own town like Sweetwater Springs. These types of stories are also to blame for my dream of living in a small town where everyone knows me, because I love the sense of community it brings. It was so nice reading about the different stores, like Dawanda's Fudge Shop and her cappuccino readings. You'll fall in love with the town, the people, and the dreams created in the hearts of all who encounter Sweetwater B&B.
After her grandmother passes away and leaves Kaitlyn Russo the Sweetwater Bed and Breakfast, it is the lifeline that Kaitlyn needs to gain a new purpose in her life. Having lost her interior design job due to an incident with a famous client, she is in desperate financial straits. When she arrives in Sweetwater Springs, though, she finds that she's not the sole own of the bed and breakfast. Her grandmother also left it to a tall, dark, and broody ex-Marine named Mitch Hargrove. Mitch had no idea this was Mable Russo's plan, and he has a job to get to in Virginia. But the stipulations of Mable's will are clear - Kaitlyn and Mitch must run the bed and breakfast together for two months before parting ways, or else it will go to charity. Now, forced together by a matchmaking grandma from the grave, they work together to build a beautiful vacation destination, dancing around an attraction that could throw a wrench in both of their plans for the future.
I loved Kaitlyn's spunky personality and Mitch's heart of gold - they were a perfect match! The trouble came when Mitch's past came back to haunt him. He had a childhood tragedy that he caused, which led to his mother losing his job, him fleeing town to join the marines, and staying away due to a promise. Now that promise kept him from staying with Kaitlyn, despite how much they clearly loved each other. I loved the first 80% of the book, and then the last 20%, Mitch just royally pissed me off. Don't get me wrong - I still loved Kaitlyn and Mitch, and their romance won out in the end. But I wanted to shake Mitch a LOT. Why not just tell her the truth, Mitch? Huh? Is that so hard? Yes, yes it was. It took a long time for him to admit to her what happened, and why he couldn't stay in Sweetwater Springs. He hurt Kaitlyn emotionally, and I wasn't cool with that. Nevertheless, he realized eventually how stupid he was being, and so I can forgive him. But for a while there, I was strangling him in my head. :)
I love Annie Rain's writing! Her descriptions of the town brought it to life and made me wish it was real. Each character she created had a lot of depth to them, and I felt like they were all my friends by the end of the book. It was truly inspiring.
**I received a free copy via NetGalley and this is my honest review.**