Review by Veronica

Series Name: Somerset Lake, # 4 

Gil was a people pleaser, and he knew it. It bothered him when a person didn’t like him, especially someone whom he’d grown up with. And admittedly he’d had a crush on Moira Green since kindergarten when she’d sported long, black pigtail braids with green ribbons tied at the bottoms. 

The Good Luck Café is a sweet small-town romance that will sweep you off your feet.

Moira Green is perfectly content with her life. She has a rewarding career and plenty of wonderful friends, including the members of her weekly book club. Then everything in her life goes topsy-turvy when the town council plans to demolish the site of her mother’s beloved café to make room for much-needed parking. Moira is determined to save her mother’s business, so she swallows her pride and asks Gil Ryan for help.

Moira and Somerset Lake’s mayor were good friends once, the kind who could laugh at everything and nothing at all. Until one night changed everything between them. And now, with Gil supporting the council’s plans, Moira is forced to find another way to save Sweetie’s—and it involves campaigning against Gil. Going head-to-head in a battle of wills reveals more than either of them are ready for, and as the election heats up, so does their attraction. But without a compromise in sight, can these two be headed for anything but disaster? 

Sometimes all a girl needs is to read a book that will soothe her soul, and this book did that for me. The Good Luck Café is a feel-good read that makes your heart so happy. I loved the slower, softer pace of this book; I’ve been reading a lot of heavier books lately, and it was just nice not to have to overthink what I am reading. If you love Hallmark movies, this book will be right up your alley. This is a small-town romance where the main heroine is trying to save her family’s business because the town wants to tear down their cafe to build a parking lot. Y’all know by now that I love a book that focuses on a small business, whether it’s a new business or the main character is trying to save it. This tends to be a pretty typical romance story plot. What stood out to me was that Annie took that typical plotline and added a new spin. The main catalyst in this story is Moira’s quest to save her mom’s café, but what’s different about this story is that the people (aka Mayor Gil and town council) who have voted to tear down the café aren’t doing it because they want to. The town desperately needs more parking downtown to the point where it has caused accidents and hurt people. Mayor Gil has tried to find different solutions and spots for more parking, but nothing has panned out. Gil is in a tough spot, he doesn’t want to destroy someone’s livelihood and hurt his relationship with Moira, but he needs to do what is best for the town. I like the direction Annie took in this book. I found myself struggling with what is the right thing to do in this situation. I hate to see a small business disappear, but it’s clear that the town needs more parking downtown. 

It was also clever of Annie not to create that typical cold corporate character that Moira would have to go up against to try to save her family’s café. Moira finds herself going up against Gil, who is a nice guy. He is outgoing and kind and absolutely adores Moira. Moira has been prickly towards Gil because of a past incident, but Gil holds a torch for her. At the beginning of the book, they start to form this friendship, which hits a rough patch when Moira finds out the town will be tearing down her family’s business. Watching these two try and navigate a friendship and eventually a relationship while all this other stuff is going on was interesting. Often the phrase “it’s nothing personal” is exchanged between them. They are trying to keep what’s happening in the town separate from what’s happening between them. 

I liked Moira and Gil; they have this great enemies to lovers, and a slight grumpy sunshine tropey feel to their relationship. Gil has had a crush on Moira and has just pinned for her for quite some time. I adore Gil; he just really wants good things for Moira. Even though they are running for mayor against each other, he wants her to succeed and is constantly cheering her on. He is just a delight. Moira is prickly and has built up some walls around her heat. She has a hard time letting anyone in romantically. The interactions between these two were sweet and had a lot of depth. I like them together; they are good for each other. 

The Good Luck Café is a delightful and charming love story perfect for reading on a lazy afternoon. 

Thank you, Forever, for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.