It’s easy to see why this friends to lovers romance is so popular – it is completely swoony and CHARMING, with a great found family feel and an intriguing cast of characters. I also adored the hero, who is so obviously head over heels for his girl from the moment he meets her. There are TONS of moments that made me swoon… which just made me even more frustrated with the heroine for being so oblivious. The only person who didn’t know that these two would end up together was her, and that made for SO MANY moments where I wanted to shake her. I’m really not a friends to lovers girl though, so maybe that’s your jam, lol. The good news is that there was so much other stuff to love about the story that it (almost) made up for my frustration. It’s a stellar debut, setting up a series that promises to be incredibly heartwarming and adorable – and also kinda sexy.
The story follows Stella, a woman who bought a Christmas-themed tree farm about a year ago. She loves everything about it, but a series of issues has lead to some serious financial woes. When Stella has the opportunity to compete for a social media influencer’s cash prize and media exposure for the farm, she jumps at the chance. But she also finds herself claiming that she runs the farm with her boyfriend, Luka. The only problem? Luka is actually her best friend, the man who has had her back for the last nine years. Sure, Stella might wish that Luka was her boyfriend, but he’s become way too important to her to ever cross that line – she can’t risk losing him. So when Luka agrees to be her fake boyfriend, Stella is uncertain what effect it will have on their relationship.
I’m not the biggest friends to lovers fan, but I’ve heard so many great things about this series that I decided to start at the beginning – my initial attempt to read book 2 was unsuccessful because I hadn’t read this one yet. So I already knew that I’d have mixed feelings about Stella and Luka’s dynamic, which was definitely the case. They’ve basically been in an intimate relationship for the last nine years, they’ve just never shared the titles or crossed that physical line. Which is why it was frustrating to me that they’d continued to hook up with other people in that time; they both just seemed to be in too deep to go there with others. I completely understood why they chose the path of friends over lovers – Stella was grieving when they met, and Luka knew that the timing wasn’t right. The fact that they were still in the same place nine years later is what drove me crazy, as well as Stella’s reluctance to do anything about her feelings. But that’s just me. Beyond that, I loved pretty much everything else about the book, particularly the guys – which is excellent news for the rest of the series. The found family aspect that ties the series together was so well done, and I’m already eager to read some of the other love stories that center around this group. Not only is the vibe charming and swoony, but there’s depth hidden underneath the lighthearted storyline. Friends to lovers fans will probably enjoy this installment the most, but I do recommend it as an introduction to the series.
The audio was good! The story is told exclusively from Stella’s point of view, so there is a single narrator (Pippa Jayne). I didn’t love her voice initially, but it grew on me once I got several chapters in. It was actually pretty soothing, the kind of voice that would put me right to sleep at bedtime. Not sure if that’s a compliment or not, lol. But I enjoyed listening to this on audio, and it enhanced the story for me. This would make a great workday listen, because the runtime is short enough to finish in a single day, and the ultra-slow burn lends itself perfectly to that environment. Definite small town vibes with the story, which makes it such an easygoing, comfortable read. It’s low to mid-heat, with a few steamy situations in the back half. I do recommend it on audio.
Where the lovelight gleams …
A pasture of dead trees. A hostile takeover of the Santa barn by a family of raccoons. And shipments that have mysteriously gone missing. Lovelight Farms is not the magical winter wonderland of Stella Bloom’s dreams.
In an effort to save the Christmas tree farm she’s loved since she was a kid, she enters a contest with instafamous influencer Evelyn St. James. With the added publicity and the $100,000 cash prize, she might just be able to save the farm from its financial woes. There’s just one problem. To make the farm seem like a romantic destination for the holidays, she lied on the application and said she owns Lovelight Farms with her boyfriend. Only … there is no boyfriend.
Enter best friend Luka Peters. He just came home for some hot chocolate, and somehow got a farm and a serious girlfriend in the process.
Lovelight Farms is a romantic comedy featuring a handsome, freckled data analyst, a messy, optimistic Christmas tree farm owner, and a small town with the best hazelnut lattes on the east coast. This sweet and steamy romance is a holiday happily ever after.
It is the first book in a series of interconnected standalones following the three Lovelight owners.
About the Author:
B.K. Borison lives in Washington D.C. with her sweet husband, vivacious toddler, and giant dog. She started writing in the margins of books when she was in middle school and hasn’t stopped. Lovelight Farms is her debut novel.
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