In a desperate bid to reduce the books that are collecting dust on my TBR shelves, I have decided to collaborate with another avid reader and fellow book reviewer, Nicole from Certified Book Addicts. The #20BACKLISTIN2020 challenge is a self paced challenge hosted by Jaylamm.Reads, Reading and Sunshine, and Cassidys.Bookshelf. The overall goal of this challenge is to read 20 titles from the backlist books that are currently sitting on your TBR pile. For this challenge I will be reading non review books and taking my selections directly from my chock-a-block TBR bookcases (there are two shelved back to back). I will be publishing my reviews of these books on my blog and social media sites on the first and third Tuesday of the month.
Book #9 in the #20BACKLISTIN2020 challenge
Estimated TBR Shelf Life: 6 years
From bestselling author, Rachael Herron, comes another funny and sexy rom com set in the sleepy Californian town of Cypress Hollow.
Cora has been hurt too many times. And by one man in particular . . .
Abandoned by her mother and widowed in her mid-twenties, Cora Sylvan has learnt the hard way that you should take nothing in life for granted.
So everything is planned out to the nth degree – from how to run her farm on a shoestring, to how to survive a major earthquake.
Unfortunately there’s nothing in those notes to cover the return of the infuriatingly handsome Mac Wildwood. Her husband’s cousin. The man she loved and lost. And Mac, it seems, has a shattering plan of his own up his sleeve.
Dammit. Cora Sylvan safeguarded everything – but she didn’t protect her heart . .
Cora’s Heart signals the fourth issue in American author Rachael Herron’s Cyprus Hollow series. Filled with small town musings, humour, heart and knitting, Cora’s Heart represents another engaging caper in Cyprus Hollow. Following the life of Cora Sylvan, this is a tale of beating the odds, second chance love and acceptance.
Cora’s Heart is the story of a young resident of the quaint small town of Cyprus Hollow. Cora Sylvan has suffered a great deal of tragedy and personal pain in her life. Cora has a troubled past and she is a widow. When the story begins, Cora is further tested to her limits by a fire that has destroyed her livelihood. When an old face returns to Cyprus Hollow, Cora finds she is wrestling with long held feelings of love and loss. The gentleman in question, Mac, is also tormented by his feelings for Cora. But Cora is determined to keep Mac at distance, as she cannot afford to let a man into her heart yet again. Can these two lost souls finally overcome their fears and rediscover their lost love?
My personal records tell me that I last read a Rachael Herron book back in 2016, which was The Darling Songbirds. I noticed that I have around half a dozen of Rachael Herron’s books sitting on my TBR shelves, which I haven’t got to due to the sheer volume of review books I must get through. Lately I have had some extra time in my reading schedule to warrant selecting a few long standing residents from the TBR shelves to read. I plucked Cora’s Heart off my shelf as I liked the sound of the title and I was drawn to the strong rural romance feel cover. I tend to turn to rural romance when I am in need of a light and comforting read. Cora’s Heart definitely fit the bill.
Cora’s Heart is book four in this loosely linked series. I stress the word loose, as the setting and a resident knitting queen named Eliza is the only true link to this series. Each book can be read independently of the others and they do not have to be read in order. I read Cora’s Heart after reading only book one some years ago now. There is something ubiquitous about this novel and the series as a whole. The slightly predicable and formulaic approach means that it will appeal to a broad audience.
The setting of Cyprus Hollow is a delight. There is a nice homely and embracing feel to this community that I enjoyed. But it isn’t all hearts and roses. Herron makes us see through her storyline that there are still small minded folk, tension and politics that comes with living in Cyrus Hollow. The lead has also experienced her fair share of personal, as well as professional setbacks. However, working through these obstacles forms the very backbone of this novel.
Herron’s characterisation is sound and her protagonists have a genuine quality to them that made the whole experience of reading the novel very welcoming. Cora has an intriguing past and present background which made the book interesting. Likewise, we discover more about her husband Logan who is now deceased, along with potential love interest Mac. I do have to admit that I wasn’t completely enraptured by this love story, but it definitely helped fill my evening with some much needed light entertainment. I really looked forward to the little knitting based life sentiments that preceded each chapter as a heading, it was a thoughtful touch. If you are a knitter, do not let the cute sweater pattern at the back of the book pass you by!
*** 3 stars
Cora’s Heart by Rachael Herron was published on 1st March 2013 by Bantam Australia. Details on how to purchase the book can be found here.
To learn more about the author of Cora’s Heart, Rachael Herron, visit here.