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Review ❤️ Come Home to Deep River by Jackie Ashenden

July 28, 2020


Deep River, Alaska boasts a fiercely independent though small population. The people who live here love it, and they don’t much care what anyone else thinks. Until the day Silas Quinn comes back and tells them an oil reserve has been found below the town and now it’s neighbor vs. neighbor. Some want to take the money and run, while others want to tell the oil company to put its rigs where the sun don’t shine.

Hope Dawson never expected to leave Deep River. Her mom needs her. Her grandfather died and left her the local hangout to run. Her dreams of college and adventure died long ago. Until Silas comes back to town, holding the key to set her free. But freedom means she loses him again, and he’s the one she’s really always wanted.

Release Date: Jul 28, 2020
Series: Alaska Homecoming
Book: 1
Heat Level: Hot
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Imprint: Casablanca
Price: $7.99

Small town romance meets Ashenden alpha males… a real treat!

I’ve been in a reading slump. I mean it. Tropes and authors that normally appeal to me aren’t doing the job and I find myself struggling to read books that I signed up to review. Not that the books are bad, but I’m starting and stopping (a not normal for me).

So, cracking open Ashenden’s new book in a small-town romance series I expected much of the same. Instead, I was pleasantly surprised. This one I couldn’t put down. It features an alpha male, because that’s what Ashenden does best, coming back home to his small town and the best friend he left behind thirteen years prior. Lots of potential for conflict here and Ashenden makes the most of it, like she always does. But, I won’t spend a bunch of time waxing poetic on the author, let’s get to the meat.

Silas Quinn is ex-military, rough and rugged male specimen of the deep-seated emotions and piercing green eye variety. In a word – HAWT! Silas is not the typical alpha male because when he feels things, he feels them deeply. He’s had a rough life, left his small town after both parents died (some big issues there) and followed his best friend into the military. That best friend is gone and Silas has inherited the small town he grew up in from said friend (it’s a lot to unpack, but worth the travel luggage). But wait… I mentioned a best friend to lovers’ trope. This was a trio of friends. Silas, buddy Cal, and Hope Dawson (the one who stayed behind).

Hope Dawson always wanted to have a life beyond Deep River, Alaska, but when her grandfather passed on she took over caring for her mother and her grandfather’s bar. She’s all banked fire and sass without any dreams left since they’ve been smothered by responsibilities and doing what she thought she had to for others. Hope resonated with me because I know what a little bit about setting aside dreams and plans for responsibilities.

So what else grabbed me? From the moment Silas and Hope share the page the tension is overwhelming enough I needed to turn on the fan. The buildup is at first slow, but quickly heats amid Silas and Hope navigating a precarious situation that centers around Deep River and the possibility of oil beneath the town. I quickly became invested in seeing if Silas, who’s trying to ditch the town and go back to his life, and Hope, who is wrestling with her own inner wants and demons, can find a way to save the town and be together.

The town itself is an added plus. There is a whole extra cast of characters that liven up the page, from the reluctant mayor-slash-librarian, to Mal the owner of the town store that sells anything a person could ever want. I fell in love with Deep River and started wondering if the temperatures are comfortable enough for shorts, based on the book cover. There was only one hiccup for me… there’s a few unresolved issues between Silas and his other town owners. See, Cal gave the town to Silas and two other friends. One of the friends, Damon, appears in the story, and there seems to be extra set up there for more books. I did not enjoy how Silas seems to ignore his entire life, and Damon once he gets to Deep River and at the very end we get one little scene that’s supposed to make up for it.

Overall, if you like small town romance and alpha males with hearts then Come Home To Deep River is definitely worth a read. I’m looking forward to seeing how this series plays out. Ashenden is making Alaska look mighty appealing.

~ Landra

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