The Garden (Lavender Shores #2)

Author: Rosalind Abel

Publisher: Self

Rating: 4 stars

Buy Links:  Amazon

Type: Novel

Purchased by Reviewer


Blurb: Beautiful Gilbert Bryant designs jewelry for the rich and famous, and he made his escape from his gossipy little hometown of Lavender Shores. However, with so many friends and family, he keeps getting pulled back. When he attends his best friend’s engagement party, Gilbert can’t help but sample one of the new men in town. It’s just some innocent—or not so innocent—fun. Nothing that will even cross his mind once he gets back to his everyday life.
Walden Thompson dreamed about living in Lavender Shores since he visited as a child. He finally gets his chance, and he embraces the opportunity to start over, to become someone new. He leaves both hurts and dangerous habits in the past, where they belong. When Gilbert crosses his path, Walden gives in to his baser instincts. He can indulge in the carnal pleasures this once and still be okay.
Their few hours together haunt Gilbert, the two-hundred-mile buffer from home no longer shutting out the past or the sexy man he left behind. Walden is just beginning to recover from the smoldering encounter with Gilbert when they are thrust together once more. This time, neither of them can walk away, no matter how hard they try. But when their pasts crash into each other as surely as the magnetism that pulls them together, walking away may be the only option.


Review:  The Garden is the second book in the Lavender Shores series and I found I enjoyed this one a lot more than the first book.

In the first book, we were introduced to Gilbert and it hinted that he had a sad past. Sad doesn’t even begin to describe Gilbert’s struggle. I cried my eyes out. I hated the town. I wanted to wrap Gilbert up in a soft blanket and tell him it wasn’t his fault over and over again. Okay, I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me back-up a bit. Gilbert left Lavender Shores as quickly as he could because of the gossipy townspeople. He’s now a jewelry designer that lives in a cabin in Lake Tahoe and a good one if one bracelet costs twenty grand. He has to come back to Lavender Shores every now and then because of his family and friends.

While in town for Andrew’s engagement party he sees “fresh meat” at the gym. Let me tell you the heat and the dirty talk in this is absolutely delicious. I have no idea what happened with Abel’s sex-fueled mind when writing this, but holy sheep! That’s all I can say.

Walden (aka Gilbert’s fresh meat) is hiding away, too, but he ran to Lavender Shores. I love when Walden opens up to Gilbert and everything comes through. The pain, the shame, the guilt, the sadness that comes with sharing his past it’s all there for us to feel/see. Walden’s issues while sad, I’m not sure if his reaction was a little dramatic for my taste. Sure what he did was stupid, but he wasn’t the only one making decisions.

Gilbert has been in therapy since he was 16 years old and to be honest I’m not sure, as a parent, I would have sent my child to someone in Lavender Shores. Being so close knit and you’re friends with everyone Gilbert and Donovan’s doctor/patient relationship crossed lines for me. I know Donovan is professional, but I don’t need to go to a bar and see my therapist and act like we’re friends. That’s just weird.

Gilbert and Walden have a lot of issues to get through, but will they get through before one hurts the other?

”One day we’re going to believe we deserve each other.”

Overall, this The Garden was quite a bit heavier than The Palisade, but it was so worth it. I loved Gilbert and Walden’s story.



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