Gifted - Ainsley St Claire

Reading Challenge Category: Free ARC from Booksprout

Official Blurb:

How do things fall apart so easily?
As a former teacher, my mission is to keep the disadvantaged youth of our city engaged with school. My non-profit has been wildly successful with the kids, but now I'm forty mentors short for the Christmas season. It didn't look like we would be able to find enough help, until Jim Adelson got involved. He may have solved my mentor problem, but he's created another: I can't concentrate with this panty melting God around.
The community has been good to me. I'd built my successful security business with hard work and determination, and when I got approached to help Kate Monroe's non-profit, it seemed a fitting way to give back. I'd offer to spend time with some kids, but it’s Kate that I find myself wanting to spend time with. With beauty obvious to everyone, and a compassionate heart she wears on her sleeve, she has me reevaluating my priorities.
When the children's Christmas gifts go missing, Jim and Kate are forced together in the hunt. Can true love fight through the drama to find a happy ending?

My Thoughts:

This was a light and easy read. It was a fast-paced story with a gritty undertone.
When Kate arranges for underprivileged kids to win a shopping spree she doesn’t expect to find the love of her life in the process. Throughout the book, Kate has a lot of obstacles to endure, and not everything runs to plan. She does manage to squeeze in lots of steamy moments with her new beau, though.
Even though the background story is quite rough and tough, and the characters had a lot of ups and downs to overcome, the story had a very good-humoured and effortless feel to it. Everyone was a little bit too nice, too accommodating, and everything worked out too perfectly. It was a bit sickly sweet. I think it was the overselling of how right for each other Jim and Kate were that everyone kept waxing lyrical about. It made them seem too saintly so you couldn’t really identify with them. This didn’t ruin the story in any way; I would have just liked it to be a little more toned down. Maybe not all the problems being solved so easily with smiles on everyone’s faces. I little bit more hand-wringing would have been good. I think the story could have been a little more developed in this sense.
It wasn’t a bad read and certainly kept me entertained for an hour or so. I did want to see how everything worked out in the end. Would the kids get all their gifts, would Kate and Jim live happily ever after?
The very end felt too rushed. It just sort of ends. I would have liked an epilogue or just one more paragraph. It was a bit too abrupt for my liking.
Overall, a fun and pleasant read and I would like to read more of this author’s work.

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by Ainsley St Claire
Date Started
17th November 2019
Date Finished
18th November 2019
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