*I received a free copy of Finding Our Forever from Harlequin via Author. This has in no way influenced my voluntary review, which is honest and unbiased *Finding Our Forever by Brenda Novak
Series: Silver Springs #1
Published by Harlequin on 21 March 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
The search for her birth mother brought Cora Kelly to the New Horizons Boys Ranch. Getting a job there was easy enough, but confiding in Aiyana, the ranch's owner, that she's really her daughter? Cora's not sure she can do that, not unless she's confident the news will be welcomed. And once she gets to know Elijah Turner, Aiyana's adopted son and ranch manager, that decision becomes even more difficult.
Although Elijah can't deny his deep attraction to Cora, he's always struggled with trust. Anyone with his past would, and there's something about the ranch's newest employee that isn't exactly as it seems. But if the feelings she awakes in his guarded heart are any indication, she might be just what he's long been waiting for.
Finding Our Forever has some complex relationships, a lot of longing, a lot of love, and a little intrigue. It’s all set at a beautiful ranch away from the lights of the big city.
The setting in Finding Our Forever is really nice, it’s a school for wayward young men, and because it’s kind of enclosed, it’s really more like a small town than anything else. Some teachers live on campus, as do all the students. The newest teacher, Cora, has more than one reason to want to be there, though. She has finally, after years of searching, found out who her biological mother is. And because her bio mom is the director of this school, she decided to apply for the position as an art teacher. This way, she could get to know Aiyana before she’d have to decide whether or not to tell her who she was.
Just before moving to Silver Springs, Cora broke up with her boyfriend, and managed to pack all her belongings into her car. Finding Our Forever is about more than meeting her biological mother for the first time, though, as there is a vers strong love story as well. From the start, Cora was attracted to Eli, even if it felt a bit wrong – especially since he was Aiyana’s adoptive son. She still decided to keep her hidden identity to herself a little longer.
Learning to get to know both her colleagues and her boss, as well as teaching and getting to know her students kept Cora very busy. She was a character I enjoyed, even if I kind of wish she’d have shared her secret before she did. I can understand why she didn’t tell anyone, of course, but the secret brought some added stress to her already turned upside-down life. Plus, when her ex-boyfriend showed up, drunk and belligerent, I got quite scared for her and her newfound happiness.
Both the small-town feel and the multifaceted relationships that Novak do so well were big parts of the story, and it made Finding Our Forever a very good contemporary romance. It also made me curious about what else will happen in Silver Springs in the future. Written in third person point of view, past tense and mostly from Cora’s perspective, the dialogues kept the story fresh and nicely paced, while also letting me know more about the inner workings of the other characters.
Would she like her mother? Would they resemble each other more in person that in the one picture she’d seen?
“See? I’m not that far away.” Although… it almost seemed as if she’d moved to another planet; Silver Springs was nothing like L.A.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: