Overall Grade: 4.5 ⭐️
Tropes: grump/sunshine; forced proximity; single mom; family reconciliation
Weston Madigan is hands-down my favorite Madigan brother. Bet. Now, to be fair, I haven’t quite met his youngest brother yet, BUT I suspect I will still adore Weston when the final story has been released. There is something incredibly romantic about a hero who is grumpy, protective, and responsible. It doesn’t hurt that he’s also handsome and well-built, but based on character traits alone, Weston is my romance hero catnip. Does he hate messes? Yes. Who doesn’t? Has he intentionally stayed away from his hometown and given his oldest brother grief in the face of the challenges of their family business? For sure. But the pain of his mother’s death coupled with his father’s actions in the wake of her death ensures his reticence at wanting to come home. However, he does, and he does so with the intent of protecting his “found family.” Yes, he’s willful and protected behind a steeled wall. Yet…yet, Weston cannot protect himself from the heroine of Rebecca Yarros’s A Little Too Close, book 2 of the Madigan Mountain series. Callie owns Weston from their meeting, and Yarros takes us on an emotional journey of second chances.
While I’ve been vomiting the beauty that is Weston Madigan, I’ve been remiss in noting the power of Callie and her daughter, Sutton. Callie’s purpose lies in breaking down Weston’s emotional walls, loving him through his foibles and helping him, on his own terms, to reconcile with his older brother. Her kindness and care along with her self-determination to give her daughter, Sutton, the best life are utilized to rock Weston’s world. Initially, they rock the bedroom, but little by little, Callie’s tenacity transforms Weston. If you’re like me, this transformation of a grumpy hero through the sunshiness of the heroine makes you swoon. And Rebecca Yarros has crafted their story arcs in ways that make you fall for their coupling.
Adding in the vivacity and daredevlishness of Callie’s daughter, Sutton, simply adds an additional layer to the story. She provides humor, as well as a complication to Callie and Weston’s story. Even more, Sutton’s existence is why Callie forgoes her dreams of becoming a nature photographer a la National Geographic. Callie loves her life and her daughter, but for much of A Little Too Close, she lives in the shadow of her lost dream. Through her story arc, Yarros reminds her readers about the reality of dreams: that they can change as we experience life. Just as Weston is living a second chance in his birthplace, Callie lives out a past dream only to find it no longer fits. She earns a second chance, only to find that Weston is her new dream.
Rebecca Yarros’s A Little Too Close is a steamy, emotional romance with an MMC and FMC who will engage you. Thus far, I’ve enjoyed the first two books of the Madigan Mountain series, and I’m certain Devney Perry will situate herself alongside Sarina Bowen and Rebecca Yarros in this world of family reconciliation.
In love and romance,