Finding New Hope: Book 1
Release Date: November 4, 2020
Former child actress, Danielle “Dani” Winter, left Hollywood to transform an old cinema into a dinner theater, seeing the project as her chance to take control of her future. The middle-of-nowhere location in Wisconsin is a perfect escape from backstabbing celebrity friends. The small town welcomes her help with open arms, but one man questions her plan.
After unsuccessful writing stints on both coasts, Paul Howell returns home to New Hope. He’s shocked to discover that his sister has sold the family business to a beautiful woman. With the encouragement of his neighbors, he reluctantly agrees to write Dani’s next musical.
Working together, they discover more similarities than differences and grow close. When Dani’s former best friend and America’s sweetheart, Kara Kensington arrives, their blossoming relationship is threatened in more ways than one.
With a title of Holidays Inc and it being released in the fall, I was really expecting a Christmas story. I suppose the cover and blurb should have been the giveaway that it’s not a Christmas story, but I was still a bit disappointed. But that’s my own fault. All that said, it does end at Christmas, so there is that.
I had a really hard time reading this story. It just didn’t capture my interest, and I felt myself forcing myself to continue reading. The story was slow in building, and the romance was non-existent. In fact, the main characters never spent any quality time together, so I was confused how they fell in love. I spent so much time just scratching my head wondering when things would speed up, or the characters would quit focusing on work and find romance, or they’d get out of their pasts and look to the future. I guess what I’m saying is that none of it really worked for me.
There was promise there. I mean, I liked the small town and the concept. But the execution was more of a women’s fiction read than a romance. The characters get their happily ever after, but more time is spent with self-reflection and growth. And that is needed in a good book. But when reading a romance, I expect an actual romance to be developed, and that was lacking for me. Sure, there was an attraction, but there weren’t any dates or long, meaningful chats where they get to know each other. I felt they spent more time apart than together.
In the end, this book wasn’t for me. It just didn’t tick off the boxes of what I need in a romance to have it be an enjoyable read.
Rachelle Paige Campbell writes contemporary romance filled with heart and hope. No matter the location—big city, small town, or European kingdom—her feel-good stories always end with a happily ever after. She’s grateful for the support of her family, her robot floor cleaner, and her reluctant writing partner (her dog).