In A Fair To Remember (Montana Born Fair Book 5) by Barbara Ankrum, Olivia has come home to Marietta to pick up the pieces of her life and move on. Once an Olympic hopeful, her dreams ended and her marriage was a disaster. Olivia has lost a lot of who she was in the 12 years since she left Montana.
Jake used to be her best friend in high school. There was always an undercurrent of attraction, but it never worked out that they were single at the same time. When Olivia rejected Jake and what they might have, he left Marietta and joined the military. Now retired from the military, he's back in Marietta to make good on a promise to reunite on Olivia's 30th birthday. That's not the only reason though. "...all that desert time had shown him what was really important and, maybe even more, what he wanted out of this life." Or more importantly, who he really wanted.
Jake and Olivia have both changed over the years, but that spark hasn't died out between them. Olivia is determined to avoid any relationship, especially with Jake. Jake is just as determined that they can have a future together. Can they though? Or will the walls around Olivia's heart keep them apart again?
A Fair To Remember was an enchanting, great romance. Barbara gives much more than a second chance romance as Jake and especially Olivia heal from the past. I loved seeing them get to know one another again as adults. Jake is just wow! He is patient but persistent and is very honest about what he wants and hopes for. I really liked Jake! Olivia kept things closer to her heart and it took longer to get to know and understand her. She has a great loving family and a great example of a loving relationship between her mother and stepfather, so at times it was hard to understand why things turned out how they did for her. Barbara really made me want to keep reading and know Olivia better. Jake and Olivia are believable characters and they both managed to take a piece of my heart. At times my heart ached for them, at times it laughed with them.
I loved all the secondary characters from Jake's uncle (who I'm sure has a great story!) to Olivia's family. The interactions between Olivia and her sisters was realistic and hilarious at times!! A Fair To Remember is a great visit back to small town Marietta, and I liked the little catch ups with some of the past characters. The fifth book in the Montana Born Fair series, A Fair To Remember can definitely be read as a stand alone. The story is Jake and Olivia's and Barbara keeps this well defined without background distractions.
A Fair To Remember is a well paced, captivating romance that I'd recommend to any romance reader.
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