October 01, 2013
Big Sky Christmas by C.J. Carmichael
I have to say, this fourth and final book in the Coffee Creek Montana series certainly improved upon the third book. The characters were written better and the plot moved along better. And because it is the fourth book, it's one of those series that would be helpful to read in order. Especially because this one relies a lot on the history from the other books.
Winnie has finally returned to Coffee Creek. In Book One, we saw her on her wedding day, about to get married to Brock Lambert, when a terrible accident killed him on his way to the church. Now, almost two years later, she returns with her son (she was pregnant with Brock's child)and finds herself trying to fit in with the Lambert family despite an overbearing almost-mother-in-law. And to make things even more complicated, she has feelings for Brock's foster brother, Jackson, who feels so much guilt over the accident that he's just not prepared to have any kind of interest in Winnie.
I was glad we got to see more of Winnie in this book. She kind of just disappears in the first book and then we only have phone conversations between characters with her in the next two. And it did seem unfair that she lost her fiance and never had another chance for love within those books. Jackson is also a well written character. But I can't say I like him. But that's probably because he just isn't my type. Regardless, he has fully developed emotions in this book and is believable. The only character I didn't really like was Olive, the matriarch of the Lambert family. She's hard to get along with anyway, but she has some unexpected changes of heart in this book that are just never fully explained.
This wasn't an exciting plot. It was more angst and emotion driven. But I thought it was well done. I really wanted to see what would happen with Jackson and Winnie. And some side plots that the author had been creating in the previous books were also resolved in this one. So that provided some closure. Maybe they weren't as dramatic as I was expecting, but they were realistic. This is a romance novel, but aside from the unsnapping of a bra, they weren't descriptive. It's a tame romance novel in that regard. So if you're looking for cowboys and love stories, this is going to be in that genre.
I'm glad the series ended on a positive note. Overall it's been pretty good and since I'm partial to cowboys and Montana, I was happy to read about Coffee Creek. I also wouldn't be adverse to this not being the final book in the series.
Big Sky Christmas