Reviewed by Sarina
TITLE: Gone Surfin’
SERIES: Cattle Valley #9
AUTHOR: Carol Lynne
PUBLISHER: Pride Publishing
LENGTH: 136 pages
RELEASE DATE: January 19, 2009
Since the age of six, Kai Hachiya’s entire life has been centred on surfing. Now, at the age of twenty-six, he’s begun to drop in the rankings. Memories of a small-town mayor have him completely off pace, and only one thing can fix it, finding that man.
Winters in Cattle Valley are torture for Mayor Quade Maddison. Standing around singing Christmas Carols with friends only serves to remind him how completely alone he really is. The only thing that gets him through the cold, lonely months is his annual vacation to Hawaii.
When a gorgeous professional surfer washes up at the grand opening of the Tall Pines Lodge, Quade knows his Christmas prayer has been answered.
Reader Advisory: This book is best read in sequence as part of a series
I will admit that I was a little iffy about getting into this next installment of the series. I mean, up to this point, Quade has been seen in several of the previous books but I was pretty much under the impression that he was Cattle Valley’s own version of Oscar the Grouch. Not really much to recommend someone when that’s the mental image you have associated with them, you know? That being said, the story was better than I had been expecting and Quade did pretty thoroughly redeem himself by the end.
Quade and Kai met about a year ago when Quade went on vacation to Hawaii and ever since he’s returned home, he can’t stop thinking about the younger man. Unbeknownst to him, said younger man hasn’t been able to stop thinking about Quade, either. Unable to focus on surfing, Kai takes a chance and a flight out to Cattle Valley to see Quade in the hopes that the other man has missed him just as much. While I have no problems with the set up of the story, past the initial reunion between these two men, the story kind of just goes as follows: they’re reunited and then separated at which point they each begin to pine for the other. Oh! They’re reunited again…and then separated…I’m fairly certain you’re getting the point. I liked the long distance relationship aspect of the story but all of Kai and Quade’s interactions revolved around the same stuff time and time again and there wasn’t really anything to draw and keep my attention. Now, Quade did at least get more depth added to his character and it was nice actually getting to see him with some of his family which helped flesh out his back story but you don’t get the same with Kai. The ending was pretty much inevitable, and I was fine with that as everyone liked a happy ending, but the book also cut off rather abruptly and I was left with ‘wait, that’s it?’.
The writing was good and the story was enjoyable in general; for the series itself it didn’t really do much for me and this will probably get marked down as my least favorite so far. It was nice to finally get Quade’s story and to see that there was more to the man than just an intolerable attitude in need of adjustment but I’m not sure I’ll end up reading this one again in the future. I’d say this is worth the read if you’ve enjoyed the rest of the series so far, mainly to keep up to date with the overall story line but on its own I could honestly take it or leave it depending on the day.