★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
I did not expect to like this book – the characters seemed one-dimensional, I’m not a big fan of the Netflix Rom Com style (which it proudly touts in marketing it’s “just like!”), and we’ve seen this fish-out-of-water love story 50m times.
I was pleasantly surprised. In particular, by how much I liked the main characters: Piper and Brendan (despite the terrible, oh-so-modern names). The way that Bailey told their histories, interwoven with the story of the fisherman’s village of Westport, was really well done. In particular, the denizens of Westport brought the vibrant, wind-swept, close-knit, dangerous place to life. It was *chef’s kiss* The spicier scenes were very, ahem, spicy indeed, too.
And then in the last couple of chapters, my hopes were dashed. What had been a well-built, salt-of-the-earth story of healing and growth, suddenly became a confused, rushed annoyance. It was as if Bailey was rushed by the process, hadn’t decided how to write her climax and then write herself out of it, or simply didn’t care anymore. Or maybe some combination thereof. I finished the book unsatisfied by the laughable epilogue.
I recommend reading the book for the immensely enjoyable first 90-95%. Don’t let the ending get you down. Just pull a Piper and tell yourself your own version.
I will admit: I haven’t decided if I’ll read the sequel yet, Hook, Line, and Sinker tells Pipes’ little sister Hannah’s story. But considering the 1st didn’t win me over hook, line, and sinker… I just don’t know.