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Heartbreak at Roosevelt Ranch
Elise Faber. Elise Faber, $2.99 e-book (250p) ASIN B07BKB77H7
Faber continues her Roosevelt Ranch series (Disaster at Roosevelt Ranch) with this uneven contemporary tale about a food blogger and a cop whose marriage appears to be hitting the rocks. Melissa is content with her life as a wife and mother in Darlington, Utah, until she finds a secret cellphone with messages that imply her husband, Rob, is having an affair with a mysterious woman named Celeste. As if that’s not enough, when an unexpected dinner party at her sister’s turns into a chance for Melissa to have her own cable cooking show, she’s thrilled—but her husband isn’t, further driving a wedge between the two and making divorce seem likely. Faber’s competent characterization (particularly of Melissa and her pregnant sister, Kelly, the heroine of the first book) pulls the reader into the story, a heartbreaking view into a marriage devolving—so when Faber takes an almost cartoonishly soap opera–like series of detours late in the book, readers may feel misled and annoyed. Melissa’s villainous mother and an unexpected relative are irredeemable, making the reader wish for their demises as soon as possible, and Faber’s late, sharp veer into thriller territory just doesn’t ring true. (BookLife)

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly on 11/02/2018