Gabe Wilde has never been more ready for a change. Thirty-three and in the midst of a divorce, he’s packed up his second-grade daughter and come home to Birch Bay, Montana. New house, new career, new life. Only, with changes come stress. His daughter is struggling with the transition to their new norm—and Gabe is out of ideas as to how to help.
Erica Bird is mired in her own worries. After impulsively leaving the teaching job she loved, she may finally be free from her cheating ex, but separated from her family and everything she’s ever known, second guesses linger. Substitute teaching in Birch Bay is fine for the time being, but what will her future hold?
When Gabe’s daughter winds up in Erica’s class, the two meet—or rather, reunite. Neither has forgotten their college romance or the tender feelings they once shared, but will their complicated pasts destroy their second chance? Or will old desire lead to a new love when each needs it most?
Kindle Edition, 320 pages
Publication Date: February 28th 2017 by Montlake Romance
Current GoodReads Rating: 4.52 Stars
Montana Mornings was beautiful and deep. The main characters were both going through their own dark, sticky situations and identity crises. It was a unique background story between the characters that was fun to read and see where their lives would lead them. I don’t think I’ve read anything with backstories that were so profound and twisted.
I remember Gabe’s story being introduced throughout the previous series books, but wasn’t expecting this turn of events for him. He had a narcissistic mother and ended up marrying someone that followed in her footsteps. In this story, he had to decide though if he was going to follow in his father’s footsteps of being submissive and letting his wife walk all over him and his child like he had been walked over as a child from his mother. He chose a better path, but it’s not an easy, clean path to freedom. As he reconnects with his college sweetheart in his hometown, he finds he’s not the only one dealing with the aftermath of an emotionally draining separation. Throughout the story, they help each other reflect on the past as just that, a separate period of time that should no longer negatively affect their present or future. They helped each other fully break the strings that were still attached and move forward.
I was scared when the football aspect was introduced because if they would have dived into the particulars on the sport and made that more of a main topic I would have been lost. The author ended up included it as more of a background element, which added to the story rather than distracted and complemented it perfectly. It also held a very charming outlook on teachers. It shows the love and respect that goes into each relationship with every single student as they try to get each kid to open up and reach their full potential. It displayed both of the characters pouring their hearts into their students and trying to make a difference in their lives.
I would highly recommend this story to the lovebirds, the broken hearted, the football fans, the single parents, the close families, and the families in turmoil. Montana Mornings holds a little bit of everything to the perfect degree to make you fall in love. I received a free, advance copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for my unbiased review. I've read her previous books in the series and have been excited to see each Wilde child find their happy ending. This was not a disappointment, but comparing this to the ones that came before I gave this four out of five stars. It was a great read, but it wasn't her best. These backstories were intense and it did seem like some aspects of the stories had to be cut in order for it not to be an extensive novel and weren't allowed enough explanation. The ending seemed a bit rushed between the child support case and the magical reunion only encompassing a few chapters. As well as the final reunion where they were seperated by a four feet fence at first then they started kissing by the end of the conversation, so I became blinded trying to envision the scene and didn't get the butterflies and epic conclusion that I was hoping for because of the distraction of the details that held me up.