Monday, 25 November 2013

Review ~ Echo Bay by Gina Robinson

Echo Bay ChristmaseARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: 17th September 2013

Tara Clark is spending her first Christmas at her grandparents' resort lodge since herbrother died near there in a snowboarding accident on Christmas Eve ten years ago. When her matchmaking grandma sets her up with tiny Echo Bay's newest resident–none other than her ex-fiancĂ© Ryan Sanders–not even a record snowfall can dampen the rekindling of a love that wouldn’t die.


When Ryan Sanders returns to the small town he grew up in, his life feels nearly complete. But as the snow piles up in the week before Christmas, and his ex-fiancée Tara shows up, Ryan has to face the truth that he has never really gotten over her. And with Christmas Eve fast approaching, all he wants for Christmas is Tara.

My Opinion

I've had this book on my iPod for a few months, yet I've been putting off reading it because of the Christmassy and festive theme. I just couldn't muster the energy to start thinking that far ahead but now coming to the end of November I decided it was okay to start reading it finally!

I'm not sure this is going to make sense but this book felt like it had a homely, Christmas feeling and atmosphere that just enveloped you in the beautiful landscape and setting the author creates. Everyone in the book pulls together, knows each others business and I liked the over all effect the author gave the lodge. It was a friendly and welcoming vibe that almost made me fall in love with the place in my head.

I loved reading books set in ski resorts in the winter. For me they are the perfect fireside reads, especially when they involve romance and this book had both. I liked that the book included struggles that Tara had to face by moving back to Echo Bay and I liked she was strong enough to face the fears on the slopes. The ski sections were a nice change of pace in the book.

As well as this I loved some of the sweet moments in the romance - especially the first one in the forest. They were playful, sweet and put a smile on my face. They were the moments that felt most realistic and natural in the book for me, in regards to their emotions. I really wanted more of these sections as for me, the build up to the romance is always better than the actual romance. This was was of the problems I had with the book. There wasn't much of a build up. Tara and Ryan were a very much hot and cold couple and I found some of the shifts in personalities slightly annoying. 

When Ryan and Tara weren't together, there are a lot of thoughts and for me this slowed the pace of the book dramatically. As well as this sometimes they could be quite repetitive as the book would switch from Tara and then to Ryan. I like seeing inside a characters mind but for me that's all this book seemed to be. I wanted a bit more action, whether on the slopes or interaction in the romance. 

The only other issue I had was the meddling grandparents. At the start of the book it was cute and sweet. However, when Margie was still interfering towards the end I found myself starting to dislike her. I just wanted her to let the relationship unfold by itself, and I felt it lessened the romance.

Overall though, Echo Bay was an enjoyable winter read. It made me feel Christmassy and although it's a bit slow and stiff in parts, the sweet heart warming moments and HAE makes up for it.

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