STORY: Picking up where her story leaves off in A Table by the Window, newly minted restaurateur Juliette D’Alisa is currently basking in the sun and enjoying her extended family in Italy. What makes her trip even better is her love, Neil, flying over to spend a whirlwind and romantic holiday with her; a trip that cements her feelings for Neil. But all too soon, Juliette is back on solid ground in Portland, busy preparing for the opening of Two Blue Doors. Back to reality, Juliette’s life changes; she learns something about her family she never expects, her relationship with Neil becomes complicated, and all as she begins to grow closer to someone else.
RESERVATIONS FOR TWO, BY HILLARY MANTON LODGE | BOOK REVIEW
REVIEW: Though this story is first-person, which can be difficult to relate to, there is a natural ebb and flow. There are trials and triumphs, sorrow and smiles, and through it all, the heroine proves to be some we admire. I enjoy Juliette’s character, ever since that first meeting, and it continues here. Choices lie before her that may break her heart. She struggles to come to a place of acceptance, none of which put her in a good place. As usual, I love all of the characters though feel at a disadvantage of knowing them considering its first-person. Still this in no way underestimates their importance or likability. I come to like some of these characters more than before, even swoon a time or two and develop a new respect and appreciation for another certain male character.‘Reservations for Two’: Book Two in the Blue Doors Trilogy. A review of the 2015 novel by Hillary Manton Lodge. #BookReview #FWArchives Click To Tweet
Aside from the food, which is again a pivotal part of the story – the characters are passionate about creating only the best, and the book includes recipes every few pages – the fascinating part of this novel is the mystery that backlights the present story. Through letters, Juliette unearths a piece of their family tree that no one can explain. Because of that, this reads like an old-fashioned love story as a result of the charm the love letters bring to an otherwise (equally delightful) very contemporary novel. Juliette’s research through the letters is an interesting way to honor the past and blend it (in this case, effortlessly) with the present of Juliette’s life and those around her.
I admire so much about this series, but putting it all down to words isn’t possible. Suffice to say, two books in and this series is one of my favorites. Reservations for Two is charming with some hints of vintage influences that balance nicely with the contemporary setting. It’s an enjoyable read that is sure to tempt you; if not with its swoony romance, then certainly your taste buds.
About the Book:
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Author: Hillary Manton Lodge
Source: Publisher provided Netgalley
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Series: Table for Two Trilogy, book 2
Genre: Christian, Contemporary, Fiction
Published by: WaterBrook Press
Publication Date: April 2015
Rating: 5 out of 5
This review originally appeared on Life Is Story. Sincere thanks to the publisher for a complimentary copy of Reservations for Two.