Carousel Nights by Amie Denman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
💜💜💜💜💜 Carousel Nights is book 2 in the Starlight Point Stories miniseries, and it was a delightfully, enjoyable read. The story focuses on Mel Preston, head of maintenance at the Starlight Point Amusement Park; and June Hamilton, part owner of Starlight Point. The two had dated for a summer seven years earlier when they were teens. June, feeling destined for the bright lights of Broadway in NYC, left Mel behind to pursue her dreams. Now she’s back at The Point to help out her siblings, co-owners of Starlight Point, with various park upgrades for several weeks before returning to her life in NYC. It’s not easy seeing Mel practically every day while he carries out tasks around the amusement park. And his adorable 5-yr. old son, Ross, is subtly stealing June’s heart as well. It’s becoming obvious that the two are still attracted to each other, but Mel’s reluctance to act on his impulses stems from being left behind by June once before. And although she seems somewhat interested in rekindling their lost love, Mel knows he has to tread carefully because this time around he has another to consider besides just himself. So who or what will ultimately win out with June?Will it be the handsome maintenance worker that she left behind years ago? Or will she choose the fame and opportunity of a lifetime that awaits her back in The Big Apple?
This book really drew me in and held my attention. The amusement park setting was vivid and lively. I could feel the energy of the crowds, rides, and fireworks going off. I imagined Mel Preston busily going about his day handling varying degrees of emergencies, and June Hamilton, dressed in sparkly costumes, dancing in the Midway Theater. Little Ross’s appearance in this book added an endearing quality. He was a sweet presence; not whiny or childish, but slightly mature for his five years, and the interaction between father and son was a joy to read about. There were also a couple of nail-biting scenes involving a storm and a fire that amped up the story and helped to move it along at a nice pace. I was on the edge of my seat at times eagerly anticipating the outcomes.
Overall, I greatly enjoyed this book. The romantic element was convincing and the ending was as sweet and satisfying as a hot fudge sundae after a plate of comfort food on one of your best days. Highly recommended.