Friday, February 28, 2014

ARC Review: Sunrise Over Savannah by Scotty Cade

Sunrise Over SavannahFrom the blurb:

Thompson and Caroline Gray were living their dream until Caroline's untimely death just two years after they’d bought the Thundercloud Marina. When Caroline died, she left Thompson alone and emotionally disconnected—until Thompson’s longtime friend and towboat owner Hank Charming tows Garner Holt, a recently retired psychiatrist, and his boat into the marina for repair. Thompson and Hank are both drawn to the sailboat captain, but for very different reasons. 

Since high school, Hank has secretly carried a torch for Thompson, even though Thompson remained committed to Caroline, even after her death. Hank is totally caught off guard when his initial attraction to Garner makes him realize this stranger might be the one to help him move on with his life. Thompson establishes a platonic friendship with Garner and starts to see the psychiatrist as his only lifeline to sanity. Life improves until Thompson sees Hank and Garner together, and old feelings Thompson thought were long buried begin to resurface. Garner quickly identifies the unresolved feelings between Hank and Thompson and decides to tap his professional skills and work behind the scenes to help Thompson and Hank see what has been right in front of them all along. 

Heather's rating:

My first book by Scotty Cade might be my last. This one didn't work for me, not at all.

To answer many of your questions, no this isn't a menage book. The blurb is a bit ambiguous about that, and I don't want to turn people off from the story because they are afraid of some three-way action.

Now, on to why I didn't like this one. It mainly boils down to the writing style + Heather = me no likey. I'll break it down for y'all.

Everything is described. In EXCRUCIATING detail. Are you curious about what every character is wearing in every single scene? Fear not! All will be revealed.

"Hank was wearing a nicely pressed blue chambray shirt over a bright-orange T-shirt, khakis, and brown driving shoes."

"Garner felt underdressed in his amber-colored V-neck T-shirt, blue jeans, and blue-and-gold Nikes."

Worried that you won't get enough descriptions of the setting? Unfounded!

"Garner followed in awe, certain his mouth was hanging open from the sheer beauty surrounding him. There was a royal-blue tone-on-tone striped camelback couch sitting in the center of the room with two tapestry-upholstered Martha Washington chairs flanking a large fireplace. End tables and other accent pieces effortlessly placed here and there donned the room and created a comfortable but elegant feel. There was a hall at the far right, which Garner assumed led to the bedrooms, and closed double french doors across the back wall. But before he could ask where they led, he spotted a triple mahogany chest of drawers with shiny brass pulls against the back wall..."

For some readers, they may love these details. I, however, did not. I found all of the descriptions to be both dull and distracting.

I also found the writing style overall to be just ill-suited for my tastes. It felt very tell-y and not show-y with the emotional details. I felt like everything was explained for the readers versus letting them discover facts for themselves. It made it so I didn't feel emotionally invested in the characters.

There was also a melodramatic, soap-opera/harlequin feel to the story that I didn't care for.

Now, underneath the stylistic issues there is a meaningful story. I started to enjoy it a little at about 60% and finished it easily whereas I was struggling before. I think the characters grew on me a bit.

Maybe other readers will connect with the story more than me, but I think I'll pass on this author in the future.

**Copy provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All quotes taken from the ARC copy and may be changed or altered in the final product.**

Buy this book: Dreamspinner PressAmazonKobo

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