First Lines: Welcome to Hell would be a more appropriate sign, considering Dad just uprooted me from West Virginia and hauled me to Tennessee two days before senior year.
In this midst of all of these ARCs (which are mostly fantasy) and historical fictions, I need a little grounding in reality. I knew this would be fast, cute, and, of course, realistic.
Savannah’s world has gotten more complicated recently. Moving away from her home was tough, but she knows she can settle into her new home. After all, she still gets to work with horses, which she loves. But then she meets Jack, the boss’s son. He’s cocky, popular, and way out of her league. And she knows the rules: the staff and the Goodwin family do not mix. But Jack doesn’t have these boundaries. With dreams of being a jockey, Savannah’s not exactly a rule follower herself. Still, dating Jack may be the most dangerous thing she’s ever tried to do…
So, this book has pretty much everything I’ve come to expect from Kenneally. Good characters, a cute love story, and depth to the story that comes in the form of some serious topic the main characters have to deal with. Oh, and there’s a sport. This one happened to be horse racing, which I know next to nothing about.
Savannah and Jack were interesting characters, though I admit they aren’t my favorite of Kenneally’s. I will say that Savannah was a lot spunkier than I thought she’d be. She was not about to let Jack walk all over her, just because he had power over her. She stood up for herself, and I loved that. And, in Jack’s defense, he’s really charming.
But it was the minor characters who really thrilled me. There’s a timeline gap between the previous book (Things I Can’t Forget) and this one. We get to see the return of characters like Jordan and Sam, Parker and Will who are all grown up. Well, out of college anyway. But we also get to spend a vast majority of the book with the younger siblings of previous characters, and they were the ones who really won me over.
As I mentioned, this book is more than a romance as well. It plays on social class a lot, what it means to have money and what it means to be poor. But it also plays on how these classes act differently. Like how a massive business deal may hinge on getting in good with the other man’s family rather than money. Or just how expensive even applying to college can be when you’re trying to rub pennies together to make ends meet.
I saw a few negative reviews on Goodreads, and I think those come from the predictability of the story. Like most love stories, you know how this book is going to go (more or less) from the moment you pick up the book. For me, I was banking on it. I wanted that. But other people, maybe that bothered them.
Overall, it’s a cute contemporary romance, but maybe not Kenneally’s best.