The Sweetest Thing by Lilian Darcy

THING
The Sweetest Thing by Lilian Darcy
Publisher: Tule Publishing
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full Length (312 pgs)
Heat Level: Sensual
Rated 4 stars
Review by Snapdragon

Tully Morgan hasn’t been back to Marietta for more than a few brief visits since the night of the 1996 senior prom eighteen years ago, when the chance exposure of a long-held family secret sent her running to her uncle in California in shock. She stood up her date Ren Fletcher that night, and she hasn’t seen him since. Now she’s here for an extended stay, to help take care of her seriously ill mother. It’s an edgy reconciliation, the first time that Tully, Patty and Sugar Morgan have been together since that long ago prom night. Tully has had so much anger toward Sugar… can she ever forgive her? And Sugar still has one more secret that needs to be dealt with, one that needs Ren Fletcher’s help. Has he forgiven Tully for leaving him in the lurch on prom night? And is there any chance that he and Tully can rekindle what they might once have had, when he’s still tied to someone else?

The Sweetest Thing (A Riverbend Novel) by Lilian Darcy really is sweet: it’s a sweet love story, a sweet family story, and leaves that sort of heartwarming-sweet feeling in its wake.

Of course, it is the characters who evoke the sweetness readers will savor. Tully, introduced first, is acting as her mother’s mainstay, sweetly reassuring her, even though she has her own concerns. Ren, dear soul, is sweet; the first visual of him has him holding Tully’s hand — but he is unexpectedly complicated, as is their relationship.

They’d both agreed to the parameters of their relationship, and Tully makes dutiful, rational-seeming decisions , but there is all this other stuff going on, in the way. ‘An interlude’ seems like a terrible thing to call a relationship. I have hope, though, and the hopes grow as the story carries on. But…

Every character seems to have secrets, or suspect others of having their own. Secrets might not be awful, but they get in the way:  of people, relationships, and trust. Charles, Uncle David, even her mom are important and meaningfully deep secondary characters. Sugar Morgan is somehow, someone more. Characters truly are at the center of this charming romance. Still, it IS a romance, and no matter the things between them, I continue to have hope for the main couple throughout.

The Sweetest Thing is nicely written, if occasionally wordy. Author Darcy it seems, won’t have readers overlook a detail, so perhaps too thoroughly explains points, or must include one more adjective than necessary. The wordiness occasionally slows the pace, but by no means disturbs the wonderful tenor of the story.

And I must note: I love the ‘candy’ themed cover of The Sweetest Thing. Perfectly appropriate!

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