The Lacy Creek Trilogy by Bethany Monaco Smith
Once again Bethany Monaco Smith is showing us that she is becoming a master of sweet, sexy, small-town romance. Her last trilogy, Freaking Love, was a beautiful YA/NA love story set in the little town of Ida, New York. This time we are just down the road in Lacy Creek, and the author has ventured into adult fiction with this set of three novellas. All three feature the friends-to-lovers trope, which is one of my favorites.
We begin our trip to Lacy Creek with Finally Yours, featuring Mikey and Trish, best friends since they were kids. Trish is nerdy and bookish, while super-hot Mikey is the mechanic who is always rescuing her. When a fire destroys Trish’s apartment, it’s Mikey who takes her in and gives her a place to stay. Can their long-held attraction to each other survive this forced proximity? Of course it can’t. 😊
Next up are Luke and Zoey, who we meet in book two, Always Mine. She’s a romance writer and a mom sharing custody of her two young boys with her horrible ex-husband, and he’s a talented tattoo artist also facing a post-divorce life. They’ve been pining for each other since high school, even through their other relationships. Now that they’re both single again, they are forced to face the truth that all of their friends and family members have know forever – they are perfect for each other.
Finally we get to meet George and Cece in Only Ours. George is best friends – more like a brother, really – with Mikey from book one, and Cece is Mikey’s little sister. Mikey has always put a firm OFF LIMITS sign on Cece when it comes to George, but we all know how that is going to end up, especially when there are secrets and lies involved.
Just like in the Freaking Love series, Lacy Creek brings us vivid characters, beautiful relationships, and a whole bunch of spice. I love the small-town vibes of these three novellas, and the strong women and swoony men that are a hallmark of this author’s stories. While each of these novellas stands well on its own, I recommend reading all three as one. The individual stories are tied together by beautiful themes of life-long friendships, romantic and familial love, and the power we hold to lift each other up. They deftly balance years-long pining and quick burn romance, as each couple finally gets out of their own way and discovers what is right in front of them. If I had to choose a favorite of these three, I would pick Luke and Zoey, because I am a sucker for a story of a hard-working single mom, and seeing men bond with little kids makes me swoon. Every. Single. Time. So if you are looking for some short reads with a lot of heart and just as much heat, definitely check out the Lacy Creek Trilogy.
Thank you to the author for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.