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Reviewed by Courtney Talbott for Readers' Favorite
Love Always by Carol Marinelli is a heartwarming story of redemption and coming home. Kate Madison is having a difficult year. Her family is in turmoil after her sister’s soldier fiance is unexpectedly killed while she is expecting their son. Kate has been flung back and forth to help her family, while trying to maintain her own relationship and life across the country. Feeling guilty about not spending enough time with her own fiance, she returns early from a trip to surprise him. Instead, she is the one met with an unpleasant surprise and finds herself starting her life over as well. Upon discovering that her parents are about to change their holiday plans for her, she makes a spur of the moment decision to spend Christmas at her family’s little used cottage in Ireland. Returning to Ireland means confronting her long buried feelings about her first love, Liam O’ Farrell. She had always told herself that it was a summer fling and nothing more, but then why are their feelings for each other still so strong?
I felt connected to Kate. Who hasn’t felt the need to start over, and in a setting as gorgeous as Baile Doch, no less? In Love Always by Carol Marinelli, teenage misunderstandings and the fervor of young love are revisited and lead to a beautiful and moving reunion between two characters who are clearly meant for each other. Reading this book was like visiting with an old friend. I found Marinelli's writing to be cozy and welcoming, and I gladly curled up with this book and lost myself in it. The descriptions of both Kate's childhood home and the setting of Ireland were so vivid that I felt as if I were there. I was rooting for Kate and Liam, and enjoyed the secondary characters, such as Mrs. Donnelly, as well. Kate's family is one that I found myself relating to, and I am pleased to see that this is meant to be a series. I am eager to read more books by Marinelli, especially about Kate's two sisters and their own journeys to happiness and love.