A charming romantic comedy about an unemployed woman and an ex-NFL player at odds with each other.
Becky, an artist and teacher, moves into her sister Maddy’s bed-and-breakfast in coastal Maine. She’s there not by choice but because a scandal ousted her from her previous job. She seeks the support of her seemingly perfect sister who’s now a stepmother to two precocious young boys, Blake and Parker. Maddy and her new husband, John, embark on their honeymoon, leaving Becky to take care of the B&B. She envies her sister’s perfect life while basking in its warmth, but the idea of getting a husband is far from her mind. Becky has sworn that she’s “done with men forever.” But then a guest arrives at the B&B: Tank, an ex-pro football player and the brother of Becky’s friend, Grace, who immediately annoys Becky. Although Tank and Becky grate on each other’s nerves—she thinks that he’s too big and brooding, and he thinks that she’s too aggressive and fickle—the tension between the two is comedic. When Tank begins to assist John in the renovation of his and Maddy’s apartment, Becky can’t avoid him. One drunken night, she spills her personal life to Tank, and he witnesses and admires her vulnerability. It’s difficult to discern exactly why Becky is so bothered by Tank (Scheyder never shows their initial meeting, for example), and so it may be hard for readers to believe their disdain for each other. However, they’ll quickly overlook this lack of clarity. Scheyder has created witty, likable characters that add vitality to the story and offer a reminder that this is a novel that’s just as much about family as it is about romantic love. Tank’s character develops wonderfully as he struggles with quitting football and shaping the next chapter of his life. One can’t help but root for him.
A delightful read that may make readers want to move to New England, stay in a B&B, and fall in love.