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Friday, January 29, 2010

Forbidden Falls by Robyn Carr

Forbidden Falls by Robyn Carr
Publisher: Harlequin
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full (376 pages)
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 5 Books
Reviewed by Camellia

Virgin River is abuzz with the news that a stranger bought the town's abandoned church on eBay. The buyer, a young widowed reverend, is a little like the building itself: in need of some loving care.

Noah Kincaid arrives ready to roll up his sleeves and revitalize his new purchase, but he's going to need some help. An ad in the local paper brings an improbable candidate his way.

"Pastor's assistant" is not a phrase that springs to mind when Noah meets brassy, beautiful Alicia Baldwin. With her colorful clothes and even more colorful past, Alicia needs a respectable job so she can regain custody of her children. Noah can't help but admire her spunk and determination, and she may just be the breath of fresh air he needs.

This unlikely duo may come from two different worlds, but they have more in common than anyone would have expected. And in Virgin River lasting happiness is never out of the question.

Brassy, but honest and hardworking Ellie knows herself and is comfortable in her own skin. However, the way others perceive her before they know her limits her options in the workplace. Ellie children have been taken from her and placed in the custody of her ex-husband who is not their father. The horror of it all threatens to crush her but with the fortitude that her “gramma” engendered in her she tackles the problem with determination.

Ellie’s strength, candor, and underlying desperation touch Pastor Noah Kincaid’s heart. He hires her not realizing what a dynamo he is getting, not just for getting a rundown church up and running but also for rekindling a feeling that had gone dormant deep inside him when his precious Merry died.

Noah knows about hard times. Since leaving his opulent home when he was eighteen, he has made his way in the world doing hard work with lots of hard knocks along the way. Emotionally bankrupt he immerses himself in refurbishing and opening a church in Virgin River. His true calling and his compassion along with his understanding of what “real life” is makes him a hero to be remembered.

All the characters make FORBIDDEN FALLS pulsate and hum with life. The sub-plots about Paul and Vanessa and about Jo Ellen and Nick bring a sense of joy and affirmation of what love can do.

Robyn Carr works magic with words to make the people in the community of Virgin River seem real. The reader can feel the hurts, fears, joys, and a ton of other emotions as Robyn weaves a story full of love that overcomes hate, despair, and so many negative feelings that would deny the characters happiness. The faith (not preachy kind) but faith lived day by day is the abiding strength that gently nudges the characters toward happiness.

Robyn Carr’s remarkable writing style makes her disappear and allows the reader to vicariously experience life with her characters who touch the heart and give that special feeling that good can overcome evil and love brings meaning and joy to lives of those who give and receive it.