Rita Jansen is living her dream as a hairstylist in Hollywood when her father calls with news that her mother has suffered a stroke. When she gets home to Chicago, Rita finds her mother is healing but facing a long recovery. Worse, without being able to run their family-owned salon, her mother could lose the business. Rita decides to help, but she only has until Valentine’s Day to come up with a plan.
As Rita takes her mother’s place at work, the nearby skating rink she loved as a child brings back fond memories. Rita also finds herself renewing friendships with her childhood best friend, Marley, as well as her classmate Johnny. Although they now lead such seemingly different lives, Rita is surprised by how well she and Johnny connect and how far he will go to help her. Though Rita believes Johnny is only being kind, with romance kindling in the air and on the ice, their friendship may just fall into something more.
Admittedly, I decided to read Love Gently Falling is because the front cover was misleading. I believed it to be a Christmas Story. It isn’t.
However, it was a surprisingly good novella; a novella that ticks all the boxes for a romantic story; a hot dude, a cute girl and a series of misleading information that may or may not lead the romantic leads to not get together in the end.
Ok, so it all seems rather bog standard but it is actually a lot more interesting than I have made it out to be.
So we have Rita who has returned home because her mother is unwell. She meets up with an old friend (Johnny) and sparks start to fly. In this will-they-won’t-they story, Carlson has you chomping at the bit to get to the end to see how things turn out. Now as all romance readers know the love story has to have a happy ending. It is part of the convention of the love story. However, I think I was a little disappointed by the cliché this time – whilst I will defend Love Gently Falling in that it is well written, you have to ask yourself the situation was too romanticised for a modern day audience. Conventional happy endings don’t always apply and it is something that I think I personally found too saccharine.
Overall, Love Gently Falling is a good, quick and easy read.
Love Gently Falling by Melody Carlson is available now.