By Gail Allison
Ally Couper is not having a great life. When Caching In by Tracy Krimmer begins, we meet Ally mid-hike: halfway up a hill sporting burning thighs, sweaty yoga pants, and squishing her way up a trail of mud because she needs a win that day. The pain of her father passing away is still fresh in her mind, the shock of her mother deciding that she can move on with her life and date other people isn’t helping, and Ally’s own failed relationship with her ex-fiancé Josh is just the icing on the cake. When she finally makes it to the top of the hill, she runs across a couple hovering over a mysterious box that they’ve picked up off the ground. Ally accidentally makes eye contact, and ends up asking the couple what they were up to. When she learns that they were geocaching, she immediately judges them for their pastime, but later realizes she can’t get this odd hobby out of her head. The next night, she googles geocaching out of boredom and ends up deciding to give it a shot.
Ally decides it’s time to break out of her rut and starts trying to find some caches, but she ends up finding Seth, the co-owner of a gorgeous old Bed & Breakfast that she’s driven past and admired countless times before. Seth has his own past to deal with, and he’s nearly as slow to open up to new people and new experiences as Ally is. Throw a couple of monkey wrenches into the mix (a pregnant best friend and a sister who is not impressed that Seth is attracted to Ally) and you have the basic ingredients for a delightful, effortless chick lit story.
Ms Krimmer definitely did her research into geocaching before writing this novel. I’m curious how many caches she has found (and how many she has planted). Personally, I had heard of geocaching before this, but never in any great depth. This novel was a fantastic introduction to a hobby that pushes you to go places you may have never thought to go and explore areas around you that you had perhaps previously only heard of. I know when the weather warms up, this is definitely something that I’ll be trying out.
I really enjoyed that the problems the characters faced in this story weren’t the same old issues that crop up in almost every chick lit novel. Everyone has a broken heart or two in their past, but the back stories of Seth and Ally were so much more than that. I do wish that Ally’s best friend Chelsea’s character had been developed a little more...her story alone could make for a great standalone novel. Ally did tend to overreact from time to time, but hey...who doesn’t? The language dotted throughout the book may be a turnoff for some, but I can absolutely vouch that any four-letter words were used for effect and were certainly not used gratuitously. Unfortunately, Ally’s character did come off a little flaky and a little whiny at times, but again, it was in keeping with her situation, and although it became irritating at times, it made sense with the story.
Caching In was a cute little story about how sometimes you can find the neatest things in the last place you’d have thought to look, and how pushing through frustration can end in success. You realize at the end that this is perhaps a frequent lesson taught in the fiction world, to be sure, but it was still definitely a fun book to read and a fantastic introduction to the world of geocaching.
Thanks to Tracy Krimmer for the book in exchange for an honest review. Enter to win a $5 Starbucks gift card from Tracy's blog tour!
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