Thank you to Kris Phillips for this lovely review. I'm lucky to have such a supportive reader. I’ve been a huge fan of Luanne Rice’s novels for many years now and was thrilled when I won the first copy of her novel, The Lemon Orchard, in a contest on her Facebook page. I quickly devoured the wonderful book and was honored when Luanne asked me to review it for her blog. While Cloud Nine will always hold a special place in my heart as my favorite of her novels, The Lemon Orchard is now a close second. I love that Luanne believes in angels, in second chances, in the power of the human spirit, in true love and in the importance of family above all else – and she will make you a believer, too! Julia and Roberto’s story touched my heart so much; I didn’t want to put it down. As a mother to a little girl, my heart broke for them both for the loss of their daughters. The bond – the love – between these two lead characters is palpable. And the story of how Roberto and his young daughter, Rosa, try to cross the border into the United States from Mexico was so heart wrenching, I actually dreamt about it and woke up exhausted, my legs aching, my throat parched. No book has ever affected me like that! I’ve always had a strong opinion about illegal immigrants, but Luanne’s story changed my heart. I could not imagine what Roberto, Rosa and the others went through to try to make it into this country and a better life. Julia and Roberto not only find love with one another, but help to heal each other’s broken hearts over their mutual losses. While this book did leave me wanting more (don’t expect a “happily ever after” ending), it was a satisfying ending that touched my heart and gave me hope. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves stories about the resiliency of the human spirit. It will not disappoint! Here’s hoping that Luanne is already working on a sequel.
By Kris Phillips