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Inn at Last Chance by Hope Ramsay
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Inn at Last Chance

by Hope Ramsay

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I received a copy of this via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. That in no way changes my opinion of this book.

First of all, I wish I had known this part of a series; otherwise I would have opted out of reading it since I haven’t read the prior books. With that being said, this book is not something I typically read, and the details are a bit much. A lot of the book is very slow moving, and really, the last 2 chapters were probably the best.

Jenny is a former teacher, quite the baker, and just decided to buy a house to turn into a B&B. She soon encounters Gabe, an author, who used to live in the home. He is suffering from writer’s block, and wanted a quiet place to stay and focus on his writing, and decides that his former home is the place to do so.

Gabe’s older brother, Luke, was killed as a kid by a freak shooting accident, much of which Gabe does not seem to remember. The ghost of his brother haunts him, but not in a freaky, scary way. Instead, he is there to help direct Gabe, he just does not see it as such until later on.

All in all, I give this 3 stars.
( )
  annmwilson09 | Aug 9, 2016 |
With it's quirky characters and crazy goings on Last Chance is never a dull place. In this latest installment of the series Jenny is opening an Inn but will the ghost living in her home be ok with that? Gabe Raintree returns to Last Chance for some peace and quiet to finish his latest novel. Dealing with the past may keep that from happening. This is a good read but if you haven't read the prior books in the series I would think it would be confusing. ( )
  Bette_Hansen | Nov 3, 2015 |
Pretty good book that is both romance and ghost story. Jenny has given up her job as a high school math teacher to follow her dream of owning an inn. She bought Jonquil House, which has been deserted for years and is said to be haunted. She is just a few weeks from opening when Gabe arrives. He is a best selling author and the former owner of the house. Suffering from writer's block, he wants to buy the house back and live there while he gets his writing mojo back.

Their first meeting doesn't go so well, as Gabe is quite rude to Jenny and she feels fully justified in slamming the door in his face. Thanks to some other circumstances, Jenny ends up letting Gabe stay at the house with her. She is basically a caring person, and senses that Gabe is not a happy man, so she tries to take care of him. She's also attracted to him, but having been burned a couple times in the past, she is determined to resist the attraction. Gabe is attracted to her also, but has enough secrets and unhappiness in his life to keep him from giving in.

I liked Jenny's determination to follow her dreams. She has multiple people telling her that she's making a mistake, but she isn't giving in to them. She doesn't believe in ghosts and has her plans well in hand. When Gabe arrives, things start to get a little freaky. The bedroom where he's staying used to be his brother's, until he was killed in a hunting accident at the age of fifteen. Gabe was there when it happened but has no memory of it. It soon becomes obvious that the ghost is that of his brother, and Gabe is forced to face the demons of his past.

The relationship between Jenny and Gabe grew pretty slowly, Both are determined to protect themselves. Jenny has a couple failed relationships behind her and believes that love and marriage are not likely to happen for her. She's attracted to Gabe, though she doesn't want to be. She can see that he's unhappy and the more she learns about his past the more she wants to help him. Gabe is keeping quite a few secrets that he sees as obstacles to any kind of relationship. He tends to use rudeness to keep Jenny at a distance, but when strange things start to happen he's determined to protect her. Jenny is equally determined to help Gabe deal with his own past.

Everything that has happened comes to a head at the library fundraiser, where Gabe finally learns the truth of what happened. There's a lot he has to deal with and Jenny is there to help him. The aftermath has a couple of strange twists that I didn't see coming, especially the identity of Jenny's attacker. The scene at the vet's office was very moving and I thought it was a good resolution to the ghost problem.

There were some pretty funny moments in the book. The ladies of the town keep trying to push Jenny and the new preacher together. Though it had its dark moments, I enjoyed the dinner that he came to and the way he and Gabe seemed to be competing for Jenny. What happened to him there was funny, and his later visit too. The ghost certainly didn't like him. The dog also brought some lighter moments into Gabe and Jenny's lives.

There were some down sides to the small town actions also. That same preacher was a self-righteous ass, and I didn't like the way he treated both Jenny and Gabe. I also didn't like the way so many people treated Gabe like he was evil, just because of the type of books he wrote. I completely understood Jenny's frustration when her friends tried to warn her away from Gabe.

Overall I enjoyed the book, though it was darker in tone than the others of the series. I'm looking forward to the next one, though I hope it goes back to a lighter read. ( )
  scoutmomskf | Feb 9, 2015 |
My first book by Hope Ramsay, as was drawn to the B&B sign (nice cover), as tend to gravitate to this subject, as a marketing consultant, having worked with many bed and breakfast inns across the country, as well as hotels. There is always some sort of action (guests and owners) within the walls of these quaint establishments.

The Inn at Last Chance, SC definitely adds some flavor for the “haunted” and mystery inn lovers at the old Jonquil House, when persistent Gabriel shows up on a rainy stormy night at Jenny’s door step, prior to opening her charming inn.

Jenny does not like this annoying interruption to her plans for establishing her new business, and all her well laid plans and preparations for baking, website, gardens, marketing, and all the fun things to do when running a new B&B.

However, mysterious Gabrielle (the former owner’s grandson), is a successful mystery thriller writer and best-selling author, in dire need of seclusion (writers’s block) and wants to rent a room long term to finish his next twisted book, in order to meet his deadlines, as he feels the old family mansion would provide inspiration.

Jenny is torn, as she does not want this rude and demanding guy intruding on her space; however, the money will be good, as he can afford it.

She allows him to move in and shortly thereafter the ghost and haunting begins (a light version), just to make the novel interesting. There are secrets from Gabrielle’s past he has to confront, regarding a tragedy and his brother’s death some twenty something years ago. Zeph, another characters- the family handyman was involved with a connection to ghosts and battered animals.

Through all of this drama, somehow Gabrielle and Jenny provide some romance and sparks to this old haunted house, and become close while they figure out the mystery, and learn more about themselves in the process. Jenny has to convince Gabrielle to leave his ghosts behind in order to move forward.

A light easy Southern small town read with quirky characters, some romance, and newfound writer, which I enjoyed. Look forward to reading more from this author, and may go back and pick up the earlier books in the Last Chance series.

Fans of Sherryl Woods, Mariah Stewart, Susan Mallery, Debbie Macomber, and Nora Roberts would enjoy this author and Home Sweet Home.

A special thanks to Forever (Grand Central Publishing) and NetGalley for providing a complimentary ARC in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.

( )
  JudithDCollins | Nov 27, 2014 |
Inn at Last Chance
Hope Ramsey

Book Summary: Jenny Carpenter is the unrivaled pie-baking champion of Last Chance, South Carolina's annual Watermelon Festival and the town's unofficial spinster. With her dream of marriage and children on hold, she focuses on another dream, turning the local haunted house into a charming bed-and-breakfast. But her plans go off course when the home's former owner shows up on her doorstep on a dark and stormy night . . . Mega-bestselling horror writer Gabriel Raintree is as mysterious and tortured as his heroes. His family's long-deserted mansion is just the inspiration he needs to finish his latest twisted tale, or so he thinks until he learns it's been sold. The new innkeeper proves to be as determined as she is kind, and soon Gabriel finds himself a paying guest in his own home. As Jenny and Gabe bring new passion to the old house, can she convince him to leave the ghosts of his past behind-and make Last Chance their first choice for a future together?

Review: I am torn on this book. There were some things I did like and some things I did not like. Jenny and Gabe were as different as night and day. Ms. Ramsey almost succeeded in making Gabe so dour that I did not like the entire fighting and strife that was the first 25% of the book. I almost stopped reading it. I liked parts of the middle when things were moving along with the inn and the dog. I could have done without the ghost. I liked the secondary characters of Zeph, Nita, Sheriff Rhodes, and Maryanne. They helped the book along tremendously. I loved the setting of Last Chance, SC to be fun the description were well written and painted vivid pictures of all the settings. Overall the book was not as much my style of reading that I thought it would be. I do think the author is a talented writer. Her use of words and description were vivid and well done. Her storyline was consistent and well developed.

I would like to thank Net Galley and Forever (Grand Central Publishing) for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. ( )
  Robin661 | Jul 22, 2014 |
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"Jenny Carpenter is the unrivaled pie-baking champion of Last Chance, South Carolina's annual Watermelon Festival and the town's unofficial spinster. With her dream of marriage and children on hold, she focuses on another dream, turning the local haunted house into a charming bed-and-breakfast. But her plans go off course when the home's former owner shows up on her doorstep on a dark and stormy night...Mega-bestselling horror writer Gabriel Raintree is as mysterious and tortured as his heroes. His family's long-deserted mansion is just the inspiration he needs to finish his latest twisted tale, or so he thinks until he learns it's been sold. The new innkeeper proves to be as determined as she is kind, and soon Gabriel finds himself a paying guest in his own home. As Jenny and Gabe bring new passion to the old house, can she convince him to leave the ghosts of his past behind--and make Last Chance their first choice for a future together?"--P. [4] of cover.… (more)

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