Reviewed by Tori
Favorite Quote: “One word. His last wish. His last hope for her. Grow. “
Reagan Thurman is all grown up now. It’s been 3 years since the first time we saw her; a bedraggled 15 year old looking for a place to call her own. Jeremiah Thurman adopted her-letting the world continue to think she was his niece and has pretty much gave her the farm. Reagan knows her uncle doesn’t have long to live and she wishes her best friend, Noah McAllen, was back in Harmony where he belongs. But Noah is riding the rodeo circuit and has no reason to return to Harmony; except for one. Reagan. He loves Reagan with all his heart but fear of failing her and himself keeps him traveling and away from her.
Tyler Wright has spent the last four years emailing and occasionally "dating" Major Kate Cummings. He loves Kate but doesn’t know how to tell her. When a young woman is found trespassing on his land, a series of circumstances puts Tyler in the role of her savior and suddenly he finds himself thinking less about Kate and more about his own happiness.
Ronelle Logan has spent her life hiding from her mother and the town. Working at the post office is her only way of being free from the constant demands of her mother, Dallas. Ronelle’s life changes when a special delivery requires her to to meet the town recluse, Marty Winslow.
Marty was a world class skier till an accident left him without the use of his legs. Ronelle is a true gift to him for she only sees the man before her. As Marty and Ronelle get to know one another, Ronelle is given the chance to emerge from her shell and begin the process of becoming the special person Marty sees before him.
Denver and Clare began their affair over a year ago. Clare’s ex husband severely hurt her and she has yet to give up the pain and begin healing. For this reason she demands Denver keep their relationship a secret and only meet on her terms. Denver waits for Clare to admit she loves him but she denies him even that. Denver is ready for more so when his bet friend Gabe tells him that everyone already knows about their affair, he decides that the time has come to stop chasing Clare and start let her decide once and for all if she’s willing to take a chance with him.
Jodi Thomas’s Harmony series is like receiving letters from home. Brimming with gossip, news of family, and well wishes; you find yourself waiting with anticipation for the next batch to arrive. A smoothly written romantic contemporary that goes beneath the facade of a small town and examines and reveals the love, laughter, pain, and heartbreak that resides within.
The Comforts Of Home is all about trust, change, and whether the people we have grown to care for have the courage to take what is being offered to them. There are four main story lines involved here with numerous subplots that intertwine and come together in the end. What I truly enjoy about this series is the sense of realism she injects into her characters and their situations. Ms. Thomas has such a gift for creating memorable and witty characters whose not so perfect lives enchant and beguile. She writes with such intimacy that we are instantly drawn back in to their lives as if we never left. These are folks you can find anywhere. They are your friends and loved ones. Ms. Thomas doesn’t answer all of ours or their questions in here. We aren’t promised happily ever after. She can’t because their lives aren’t over at the words, " The End, " they continue on past that page.
She gives voice to old and new characters in this story and each one plays an important role in the towns life and well being. Ms. Thomas gives a lot of background into her characters lives without overwhelming you. A strong character driven arc; it’s the steady and humorous dialog keeps you entertained and laughing throughout the book. I adored watching Gabe Leary try to deal with his wife Liz having twins. One particular scene between Gabe & Denver had me giggling.
“It turns out I don’t even have a voice on the breast-feeding question, and after my last suggestion on names, Liz and her mother both agree don’t get a vote on that either.”
“What did you suggest?”
“Well, after Thing-One and Thing-Two didn’t go over, I thought Thor and Loki. After that I was told to stop thinking period. Apparently my role in this whole thing is sperm donor and nothing else.”
Hints of suspense and mystery only strengthens the strong emotional connection of this series. Well written with a steady pace-this is the perfect book to lose yourself in on a quiet rainy day.
I was pleasantly surprised to see Ms. Thomas go in depth with Carol and Denver’s storyline. She does a great job of helping them overcome their obstacles. I really enjoyed Ronelle and Marty. Their story was especially bittersweet and has me eager for book four in this series. Even though this could be read as a stand alone, I recommend reading the first in the series, Welcome To Harmony. This is a continuation and is written as such. All in all a delightful contemporary romance that continues the Harmony saga and I cannot wait for the 4th book-Just Down The Road-set to release April 3, 2012.
Overall Rating: A