Publication Date: February 28th, 2012
St. Martin’s Griffin
Format: Trade Paperback, 324 pages
RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars
Lucy Marinn is a glass artist living in mystical, beautiful Friday Harbor, Washington, with a boyfriend, Kevin who she believes is her soul mate. She has always had a magical side – a gift that finds its way into the breathtaking glasswork she creates – and she struggles to keep it contained. But when Lucy is blindsided by the most bitter kind of betrayal, she questions many of her choices. Her boyfriend leaves her and his new lover is none other than Lucy’s own sister. Lucy’s bitterness over this devastation is multiplied by the fact that she has constantly made the wrong choices in her romantic life.
Meanwhile, facing the severe disapproval of Lucy’s family, Kevin asks his friend Sam Nolan, a local vineyard owner on San Juan Island, to “romance” Lucy so that she can more easily move on. But when Sam and Lucy begin to feel real sparks between them, Lucy must ask herself if she can easily risk her heart again.
As Lucy questions her beliefs about love, loyalty, old patterns, mistakes, and new beginnings, she explores the possibility that some things in life – even after being broken – can be re-made into something beautiful. And that is only by discovering who you really are that you can find the one who truly deserves you.
It’s unbelievably easy to fall in love with Lisa Kleypas’ books. This series, for example, didn’t have to do much to get me reading the books in succession. It had a readability scale of 10 – 10 meaning, I read it in practically one sitting. In fact, if not for that pesky thing our bodies apparently needs (sleep), I’d say I would have read her two books in 1.5 days.
This novel is about Sam Nolan and Lucy Marinn. They’re two ends of a spectrum when it comes to relationships. Lucy needed stability while Sam is the ultimate commitment-phobe. But these two has one thing in common: they both these subtle magical abilities that they’d pretty much kept hidden for most of their lives. When I decided to read this series, I never expected this added whimsical element to a contemporary romance. It was certainly non-existent in Christmas Eve at Friday Harbor. I’d say that this magical element is an inconsistency with the
first prequel that leads up to Rainshadow Road.
After reading the synopsis, I pretty much called how to story would go: Sam and Lucy gets close, Lucy finds out Kevin coerced Sam to date her, Lucy loses it and Sam spends the entirety of the novel wooing her. WRONG. So freaking wrong. It’s nice to know that even with a formulaic romantic arc, Lisa Kleypas still managed to surprise me.
I love the little things that make Sam, SAM. I love how Lisa shows that for every hot guy is a geek hidden within him. And Sam is the geek extraordinaire you wouldn’t mind re-booting your system for (wink, wink, nudge, nudge). Though he was more of the vintner, agriculturist geek variety. But hey, I’ll take him. We also learn more about the incredibly difficult childhood that the Nolan siblings went through and how Sam managed to grow up well adjusted despite the trauma of growing up being shun for having a set of alcoholic parents.
As usual, the family dynamics play a big role in this story. Though I’m a bit disappointed that there wasn’t much of Maggie. Still, the ugly pug is ever present which pretty made up for it. I’m looking forward to reading the next book, which would feature Alex, the tortured hero.
VERDICT: Lisa Kleypas hardly disappoints. With a perfect blend of romance and magic, Rainshadow Road had me reading till the wee hours of the morning. It had subtle humor, heartwarming romantic story and a landscape that would make you want to visit this quaint island.