Review of ‘After the Summer Rain’ by Gerri Hill
Erin Ryder is a workaholic property developer who, after a disastrous breakup, is on the path of self-destruction. After a family intervention, she is sent for three months to a secluded ranch in New Mexico to detox and heal. Her host, Melanie West, is very reserved and guarded but slowly both women start forming a friendship. When deeper feelings arise, Erin will eventually have to choose between Mel or her previous life.
This is a slow-burn romance between two very different women who are both in need of redemption and a second chance at love. In a way, this is also an opposites-attract romance. Both characters come from very different backgrounds and have contrasting experiences in romantic relationships, but somehow, there and then, they seem to be what each other needs. While one of the mains has a questionable past, her present redeeming qualities make up for her past mistakes. As usual, Ms. Hill builds up the chemistry of the mains to hot levels and despite their differences, their attraction feels realistic.
Gerri Hill is great at writing magnificent settings for all her books and this is no exception. Her depiction of the landscape of New Mexico, with its peculiar weather, is the star of this novel. There is a good deal of description of gardening and small farm chores that might not appeal to all the readers but help to create a sense of peace and tranquility that both characters seek and give them a perfect way to bond.
My main criticism is that this novel is highly predictable. There was no doubt where the plot was leading to and even Melanie’s mysterious past did not bring any excitement to the story. Even though most secondary characters were well-written, Erin’s ex seemed a bit stereotyped. For me, these issues combined with a farm theme that wasn’t particularly appealing put a damper on my enjoyment. However, if you like farms and a slow-burn romance, this might appeal to you.
Overall, an ok lesbian slow burn romance book with a beautiful natural setting. 3.5 stars.
ARC provided by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.