Summer Reads Spotlight: Finding Ronan’s Heart
by Donna Soluri
Here’s how it all went down. A couple of Fridays ago, I received an ARC for Finding Ronan’s Heart. I diligently sent it to my Kindle and decided to read the first couple of chapters the following day over my morning coffee. In my home, Saturday is chore and errand day. Sunday is for self-care, but that’s a post for another time. You see where this is going, don’t you? We’ve all been there, amIright? The cat wakes me bright and early Saturday morning, confident she will never eat again, and for once, I don’t linger in bed trying to postpone my cat-mom duties. I jump right up because I know I have coffee and the latest Melanie Moreland book just waiting for my attention. One well-fed cat, a highly caffeinated cat-mom, zero errands run, negative chores crossed off my list, and a full day of ignoring my family later, and I am a happy, satisfied romance reader! Yep, it was a rookie mistake thinking I’d get anything other than devouring Finding Ronan’s Heart done on that fateful Saturday.
I’m not mad about it.
I’ve preached the gospel of Melanie Moreland’s books before. It’s a hill I’m content to die on. I swear to you, each new book is better than the one before it, which, if you’re a fan of romance, you may know is not an easy task for the second book in a series. Seriously, I’ve noticed that slight decline several times over the years, and I even have a term for it: The Second Book Slump. Usually, the first book in a series is so good and so chock full of world-building details; the second book, well, it can drag a little. It’s a little like a middle child. You know, still loved but a tad boring and predictable. My Saving Grace, the first book in this series and the first full-length book about the kids from the BAM series all grown up, set the bar pretty high. I knew I’d enjoy Ronan’s book, but I was wholly unprepared (as was my chore to-do list) for how much I’d enjoy this book! The pacing, the character development, the depth of emotions that completely resonated with my soul, man, it’s all in there! I was a twisted-up glob of feels for both Ronan and Beth. Don’t even get me started on Evan and join me for my Ted Talk on the sweetness that is Lucy. I swear to you, tertiary character Lucy is nothing but absolute sunshine on the page. I’m getting ahead of myself…
Ronan is the oldest of the Callahan triplets. Ronan and his brothers Paul and Jeremy have always been treated as a unit. People pleaser Ronan has just accepted his fate and rolled with the punches and warm lettuce, much to his chagrin. His two younger brothers have paired up with, remarkably, a set of twins, and Ronan is feeling some emotions around being the third wheel — or I guess the fifth wheel. The triplets have two older siblings, Ava and Liam. Let me just say I am chomping at the bit to read Liam’s story. I hear it might be coming next! (Editor’s note: Loved by Liam is now available to preorder!) Ronan has been burned in the love game before. It’s a risk a young man takes when he’s from such a wealthy and influential family. Unfortunately, not everyone is good; Ronan can tell you a story or two about that fact. What he wants more than anything is to be his own person. To have a woman see him, just him, and fall in love with him, just him, not his family. While he and his brothers look alike, and the whole lot of them are good people, Ronan wants to find his place in the brood, as himself, not necessarily as part of the triplet Borg. The thing is, this is a self-inflicted wound. His family sees Ronan for the great guy he is; Ronan needs to see that for himself.
Beth is an incredibly generous soul. A tragic accident left her without her parents and the sole guardian/caregiver for her injured younger brother. Young Evan was with their parents when they were killed; the incident left him relying heavily on crutches. Without a moment of hesitation, Beth rearranged her life, school, career to care for her brother. She shares a rental home with her new best friend, Paige, and Paige’s daughter, the aforementioned beam of sunshine, Lucy. Working as a waitress and baking cakes for the diner to earn extra money, Beth juggles life nicely, but it’s never easy. I can only imagine the level of responsibility that has been thrust upon her must be overwhelming, but Beth never complains or even bemoans her new role in life. Then Ronan happens upon her diner, and the sparks start flying!
Ronan is so taken by Beth’s charming demeanor (and her amazing ass) that he allows her to believe he’s just a regular guy, stopping in for some dinner after a hard workout at the gym. We all know withholding information is akin to lying, and well-intentioned Ronan lets the big lie get away from him…
Here’s the thing I’ve noticed with Moreland’s Vested Interest: ABC Corp series, which, as I’ve mentioned, is all about the adult children of the BAM guys. Moreland’s BAM guys are all uber protective, caveman-ish to some degree. They aren’t always easy to love. In fact, Richard — a BAM guy by association — would prefer you hate him. He was much better at being despised and feared than feeling the love. All of the BAM guys share this “I’m unworthy of love, let me push you a way to avoid my feelings” trait and Ronan’s dad, Aiden, leads the way! Yes, the BAM guys are not easy to love initially, but the women they end up with stick with them and show them the love light!
You can definitely see the mingling of these co-parenting personalities when it comes to their kids, especially Ronan. His dad is a better man because of his wife, Cami, and Cami’s influence and goodness are reflected in Ronan’s soul. As a matter of fact, you can see Cami’s influence on all of their children. Moreland gives us kids who are the right balance of Aiden’s hard-headedness caveman traits and Cami’s nurturing goodness. It’s why the angst is low to manageable in Finding Ronan’s Heart. Ronan has Aiden’s edge, but it’s softened by Cami’s motherly love. That’s some meta-level character development, and I freaking love it!
About Finding Ronan’s Heart
Release Date: June 24, 2021
“The Callaghan Triplets.”
“Three of a kind.”
All his life, Ronan Callaghan has been part of a group. Always looking out for his brothers. Never seen as an individual or judged on his own merits.
When his brothers veer onto their own path, he finds himself alone. Restless.
Then he meets her.
A waitress who sees him just for himself. None of the trappings of his wealth or family.
A woman who only wants to know him—Ronan.
She captures his heart, but how will she feel when she discovers the truth he’s holding back?
Can he show her the man he really is?
That he would be rather be hers than anything else?
Learn More About the World of Vested Interest
Did you know that we recently did a Family Series Spotlight on Melanie Moreland’s Vested Interest and The Contract series?
It’s true! I had the chance to pick Melanie’s brain about her broody, growly, alpha billionaires, including which one is her favorite, the meaning of family, and whether her characters are based on real-life people. Check it out and learn more about the men and women of Vested Interest, The Contract, and Vested Interest: ABC Corp!
Donna should be an empty nester, but she’s not, thanks COVID-19. She’s a voracious reader of all books; she can’t pick just one sub-genre. A staunch supporter of seasoned romance and a lover of cupcakes, you’ll often find her with a cup of tea and a mountainous TBR pile close at hand. Follow her @DonnaSoluri on B+M Bites.
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