Sweetheart (Busy Bean, #1) by Sarah Mayberry
Publisher: Heart Eyes Press LLC
Publication Date: March 1, 2021
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Mental Illness, Romance
Pages: 282
Format: e-ARC
Source: the publicist

The first Busy Bean novel is an achy breaky romance with gorgeous writing! – Sarina Bowen
I just wanted to get my hands on his beans
Four years ago, I had a ridiculous crush on my sister's boyfriend. But when they moved away together, I put Beck out of my mind and my heart. But now he's back, and roasting the best coffee in Vermont. I need to convince him to supply the Busy Bean. And I need more of those kisses we accidentally shared outside the coffee shop. He still makes my heart race faster than a triple shot of espresso.

She should be off limits, but instead she's pushing mine

Her sister burned my life to the ground, so Haley Elliot is the last woman I should bring into my bed. Although our business relationship is giving way to something more than a fine grind. Neither of us can help ourselves. And what’s worse, I think I’m falling for her.

But it’s a small town, and ours is a big secret. And when her sister blows back into town, suddenly the coffee isn’t the only thing brewing…

*Note:  This book was provided to The Book Hookup by the Author’s Publicist but that did not in any way influence this review!

If you’re looking for a book that’s simply a sweet romance, this probably isn’t the book for you.  However, if you like your stories to come with layers and baggage and seemingly impossible situations, then this just might be a story you’ll enjoy.  Both Haley and Beck have complex, sad backstories…due to the same person.  And, when they meet, it feels impossible that they could overcome those challenges to find a happily ever after.

However, this story is about more than just the baggage they bring to the table.  It’s a look at how we can move forward from difficult times, how sometimes we need to look out for ourselves even though we love our family, and how hiding our heads in the sand doesn’t make anything better.  The author weaves Haley and Beck’s tale in a very vivid way and treats each of their experiences with care.  We learn that Haley’s sister has mental health issues and throughout the story we see how it affects Haley, her family, and Beck, who was her sister’s boyfriend in the past.  We watch the characters struggle and we watch them grow.  There are several difficult scenes but they’re balanced by Haley and Beck’s love story which is both sweet and steamy.

This is a story that, depending on your life experience, may touch you in many ways…you heart will hurt for these characters and it will be happy for their ability to find love, it will be angry at how some situations are handled, and yet it will be content with some of the outcomes.  This book is an onion, folks, so get ready to peel back the layers and dive into Haley and Beck’s story…a very good start to this series.

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