Title: Midnight Promises by Sherryl Woods
The Sweet Magnolias Book 8
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 384 pages
Book Rating: B
Review Copy Obtained from Publisher Through NetGalley
When Elliott Cruz first courted struggling single mom Karen Ames, it it was a romance worthy of any Sweet Magnolia fantasy. The sexy personal trainer made it his mission to restore Karen’s strength—physical and emotional—and to charm her children.
Now, a few years into the marriage, colliding dreams threaten to tear a few years into the marriage, colliding dreams threaten to tear them them apart. Elliott’s desire to finance the business opportunity of a lifetime with their hard-earned “baby money” stirs Karen’s deep-rooted financial insecurities. It’s the discovery that their brother-in-law is cheating on Elliott’s sister—and thinks it’s justified—that puts their irreconcilable differences into perspective. Will their own loving fidelity be a bond so strong they can triumph against all odds?
In Midnight Promises, Sherryl Woods’ presents her readers with an in-depth and realistic look at what happens after the wedding vows are exchanged. Elliot Cruz and Karen Ames discover saying “I Do” is easy, but making a marriage work in the midst of everyday life? Well, let’s just say our couple has a lot to learn about themselves and each other.
Elliot Cruz and Karen Ames have what is probably a fairly typical marriage. Busy careers, long hours and working opposite shifts leave this couple little time together. Two kids, financial stress and extended family involvement provide additional strain on their fragile relationship. Lack of communication, secrets, trust issues and their respective emotional baggage threaten to destroy their marriage.
Ms. Woods beautifully illustrates that successful marriages take hard work. While it may not be romantic, dates sometimes have to be scheduled so couples can reconnect. Families are often a blessing and a curse. Each partner brings their own vulnerabilities and fears to the marriage and it is up to both people to work at understanding where the other person is coming from. Neither partner is perfect and mistakes are inevitable. Learning from those mistakes and self-reflection play a crucial role in resolving the issues facing Elliot and Karen.
The secondary plotlines are well-written and the conflicts provide added depth and substance to the main plot. Elliot’s sister Adelia is going through a marital crisis that forces her to reassess her values and her traditional Hispanic upbringing. Surrogate mother/grandmother Frances is frightened by the implications of an unexpected health problem.
Midnight Promises is a delightful addition to the Sweet Magnolias series. Fans of the series will enjoy reconnecting with characters from previous books in the series. Newcomers to the series will enjoy the camaraderie shared by this close knit group of friends and family.
Midnight Promises by Sherryl Woods is a fast-paced and captivating read that fans of contemporary romances are sure to love. I am very much looking forward to Catching Fireflies, the next installment in this charming series.