Published by Harlequin MIRA on June 26, 2012
When Elliott Cruz first courted struggling single mom Karen Ames, it it was a romance worthy of any Sweet Magnolia fantasy. The sexy personal trainer made it his mission to restore Karen's strength—physical and emotional—and to charm her children.
Now, a few years into the marriage, colliding dreams threaten to tear a few years into the marriage, colliding dreams threaten to tear them them apart. Elliott's desire to finance the business opportunity of a lifetime with their hard-earned "baby money" stirs Karen's deep-rooted financial insecurities. It's the discovery that their brother-in-law is cheating on Elliott's sister—and thinks it's justified—that puts their irreconcilable differences into perspective. Will their own loving fidelity be a bond so strong they can triumph against all odds?
As usual I really liked this book, but then again I like the A Sweet Magnolia Novel, especially since the same people that we came to know and to love in previous books keep popping up in these new books. This is the first book in a new trilogy of A Sweet Magnolia books, and I have to be honest and say that while I remember Elliott from the Corner Spa I didn’t really remember Karens’ character. I guess I need to go back and read the fist set of Sweet Magnolia books, it has been awhile since I read them.
Karen and Elliot have a lot going on in their lives, and both have things from their pasts that they are having a hard time letting go of. For Karen it is trusting Elliot to stay with her and also being able to take some chances financially. For Elliot it is being the kind of man who will stand by his wife and be there for her no matter what, even when that means letting his sister be and letting her solve her own problems. And not turning into the kind of man who believes that it is his way or no way. Karen and Elliot really do love each other, but they like every other couple have to learn how to work together in order for them to stay together. The path that Karen and Elliot takes is not an easy one, but one where they both make mistakes and learn from those mistakes. This gives the book a realistic feel and makes the ending so much sweeter.