Tuesday, January 10, 2023

Review: When I Fall in Love by Susan May Warren

Series: Christiansen Family #3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Tyndale House
Released: June 20, 2014
354 pages
About the Book:

Hawaii was the last place Grace Christiansen ever imagined she’d vacation, much less fall in love. But when her family surprises her with a cooking retreat in paradise, she is pulled—or maybe yanked—away from her predictable, safe life and thrown headfirst into the adventure of a lifetime.

Maxwell Sharpe may make his living on the ice as a pro hockey player, but he feels most at home in the kitchen. Which is why he lives for the three-week culinary vacation he takes each year in Hawaii. Upon being paired with Grace for a cooking competition, Max finds himself drawn to her passion, confidence, and perseverance. But just when Grace dares to dream of a future beyond her hometown, Max pulls away.

Wrestling with personal demons, Max fights against opening his heart to a love he knows he should never hope for. And as his secrets unfold, Grace is torn between the safe path in front of her and what her heart truly desires. If love means sacrificing her ideal happily ever after, Grace’s faith will face its toughest test yet.

My Rating & Thoughts:    ⭐⭐

This book has two main story lines, one focusing on Grace and Max and the other on Raina and Casper, but it also connects the previous two books by celebrating the weddings of Derek and Eden. Max is dealing with a terminal disease and knows his time is limited. He tries to keep everyone at arm's length so not to hurt them but finds that this doesn't work so well. Can he learn to embrace the moments he has? Will his life be richer if he does? Grace is scared to step out of her comfort zone of home, but her family gifts her a trip to Hawaii. With Max's help she learns she can embrace new adventures. These two have struggles but they learn lessons that only make their life richer in the end. Casper is the brother that is always there for everyone wanting to fix everything, Raina is broken and has never really had someone there for her. Casper sees this and want to help her. These two form a bond but then a past decision of Raina's catches up with her and she tries to push Casper away to save him, but he gets hurt when she won’t tell him what is going on. Their story is only beginning in this book, and we need to read the next one to find out what happens with these two. I fell in love with Grace and Max’s storyline and was surprised how much I enjoyed the food related portions of the story. I love that this series shows that even though the Christiansen siblings have grown up in a Christian home surrounded by love, they just like everyone else, figuring out life and making mistakes along the way. 

Favourite Quote: 
“The key to finding out what God has for you is not reaching out for paradise ... but letting go. Falling. Losing control.”
(I purchased my copy of this book; opinions expressed 
in this review are my honest opinion and completely my own.)

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