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Wish You Were Here by Lani Diane Rich

Maria Lokken

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What's a smart, tough, sexy business woman to do, when she develops an eye ‘condition’ that oddly resembles crying each time she's about to strike a deal? That's the problem our heroine Freya must overcome if she's going to close the biggest deal of her life.

In this delightful contemporary romance all is not as it seems - there's a mystery to be solved and some soul searching to do. Freya is sent to Deer Park Idaho by her tycoon real estate farther to purchase a rundown camp ground owned by Cincinnati chef Nate Brody. Nate's in a bind - he'd like to sell and get back to his life, but he made a death bed promise to his father that he wouldn't sell until he finds a certain ‘package’ on the property. That's when Freya is forced to pull out all her negotiating skills to seal the deal. Her career and her future depend on it. Freya's not sure why her father wants this ramshackle, tumbleweed infested property - but she knows if she doesn't get it, her promotion and her dreams will look a lot like the property she's trying to buy - a mess.

I love relationship stories, the ones that include interactions between mothers, daughters, sisters, fathers, aunts, uncles, cousins - you know - relationships. And this book has them. Nate's got a precocious ten year old daughter named Piper and as the story progresses he learns the importance of his relationship with her, and that his actions have consequences to her future. Freya learns there are relationships between a father and daughter that can be nurturing and loving. Each grows within themselves and as a result grows toward each other. The mystery of the missing ‘package’ and its significance to the hero and heroine is what finally shifts each one toward the life they really want.

The author gives us a happy ending - but she takes it one step further. She doesn't have our tough, sexy, smart heroine change her entire world to be with Nate. No, he's got to work for it, and it makes the ending that much sweeter.

This is the first book I've read by Lani Diane Rich, but it won't be the last. She has a wonderfully smart, fresh voice. As a reader, you want to keep turning the pages for the dialogue as well as the plot.

Maria Lokken
Romance Novel TV


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