Review by Kayleigh

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Series Name: Love Heart Lane #7

With a flutter of butterflies in her stomach and a pounding heartbeat, Grace knew she had a silly grin on her face. The eye contact between them was strong, their legs touching under the table.”

A sweet charming story full of emotion and heart.

Love Heart Lane – where friends are there for you no matter what

A second chance…

When her grandfather Marley passes away Grace Power discovers she’s been left the beautiful but crumbling estate of Heartcross Castle. As a single mum of three, Grace has no idea what she’s going to do with it – but who can say no to a roof over their kids’ heads and a chance to get away from past hurts?

And a forever home

Heartcross Castle is full of secrets – especially a lost security deposit box that holds the truth to everything… But when celebrity chef Andrew Glossop sets his eyes on the castle and, to make matters worse, mistakes Grace as the new housekeeper, Grace tells him there is absolutely NO CHANCE he is getting his hands on her home.

Devastated to have got it so wrong, Andrew will do anything to make it up to her – but is she willing to listen?

If Hallmark style movies are your thing, then you will love Heartcross Castle. This sweet story, the seventh in the series although the first I read, has drama and heartbreak. Grace Power goes home to the place she ran away from ten years ago at the age of 16. Fleeing an abusive relationship with her three children and with only the clothing on their backs, she returns home to the castle in Scotland she inherits when her estranged grandfather dies. Throughout the story of her return, we watch Grace gain confidence and battle with her grief and sadness. I really enjoyed watching Grace go from a defeated, abused woman to a fierce mother of three who was willing to do anything to ensure their happiness. I liked watching Grace reconnect with her friends at Heartcross (whose stories are told in previous books, although I didn’t feel like I was missing anything by beginning at book 7) and find her own path. 

The romance between her and a tenant on her property, the handsome Andrew Glossop, a millionaire chef, was a slow burn. I have to be honest: I did NOT like Andrew when I first met him. I was very unconvinced that Christie would be able to make him likable and worthy of Grace’s interest. But somehow, Andrew’s layers were slowly peeled back. I don’t know if he’d ever be in the running for my favourite book boyfriend, but he does redeem himself. The romance itself is very much in the Hallmark style: there is nothing more than a few sweet, chaste kisses and a lot of longing. It suited the book and the characters. 

For me, Grace’s relationship with herself was the standout relationship in the book. We see a lot of her private anguish and regrets from how she ran away from home and what she missed out on. For myself, the most fruitful part of the book was watching Grace become more open to her own strengths and her own learnings. While there are many warm and caring secondary characters from earlier books, I really enjoyed seeing Grace’s three boys interact on the pages. They brought a lot of life and laughter to the story (and have me now wanting my own Selkie hens).

All in all, I enjoyed the sweet storyline and the fabulous setting of a small, but large-hearted, Scottish village. I will be returning back to Heartcross for sure.  

 Thank you, Boldwood Books and Rachel’s Random Resources, for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.