“Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.” ― G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, November 8, 2018

A Contemporary Romance with Depth--"Blue Ridge Sunrise" by Denise Hunter--Review

My Review:
From the cover I was expecting a fun, cute romance.  Instead, "Blue Ridge Sunrise" by Denise Hunter is a romance with a lot of deeper issues being explored; such as family drama and dealing with past mistakes.  The first half of the book is dealing more with Zoe, our main female protagonist, returning home and facing her past.  Because of this there are flashbacks to Zoe’s past; a lot of which were bad decisions she had made.  I didn’t enjoy the first half as much because there is more mature content and I was really frustrated with Zoe.  The second half is where I started to like the book a lot more and I give Ms. Hunter kudos for the transformation Zoe goes through and her character arc. 

In the end, Zoe and Cruz (the hero of the book), learn a lot of lessons.  Zoe’s friend reminds her to find her identity in God and not any man.  Zoe realizes she has been trying to control things when God should be in control and she should pass things by God before acting.  Cruz’s faith also grows throughout the novel.  The only thing that is a little troublesome is that Zoe and Cruz made mistakes in the past, but I don’t really see them acknowledging specifically that what they did is wrong.

Of course, I love the romance!  Cruz is a great guy and it’s so sweet how he is so protective of Zoe and never stops loving her.  Ms. Hunter is an amazing writer and her style is easy to read.    Overall, I liked the book.  I think fans of contemporary novels and romance with some depth will really enjoy this book!

Content: This book definitely falls in the category of edgy Christian fiction with a PG-13 rating.  Some examples of the content are: the word hell is used; a couple shares a hotel room and sleep together when they aren’t married; people are at a bar and drink alcohol; a man is physically and emotionally abusive towards his girlfriend; a man calls a woman a derogatory name, but the word isn’t written; reference to someone being a drug addict.              
Rating: I give this book 3 stars.

Genre: Contemporary; Christian fiction; Romance.

I want to thank Denise Hunter, The Fiction Guild and Thomas Nelson for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.                                                                            
Author Bio:
Denise Hunter is the internationally published bestselling author of more than 30 books, including "The Convenient Groom" and "A December Bride" which have been made into Hallmark movies. She has appeared on the The 700 club and won awards such as The Holt Medallion Award, The Carol Award, The Reader's Choice Award, The Foreword Book of the Year Award, and is a RITA finalist.

Denise writes heartwarming, small-town love stories. Her readers enjoy the experience of falling in love vicariously through her characters and can expect a happily-ever-after sigh as they close the pages of her books.

In 1996, inspired by the death of her grandfather, Denise began her first book, writing while her children napped. Two years later it was published, and she's been writing ever since. Her husband says he inspires all her romantic stories, but Denise insists a good imagination helps too!

When Denise isn't orchestrating love lives on the written page, she enjoys traveling with her family, drinking coffee, and playing drums. Denise makes her home in Indiana where she and her husband are currently enjoying an empty nest.

You can learn more about Denise by visiting her FaceBook page.

To visit the author's website click here
To purchase the book click here


  1. I haven't yet began this series by Denise, but since I always do read her books I'm sure I will someday. :)

    1. Hi Rissi! Thanks for stopping by. Yes, I think you would like it since you love contemporary!

  2. Mae, good for you for sticking with this one although it (initially) fell out of your comfort zone. I sometimes like books like this because the frustrations with Zoe's character in the beginning are in such contrast with the redemptive second part of the book i.e. light is always most bright when held against the dark. I love transformational stories and you've described this one beautifully. Way to go with another great review! Thanks for bringing this one to my attention.

  3. Thanks so much! Yes, redemptive stories are awesome! Isn't that light quote a famous one? Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

  4. Yep! Sounds like one I should read. Excellent review!

    1. Hi Chautona! I'm glad the review was helpful. I hope you enjoy the book. Thanks for the kind words and for commenting : )