Tuesday, June 28, 2016

ARC Review: Snakes Among Sweet Flowers by Jason Huffman-Black

Snakes Among Sweet Flowers
From the blurb:

Two-time ex-con Camden Sanders has decided that Hog Mountain—an isolated community on the outskirts of Atlanta, Georgia—is the perfect place to continue running small scams without the threat of more prison time. But there are a few problems with this plan. One is the neighborly citizens of Hog Mountain thwarting his dirty dealings at every turn with their kindness. Another is Jackson Rhodes, a closeted Hog Mountain police officer who can see right through Cam’s good ol’ boy act and plans to catch him red-handed despite the attraction they both can feel. But the biggest problem of all is that Cam’s past is threatening to catch up with him, and it could mean trouble for more than just himself.

Heather's rating:

As I'm seeing dozens of 5-star reviews for this book, I can't help but wondering what I'm missing. I mean, I enjoyed this story, but I'm not raving over it like some of the other reviewers.

I love a book that features an antihero, and that is certainly what we have here. Cam is a small-time crook who moved his con to a rural town in the hopes of escaping his enemies and starting over. He isn't looking to reform his bad boy ways, and at the start of the story, I promise you that you will want to smack him. He begins the book as a callous man, and I really enjoyed watching him slowly transform into something... maybe not softer, but more caring. I liked the overall story arc a great deal, even if I had some issues with how the ending went down (melodrama, alert!).

However, I think my main sticking point was the writing style. While other people seem to enjoy the straightforward way that Jason Huffman-Black writes, I found his style to be blunt and too simplistic. He writes very direct prose, and while that may appeal to some readers, I found myself wanting something more evocative. It isn't that Jason Huffman-Black's style is bad, it's just that I didn't find it to be a good fit for my reading tastes.

The romance was there, but I wasn't blown away by it. This book is pretty far from a mushy romance, with most of the feelings between the two MCs going unsaid during the story. While I appreciated that the romance was different from a lot of romance novels that I've read, I found myself wanting a deeper connection there. I think part of the reason that I wasn't feeling the connection as much was because Cam doesn't reveal a lot of his emotions to the readers, even though we have his POV.

I totally understand why people love this book. It was a good story about a man who finds acceptance and love in a small town (side note: the supporting characters are all fabulous in this story). However, it wasn't a story that I'll be thinking about days from now.

**Copy provided in exchange for an honest review**


Buy this book:

Dreamspinner Press, Amazon, Kobo

Catch ya later!!

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