I happened to stumble on Hummingbird Lake while I was in the book store one day, and I was in the mood for a sweet romance story. I've also been attracted lately by the small town setting, and Hummingbird Lake just seemed to fit my mood for the moment. I realized that it's book two in March's Eternity Spring series, but of course the book store didn't have the first book and although I like reading in series in order, I thought, what the hell, and here we are.
Summary from Emily March
Eternity Springs is a refuge for Colt, a place to ground himself when the stress of investigating tragedies takes its toll. He has come here for a little R&R, but instead of relaxing, he finds himself fascinated by the mysterious redhead whose secrets beg to be discovered--a beauty running from her past, a heartsick woman in desperate need of the sweet sanctuary of a devoted man's embrace. And he is just the man to show her the true path to peace--by offering her the healing power of love.
I really enjoyed March's writing style and story line in this book. She brings the little town of Eternity Springs to life with her descriptions and I was immediately swept away by the easy, natural pace of this novel and the rich people and places we encounter in the novel.
Sage Anderson is a character I have a huge amount of sympathy for. It's clear from the beginning of the novel that she's on the run, and barely acknowledging what she's on the run from. She's abandoned her medical career to be an artist, which is in itself, an escape from the horrors she's endured. But it's clear that while her current home and job in Eternity Springs has helped her cope, that she's barely coping from what she's running from. I like that March doesn't reveal to us right away what horrible experience is in Sage's past, that we only face it when Sage herself is ready to face it, in bits and pieces.
Colt is part of the reason Sage begins to open up about her experiences in Africa. After she delivers Nic's babies, it's clear that the source of her nightmares is somehow related to her previous doctoring career, but we're left pretty much in the dark as to how or why. Colt happens to be on hand once the babies are safely delivered and Sage falls apart in his arms. Something she does repeatedly during the first months of their friendship. I like that Colt is always pushing Sage. Really, Sage doesn't want to be pushed, and she's a strong willed personality who won't tolerate being pushed. But Colt isn't a pushy guy, he just pushes. He cajoles, and teases and romances Sage until she gives in and starts enjoying his attention and spends time with him. She knows better than to become involved with anyone because she knows she's suffering from PTSD, but she feels that a fling with Colt is a safe bet because that's all it will be, a fling since he doesn't live in Eternity Springs.
Until he moves to Eternity Springs that is. Colt has been supremely unhappy with his career, and he decides he needs a change in life and lifestyle and he's always loved Eternity Springs, so he decides to move there. He's also in love with Sage despite the fact that he knows there is something big in her past that she's hiding and not dealing with. So Colt sticks around until she is ready. There is a moment when he thinks that Sage will never be willing to deal with her PTSD, where he thinks he's been hoping for too much for them, but Sage does come through in the end. I rather thought the ending was perfect--Sage has agreed to marry Colt, and she's realized that she can survive her experiences in Africa, by continuing to face life head on.
A great story of love, loss, survival, and hope, Eternity Springs is one series I'm eager to continue to read.
4.5 glittering stars