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Guest reviewer for Paranormalhaven.com. Goofy and gregarious, although mostly sensible. Love to chat about books! :)

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Anything But Sweet

Anything but Sweet - Candis Terry **** posted as a guest review on paranormalhaven.com**** I’ve really enjoyed Candis Terry’s Sugar Shack novels, so when I saw she had a new contemporary romance set in a small town in Texas, I went ahead and made the request for Anything But Sweet. Her contemporaries are sweet without being overly sentimental, and she keeps the small town, quirky residents to a minimum.Charlotte “Charlie” Brooks is the host of a makeover show that has come to the town of Sweet, Texas, to do renovations on several stores and Reno Wilder is the owner of the hardware store that’s been selected. Reno isn’t impressed with Charlie’s little dog (who pees on Reno when they first meet), her big high heels, or her plans to transform his dad’s store. He makes it pretty clear that he’d prefer if she just packed her things and left Sweet, but Charlie just digs in and makes it understood that she’s not going anywhere.I thought both characters were very well matched. Reno is a taciturn ex-marine that has suffered many losses, including his father, brother, and fiancé. He’s also not a blood relative of the Wilder family, but was adopted into their family as a small child and still carries around that baggage with him. Charlie, in contrast to Reno, is a little less damaged, but still has issues that stem from having a career military father. She is very good at her job, but is tired of the constant travel and being uprooted, and wants nothing more than to find a place where she can a home for herself. I liked how Charlie handled herself with Reno and his bad attitude. She was assertive, but not mean, and has a great sense of humor. In the book, you see how Reno is drawn to her wit and outlook on life and how it greatly differs from his own. The side characters are fun when they’re on the page, but they’re certainly less fleshed out than the main characters. I do look forward to reading more about the Wilder’s though. The brothers’ interactions made for some terrific moments in the book.The dialogue is really fun throughout the entire novel and it manages to keep a brisk pace all throughout the book. Charlie and Reno treat each other like adults and while you see that they’re attracted to one another, they don’t immediately jump into bed together. My ONLY quibble is with what happens at the end. It’s very predictable and somewhat trite. Had the ending been better, my rating would be even higher. While the book doesn’t break any new ground, it’s a lovely romance that is full of charm and humor, and if you’re a fan of contemporary books, I’d certainly recommend that you give Anything But Sweet a try.