Falling For You – Becky Wade – Bradford Sisters Romance #2 – Bethany House – Published 1 May 2018
Willow Bradford is content taking a break from modeling to run her family’s inn until she comes face-to-face with NFL quarterback Corbin Stewart, the man who broke her heart–and wants to win her back. When a decades-old missing-persons case brings them together, they’re forced to decide whether they can risk falling for one another all over again.
My heart just sighed with happiness. There is so much to love about Falling For You – a beautifully sweet love story of second chances, a return to wonderful sibling relationships, a decades-old mystery to solve, love, humour, faith, and family all wrapped up in a parcel of deliciousness.
Willow has returned to her family home – taking time off from her modelling career and stepping in to help run her parents’ BnB. Willow doesn’t expect to run into her ex-boyfriend and biggest regret, Corbin Stewart. Willow’s plan is to avoid and ignore Corbin and the hurt she still carries over the way their relationship ended, but when Corbin’s niece Charlotte requests Willow’s help to solve a family mystery, Willow finds it hard to say no, even if it means working (and spending time) with Corbin.
Ahhhh. The sweet romance of second chances. Relationship do-overs are so much fun, and I particularly liked Corbin and Willow’s journey from hurt and shame to reconciliation. At first, I wasn’t sure if I liked Corbin all that much. He seemed a little too showman-like, sure of himself and loudly confident. But he grew on me and, as Willow similarly discovered, it is hard to resist Corbin’s charm. As the story unfolds, it was also easier to see Corbin’s charisma as a protective facade, and the times he lets his vulnerability show were precious.
Willow is a relatable character (aside from the fact that she is a gorgeous model), and she struggles with the desire to be perfect, feeling like she must earn love, and with shame and guilt from her mistakes. She also has a strong desire to protect herself from future pain, and does that by keeping Corbin at arm’s length. The hurt she felt from the past, and her determination to keep her distance from Corbin or see the good in him was palpable. These intense feelings made their change in relationship so enjoyable to read.
I particularly like that alongside the romance, Falling For You had a good helping of mystery. The detective work Corbin and Willow undertake gave them a natural reason for sharing so much of each other’s company, even when they might not have wanted to. Charlotte-12 years old, confident, witty and unafraid to speak her mind- was a wonderful addition to the grouping, offsetting Corbin and Willow’s awkwardness perfectly. The mystery itself was intriguing, well-paced and a great addition to the storyline.
There was so much that I enjoyed about Falling For You: the sisterly relationships Willow shared with Britt and Nora; the honest and forthright way that sexual relationship were discussed; the journey of faith that Willow, Corbin and Corbin’s father all continue or begin; the undeniable connection that Willow and Corbin share; the way the characters grew on me, how they made me fall in love with them, not because of any perfection they might have had, but because of their honesty, vulnerability and humanness. And did I mention how much I liked the romance?
Falling for You is totally delightful and such a sweet story of reconciliation, second chances and forgiveness. It is the second full-length novel in the Bradford Sisters Romance series, and while each book can be read as a stand-alone, the lives of the sisters and their stories overlap a little. As such, it was fun to start Britt’s story. Her story, which will feature in book three, promises to be as wonderful as Falling For You.
The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.
Genre: Christian contemporary.
Themes: Romance, family, mystery, missing persons, modelling, NFL, injuries, forgiveness, dating and relationships, sex, reconciliation, modelling.
Published: 1 May 2018 by Bethany House Publishers.
Format: Hardcover, paperback, ebook. 368 pages.