Adam Mills wants to make this Christmas, their first Christmas in Garnet Run, the best possible for his daughter Gus. They’ve had a hard year and all Gus wants is to have as many Christmas lights as possible on their tiny home. It’s a simple enough wish, but a none too easy task. Complicating things is Gus’ obsession with their next door neighbor, Wes Mobray. Wes is something of a hermit, preferring the company of his animal menagerie to that of humans. But he finds himself charmed by the irrepressible Gus and her handsome father.
Starting a relationship isn’t something Adam expected and after being abandoned by his ex, he’s hesitant to risk Gus’ heart again. Still, Wes seems like a natural fit for their quirky family and Adam finds himself looking forward to Christmas for the first time. But when a secret from Wes’ past threatens to undermine their future, Adam and Gus must find away to remind Wes why Christmas miracles are always possible.
The Lights on Knockbridge Lane is the third in the Garnet Run series and the first to be published under the Harlequin banner. Though you can easily read The Lights on Knockbridge Lane as a standalone, I think you’ll enjoy the entire series more if you read them in order.
I think The Lights on Knockbridge Lane is probably my favorite of the series so far. Normally, I find precocious children to be somewhat annoying in romances, but Gus is sweet and altogether charming and I found it impossible to dislike her. Wes and Adam mesh well and I appreciated that their romance was slow burning and realistic. Wes has some serious mental health issues (a recurring theme throughout the entire series) and Adam’s gentle handling of the situation was just another reason to like his character. There were times I wanted to give Wes a slap because there was a measure of (understandable) selfishness in some of his behaviors, but the author did an excellent job of showing how his past had traumatized him.
The overall story is pretty straightforward and fairly predictable. There isn’t anything here that I found to be overly original, but it was written well and with a depth of emotion that elevated the plot. The pacing is a little slow at times, as the narrative tends to wind its way quietly towards the end, rather than relying heavily on excessive action or “big” moments. That said, I was never pulled out of the story or bored with it, I just think it could have moved a bit more quickly.
The Lights on Knockbridge Lane is a strong entry into the Garnet Run series and was, at its core, the sweet story of two men moving past their pain to make a family. It avoids becoming overly saccharine and I found that despite being a holiday story, I found it an enjoyable read during the middle of summer. Consider this one recommended.