Author: Irene Hannon
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Hope Harbor #7
Release Date: April 6, 2021
Her lifelong dream is in sight, but does a new--and better--future await in Hope Harbor?
Katherine Parker is on the cusp of having everything she ever wanted--fame, money, and acclaim. So why isn't she happy? In search of answers, she comes incognito to Hope Harbor on the Oregon coast for some R&R. Maybe in her secluded rental house overlooking the serene Pacific she'll be able to calm the storm inside.
Coffee shop owner Zach Garrett has found his niche after a traumatic loss--and he has no plans to change the life he's created. Nor does he want to get involved with his reticent new neighbor, whose past is shrouded in mystery. But when Katherine and Zach are recruited to help rehab a home for foster children, sparks fly. As their lives begin to intersect, might they find more common ground than they expected . . . and discover that, with love, all things are possible?
Come home to Hope Harbor--
where hearts heal . . . and love blooms
Reviewer: Marilene VE
Irene Hannon has written another stunning novel called Blackberry Beach. I’m glad that I was back in Hope Harbor for the next summer romance between Kat and Zach. Katherine Parker has everything she ever wanted: fame, money and acclaim. But she doesn't feel happy. So she decides to leave for Hope Harbor to overcome the difficulties she faces inside. Zach has just overcome his difficulties and doesn't want to get into trouble again. Still, he is curious about Kat, and he would like to give her the same thing he got when he came to Hope Harbor.
My attention was immediately captured with the first sentence of the book: ‘The mystery woman was back.’ It set the tone of the story. I enjoyed reading how Zach tried to figure out who his mysterious neighbor was. I liked reading that social issues, such as foster care, were also addressed. In fact, Kat and Zach go to help fix up a house meant for foster care.
I also enjoyed when Stephanie Parker, Katherine's aunt came to visit Katherine. The fact that she ran into an old friend during the visit brought another fun twist to the story. Of course, I also enjoyed meeting old friends from Hope Harbor again. Yet I am also curious about Charley's love story. This book is a contemporary romance with a feelgood twist. I found it very difficult to stop reading in this book because there was a certain pace to the story that made you keep your attention to the book. The faith message didn’t came out very well. There were also a few points in the plot that didn't quite work out. But it was ultimately an enjoyable read. I am looking forward to reading the next novel in the series.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Revell through Interviews & Reviews and Netgalley. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.
Reviewer: Deanne Patterson
I was so excited to take another trip to Oregon in the seventh Hope Harbor book.
The beachy descriptions sound so relaxing, and the call of the seagulls makes me want to visit the town for some delightful relaxation time. While there, I'll definitely need to pay a visit to the coffee shop Zach Garrett runs. Suffering from a traumatic loss, he is comfortable running his coffee shop and trying to put the past behind him. He is not looking for a romance, but he is intrigued by his reclusive beach neighbor.
Katherine Parker is a woman that should be happy. She has all she could possibly need fame, fortune, and an offer to star in an upcoming movie with a popular movie star. She should be thrilled with how life is progressing, but she feels something is missing. I enjoyed seeing how Zach persisted in getting Kat to open up while drawing her into a friendship. I think she needed someone like this to draw her out.
I enjoyed revisiting the characters I've read about in previous books, especially Charley, the taco stand guy. I think he'd be an interesting character to talk to.
This book can be read as a stand-alone, but I recommend reading the entire fun series.
This book was provided by Baker Publishing Group, Revell Division, through Interviews & Reviews.
Reviewer: Laura Thomas
I've read several books in the Hope Harbor series and loved revisiting the sleepy coastal town in Oregon for this sweet, slow-burn romance.
After a personal tragedy, Zach Garrett left a fast-paced business life behind him and is now content owning and managing a quaint coffee shop tucked away in Hope Harbour. When a mysterious young woman, Katherine Parker, rents the house next door to his at Blackberry Beach, Zach is intrigued. When Katherine receives an offer that will take her successful career to the next level, she needs to find peace with a decision to accept or change course completely. As each of them work through personal battles and Katherine begins to open up, Zach realizes they have more in common than he imagined.
Although this is the seventh book in the series, Blackberry Beach can absolutely be read as a stand-alone. With food descriptions guaranteed to make your mouth water, loveable characters, and an idyllic setting, this is a delightful Christian romance read.
I received this book courtesy of Baker Publishing Group, Revell Division, through Interviews & Reviews. All opinions in this review are my own.
Reviewer: Paula Shreckhise
It is great to be back in Hope Harbor on the Oregon coast. The quaint town is a beautiful refuge. This time we meet Zach Garrett who has left his high dollar, pressure cooker life to open his dream coffee shop. He is seeking a slower pace and everything worthwhile.
Being the haven that it is, Hope Harbor draws Katherine Parker who has been questioning her whole career. The house she rents in order to re-evaluate her priorities just happens to share Blackberry Beach with Zach. A hero who cooks and a heroine who makes chocolate truffles, a wonderful pairing!
There are great matchups in this story including the returning sea gull duo, Floyd and Gladys. We see old friends: The sparring golf buddies, Father Murphy and Reverend Baker as well as Charley of the food truck who always dispenses wisdom with his fish tacos: “I expect most dreams are reachable, if the person is willing to pay the price. The question is whether the goal is worth the cost-and whether the return on investment is positive or negative.”
I like the giving spirit of the residents as they pull together for community projects, even Zach’s visiting Aunt Stephanie. More than one romance blooms in this place of refuge.
A complimentary copy of this book was provided by Revell through Interviews & Reviews. I was not required to give a favorable review. All opinions are my own.
Reviewer: Winnie Thomas
“A person had to choose to stay—or return—without coercion or they could never be truly yours.”
It’s been a while since I’ve read one of Irene Hannon’s books, but the cover and premise of Blackberry Beach called to me, and I couldn’t resist. Now I need to go back and read the other books in the Hope Harbor series that I’ve missed.
Hannon’s setting in Hope Harbor, Oregon, and her colorful, well-crafted characters grabbed me from the first page and kept me captivated to the end. Zach Garrett is a wonderful, compassionate hero whose concern for others made him a popular coffee shop owner. Katherine Parker is a successful actor who visits Hope Harbor to contemplate a career change. I enjoyed their interactions and seeing their relationship grow.
Charley was a breath of fresh air with his fish tacos, sage advice and observations. He was definitely a fantastic part of the story and added to my enjoyment of it. The stellar cast of secondary characters gave depth and a bonus plot twist. The small-town charm of Hope Harbor made me want to visit, and the story was delightful and satisfying.
I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy from Revell through Interviews & Reviews. All opinions are my own.
Reviewer: Robbie Pink
Irene Hannon’s newest Hope Harbor story (releasing April 6th) is Blackberry Beach. Even though I didn’t know this was part of a series, it still works well as a standalone.
Hope Harbor “harbors” the picturesque and enchanting Blackberry Beach, home to several idiosyncratic and unconventional people and birds. Needless to say, they were some of my favorite characters!
I would love to stop in at The Perfect Blend coffee shop and talk with the owner, Zach Garrett, and sample his fantastic blends and desserts. And, oh my, Charlie, the owner of the fish taco stand! Hannon has created a must-visit, perfect friend. Can you guess that I would love to live there?
Kat, the mystery woman, piques everyone’s interest, especially Zach’s, and uses her wonderful culinary skill to create blackberry and blackberry lavender truffles. So, is Kat a chocolatier? Why is she in Hope Harbor, and what is she hiding?
Hannon is amazingly skilled at creating a place you want to visit and characters you would love to have as friends. Not to mention, she leaves you starving for treats from the Perfect Blend, Kat’s chocolates and fish tacos, even though I have never really cared for fish tacos.
As you can see, Blackberry Beach features mystery and intrigue, along with romance and wonderful doses of Biblical insight.
I received this book courtesy of Revell through NetGalley and Interviews & Reviews.
Reviewer: Marie Edwards
This was not my first visit to Hope Harbor. I was introduced to the series last year with Starfish Pier. And, I recently read the author's new suspense series – Triple Threat – Point of Danger. The author manages to write both genres masterfully and draws readers in.
This is the author's seventh book in this series and definitely an interesting one. There is so much she tackles in this concerning certain subjects. But, as with the previous book, Starfish Pier, she does so in a way that isn't preachy or bold. She merely brings up a view, popular or not, and poses it in a way that makes the reader think.
The books in the series have striking and vivid covers that a reader could easily envision themselves in Hope Harbor. This was no different.
Only a few characters appear from previous novels: Charley the Taco vendor, Steven Roark (Starfish Pier), and Adam (Sandpiper Cove). The characters from Hope Harbor, Sea Rose Lane, Pelican Point, and Driftwood Bay do not appear in this book.
The main characters are Zach, Kat (Katherine), Zach's aunt Stephanie, and Zach's barista Frank. Minor characters are Simon (a major pain) and Charley. I would love to see Charley get his own story.
Right off, I adored Zach. He was one of the best characters. And, in contrast to him, there was selfish Simon. Kat (Katherine) took a bit of getting used to. Stephanie was interesting, especially given her background. Frank was one of those that took some time but was deeply conflicted. Experiencing a loss and trying to move on can seem like a betrayal.
The plot is beautiful – a deep introspective look into fame, a reflection on who we are vs. who we want to be, finding ourselves, and what we want from life. This had a bit of mystery and a slow romance with gripping and emotional prose, often being philosophical.
Hannon's descriptive and vivid writing set the tone for this and put me right into the setting. It is definitely a beach-type read that was hard to put down.
Readers will get not one but two romances – Zach/Kat (Katherine) and Stephanie/Frank.
Hannon slightly tackles the issue of ex-cons, especially those trying to make a new life after paying their debt to society. Some readers might have problems with that, depending on the crime. It is a tough subject.
This was one of those emotional, engaging reads, challenging us to find out the "who" of who we are and who we want to be while pointing out that success is different to everyone – rich, poor, married, single. It shows the upsides and downsides of what we want, the realities of getting it, and the value of the sacrifices made. Perhaps the best nugget of wisdom from this – "the heart is the best compass at any road."
God truly puts things in our way to help us discover all of what and who we're meant to be and where we're meant to be doing what we should be doing.
This was such a beautiful story, but it seemed odd to not include a few more characters from the previous books. As Steven was mentioned, I was hoping to find out how he and Holly were doing.
Fans of the author, those who've read the previous books in the series, and those who enjoy Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove series are sure to enjoy this book. And, I know I am eagerly awaiting my return to Hope Harbor next spring (2022).
As this is distributed by Revell (a division of Baker Books), a Christian/faith-themed publisher, there will be references of faith and God, second chances, forgiveness, and redemption. These are slightly tied to the story's central theme.
Even though this is part of a series, it is easily a standalone read, but I would suggest reading them all together to see the series' progression and where it all got started.
Thank you to the publisher, Revell, for providing an advanced review copy through Interviews & Reviews. A positive review was not requested or required, and all words are my own.
Reviewer: Lori Parrish
This book is so awesome! I love the Hope Harbor stories!
My favorite character, and that will never change, is Taco Charley. He's such a wonderful, wise and caring person. Have you ever met someone and felt like you knew them all your life? Well, that's Taco Charley. Here's one of my favorite quotes from Taco Charley: "He didn't pray for himself, Zach. He prayed for you. Those prayers could be why you're here." See what I mean? Wise words and ones that we as readers should take to heart ourselves.
In my opinion, I feel that Ms. Hannon has outdone herself with this novel. I enjoy returning to Hope Harbor with each new story. This peaceful setting sort of reminds me of Mackinac Island, where the magic of healing, love, and learning family dynamics happen.
As always, I'm sad when a book in this series comes to an end. A series like this leaves me thinking about the characters and how their lives will continue and if we'll continue to see our beloved Taco Charley. I sure hope so! He's my favorite character, and his tacos make me drool at times. Sometimes I pretend that I can even smell them!
I highly recommend this book.
I received this book courtesy of Revell through NetGalley. I was not required to write a positive review and all opinions are my own.
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