The Girl from Summer Hill (Summer Hill, #1)by Jude Deveraux

Published May 3rd 2016 by Ballantine Books

4 Stars

Synopsis: The first book of a new contemporary romance series set in the mountains of Virginia in a town with full of family legends, romance, and secrets from New York Times bestselling author of the Nantucket Brides trilogy.

Sparks fly as fiery Casey Reddick and brooding Hollywood actor Tate Landers clash in the Virginia summer heat. A chef who puts her career first and her love life second, Casey doesn’t see what every girl in town is swooning over. She made up her mind the moment she met Tate—he’s gorgeous, but stuck-up, nothing like his ex-brother-in-law, Devlin who’s playing the Wickham to Tate’s Darcy in local production of Pride & Prejudice. Casey makes the perfect Elizabeth Bennett—how could she be star-struck when she’s heard Devlin’s damning stories about Tate? As they rehearse together, however, Casey finds herself attracted to Tate—he’s much more down-to-earth than she expected and any physical contact between the two of them literally gives her a tingling, electric shock. As opening night draws near, Casey has some difficult decisions to make. Whom should she believe? The seemingly sincere, slighted Devlin or Tate, whose rough, arrogant exterior may only be skin deep. She’s come to love that jolt she gets when they touch—but will she get burned?

My Review: I have not read a pure romance story in a while. This was a quick, light read that I really liked. This modern take on Pride and Prejudice was enjoyable.Not only were the characters putting on a stage version of the classic Jane Austen tale, but their offstage characters were engaged in their own rendition of the book.

Casey Reddick recently quit her job as head chef of a well-known restaurant in DC. She is looking forward to her summer in the small town of Summer Hill, Virginia and possibly wants to stay there. Her life is up in the air at the time. She is staying in what she believes to be Christopher “Kit” Montgomery’s guest house at Tattwell. She’s going to do all the cooking for cast and crew as Kit puts on a local production of Pride and Prejudice. When she gets up early in the morning to make her tea and start the breakfast making, she sees a man strip down and begin to use the outdoor shower on the porch of the little house. She is mesmerized and instead of saying anything, she makes herself a cup of tea and watches. He is unaware she is there until the phone rings and his anger errupts. It turns out that the man, actor Tate (Tatton) Landers owns the plantation Tattwell, and the guesthouse Casey is staying in. He assumes she is the paparazzi and demands the pictures. Both of them lose their cool and the fireworks that begin do not stop throughout the novel, they just change to sizzle.

As the story progresses, there are a few more love matches going on. Tate’s sister, Nina, and his niece, Emme are a refreshing pair of characters that I hope we will see more of in future books. They are in a couple of “scenes” and they steal the show. We also have the villian, in the character of Devlin. He is an evil, smarmy man that gets his comeuppance eventually. Casey’s “family” play a role in her romance and I am sure we will see more of them as well. Her biological father had many children through being a sperm donor and they have come to meet each other, several of them are in this story.

Instead of chapters we have acts and scenes. There are heroes and heroines, villains and villainesses, foes, friends and lovers both onstage and off. This story hooked me right from the start and kept me engaged to the end. The Girl from Summer Hill is a fun, flirty, romantic read. Take a couple of days to sit back and enjoy it.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.