Santorini Sunsets by Anita Hughes

Setting: Santorini, Greece
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Women's Fiction
Publisher: St. Martins Press
Release Date:August 2, 2016

With her wedding day quickly approaching, the last thing Brigit Palmer needs is her ex-husband's intrusion. However, she quickly learns that her fiance, a popular movie actor, sold exclusive rights to HELLO! Magazine to help his charity. As fate would have it, her ex-husband is the reporter assigned to the big day.

That's not the only issue at hand. Brigit's ex-husband is bad enough, but she also learns her husband-to-be has been keeping secrets. Brigit isn't sure a marriage built on secrets is what she wants or needs at this stage in her life.

That's the key story in Santorini Sunsets, but there are two other key characters. Brigit's sister is falling for the photographer sent in by HELLO! Magazine. It's her sister's big day and not her time to shine, but can she really turn her back on what feels like true love?

Brigit's mom is also hiding a secret. The arrival of the crew from HELLO! brings it all to light. Can her family forgive her if her secret is revealed?

Santorini Sunsets has three plots going at once. Chapters switch back and forth with ease, but the story is mostly focused on Brigit, her Hollywood groom, and her ex-husband. Here's the issue. I never liked any of them. Brigit is dull. She's so busy worrying about her husband-to-be's secrets, which I really didn't find offensive, that I started to question if she really ever loved him at all. I couldn't buy that she did. Her ex-husband. He's just a jerk. He knows he's messing up the wedding plans, but he thinks only of himself. The husband-to-be is probably the most likable of the bunch.

Brigit's sister... I didn't actually dislike her. I did find her weak, however. She wanted love, yet pushed him away. She wanted a fashion career, but worried more about not having one than really buckling down and fighting for what she wanted. Brigit's mother was the only one I saw as having a genuine problem.

Here was my other problem. I loved the setting and it was portrayed beautifully, but there were times too much detail was given. If I had to read about Santorini tomatoes one more time, I was ready to toss the book. For the first few chapters, it seemed that oral sex was the only kind of sex these woman could have. And, I also got tired of the details involving hair and outfits. There's showing rather than telling, but then there is overkill, and the descriptions in this book sometimes came off as overkill.

As much as I wanted to love Santorini Sunsets given the cover art and description, it fell flat.


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