Title: Rainy Day Friends
Series: Wildestone #2
Author: Jill Shalvis
Publisher: Headline Eternal/William Morrow
Synopsis from Goodreads
Rainy Day Friends is the second Wildstone novel from New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis, a moving story of heart, loss, betrayal and friendship, for fans of Susan Mallery, Kristan Higgins and Robyn Carr.
It’s time to learn to trust again… Six months after her husband’s death, it’s hard to imagine anything could deepen Lanie Jacobs’ sense of pain and loss. But then she discovers she isn’t the only one grieving his passing. A serial adulterer, he left behind several other women who also believed they were his legally wedded wife.
Desperate to make a fresh start, Lanie impulsively takes a job at the family-run Capriotti Winery. At first, she feels like an outsider among the boisterous Capriottis but slowly comes to feel like she belongs, especially when Mark Capriotti, a gruffly handsome Air Force veteran turned deputy sheriff, manages to wind his way into Lanie’s cold, broken heart.
Everything is going well for her until the arrival of River Brown. The fresh-faced twenty-one-year old seems as sweet as they come…until her dark secrets come to light – secrets that could destroy the new life Lanie’s only just begun to build.
Rainy Day Friends features a well-used trope this year, that of betrayal!!!! While the trope may be in abundance at the moment, Jill manages to make Rainy Day Friends feel personal.
Lanie has completely cut herself off emotionally following the discovery of her husband’s betrayal. Sadly, she has only just skimmed the surface as more skeletons come out of the closest as the story progresses. Lanie is deeply ashamed of the deception she has uncovered, taking a massive hit to her self-confidence in the process as well as questioning her own judgment. Escaping her everyday life to take a short-term contract redesign the marketing images for the Capriotti Winery is Lanie’s way of trying to move on from the ghosts which haunt her. Although it would seem as if those ghosts are able to follow her no matter where she goes!!!!
Mark is a member of the Capriotti clan and smokin’ hot man of the law 😉 Previously a career military man he had to leave behind his personal ambitions when his flighty wife decided to abandon his twin daughters. As you can imagine a situation such as abandonment can cause some serious emotional damage, not only to Mark himself but also to his daughters. Allowing Mark to use the emotional baggage as an excuse not to pursue a relationship beyond the physical. However, he doesn’t expect to be completely blindsided by the quiet graphic designer who is currently working at his families winery.
While the main focus of the story is on the dynamic between Mark and Lanie alongside them working through their issues. The third person narrative allows the switching of perspectives to some of the other main players to the plot. Adding insight and understanding but also providing more than one sub-plot along the way. All the threads tie together beautifully. I will confess I nearly fried my brain when I started reading Rainy Day Friends trying to tie it to Lost and Found Sisters – take a tip from me – don’t try it doesn’t feature any of the previous characters it is just set in the same area!!!!