The Last Lavender Sister by Melissa Brayden sent me on a roller coaster ride of emotion, in a good way. Ms. Brayden’s novels have always touched my heart with her beautiful love stories. This book did much more than that. This one grabbed my heartstrings and played them like a harp.
The novel tells the love story of Aster Lavender and Brynn Garrett. Aster is the owner and operator of a small gourmet doughnut shop in the equally small town of Homer’s Bluff. She loves her job and her family, but longs to do something more with her life, maybe in a city instead of a small town where she often feels ignored as the last Lavender sister. Brynn is a veterinarian who comes to work at the vet clinic while her friend, who owns the clinic, goes to Chicago for more training. Brynn is also hiding from a bad breakup that broke her heart. She is definitely not looking for romance, but she can’t seem to get that youngest Lavender sister (Aster) out of her mind.
This book seemed a little different from some of Ms. Brayden’s other novels. The time period of the tale is longer than usual, taking place over the course of several years. This gives the reader a chance to really see the characters as they meet, and then slowly mature and come together as a couple. This is not an easy growth though, and we need the lengthy time period for that to happen. Be prepared for many highs and lows, missteps and heartache along the way to happiness in this tale. That is what makes this a very special story.
The characters make the novel something special, especially Aster. She is just so real, so likeable. All of the people in the book are well-developed, even the secondary characters which adds to the realism of the story.
The Last Lavender Sister is one of the best character driven romances I’ve read in a while. I’ve listed it in my favorites folder, and it has my highest recommendation.
I received an ARC from NetGalley and Bold Strokes Books for an honest review.