Sugar Pine Trail by RaeAnne Thayne

September 21, 2017 Book Reviews 8 ★★★★

Sugar Pine Trail by RaeAnne ThayneSugar Pine Trail Series: Haven Point #7
on September 26th, 2017
Pages: 352
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Also in this series: Snow Angel Cove, Redemption Bay, Evergreen Springs, Riverbend Road, Snowfall on Haven Point, Serenity Harbor, The Cottages on Silver Beach

An unlikely attraction brings comfort, joy and unforgettable romance this holiday season!

Librarian Julia Winston is ready to ditch the quiet existence she's been living. She's made a list of new things to experience, but falling for Jamie Caine, her sexy military pilot neighbor, isn't one of them. Julia's looking to conquer life, not become the heartbreaker's latest conquest. But when two young brothers wind up in Julia's care for the holidays, she'll take any help she can get—even Jamie's.

Happy to step in, Jamie reveals a side of himself that's much harder to resist. Not only is he fantastic with kids, he provides the strength Julia needs to tackle her list. She knows their temporary family can't last beyond the holidays, but the closer she gets to Jamie, the more she wonders if things could be this merry and bright forever…

I received a review copy of this book from the publisher.


Sugar Pine Trail is sweet and heartwarming, like a mug of hot cocoa on a cold winter’s day. I’ve got a soft spot for librarian characters like Julia Winston. It was lovely to see her come out of her shell and blossom a bit. Jamie Caine is the brother of Aiden of Snow Angel Cove and the various Caine siblings featured in the Hope’s Crossing series—all of whom show up at one point or another in this book. He has all the Caine good looks and charm, but he avoids romantic entanglements. Which, he realizes, makes Julia off limits. If only he weren’t so drawn to her…

What pulls these two together are the two charming little boys whom Julia unexpectedly agrees to foster. Interacting with the boys shows both Jamie and Julia a different side of one another, and pushes Julia out of her comfort zone and into doing some of the things on her secret wish list.

There’s not a lot of conflict between the characters in this book, though there is a little. Instead, as in many real-life relationships, the obstacles come from inside them, and Thayne does a good job of portraying the internal doubts and conflicts they feel.

Just as in real life, not everything turns out perfectly. The story took one surprise turn that I didn’t see coming, and there’s still something left unresolved between Jamie and one of his brothers. But on the whole, Sugar Pine Trail will leave you smiling, with a warm glow and a touch of holiday spirit.


About RaeAnne Thayne

RaeAnne Thayne majored in journalism and worked as a reporter, then an editor, before she began writing fiction. She now writes full-time, and lives in the mountains of northern Utah with her family.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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8 Responses to “Sugar Pine Trail by RaeAnne Thayne”

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      I really liked this librarian in particular. 🙂 The unresolved issue isn’t between the two main characters, so it doesn’t “matter” in terms of the romance, but it nagged at me a little.

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      I know—I’d prefer to read them closer to Christmas, too, but since they were kind enough to give me the ARC, I thought I should read and review it around the publication date!

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      Her romances are sweet, in the emotional sense at least. (I know “sweet” is sometimes used as a euphemism for “no heat/no sex scenes.” Her books have a little “heat,” but usually less than many other romance authors.)

    • Lark_Bookwyrm

      I really like her books, particularly the Cold Creek, Hope’s Crossing, and Haven Point series. They’re unabashedly romantic, but grounded; they’re relatively short; and they leave me smiling. They are sweet in the sense of “emotionally pleasing,” though not always in the genre definition (i.e., no explicit scenes.) They always lean toward the lower end of the heat spectrum, though.