Home in Your Arms by Charlotte O’Shay

Home in Your Arms by Charlotte O’Shay
Deerbourne Inn series, #19
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Rating: 3.5 Stars
Reviewed by Mistflower

After her sweetheart Joe dies in a road accident, twenty-four hours after he returns from Army service, grieving Karla Payne slams the door on love.

Five years later, Karla’s tavern business is booming, and she owns her home, but she knows forever love has no part in her future.

Headed to interview for his first civilian job, retired career Army 1st Sgt. Zane Blackthorne can’t resist visiting his late buddy’s beloved Vermont hometown. He also can’t resist looking up Joe’s sweetheart, Karla, who is an alluring mix of brains, beauty, and bravery.
Loyalty to his brother-in-arms demands Zane fight his attraction to Karla. Besides, even if Karla wants him, she’ll never love him.
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Can Zane say goodbye to the woman he has no right to call his own?
Even if his only true home is in her arms?

The Deerbourne Inn series is written by a collection of authors sharing the same setting but they don’t have to be read in order because the two I chose can definitely be considered standalone stories. The first one I tried was #8 and was written by Charlotte O’Shay. I’d never read her before. Because I loved it very much, I chose to read Home in Your Arms as it was also written by Charlotte O’Shay.

I was amazed at the differences between the two romance stories. I simply had to compare them, especially because they were part of the series. My verdict – while I preferred book Forever in a Moment, Home in your Arms is still a good book. It was. I was entertained and enjoyed many parts of it. It’s just that I couldn’t connect with the heroine, Karla Payne. It’s true that I don’t know what it’s like to be a widow, but Karla’s character didn’t come close to what I imagined it might be like. I’m frustrated that I can’t pinpoint exactly what didn’t jive for me. There were times when I really felt like I was connecting and then, I wasn’t. Her personality flip-flopped – from independent to dependent. It didn’t help matters that Karla wasn’t very nice to the heroine in Forever in a Moment. Justified or not, it was still stuck in my head.

My impression of the hero, Zane, was that he was a borderline stalker. He fell in love with his late buddy’s sweetheart while listening to him tell stories about her during their deployment. Zane couldn’t resist looking Karla up. While it all logically made sense, it was still kind of weird.

Even though the story had a predictable plot, it flowed at a nice steady pace. The chemistry between Karla and Zane brought a smile to my face and made me happy when they received their happily ever after. Another thing I liked about Home in Your Arms were the cameos from some of the characters I met in Forever in a Moment. Seeing them made for a very nice surprise.

The best takeaway was the belief that a true home is in your loved one’s arms. I absolutely agree with that because I’ve moved several times and could relate to this concept. I was able to look past the conflicts and struggles between the hero and heroine because I appreciated the moral of the story. A house is just a structure. It’s the loved ones within that make it a home and it’s that theme that redeemed the book for me.

Ultimately, the author’s writing style made for a pleasant and enjoyable read. I would definitely encourage readers to give this story a try. One thing’s for sure. I’m curious to try another Charlotte O’Shay romance story simply because I’m amazed as to how different books #8 and #19 were. What other surprises might be in store for me from this multi-talented author?

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