All You Need is Love
I’m primarily familiar with Marie Force through her Fatal romantic suspense series. I like her writing and I was curious to try her small town romance. Even though she sometimes makes family life in Vermont look a little too perfect, All You Need is Love is a fun, engaging book and I could see fans of novels such as Shannon Stacey’s Kowalski series lapping this one up.
Cameron Murphy has come from New York to meet with the Abbott family of Butler, Vermont about an idea to build a website for their Green Mountain Country Store (and yes, this place is a lot like the real-life Vermont Country Store.) Her trip into the wilds of Vermont hits quite a snag when she runs into Fred, the town moose. Fortunately, this is a light-hearted story, so Fred is unscathed while the car takes the worst of it.
Cam’s first challenge comes in convincing the Abbott family to hire her to build their website. As it turns out, the Abbott siblings aren’t completely in favor of their father’s idea and question whether bringing their business online will help or hurt it. The Green Mountain Country Store, after all, is a rural, small-town business. In the end, Cam ends up staying to work on the website and Will seems to get over his mistrust of big-city women long enough to fall hard for her.
And that’s where I started to worry. After all, the big conflict in this book seemed at first to be Will Abbott and his siblings not being happy about Cam’s presence and building of a website. However, that gets taken care of early on, letting Cam and Will get closer to one another without too many cares in the world. But then it got better. Just when I thought we were going to settle into something fairly humdrum, the Vermont vs. NYC conflict started to rear its head. We’ve all read plenty of romances where the heroine leaves the big city for a small town, falls in love with the local sheriff, and suddenly decides that big city life is just no good. Well, not only is Will not the sheriff, but Cam actually loves her life in New York.
The conflict between Cam’s way of life and Will’s felt believable, as did their growing closeness to one another. For that reason, the conflict worked. Neither wanted to give up their home, and even though I worried for them, I also appreciated that the author didn’t make the resolution easy and totally pain-free. If only that dose of reality had been worked into some of the rest of the story.
While I genuinely liked the Abbotts and the story overall, sometimes things were just a little too perfect for me. Everything Cam tries or suggests is just wonderful and brilliant, the website build seems to flow without a hitch, most of the town just adores Cam, and well… you get the picture. Not every story needs tons of angst, but even happy and peaceful families screw something up from time to time. In addition, I couldn’t figure out why the author made Vermont sound as if it were decades behind the rest of the world. I’ve got friends up there, and contrary to what this book would make one think, they actually do use cell phones and have some knowledge of current events and pop culture.
Even with those quibbles, Cam and Will’s story often made me smile. The Abbott family were a likable bunch, and I think this series will be a lot of fun to follow. If you like your contemporary romance cute and sweet, I suspect you will enjoy this one.