Series: Alaskan Nights #1
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Signet on 1 November 2013
Reading Challenges: 2013 In Uniform Challenge
Sloan McKinlay would do anything for Grier and when she gets a frantic SOS text from her friend, Sloan drops everything and heads up to Indigo, a small town in the Alaskan wilderness. Grier has just inherited a property from her estranged father but her half-sister Kate is kicking up a stink. Kate has got the whole town on her side, leaving Grier literally and figuratively out in the cold. Sloan’s visit (un)fortunately coincides with Indigo’s annual Bachelorette competition where hundreds of women flock to the town looking for their perfect mate.
The Bachelorette contest was a scheme whipped up by three women who wanted to get their grandsons married off. The competition is pretty funny as the ladies have to shoot fake birds, carry pails of water and take part in a mini-Iditarod trail to get a chance at winning their man. The men don’t have to actually do anything except participate in an auction at the end. If you throw a cast of odd townsfolk into the mix as well, you have a recipe for lots of humour.
Sloan is a no holds barred kinda woman who seems to lack a verbal filter. In the opening scene she firmly puts a lecherous guy in his place by criticising his equipment and when she meets her first unfriendly Indigan, she asks her “who lit the fuse on your tampon and what’s it going to take to prove neither of us is the enemy?” I really enjoyed Sloan’s interactions with Grier and how she went into attack mode on Grier’s behalf time and time again. The competition is prime fodder for a journal article and Sloan is persuaded to participate “for research purposes”. Sloan is a bit too understanding of Walker’s commitment-phobia at times which is at odds with her earlier behaviour.
Walker is one of the grandsons the competition is in honour of. He takes a calm and measured approach when dealing with Grier inheritance problems but is a bit immature in his private life. Walker is scared of commitment because his father was a serial-cheater. He has successfully dodged serious relationships all his life – living in a town where the men outnumber the women two to one helps. He stuffs Sloan around a bit while he tries to grapple with his attraction for her.
From the moment Sloan and Walker catch sight of each other, you know exactly how the book is going to end. The journey to the HEA however is fun and sweet. My biggest problem with the book was the time spent on the three other couples and their dramas. A little more Sloan and Walker time wouldn’t have gone astray.