Monday, May 22, 2017

ARC Review: Positively Pippa by Sarah Hegger

Series:     Ghost Falls #1
Pub. Date:May 30, 2017
Publisher:Kensington
Length:352 pages
Source:NetGalley

As a fan of Sarah Hegger's Sir Arthur's Legacy series, this is my first time giving her contemporary romance a shot. I'm not a huge reader of contemporary romance because I have gotten rather picky (it's a side effect of finding gray hair, I promise). But I will be adding Sarah to my trusted authors list for contemporary. Positively Pippa checked all my boxes with mature characters, a likable heroine, a fun flirty hero, a lovable secondary character, minimal angst and drama, and an awesome setting.

At first, I was skeptical about this heroine, Agrippina "Pippa" Turner. As the host of her own makeover television show, I was disinclined to like her as one of those "Hollywood" types. The novel starts off with Pippa suffering a career-ending and ostracizing scandal which sends her slinking back home to Ghost Falls, Utah to hide and nurse her wounds.  Luckily, Pippa turned out to be a likable heroine, and a genuinely nice person. She was also fun with a great sense of style, and the most amazing grandmother ever (more on Philomena later). I enjoyed watching Pippa manage the scandal, social media, and a budding romance with her hometown crush.

Matt Evans is the All-American small town guy - a hunky high school football star who experiences tragedy and becomes the bedrock for his whole family. My love for Matt was bordering on hero worship. He took on the reigns of his family at only nineteen years old without a thought for himself or his future happiness. Everyone calls on Matt when they need a problem solved, and he never fails to step up and work things out. I liked that his good guy persona was balanced by him being flirty (and a little dirty). He was a hero that you want to see get what he deserves (in the best way).

The romance between Pippa and Matt unfolded at the perfect pace. They had fun and kept it light-hearted at first, and the feelings deepened as the story progressed. While the book took place over a relatively short time, the characters had the hometown history to avoid it seeming like instalove. Plus, Matt was just so great that you wanted him to hurry up and get his HEA.

Pippa's grandmother, Philomena, was a dynamic diva and really stole the show of this story. A former Opera singer that, at seventy-eight(ish) years old, is still as eccentric as ever. Whether you are looking at her glittery eye shadow and dramatic dress, or her outlandish mansion, Philomena was one of a kind but with a huge heart. I think she added such an entertaining aspect to this story that I almost wanted to read more about her than our main characters. I'm glad Sarah added her as a secondary focus/distraction from main events.

I voluntarily reviewed an advanced copy of this book that I received from the publisher, Kensington.