Thursday, March 16, 2017

Whiskey Business by Avon Gale

Ryder Waites will do anything to keep the tiny town of Gallows Grove, Kentucky, from vanishing off the map—even sell his family’s whiskey recipe to Bluegrass Bourbon in Lexington. Hopeful that the larger company can provide necessary improvements to the distillery, Ryder aims ultimately to get Gallows Grove on the Bourbon Trail… and bring in much-needed tourism revenue. But to keep producing Hanged Man Bourbon in Gallows Grove, he’ll have to convince company liaison, unbearably stuffy and seriously hot Adam Keller, that he’s worth the investment.

Adam comes from an old-money family, but he’s determined to make his own way in the world. When he’s sent to Gallows Grove, he questions the life choices that led him to a rented room in a funeral home in a town full of macabre-themed businesses. And he doesn’t know what to make of Ryder, the descendant of bootleggers, who’s on a mission to save his strange town from extinction. When Adam and Ryder put aside their initial mistrust, the results are as smooth as good whiskey. But after Adam’s assignment ends, he’ll have to decide if small-town life and a future with Ryder are to his taste.

States of Love: Stories of romance that span every corner of the United States.

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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

This is sweeter and cuter than anything I’ve previously read by Avon Gale. The story is a love letter to small town Kentucky and Gallows Grove is full of eccentric characters and great bourbon. While full of charm, this is still Avon Gale and she prevents a total sugar overload with her dark humour and some wonderfully bizarre moments.

As the owner of his family’s distillery, Ryder feels responsible for the future of his family and his town – even if he also feels too young and inexperienced to manage the responsibility. I loved Ryder’s commitment to his family and his community. I loved the many sides to his character – he switches from businessman to good ol’ boy and back in the blink of an eye. He is unapologetic about his love of the simpler life.

In contrast, Adam first presents as awkward and uptight. He doesn’t quite get Gallows Grove and he doesn’t quite understand how Ryder’s bourbon works as a business. His reaction to the slightly creepy town, his room in the funeral parlour, and the many odd characters is brilliant.

The chemistry between Adam and Ryder is hot from the moment they first meet. At the start, the city executive and the small town redneck couldn’t be much different, but they have more in common than either wants to admit. For an Avon Gale story, there isn’t much sex and while steamy, the relationship between Adam and Ryder remains pretty vanilla.

Alternately sexy, silly, and sweet, this is an easy, angst free read. I loved Gallows Grove. I loved Ryder and the quirky characters in his town. And after he relaxed a little, I fell for Adam too. This is definitely Avon Gale light, but I absolutely loved it!

AVON GALE wrote her first story at the age of seven, about a “Space Hat” hanging on a rack and waiting for that special person to come along and purchase it—even if it was a bit weirder than the other hats. Like all of Avon’s characters, the space hat did get its happily ever after—though she’s pretty sure it was with a unicorn. She likes to think her vocabulary has improved since then, but the theme of quirky people waiting for their perfect match is still one of her favorites.

Avon grew up in the southern United States and now lives with her very patient husband in a liberal Midwestern college town. By day, Avon is a hair stylist who loves her job, her clients, and the opportunity to spend her time being creative and making people feel happy and look fabulous.

When she’s not writing, she’s either doing some kind of craft project that makes a huge mess, reading, watching horror movies, listening to music, or yelling at her favorite hockey team to get it together already. Avon is always up for a road trip, adores Kentucky bourbon, thinks nothing is as stress relieving as a good rock concert, and will never say no to candy.

At one point, Avon was the mayor of both Jazzercise and Lollicup on Foursquare. This tells you basically all you need to know about her as a person.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Whiskey Business (States of Love) by Avon Gale to read and review.

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