Book Review: High Hopes

“High Hopes,” by Sue Lilley

Published: April 18, 2016


high hopesImagine if… Twenty years ago you had a one night stand.
Imagine if… You got pregnant. You were a penniless student faced with a heartbreaking dilemma. You had your baby in secret and gave her up for adoption, convinced you were giving her a better life.
Imagine if… Your daughter has traced you. You’re desperate to meet her but she’s asking questions about her father.
Imagine if… Her father is your lifelong best friend. He married someone else and you’ve always loved his wife as the sister you never had. But you never told them you had a baby.
Imagine if… Telling them about a secret daughter will tear their marriage to shreds and smash your friendship into smithereens.
What would you do…?

“High Hopes” is the story of Grace and her best friends Sam and Dixie. Twenty years ago, Grace and Sam had a one night stand when he thought that he and Dixie had broken up. After learning that she was pregnant, Grace kept it a secret from almost everyone and then gave her daughter up for adoption. Grace has since gone through life, married a wonderful man Alexander, divorced him, but still maintains a friends with benefits relationship with her ex-husband. When her daughter contacts her wanting to learn more about her and her father, Grace is faced with the realization that she must tell Sam and Dixie the truth.

Once she returns to their hometown to visit, however, things are much different than she expected. Sam has had an affair, Dixie seems obsessed with her gallery owner boss, and their son Josh is dreading starting law school because he secretly wants to follow his true passion of music. Moreover, upon her arrival, Grace quickly meets the hot, sexy gardener Danny, who discovers Grace sunbathing topless. The longer Grace waits to tell Sam and Dixie the truth about the daughter that she gave away, the more tension builds between the three of them. Mixed in with all of this, Grace and Danny continue forming a bond between them that is not quite friends, but not quite sexual.

This is my second time reading Sue Lilley and I really enjoyed this novel.  I loved Grace’s style and charm and found that she is pretty thick-skinned to withstand some of the anger that Dixie shot her way. I also loved Danny!  I could practically picture him in my mind and found him adorable and witty, but also we got to see a sensitive and caring side of him as the novel progressed. The author created a suspenseful and emotional storyline that was different from other romances that may read, making her characters and their lives believable and relatable. My only negative comment is the ending. Perhaps it’s just me, but unless there is a sequel coming, I need more closure than provided in “High Hopes.” Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a cliffhanger ending, but I would have been so grateful for an epilogue giving a glimpse of what their lives looked like a year later, 5 years later, or whatever. There are so many exciting subplots among the characters in this novel, I would have liked an idea of what happened with them all. Maybe my review will inspire the author to carry on their stories?

Learn more about the fantastic Sue Lilley by visiting her web page.

*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this novel from Reading Deals in exchange for an honest review.


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