Book Review: Under an Adirondack Sky by Karen Rock

July 7, 2016 contemporary, Karen Rock, romance 10

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about the book

Can he juggle everything…including her?

After raising his siblings and running the family pub for more than a decade, Aiden Walsh has set his own dreams aside. Until the most beautiful woman he’s ever seen stumbles into his bar, and his arms.

Too bad Rebecca Day is the school psychologist in charge of his brother’s future.

Who’s he kidding? He doesn’t have room in his full life for romance anyway.

But forced to join Rebecca and her group of troubled teens on an Adirondack wilderness adventure, he realizes keeping his family afloat isn’t enough for him…not by a long shot.

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SERIES: A Walsh Family Story
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
PUBLISHER: Harlequin Heartwarming
RELEASE DATE: July 1, 2016
PAGES: 368

“There was one thing worse on a Monday than facing the man who broke your heart… and that was doing so while impersonating a medical experiment gone wrong.”

In order to properly read Karen Rock’s Under An Adirondack Sky, you should make sure you have adequate provisions on hand. The following list is a good place to start:

  1. a fan (HELLO, KissingBook!)
  2. a freezer (see above)
  3. a fainting couch (see points 1 and 2)
  4. tissues (you will cry)
  5. a decent supply of s’mores (purchase ingredients here)
  6. some popcorn (or buy some s’mores popcorn)
  7. travel brochures for the Adirondacks (head here)
  8. an Adirondack chair for atmosphere (grab one here)

Under an Adirondack Sky book reviewAre we all set? Ok, excellent! On to the review…

In case it wasn’t clear from my list of highly-suggested provisions, the kisses in Under an Adirondack Sky are quite toe-curlingly delicious. This one is definitely going on the next KissingBooks 101 syllabus! Just the right amount of heat and passion tempered with sweetness and staying firmly in the “clean reads” category. Aiden and Rebecca can barely keep their lips off each other once they get a taste and it makes for some oh-so-yummy kisses as the story progresses.  Whew…. where’s that fan I had stockpiled?!? Actually… I might just need to skip the fan and move right to sticking my head in the freezer.

But it’s not all about the kisses. Karen Rock takes a ragtag group of troubled teens, a school psychologist whose job is on the line, and a brother bearing the burden of an entire family on his shoulders and drops them all in the middle of a camp in the Adirondacks – and into our hearts in the process. It is so heartwarming to watch the transformation in the kids over the course of their stay, as well as seeing the change in both Aiden and Rebecca as well. Rock doesn’t stick a sugar-coated bandaid over the situations or the behaviors with which the characters struggle, but she does offer hope for positive change in the long run with dedicated people involved who care about the outcome.

This was – sadly – the first book I’ve read by Karen Rock. That oversight is soon to be corrected however, as I have now raided Goodreads and marked her entire backlist “want to read”. I can tell from Under An Adirondack Sky that she has a knack for setting and character growth as well as subtle humor and of course KISSES.

Bottom Line: If you want a clean read that still sparks with passion, or a touching story full of compelling characters, or a setting so vivid that you forget you’re reading at home in your grubbies … then look no further than Under An Adirondack Sky by Karen Rock.  A hero you’ll fall hard for, a heroine you’ll befriend, a bunch of teenagers you’ll be rooting for from the moment they step off the bus, and some outdoor adventures that allow even the most indoorsy of us to live vicariously. Another 5-star read from this July’s Harlequin Heartwarming quartet.

(Also see my reviews for When I Found You by Kate James and The Girl He Used to Love by Amy Vastine)

(I received a copy of this book in exchange for only my honest review.)

My Rating: 5 stars / Loved it!

KissingBook Level: 4.5 / WHEW! Keep that fan & fainting couch handy. Maybe even the freezer.

Reviewer’s Note: This book does contain some minor and very scattered instances of profanity. It is otherwise clean. I have no problems at all recommending this series to my followers who prefer Christian fiction!

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about the author

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Karen Rock is an award-winning YA and adult contemporary author. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in English and worked as an ELA instructor before becoming a full-time author. Her Harlequin Heartwarming novel, A LEAGUE OF HER OWN, has won the 2015 National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award and the 2015 Booksellers Best Award. Her Heartwarming novel, WISH ME TOMORROW, has won the 2014 Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence and the 2014 Golden Quill Contest. Her co-authored YA novel, CAMP BOYFRIEND, has been a finalist in the Booksellers Best and Golden Leaf awards. When she’s not writing, Karen loves scouring estate sales for vintage books, cooking her grandmother’s family recipes, hiking and redesigning her gardens. She lives in the Adirondack Mountain region with her husband, daughter, and two lovable dogs who have yet to understand the concept of “fetch” though they know a lot about love.

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Other Books by Karen Rock

What about you? What’s your favorite way to eat s’mores? Do you have any unique yummy recipes?

Carrie

10 Responses to “Book Review: Under an Adirondack Sky by Karen Rock”

  1. Karen Rock

    wow Wow WOW! Carrie! Your review is incredible. So entertaining, well-written and thoughtful. I loved it and wanted to thank you so much for reviewing Under an Adirondack Sky and hosting me on your wonderful blog 🙂

    • Carrie

      Thank YOU, Karen! Under an Adirondack Sky was such fun to read 🙂

  2. Terrill Rosado

    Carrie – I just love that you read and review HH books. There are so many great authors within this line with Karen Rock being one of my all time faves. Some of my Christian reader friends don’t realize that Harlequin has come a long way since the books of our parent’s generation with many wholesome choices.

    • Carrie

      I totally agree with you, Terrill! I love Harlequin’s “clean read” imprints!

    • Carrie

      Thanks, Alexa! It is! And all the other July HH releases are fantastic too 🙂

  3. Rachel Dixon

    Mmmmm s’mores!!! Favorite summer treat! I like to use crunch bars and regular Graham crackers. The trick is to set a graham cracker with the chocolate on it near the fire to slightly melt the chocolate. Mmmmmmm!!! Sounds like a good book too he he!

  4. Winnie Thomas

    What a fun interview, Carrie! You really know how to set the stage for a fun read. I’m afraid that if I had to order all that stuff before I read each book, I’d go broke in a hurry! Well, I guess I already have the fan and freezer and tissues. I’ve read some of Karen Rock’s books and loved them. I’ll have to put this one on my TBR list right away! Thanks, Carrie and Karen!