Cover Image: Riverbend Gap

Riverbend Gap

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Denise Hunter is a new author to me. I feel she did a great job with this story. It is a very sweet romance that will pull at your heart strings. I will definitely have to check out more from this author.
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This is the first book I’ve read by Denise Hunter, but it definitely won’t be my last. Wow, what a wonderful read this book was.  Katelyn and Cooper first meet when he rescued her, after she swerved on the cliff side road to miss a deer.  They bond during this experience.  What they don’t realize is that Cooper is Gavin’s brother, her boyfriend.  Will they be able to fight their growing feelings for each other or will someone end up heartbroken?  I won’t leave any spoilers, but I highly recommend this new series by this author and I’m looking forward to reading book two.

I received an advanced reader copy of this book from NetGalley and Thomas Nelson and this is my voluntary and honest review.
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Riverbend Gap by Denise Hunter is a first or stand-alone novel that takes place in the Appalachian Mountains. It begins with a tense accident that leaves Katelyn Loveland’s car dangling off the mountain side. This could and probable does happen more than one would expect with wildlife running into the road. It would be especially dangerous in the mountains. From the physical tense moments the story veers into an emotional one. 

Kate is looking to connect with family, something she has never had. The connections happen but she is dating one brother while being drawn to the other. Because of other circumstances Kate is somehow not able to break off with one or totally avoid the other. This feels authentic and makes life difficult since she is trying to do the right thing. Sometimes life is not clear cut, we want it to be but it is not. So there is a lot of small town talk, drama, and angst. Small towns can be great but Ms. Hunter hit the nail on the head when she shows that they can also be toxic. I live in one so I have seen both sides.

Well-written story on a difficult subject of hurting someone else or denying your feelings. Not always an easy answer.  The situation is handled with grace, sensitivity, and forgiveness.

The publisher through Net Galley provided a digital ARC. I have voluntarily decided to read and review, giving my personal opinions and thoughts.
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Denise Hunter has created a romance filled with obstacles to be overcome. The storyline is original, the plot interesting with the right amount of tension to drive the reader to pursue resolution, the setting is quaint, and the dialogue believable. If you are looking for a quick read, a good vacation book, or a sweet romance for a cool fall or winter's night, this is an excellent choice. 

I am grateful to have received a complimentary copy of Riverbend Gap from Thomas Nelson via NetGalley without obligation. All opinions expressed here are my own.
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Riverbend Gap
by: Denise Hunter
     Lace up your hiking boots and grab a bag of peanut M&Ms for a trek to the Appalachian Trail town of Riverbend Gap, North Carolina. Author Denise Hunter leads with a heart pounding cliffhanger on a steep, winding road, before tapering gently into a story of community spirit, family reckonings, and romantic resolutions.
     The Robinson family, brothers Cooper and Gavin and sister Avery, are well established in close knit Riverbend Gap, with deputy Cooper running for sheriff. Katelyn arrived recently, searching for family connections and newly immersed in a complicated love scenario. Time spent with these characters is moving, surprising, exciting, and sometimes heart wrenching. The setting is pure exhilaration, with hikes, Trail Days, and gardening against the naturally beautiful background. The weaving of faith into the story adds an even deeper dimension.
     I'm anticipating another sojourn to Riverbend Gap, since this book is first in the new Riverbend Romance series. With backpack ready, I'll be prepared to hit the trail reading as soon as the second one is published!  
Thank you to Net Galley and Thomas Nelson-Fiction, Thomas Nelson. I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
#RiverbendGap #NetGalley
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Such an amazing book!  I loved reading the story about Cooper and Katie.  Every book that I read by her becomes my new favorite. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series and to see where the rest of the characters end up.
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“Sometimes family isn’t the situation you’re born into but the people who’ve chosen to love you along the way”
What a terrific start to a new series!
If you love a clean romance with aspects of faith, this is a book you should read.
So much is covered in the story…..alcoholism, foster care, divorce, death along with family, faith, love and redemption.  
All the characters are likeable and engaging.  I can’t wait to read more in this series to see how the rest of the characters grow.
I read this book in one day.  I didn’t want to put it down.
Denise Hunter writes a truly lovely story with Riverbend Gap.  Riverbend Romance series is one I highly recommend.  
Many thanks to NetGalley, the publisher and author for the opportunity to read this book for my honest opinion.  All opinions expressed are my own.
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I was offered this book by net galley. I didn't read the whole blurb on the book as I should have.
This is a very different story in that it is a clean, sweet story of cheating. Wow there is so much wrong with that sentence. Once I started reading the whole story seemed familiar to me like I read it before. Which I couldn't as it the start to a new series.
We have Katelyn Loveland a nurse moving to a new town, Riverbend with a new job and her first house. With a new boyfriend of only a few months.
Katelyn and her brother Spencer were raised in foster care. Spencer was all she had and now he is gone. She is hoping to make a fresh start in a new place. Her boyfriend, Gavin has family here and she hopes they will like her. On the way to meet them she is in an accident and almost runs off a cliff.
She is saved by a Deputy Cooper who was out riding his bike. He stays with her and keeps her talking till help comes. Cooper has never been in a relationship or wanted one. He always dates a few times and moves on. But while keep Katelyn company and talking he finds himself thinking of things with her he never does. Katelyn also finds it very easy to talk to Cooper and tells him things she hasn't told anyone. Ok, this seems like a great start for a romance book right, oh no... it's not.
When she shows up at her boyfriend's house the door is opened by non-other them Cooper!!
Turns out Cooper and Gavin are brothers !!
Now the story gets really mixed up, Katelyn's new boss is the sister to both. As both Cooper and Katelyn try to hide their feelings and stay apart, the more they get thrown together.
When events happen in town, they find themselves working together. Both know spending time together and sharing secrets is wrong but it's a small town...
Katelyn has other reasons for moving to town that no one knows but Cooper. Gavin is keeping his own secrets too.
How will this mess ever work out without others getting hurt ?? It can't. Katelyn stands to lose everything she ever wanted, a family, someone to love her and a job she loves.
Cooper stands to upset his family, hurt his closes friend and brother and maybe his job.
What a mess, how will all this turn out....??  Trust me it's amazing and something you will not see coming. I never thought I would fall in love with a book on cheating but I did and you will too.
I hope you get a copy and give it a try.
I received and ARC from the author and wish to thank her. This is my honest opinion and am freely giving it.
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It's the start of a new series by author Denise Hunter!  That's something to be happy about!

The first meet between Cooper and Katelyn is a doozy and enough to spark all kinds of emotional connections.  Hanging off the side of a mountain in a car will do that to you.  Even though Cooper is all in emotionally, he knows he can't pursue Katelyn.  It's the slowest burn romance ever because nothing is happening physically or verbally for most of the book.  The attraction and growing feelings of love are all internal.  

Katelyn has a lot going on in her personal life.  Her brother's death, a move to a new town, a new job, her search for her birth mother, a brush with death.  That's a lot, right?  Katelyn has such a strong desire to be a part of a family and to belong.  To be wanted.  It really pulled at my heartstrings.  

I loved the setting of this book, the history surrounding it and how the community is such a big part of it all.  It ALMOST makes me want to hike the Appalachian Trail.  But not quite.  haha.  I'm not a hiker.

I'm looking forward to the next book!

Content:  peril, kissing.

- I received a complimentary copy of this book.  All opinions expressed are my own.
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Riverbend Gap is the first book in Denise Hunter's newest series. I always love a good contemporary romance so I was excited to get to read this one before it released. Although it didn't quite live up to my hopes, I still found it enjoyable and would rate it 3.5 out of 5 stars. 

Katelyn, better known as Katie, has just moved to be closer to her new boyfriend, as well as someone else from her past. A lifetime of rejection and pain has taught her to keep everyone at arm's length and never expect things to last, but maybe she can finally have it all here in Riverbend Gap. Cooper has never gotten serious about a relationship with anyone despite the local women constantly clamouring for dates. That all changes the day he finds Katie's car--with her inside--dangling over the edge of a cliff. The two find an instant connection as he works to save her, but there's just one problem: she's recently started dating his brother. 

I have to admit I struggled with this one a bit. Love triangles have never been my favourite trope in Christian fiction, especially when there is cheating involved. It can be a hard subject to write well, as I've seen from several other novels recently. However, I was impressed with the way Hunter didn't just brush aside the mistakes the main characters made and everyone was held accountable for their actions. I appreciated seeing Katie, Cooper, and even Gavin grow throughout the story. I also enjoyed the strong faith in God many of the characters portrayed.

If you enjoy contemporary romance or any of Denise Hunter's other novels, you will probably want to grab this one too. 

*I received a complimentary copy of Riverbend Gap through the publisher and NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own. My positive review is not required.
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Imagine meeting the woman of your dreams with chemistry zinging between you only to find out she's dating your brother.  Such is the case for Cooper when he rescues Katelyn from a harrowing accident.  You can tell right away which relationship has all the zest but have to wonder how it's going to get from here to there.  It reminded me a bit of "While You Were Sleeping."   

There isn't a lot of action or suspense but there are definitely conflicts to work through and a bit of a mystery. It's entertaining watching Katelyn and Cooper try to deal with their renegade affections when they keep getting thrown together.  I liked the Robinson family dynamics and hope to learn more about Avery and Gavin in future books.

Thank you to Thomas Nelson for providing me with a free e-copy of this book.  All opinions are my own.
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There are plenty of obstacles in Katelyn and Cooper's way to having a relationship, the biggest being Cooper's brother and family. I loved the chemistry between them from the beginning. Everytime it was just them together it was so sweet. They really got each other. I understood their dilemma and desire to be together, but not hurt others. At times it seems impossible. There were a lot of challenges in this story, but I liked how they supported each other and the beauty of their relationship. I'm excited for this new series.

I received a complimentary copy from the publisher through Netgalley and this is my honest review.
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This may be my new favorite book by Denise Hunter. Two people who know they shouldn’t be together, who do everything possible to stay away from each other, yet end up being thrown together many different times. 
Cooper never expected to fall for any woman, especially his brother’s girlfriend, but after he rescues her from dangling on a cliff in her car, he realizes she’s different from the other women he’s dated. Katie has never had a sense of belonging anywhere, especially since she was taken from her mom at a young age. When she meets her boyfriends family and they welcome her with open arms, she just may find a place to belong. The problem is she’s falling for her boyfriend’s brother. What will happen? 
This book is also, not just a romantic book, it shows the love of family even if you are not biologically related.
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What an emotional story this turned out to be. Set in such a great small town with everyone pretty much up in your business.  They have your back but they can also be brutal in their gossip if they did you did wrong.  Cooper and Katie get an up close and personal experience with that. 
I just wanted to shake Gavin, Cooper's brother.  He and Katie have almost nothing in common expect maybe the grief of losing someone close. I also felt like his family because they loved him were babying him.  Almost making it hard for Katie to end things with him because hey, they felt he "deserved" her.  
Katie was so afraid of being rejected and abandoned again so it's like she was frozen in space at times.  She came to adore the Robinson family. Avery Robinson was not only her boss but a long time friend. She's the one that set Katie up with Gavin to begin with.  But now she didn't know how to get out of things without damaging Gavin more.  Although to me they might have kissed from time to time but they were more like brother and sister in their affections.  
Someone is out to ruin Cooper's reputation and strange thing just keep happening.  There are several surprises about that.  But the truths do come out.  So does the attraction between Cooper and Katie, in the worst possible way of course.
The story does a hard fought for happy ending which I liked.

  I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
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This was a pretty quick read.  I chose it based on the author.....& I loved the cover.  I don't know if this is considered Christian Fiction or not but the Christian theme is minimal throughout the book.  It was obvious from the beginning that the chemistry between Katelynn & Cooper was pretty intense.  I wish she would have broken off her relationship with Gavin instead of basically cheating on him.  Of course, there wouldn't have been a book then!

Thanks to NetGalley for a free copy of the book for an honest review.
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This book has a great storyline with wonderful characters to go with it.  I would say its small town living at it’s best, or worse, depending on your point of view and the particular situation.  I was drawn into the story and the characters.  I feel that I felt what these folks were dealing with, the good, the bad and the ugly.  I loved it!  The characters go well together and the story flows.  I can’t wait to hang with these good folks again.  I received this book from NetGalley, but my opinion is my own.
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Katie had lost a lot in life and Riverbend Gap was a new start until she fell into a love triangle with the Robinson brothers.

As the story progressed my heart beat tippled but the author did an amazing job bringing my heart back to normal rhythm.

I loved the sense of family and belonging in this story. I loved how strong the bond between the Robinson's was. Love, forgiveness, second chances, healing were at the core of this story. The romance is to to die. Denise Hunter did not disappoint in that aspect at all.

I can't wait for book 2 in this series.

I received a copy of this book from Netgalley and this is my honest opinion.
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Katelyn moved to Riverbend Gap with two objectives: to be closer to her boyfriend Gavin, and to get to know the mother who gave her up as a child due to addiction. But when an accident on the way introduces her to Cooper, things start to get awkward - because there's an instant attraction between them, and Cooper is Gavin's brother. Neither has any intention of betraying Gavin, but circumstances push them together and make fighting the attraction difficult. Will they be able to keep to their principles, or will Cooper alienate his brother and Katelyn lose the family she's always longed for? Can there be any possibility of happiness?

I really felt for Katelyn and Cooper - trying to do the right thing but having people pushing them together at every turn. In fact, there were times when I almost wondered whether Gavin wanted them together, he so often seemed to get Cooper to help him out (but clearly not). Now, I'm hoping Gavin gets his own happily ever after soon, because he deserves it. All in all, an enjoyable and heart-warming story, including an introduction to a family and town I'd like to get to know better. Highly recommended.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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What a beautiful Christian romance. I thought the storyline was really sweet and touching. A small town by the Appalachian trail head, that survives on the hikers, and visitors that go through their town. But the townspeople are what make the town hum. All of the characters were well defined and charming. With some unfortunate events that almost tear the family apart. But the forgiveness and love of a family wins out. Although a bit predictable, it was a nice afternoon getaway. Interested in the rest of the series. I received a complimentary copy of this book.  Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.
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I fell in love with this book, from the opening scene! Katie literally has a brush with death and Cooper is her knight in shining armor. Except he is not, nor can he be. He is the brother of her real-life boyfriend who has just started opening his heart to love again. Despite this, the chemistry between Katie and Cooper grows and becomes palpable. Denise Hunter has a way of writing that draws out all my emotions and leaves me both wrecked and satisfied. The storyline is pretty quick moving and kept me wrapped up until the end. This is starting out to be a phenomenal series that I highly recommend.  I received a complimentary advanced copy from the publisher via NetGalley and all opinions expressed are my own, freely given.
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