I got incredibly spoiled by how good all the books in the Bluewater Bay series have been so far. This installment certainly wasn’t a terrible book by any means, writing-wise, but it didn’t hold up to the story-telling quality of the other novels.
Too much of the story hinged on events that occurred before the main characters arrived in Bluewater Bay. Flashbacks attempted to established that history, but we essentially pick up midway through a full story arc. Since we never get to see when Frederic and Blaire were happy together at the beginning, it makes the majority of Blaire’s actions now uncomfortably intrusive and bordering on stalking.
Frederic’s clumsiness is overwrought even before it leads to a major conflict point (the trajectory of which will make many medical professionals cringe at the ineptitude of care at Bluewater Bay’s hospital). He comes into his own as a character at the end of the story, but the spine he finds conflicts with the abuse he takes from a family member through the first two-thirds of the novel.
None of the secondary characters stood out as anything more than bodies to prop up Frederic and Blaire. This is especially true in Alicia’s case, with her very one-sided friendship with Frederic. She literally only shows up in the story to help him, and I saw no hints of how this loyalty is justified, especially since the characters have only even known each other for (maybe?) a year.
Some interesting plot twists regarding Blaire’s business and Frederic’s personal history kept the story humming along. But this relationship, and story, didn’t work for me. I don’t regret reading it, or spending money on the ebook, but it definitely won’t go on my list of “must reads” when recommending this series to other readers.