Sunrise Point was a WONDERFUL addition to an addictive series. For me, this one rated WAY up there when it comes to all of the books in this series. Be forewarned that this story goes for the heart. The romance unfolds slowly, and it becomes a beautiful friends-to-lovers romance.
Desperate for money and willing to work hard, Nora applies for a backbreaking job of picking apples at Tom Cavanaugh’s orchard, but what she ends up with is a life changing experience of friendship, family, safety, comfort and love like she has never known. But these good things don’t come quickly. While Tom is drawn to Nora, he is not interested in a woman with so much baggage. Two kids and an ex-boyfriend doing time in prison? No thanks.
Shortly after Nora starts work at his orchard, he begins testing the waters with a possible romantic relationship with Darla, a beautiful widow of a former military man he served with. She is nothing like Nora. She is polished, stunningly beautiful, educated, wealthy, independent and without baggage. Only one problem: she’s kind of a spoiled bitch.
Tom Cavanaugh was a wonderful hero, albeit a bit clueless with women but that was part of his charm. While he initially believes Darla to be a better catch for him, his growing friendship with Nora challenges him every step of the way. Watching him come to the realization that Nora was by far the better woman, and that their ‘friendship-only’ status be damned, was incredibly fun to read. I loved every minute of it.
And then there was Maxine, Tom’s grandmother and one of my new favorite secondary characters in Virgin River. I pray we see more of her, I loved that old woman and her lady friends to pieces. Her words of wisdom were well done. She helps Tom to eventually find the right answers without being obvious or pushy, she simply reminds him of what’s important and lets him work it out.
You may remember Nora from Bring Me Home for Christmas as the young lady with a 1-month old who was left abandoned in a rundown home with no windows, refrigeration, food…etc. She made another appearance in Hidden Summit as a neighbor to Leslie, where we got to see that she is doing much better, making friends, but still struggling to make ends meet. I knew I would like her as a heroine of her own romance, but I was not prepared to like Nora this much. Her HEA is one of the sweetest ones in this series, and definitely one of the most deserving.
There were other storylines going on as well, but they did not shorten the romance part down at all. Nora learns more about her parents, the pesky black bear with three cubs returns to wreak more havoc, and Luke Riordan has an old buddy (Coop) come into to town to do some hunting. Turns out Coop has an unfriendly past with Jack, but we will have to wait to see how that story unfolds. I assume Coop will be a hero or major character in a later story. I wasn’t all that impressed with his cocky attitude and the chip on his shoulder, but there were glimpses of a pretty solid guy too, so for now I’m holding judgment if I will like him or not.
I should probably mention again that this was a slower paced romance, so don’t expect any hot and heavy passion early in the book. But it does come, and it does deliver! I would even recommend this book if you want to read it stand-alone. I wouldn’t say that for many of the books, but this one could easily be read out of order as a stand-alone. I sure wish there was another book in this series for me to read, as I always hate reading the last book in her annual trilogies cause that means I have to wait another year to read more. But it was an awesome ending, and I look forward to more, more, more (please!!)