Book Review: Jill Shalvis’ The Sweetest Thing

Posted January 4, 2014 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review: Jill Shalvis’ The Sweetest Thing

The Sweetest Thing


Jill Shalvis

contemporary romance in Paperback edition that was published by Forever on April 1, 2011 and has 348 pages.

Explore it on Goodreads or Amazon.

Other books by this author which I have reviewed include Instant Attraction, Instant Gratification, Instant Temptation, The Night Before Christmas, "Under the Mistletoe", Animal Magnetism, It Had to Be You, Simply Irresistible, Animal Attraction, Rumor Has It, Rescue My Heart, It’s in His Kiss, Head Over Heels, Lucky in Love, He's So Fine, At Last, One in a Million, Forever and a Day, Second Chance Summer, My Kind of Wonderful, "Wrapped in You", Get A Clue, The Trouble with Mistletoe, Chasing Christmas Eve, “One Snowy Night”

Second in the Lucky Harbor cozy romance series and revolving around three sisters. The couple focus is on Tara Daniels and Ford Walker.

My Take

LOL, it’s not insta-love…these two fell in love years ago, and Tara is forcibly trying to back away from her attraction. It’s so sweet and sad all at once.

I’m not sure how I landed in the midst of all these stories in which the man is in love and wanting a woman who doesn’t seem to want him. But it is a treat to find the shoe on the other foot for a change. I do wonder if it’s a subconscious reaction of women to women’s lib and not wanting to fall for the pretty face, to be an independent woman. For sure Tara is working on finding herself, and with the two different points-of-view — Tara’s and Ford’s — it’s a story of past angst and current self-examination.

The underlying theme of the series is the sisters getting to know each other. Yeah, who’d’a thunk? Tara and Maddie were each raised by their fathers, for the most part, while Chloe traveled with their mother, and they rarely crossed paths. Now that they’ve inherited the inn, Maddie is determined that they’ll stay together, work the B&B, and get to know each other, yep, it’s Team Building Wednesdays for these ladies.

Man, these boys have history: Ford and his broke grandma, Jax and his jerk of a father, and Sawyer’s stint in juvie! Now, at least one of these past bad boys is finding out what it’s like to be the worried daddy.

“The reason I’m so short is that she’s in heels.” Uh-huh…

No, no, I ain’t buyin’ it. Tara wants Ford to fight for her? When she keeps kickin’ him to the curb? And she’s so dang stubborn that no one can ever change her mind? I did enjoy all the macho posturing going on between Ford and Logan. That Facebook poll was a crack-up!

As for the big moment that forces these two together? Whoa! I do love that Shalvis doesn’t drag this out over several stories!

Oh, crack me up…I love that scene between Carlos and Ford when Carlos confronts him over the hurt he’s doling out to Tara, and Ford shocks himself with his comment!

“‘Huh. I didn’t see that one coming.’

‘Does anyone?'”

It’s a sweet and homey read that will make you chuckle and cry over Tara and Ford’s encounters and warm your heart. And hopefully take a page from Ford’s book, to not let the past eat at you, to turn the page, and start that new chapter.

The Story

The girls are about to open their new bed-&-breakfast, Lucky Harbor Beach Inn, and Maddie is working hard to keep the three of them together.

It takes a surprise visit from the past with its love and angst repeating all over again to make these two realize the truth.

The Characters

The uptight Tara Daniels is shocked that she’s still in Lucky Harbor six months later, and still working as a cook at the Eat Me Diner. Her dad was a government scientist. Logan Perrish is Tara’s ex, a nationally known NASCAR race car driver, and he’s back. Chloe is the carefree sister raised by their mama, and she’s an aesthetician with a beauty line she’s promoting. Maddie Moore is the middle sister who’s taken up knitting and Jax (Simply Irresistible, 1). Her dad is a Hollywood set designer. Phoebe Traeger was the free-spirited hippie mama who left them the place.

Ford Walker is the successful, laidback young man with whom Tara had a passionate summer when they were seventeen. She was too angry for words while he was the town bad boy and good-time guy. A world-class sailing expert with a variety of wins and magazine covers under his belt, he kicks back with the bar, The Love Shack, he co-owns with one of his best friends, Jax Cullen. Sawyer Thompson, Lucky Harbor’s sheriff, is the other best friend, who is always be rescuing Chloe. Ciera is Ford’s sister, and she works at a senior center.

Carlos Rodrigeuz is the local high school kid the ladies have hired to work at the B&B. He’s supporting his younger siblings and grandma. Mia Hutchinson, whose parents are splitting up, is a surprise from the past. Both welcome and unwelcome and the needed goad.

Mrs. Taylor owns the local craft and supply store. Lucille is older than dirt, runs an art gallery in town, and keeps the town’s Facebook page updated. Rani is the town librarian. Ethel runs the rec center. Sandy is the town clerk and city manager for Lucky Harbor. And they’re all pulling for Ford.

Jan is the witch who owns the Eat Me diner; Amy is the waitress. Lance has the ice cream shop on the pier. He also has cystic fibrosis and is on a mission to pack a lotta life into a short span of time. His brother, Tucker, and Chloe are helping him out. Todd Fitzgerald is one of the rock climbers.

Boyd is Ethel’s grandson whom she sets up on a blind date with Tara. And hoo-boy…I can see why he has such problems with his dates *shakes my head mournfully*.

The Cover and Title

The cover has a white background with a couple hugging each other out on a pier as calm, turquoise waters ripple behind them. It’s a lot of pastel color from the pink in the author’s name and the umbrella they’re cozying up under to the purple in the title and his shirt to the green of the series name and her dress.

I’m not sure if the title is about Tara’s cooking or events, but I can tell you that the story itself is definitely The Sweetest Thing.