Review: Grace Unexpected by Gale Martin

Book Blurb

Thirty-something Grace Savage has slogged through crummy jobs and dead-end relationships with men who would rather go bald than say "I do." In search of respite from her current job, she visits Shaker Village in New Hampshire. Instead of renewal, she's unnerved to learn that Shaker men and women lived and worked side by side in complete celibacy. When her longtime boyfriend dumps her instead of proposing, Grace avows the sexless Shaker ways. Resolved to stick to her new plan - dubbed the Shaker Plan - despite ovaries ticking like time bombs, she returns to her life in Pennsylvania. Almost immediately, she's juggling two eligible bachelors: Addison, a young beat reporter; and True, a venerable anthropology professor. Both men have ample charms and soul mate potential to test her newfound Shaker-style self-control, and Grace appears to be on the fast track to a marriage proposal... until secrets revealed deliver a death rattle to the Shaker Plan.

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Toot's Review by Stacy Sabala

Grace and her sister-in-law Rae take a vacation to visit the Shaker settlements.  Grace can’t believe they led a celibate life.  She could never do that.  In fact she is expecting her boyfriend Christian to propose.  Unfortunately her expectations didn’t come to fruition.  Plus she had to respond to an emergency at the university she works at.  Being the media director is quite the job.  She is confronted by a reporter named Addison.  She doesn’t want to talk to him except for the barest quote.  She doesn’t trust him.  She has also decided to swear of men and get on the Shaker plan.  Addison seems interested in Grace but he is too young and she is following her plan.  Then she signs up for an anthropology class with True.  He is hot for an older man.  He may be too old for her but it doesn’t matter because she is on the plan.
Things get complicated with both of them vying for her attention.  Plus she has an enemy in the office trying to get rid of her.  Grace has to be careful and strong to do the right thing.
This story started off in a funny tone.  Grace rolling her eyes at the Shaker lifestyle was a bit comical.  Then her luck just plummets.  I felt bad for her.  She swears off men.  Of course then she catches the eye of two.  That’s how it always happens.  That was a bit predictable.  However the author tortured Grace with both men.  Then when she learns who they really are, she is shocked.  I suspected they knew each other and her boss Doris is smack dab in the middle of the mess.  You knew it wasn’t going to end well.

The conniving co-worker was almost too much.  I wish Grace could have punched her like she wanted.  Would have made us both feel better I’m sure.  It was an interesting story, not exactly what I expected.  I give it a 3 out of 5.

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