Thursday, April 29, 2021

Review ~ THE ROAD TO ROSE BEND by Naima Simone

The Road to Rose Bend (Rose Bend, #1)
by: Naima Simone
Series: Rose Bend
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: April 27, 2021
Publisher: HQN Books
Amazon | Paperback | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Google Play | Goodreads

If it was only about her, she might never have come back to Rose Bend.

But it’s not only about her anymore.

Sydney Collins left the small Berkshires town of Rose Bend eight years ago, grieving her sister’s death—and heartbroken over her parents’ rejection. But now the rebel is back—newly divorced and pregnant—ready to face her fears and make a home for her child in the caring community she once knew. The last thing she needs is trouble. But trouble just set her body on fire with one hot, hot smile.

Widower and Rose Bend mayor Coltrane Dennison hasn’t smiled in ages. Until a chance run-in with Sydney Collins, who’s all grown-up and making him want what he knows he can’t have. Grief is his only connection to the wife and son he lost, and he won’t give it up. Not for Sydney, not for her child, not for his heart. But when Sydney’s ex threatens to upend everything she’s rebuilt in Rose Bend, Cole and Sydney may find that a little trouble will take them where they never expected to go.

If Naima Simone is an author you haven’t read or heard of before, I strongly recommend that you remedy that now. I’ve been a fan of hers for years. Her stories are solid, with pop culture references, strong friendship/family bonds, sassy and spunky heroines, and heroes who make you want to throttle them, while at the same time weak in the knees. Oh, and I can’t forget about the passionate smexy times. Naima is an author who brings it all.

Naima makes her full-length Harlequin HQN novel debut with The Road to Rose Bend. The story is different from Naima’s other books, but she still includes everything I love her for. She just adds more family and different dynamics.

In The Road to Rose Bend, Sydney Collins is returning to Rose Bend, MA, eight years after leaving and swearing she would never return. “Family. Acceptance. A sense of belonging. Those had never been hers to have in her hometown.” But when she finds herself divorced and pregnant with her ex-husband’s baby, she’s hoping her parents and the town she knows is capable of loving will welcome its black sheep and child into their loving fold. Cole Dennison has overcome the tragic death of his parents and is now an attorney and newly elected mayor of Rose Bend. He’s also a loved son and brother. From the outside, and only looking on the surface, Cole seems to be a happy man. At times, he is. In those moments when no one is looking, Cole is a grieving man who believes in faking it until he makes it. Two years after the tragic death of his wife and son, Cole still grieves for them and all that he’s lost.

Cole’s world is turned upside down when he runs into Sydney, his younger sister’s childhood best friend. He’s not prepared for the feelings Sydney awakens in him. Sydney isn’t looking for anything from Cole besides his friendship. But she can’t deny the pull she feels towards him. When Sydney’s ex informs her that he’s not on board with her plans, it’s Cole who jumps to her rescue and proposes a marriage of convenience. Can two people who have endured more than their share of tragedy let go of the past and find love?

Naima shows the creativeness and amazing things that truly brilliant authors can do. She’s written a story with characters you want to embrace and have in your life. She’s given them wisdom and depth, making them multi-dimensional. She manages to bring out a variety of emotions; from anger and sadness to laughter and love. And I can’t forget about the tears. There are definitely moments when the tears flow freely. I’ve thought in the past that Naima couldn’t outdo herself. I was wrong. She can and she has. Naima has set up her Rose Bend series very well. I’m looking forward to more of the Dennison family and watching them all find and fall in love.

**Received a copy from the publisher and voluntarily reviewed it. Also personally purchased a paperback copy.**

Rating: 5

Purchase The Road to Rose Bend from:

The Rose Bend Series:

Slow Dance at Rose Bend ~ Review

A Kiss to Remember releases September 1, 2021

Christmas in Rose Bend releases October 26, 2021

Naima Simone’s love of romance was first stirred by Johanna Lindsey and Linda Howard many years ago. Though her first attempt at writing a romance novel at age 11 never saw the light of day, her love of romance and writing has endured. Now, she spends her time creating stories of unique men and women who experience the dizzying heights of passion and the tender heart of love.

She is wife to Superman—or his non-Kryptonian, less bulletproof equivalent—and mother to the most awesome kids ever. They all live in perfect, domestically-challenged bliss in the southern United States.

Places to find Naima Simone:


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