Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Book Review: Adirondack Audacity

By Sara Steven

From hiking boots to high heels.... Ellen McCauley's misguided adventures begin as a nature counselor at the posh Camp High Point in the Adirondacks. With a social life sorely lacking in romance, the last thing she expects is the beguiling spell of Vicente Rienz, aloof, arrogant and dangerously handsome. She despises him on sight until the sparks between them ignite into a passion that spins out of control thwarted by a curse born out of Adirondack legend. How does a nature-loving girl end up wearing four-inch stilettos and designer dresses on the coast of California more than three thousand miles from home? Ellen's adventures crisscross the country on a hilarious journey coming back full circle to the mountains in search of love. (Synopsis courtesy of Amazon)

I’ll be honest, I’d never heard of the Adirondack Mountains before reading this novel. Maybe it’s because I’ve always been a west coast girl, and I’ve rarely traveled past the Midwest region. Smolarek has done a wonderful job of incorporating incredible scenes that make me feel as though I’m right there with Ellen, and the scenery becomes another important character that plays a big part in the deep undertones to Adirondack Audacity. It made me want to step foot in Ellen’s shoes, to experience and witness what she’s seeing, what she’s feeling.

What encompasses her world is her relationship with Vicente. I wasn’t sure at first what role he would play. But, as is often the case, what you see isn’t always what you get when it comes to the deep layers of a person. I appreciated the dynamic between Ellen and Vicente, the child-like wonder when they’re young, the beginnings of a relationship that ultimately felt reminiscent of Romeo and Juliet. We get to see that, and more, as Ellen’s experiences span decades long, with a few twists and surprises along the way, some of which I could anticipate and see coming.

Was I disappointed in that? No, not really. I waited for those big reveals, the moments that built up and felt right and that I knew had to come from all the pivotal experiences that brought Ellen back to square one. I could identify with the girl she’d been and the woman she becomes, even more relatable to me the older she gets. While I went at a slower pace during the first half of the novel, things really picked up and moved quickly in the second half, very much mimicking what Ellen experiences and goes through in her own life.

This is the first in the Adirondack for Ladies series, and I’m looking forward to reading Volume 2, Audacity on the Water. I want to find out what happens next for Ellen, and I’m hopeful there will be more incredible Adirondack scenes that make me feel as though I’m right there, experiencing the great outdoors with her.

Thanks to L.R. Smolarek for the book in exchange for an honest review.


Janine said...

I enjoyed your review

Shocked at Pain Taint Cure said...

Adirondack Audacity was is a very well-written book. It has a bit of everything. I enjoyed it so much I read it without taking a break. Hopefully she will write more books.