Starting from Scratch

Bitterthorn, Texas

Stacy Gail’s Starting from Scratch is full of sugar and spice and everything nice! I loved this holiday story! It’s quick-paced and emotional, making it quite the page-turner. It’s also sexy and sweet at the same time. The reader feels somewhat like Sullivan, unsure of the exact history between him and Lucy, but certain of the connection between them. We get just enough snippets of their past to give us a good idea of what their relationship was like. I especially liked the way Sullivan experienced memories that were coming back to him. It seemed very realistic and added to the emotional depth. Both characters are interesting and distinct, dealing with this trauma that has deeply affected their lives. But we also see how previous life-choices shaped their previous and current relationship. I also thought Lucy’s conflict was well-developed and genuine. You go with her on this emotional rollercoaster as she tries to find her footing with a man she still loves but who does not remember her.

As this was a shorter story, we got just the right amount of input from the secondary characters. They were distinctive enough to make their presence known, but they didn’t overtake the story or blend into the background. Gail’s dialogue is particularly strong (I said the same of her book Ugly Ducklings Finish First). I love good dialogue and this strength really helps the reader envision the scene. It also adds to the flow of the story, keeping things moving along nicely. I really enjoyed Lucy and Sullivan’s story and it made for a wonderful holiday read!

Lucy Crabtree is simply trying to get through the holidays and move on with her life. She’s settled in Bitterhorn, Texas and loves her job at the local bakery. But when her ex-husband returns to his small hometown, Lucy has her heart wrenched out all over again. As a military wife, she knows she is lucky that Sullivan returned home alive. The problem is, Sullivan does not remember his loving wife at all. And Lucy has to deal with that pain every time she sees him.

Sullivan Jax believes he did the honorable thing when he divorced the wife he couldn’t remember. But now that he’s back in his hometown, he can’t seem to stay away from her! His incessant craving for cookies makes a good excuse for his trips to the local bakery. The more time he spends with Lucy, the more he wants to reconnect. But Lucy’s not sure if she’s willing to risk her heart again. Will some Christmas magic help these two lovers find their way back to each other?

Book Blurb for Starting from Scratch

Christmas is the perfect time to start from scratch

Lieutenant Sully Jax saved his unit during an IED attack, but he couldn't save his marriage. He can't even remember it. Recovered from his injuries, he's come home to the family and friends he knows—and an ex-wife who's a stranger to him.

Lucy Crabtree was heartbroken last Christmas when Sully announced his plan to go on one last tour of duty, and devastated when he asked for a divorce after he awoke in the hospital with no memory of her. She's finally moving on from her hurt and from losing the man she loved more than anything, and her cookie-baking business is taking off just in time for the holidays. But now Sully's back, and she can't deny she still loves him. But how can she trust her heart to someone who breaks it every time she sees him?

Sully might not remember Lucy, but something inside won't let her go. With every bite of her cookies, he finds a new love for Lucy, and he soon realizes he wants to rebuild his life…with her by his side.

36,000 words

Night Owl Reviews Jan, 2015 5.00