This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Published by Berkley
Released on March 3, 2020
A correspondence romance, military hero, and the promise of Alaska for a setting were all it took to hook me into trying a new to me author standalone.
From Alaska With Love opens with overworked-underappreciated Sara going out on a limb and writing a letter to a military service personnel as part of a correspondence project. Her letter reaches dedicated career soldier, Major Gabe Randall, who usually passes off the letters to those under him, but there was finally enough in this batch for him to get a letter of his own. Sara’s upbeat, fun letter hits the spot for Gabe and a correspondence between the two begins through email and onto face time.
Gabe is plans to finish his career out and settle in his Alaska home. He is eager to meet Sara in person and get all his dreams. He surprises Sara in person and that’s when he discovers that all is not as it seems. The sparkle is gone and Sara isn’t who he thought- she’s been playing a part. Sara can’t believe how it all miserably fell apart and knows she needs to get a backbone and start standing up to demanding family if she is to ever get back her chance of happiness. First stop- Alaska!
This book was all I was hoping in many ways. I recently enjoyed a slow burn correspondence- military romance so I was primed for this one. But, it ended up being one that I had mixed feelings over. I could see some complications on Sara’s side as she acted her own Cinderella part in her family as nanny to her own sharp-tongued niece and user sister as well as whipping girl for her self-absorbed mother and on Gabe’s side- he was quick to action and not a lot of tenderness and letting his guard down. So a doormat and the Great Wall of China between the pair. About half-way, the wheels fell off and it got messy. The tone of the story changed when they both started floundering. I really wanted to see them weather it after the idyllic distance romance they had together. It was a struggle. I even skimmed a few times. Nearer the end, it got onto solid ground again.
The handling of Gabe’s military background rang true and the Alaska setting was all I was looking for. Their emails really captivated me. Sara’s family were a real sour note as was the pathetic way she let them get away with it. Happily, I never hated her and wanted her with Gabe more than ever- though yeah, I wanted to boot her in the butt a few times. When Gabe went all stone soldier I wanted to shake him, too. I get his thing a bit more because I didn’t like that she basically lied to him and caused him to wonder if any of it was true bringing his withdrawal on herself. I know that she didn’t do it on purpose and got carried away especially in the beginning when it was just an escape from her dreary life. Like I said, mixed feelings.
All in all, if I balance the first half with the last half, I’d call it moderately good. Those who enjoy a slowburn romance crossover women’s fic featuring a correspondence courtship and military hero should definitely give it a try.
My thanks to Berkley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
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