About The Reluctant Courtship of Jack Allen
Jack Allan cannot count the number of times he’s been approached with invitations beginning something like, “My sister has a friend…” It seems as if everyone in the small town of Corbett, Idaho, is intent on finding a wife for him–everyone except for Jack himself. The townspeople gossip that this is because Jack, a young widower, has not gotten over the death of his wife, Katelin, and in a way they are right. However, it isn’t his undying love for Katelin which is holding Jack back. Rather it is the memory of events surrounding her death, events about which only he knows and which have left him filled with guilt.
Undeterred, Ruby Henderson, Jack’s feisty neighbor, introduces him to her granddaughter, Ally. Jack unwittingly finds himself attracted to Ally, and it seems she is attracted to him too. So he is stunned when he finally asks her out and she turns him down by saying it would be best if they were just friends. This sets in motion events which lead Jack into one romantic entanglement after another and with not one possible romantic interest but three.
Set against the backdrop of farming and small town life, The Reluctant Courtship of Jack Allan is filled with amusing characters. It tells a story which is sometimes humorous and sometimes poignant as Jack struggles with his guilt while also working to sort out his love life and those of the people around him.
This book was really good. I liked a lot of things about it. The author did a really great job with the setting, and the characters. The plot was a bit predictable. But the book was still enjoyable.
One of my favorite things about the book was the setting of Corbett, Idaho. Corbett doesn’t appear to be a real place, at least I don’t remember it and it’s not coming up in a Google Maps search, but it felt like the little town I grew up in in Idaho. The way everyone knows everyone and their business seemed so much like a small town. And things like the potato harvest and getting out of school for it were things I experienced growing up.
I liked the characters a lot. This one features Jack Allen. He’s the main character and the reader sees everything through his eyes. I like seeing things through the man’s eyes a lot of times. And Jack is a great character. There is a complexity about him that you don’t always get in characters. That was great!
Corbett has a fun cast of characters, people like Ruby make the book come alive. Ruby is the kind of busybody that most people know. I loved the way she pushed Jack into doing things and got him thinking in different ways. Jack’s sister Gwen and brother-in-law Greg are great too. And there’s also Ally. Ally is Ruby’s granddaughter and she’s the main think Ruby tries to push him into. I do wish the reader had gotten to see a bit of her point of view. She seemed a bit one dimensional.
I liked the plot. There were a few things that weren’t predictable, but not as many as I would have liked. All in all, this is a good book that you’ll enjoy taking time to read.
I was sent an e-copy of The Reluctant Courtship of Jack Allen as a gift from the author. All opinions are my own.
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