NORA ROBERTS LAND by Ava Miles
Nora Roberts Land by Ava Miles
Dare Valley, Book 1
Reviewed by Shayna
Journalist Meredith Hale’s ex-husband, Rick, claimed her love for Nora Roberts novels caused their marriage to fall apart. True love and happily ever after — aka Nora Roberts Land — simply don’t exist, or so he said. Meredith’s not so sure. Now single and armed with La Perla lingerie, Meredith trades in Manhattan for her hometown of Dare Valley. Ostensibly, she’s helping out her father and grandfather by temporarily taking a position at her family’s newspaper. But Meredith has a secret story in mind; she’s going to prove that Nora Roberts Land is real by finding her own small-town Nora Roberts hero.
Tanner McBride has finally come home after years working as a war correspondent. But his new job at a Manhattan newspaper isn’t at all what he expected. In fact, it’s not a job for a journalist at all. Rick Sommerville, his new employer, wants Tanner to travel to Dare Valley, Colorado and ruin his ex-wife’s story. Rick’s worried some of his past bad deeds will come out in Meredith’s article, so his solution is to have Tanner make Meredith fall in love with him and then break her heart. If Tanner doesn’t do as Rick says, his brother’s life will be ruined. Caught between a rock and a hard place, Tanner travels to Dare Valley, determined to find a way out of the mess he finds himself in. What he doesn’t expect is to fall for the woman who’s supposed to be his target.
After her horrendous marriage, Meredith has no desire to date another journalist. But when she and Tanner begin to investigate a suspicious death, the pull they feel toward one another becomes impossible to deny. Could it be that Tanner is her real-life Nora Roberts hero?
Enter the world of Dare Valley with Nora Roberts Land. Ava Miles’s debut novel is warm, funny, and wholly entertaining.
Meredith is a divorcée who’s been burned by love once and isn’t altogether sure how to start over when it comes to dating. It was wonderful to watch Meredith learn how to put herself out there and open her heart once more. It’s hard for her to trust Tanner in the beginning — even not knowing what his true reason for being in Dare Valley is — but I can’t blame her for falling for the sexy journalist. Tanner’s handsome, caring, and intelligent; he’s definitely a good Nora Roberts-type hero and every bit the perfect man for Meredith. As a pair, Meredith and Tanner are excellent and I was charmed by their romance. Equally compelling was the plotline involving Meredith and Tanner’s investigation into a suspicious death. Ms. Miles wove in an interesting suspense storyline here, one filled with twists and turns, some of which are sure to surprise readers as much as they shocked Meredith and Tanner.
It’d be impossible for me to write about Nora Roberts Land without mentioning the titular author. I’ll admit the reason I picked up the book was because of the title. I’m a huge Nora Roberts fan and fortunately Ms. Miles is as well. I’d feel cheated if the title was simply a gimmick, but it’s not. Ms. Miles shows true respect and affection for Ms. Roberts’s work and I absolutely loved all the references to Ms. Roberts’s characters and stories. While Ms. Roberts is referenced often in Nora Roberts Land, make no mistake that this book is very much its own story. Ms. Miles has created a fascinating and fun town in Dare Valley and I’m very much looking forward to continuing the series with Jill Hale’s book.
So if you’re looking to be spirited away by a lovely romance, take a trip to Ava Miles Land — you won’t regret it.