Photographer Ian Kroft’s dream is to finish his book on fellow veterans. When his father offers him the funds he needs in exchange for persuading a family to sell their farm, it sounds simple. Then Ian meets Colette and in a flash everything changes.
Cherry Ridge Farm is home to Colette’s family—and to her animal rescue center. The slim, gorgeous veterinarian has no intention of selling. Soon Ian’s chasing after her runaway dog and laughing at her jokes, and he knows that if he lets slip his real purpose, she’ll never forgive him. Ian’s torn between his book and his new romance…all while his father is clamoring for him to seal the deal.
Colette can trust a dog to come back when she calls, but a man? Colette’s been burned more than once. Then a sweet, athletic photographer pops into her life and makes her wonder if it’s time to picture a new future.
Source: ARC from Penner Publishing via NetGalley
This is a sweet, easy read romance starring a caring heroine and a hero who prefers life in pictures rather than words. Ian is a man on a mission – it’s just that he’s not completely certain of what it is. He starts off trying to win his way back into his father’s good graces by getting hold of the land he so desperately wants. If he gets the job done he’ll also receive funding for the photography book he’s making about fellow veterans adjusting to life back at home. He’s a good man, if a little bruised by life, and he’s just trying to do the best he can with the things he’s offered.
Then he meets Colette and everything changes. Well, some of it changes. His outlook for one. Not to mention his views on family, since Colette’s is a close and loving one. But as nice and friendly as Colette is, she also has big trust issues when it comes to men. Not helped by the fact that Ian has his big old secret that he wants to tell, and yet doesn’t. The story is a familiar one in which two essentially nice people grow closer while underneath their relationship a big secret is bubbling away, waiting to destroy everything.
Sure, there were times when I just wanted Ian to tell her! And there were other times when Colette takes an irrational swerve and starts thinking he’s leaving and has no interest in her (because he hasn’t called for two days… so pick up the phone! Even better, check your messages or even answer it from time to time. Problem solved.), but on the whole their romance is sweet, even if it does move pretty fast. I loved the way photography was such an ingrained part of Ian’s life. The way he’s always reaching for his camera or framing shots, or just the way he sees things. It’s a lovely detail that really added to his character.
I do, however, wish that the animals had played as big a role as the camera. Considering Colette’s a veterinarian as well as runs her own rescue centre, the animals weren’t as big a feature as I expected. Not necessarily a bad thing, but that was one of the main reasons I picked up this book. So if you’re planning to read this and hoping for some cute animal antics, you may be a little disappointed.
On the whole, though, this is sweet and enjoyable, a perfect summer read. Although I found the storyline with Ian’s dad a bit predictable, I can definitely see why Colette and her family wouldn’t want to sell the place, and overall it left me curious to read more.
Animal Prints is out June 15th!
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