Sparked by Love: A Holiday for Romance


Leo Wilson is a glass artist picked by committee to have a front-and-center art display at the Independence Day celebration in Vancouver, WA. It's the level of exposure he's been waiting years for. Shannon Morgan is the liaison between him, the city, and every other department imaginable who has fingers in the celebration. Through a series of miscommunications, they come together to figure out how to make his display work, despite opposition from her estranged ex and her father.


Although their "love at first sight" initially seems implausible, both characters actually slow down and take the time to get to know each other, and are a good example of crafting a relationship from scratch, even after heartbreak. There is some dragging out of events, where the pace slows to a snail's crawl across pages, but overall the flow is excellent and puts the reader comfortably in the middle of things. The miscommunication angst that threatens their relationship doesn’t really work with Leo and Shannon, though, and feels forced. They’re written to be too adult and too smart to have childish tantrums, and it throws everything off completely - and not in a good way. The secondary best-friend characters are incredible and wonderfully complex, and the story is 100% believable as a “could have happened” - though the father and the ex are a bit much. Readers will want Leo’s family and Shannon’s friends as their own.  Nice work!


Julie York