by Candace Havens
Publication Date: February 5, 2008
Genre: Fantasy, Fiction
I’ve had a few books by Candace Havens on the shelves for over a decade, and the other night I decided I had to re-read them; I remembered the broad strokes, but not much else. I started with this one, Like a Charm and it held up surprisingly well, for the kind of story it is.
Like a Charm is a paranormal romance, but really the romance is only about half the story, the rest is about the MC, Kira, picking herself up and putting herself back together after a horrific work related experience that left her traumatised and seriously ill. She goes back to her hometown and reconnects with the residents and her family, and while she’s there, the town librarian dies, a woman who was like a second mom to her. Kira is bequeathed an extraordinary inheritance, and must weight accepting it against going back to her highly successful law career.
Of course that other half of the story is Caleb. Caleb has all the requirements of a romantic hero: of course he’s hot, and he’s a carpenter, BUT only on the side, when he’s not running around the world being a highly successful investigative reporter, and of course he’s rich, although you’d never know it unless he’s in a suit. And of course he’s a gentleman of the southern variety, holding doors, paying for everything – but only in the most enlightened and charming fashion. I’m used to this sort of stuff in what few romances I read, and I accept that it’s a winning formula for a reason. But where things got really out-of-date, was the whole first time in bed scene. It was just soooo cheesy.
As is obvious, I enjoyed the non-romantic half more. It was largely an ode to books and libraries and the book-title-author name dropping was fun. It was a light, fun read that went fast.
I’ve decided to use this for the Raven/Free Square on my Halloween Bingo 2021 card. It’s full of magic and I-see-dead-people and is set in a small town run and protected by a coven of witches.