Denise Hunter. On Magnolia Lane. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 2018.
Wrapping up Ms. Hunter’s Blue Ridge Romance series, On Magnolia Lane tells the long-awaited story of Pastor Jack McReady and the results of his crush on Daisy Pendleton. For being a leader in their town, Jack’s ability to sweep a woman off her feet is somewhat lacking. With the prompting of his friends, Jack ends up on an online dating app, in the hopes of catching Daisy’s attention. However, their real-life selves also continually encounter each other as they work to put together a fundraiser for one of the community’s nonprofits. When online and real life come face to face, Daisy must decide if she can trust the man she has come to know all along.
Ms. Hunter’s small town characters will delight fans, especially with the multi-generational story of Daisy and her family. Likewise, Jack’s semi-bumbling attempts at romantic gestures are altogether adorable and worth the read.
Overall, I really enjoyed reading On Magnolia Lane. Ms. Hunter’s books are consistently worth the time and effort, especially with her accessible writing style and contemporary characters. Personally, I found On Magnolia Lane to be my favorite book of the Blue Ridge Romance series, as I found the characters to be more some of my favorites throughout the books. This series stands apart somewhat from some of Ms. Hunter’s other books, as the characters face a surprising number of significant challenges that are not always included in Christian fiction. While some of these plot points and character traits made for good stories, I didn’t necessarily like the characters themselves, with the exception of Daisy and Jack. I found that their story seemed to redeem the series as a whole, as it felt more true to Ms. Hunter’s typical writing form and style.
Fans of Ms. Hunter’s previous works will definitely want to read On Magnolia Lane. Readers who enjoy contemporary Christian fiction will also find this novel to be well worth reading.
Ms. Hunter’s next novel, Summer By the Tides, will be released in May 2019!
Special thanks to Thomas Nelson and NetGalley for the complimentary copy of On Magnolia Lane! Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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