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Book Title:  Sweet Surrender
Author: Barbara Stewart
Format Reviewed: PDF
Available as: Kindle eBook, Amazon paperback
Published On: March 8, 2012
Length: 219 pages
Price: $0.99 (Kindle), $6.95 (paperback)
Genre: Romance (novella)

Book description from Amazon.com:  Delaney Morris is a young woman afraid of commitment. Logan Stiles is a man determined to tear down the wall she has built around her heart, protecting it because of the volatile relationship her parents share. He patiently waits and chips away at the wall until a piece of her past is revealed that leads to the answers she needs to break through the wall completely.

My Thoughts:

Sweet Surrender is the heartwarming story of Logan Stiles and Delaney Morris – the perfect couple in almost every way, except that Delaney is afraid of commitment. The acrimonious relationship between Delaney’s long-divorced parents has made her especially wary of marriage.  However, thanks to Logan’s devotion and patience, not to mention the example set by his amazing family, Delaney is able to build confidence in the potential for love to endure, and for committment to be worthwhile. It is this love and support from Logan and his family that also enables Delaney to face a shattering revelation about her past.

Sweet Surrender is a ‘feel-good’ romantic story that makes you want to snuggle up in front of a cozy fire with a hot cup of tea.  I especially enjoyed the way that Barbara Stewart introduced us to the culture, customs, food and settings of the southern USA. It’s an engaging story that kept my interest throughout. 

This was Ms. Stewart’s first book and, incredibly, was written in just one month as part of last year’s National Novel Writing Month.  As such, we can actually see Ms. Stewart’s writing skills evolve as we progress through the book.  There was a bit more narration (at the expense of dialogue) than I personally enjoy, but this too improved as the book progressed. I must admit that I have not read too many romance novels in my life so this could be typical of the genre, but I did find most of the characters in the book, especially Logan, unrealistically perfect. With the exception of Delaney’s mother, and to a small extent those dealing with her, no one ever said a harsh word or got cranky. 

My favorite part of this book was the food – there was a lot of it and it always sounded interesting and delicious! I think it would be terrific if Ms. Stewart could include recipes for some of the unique southern dishes she describes in the book, perhaps as an appendix at the back.