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Virgin River (Virgin River #1)

4.12  ·  Rating Details ·  17,980 Ratings  ·  1,394 Reviews
"Wanted: Midwife/nurse practitioner in Virgin River, population six hundred. Make a difference against the backdrop of towering California redwoods and crystal-clear rivers. Rent-free cabin included." When the recently widowed Melinda Monroe sees this ad she quickly decides that the remote mountain town of Virgin River might be the perfect place to escape her heartache, an ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 386 pages
Published April 1st 2007 by Mira Books
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Sara ♥ Technically the Grace Valley Trilogy comes before this one. You can read those first if you'd like. You see the characters from it in Book 1, so there…moreTechnically the Grace Valley Trilogy comes before this one. You can read those first if you'd like. You see the characters from it in Book 1, so there is a connection. I didn't read it first, and I was fine.

You should definitely read the books WITHIN the Virgin River series in order. There's a lot of overlap with characters from the beginning books appearing in later books, so you won't know who everyone is if you don't read in order.

And as I understand it, the Thunder Point series is an offshoot of this one. The hero of book 1 is a character that makes a brief appearance in one of the Virgin River books. I haven't read it yet though.(less)
Kim Sagers No its about a small town romance, there are several in the series.
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Oct 15, 2010 Pamela rated it it was amazing
Shelves: keepers
I flipping loved this book.

It's my first Robyn Carr book. I've read a lot of good things about her here on Goodreads and also on Amazon, and I ordered several of her books this spring, hoping to get some time to read them.

Recently widowed Melinda Monroe, a certified nurse midwife, decides that to move beyond her grief she must start her life again. She sells almost everything she owns and moves to Virgin River, a tiny town in the middle of the California forest. At first it seems the transition
Feb 20, 2011 Catherine rated it it was ok
Recommended to Catherine by: Ally72
*sigh* I feel like the grump lurking in the corner, but I did not like this book. Which is shocking! This book has an extremely high average and every GR friend I have to date has given it at least a 4 star grade. It must have something going for it to have so many fans, but I just can't see it. :\

This was supposed to be a modern book, but it felt oddly dated. The heroine Mel, talks about Starbucks and $300 highlights so I know it's modern, but it also had a weirdly old school vibe going for it.
5+ stars – Contemporary Romance

There’s not much that hasn’t already been said about this sweet, delightful, feel-good contemporary romance and for very good reason, and now I’m finally glad that I get what all the fuss is about.

Virgin River is a heartwarming story about a young, grieving widow whose spirit is rejuvenated and soul revived by working as a nurse and midwife in a quaint little country town called Virgin River, with quirky, friendly, salt-of-the-earth people surrounded by the beauty
Jun 10, 2012 Shelly rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: did-not-finish
First, I'm going to apologize in advance for my review. These are my thoughts, and I know I'm in the great minority of people who didn't like this book, but OMG I just can't stand it any freaking more! I'm going to warn you right now, if you love this series, DO NOT READ ANY FURTHER - this will probably offend.

This is by far the worst book I've ever listened to, possibly ever. I had no idea it was going to be so terrible, it's gotten so many great reviews and I thought at the very least it would
Jun 02, 2016 ♥Rachel♥ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to ♥Rachel♥ by: Brandie
Shelves: favorites, audio-book
4.5 Stars

Loved this! The rural setting of Virgin River: a secluded forest, simple life, and town folk that band together like a family was an absolute win for me. Mel got on my nerves a time or two, but I shouldn't really have been judgmental since she lost her husband only a year before. I completely LOVED and adored Jack. Oh my stars, every woman needs this man! Hunky, protective, just a total MAN!

I enjoyed the whole medical aspect of the story. Mel was a midwife/nurse practitioner and a lot
May 03, 2008 jenjn79 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to jenjn79 by: Romance Series Lists group
It took me a while to get into this book. I think I was about halfway through before I started to really get into the story. That's probably partially because just before that I'd been reading a Lora Leigh book (so completely different) and also because the vibe of Virgin River is rather different than your typical romance novel.

This book is about people and life, the vagaries of small-town living, growing and healing, and, of course, love. Like the town it's set in, the pace of the book is on t
Nov 27, 2009 K. rated it really liked it
Recommended to K. by: MelissaB
”Virgin River” by Robyn Carr -- 3.5*

Modern Day Contemporary
Jack and Melinda

This book has been reviewed multiple times, so I’ll just relate my personal impressions rather than providing much of a synopsis. Quickly, Melinda is an L.A. physician’s assistant/midwife practicing in a major hospital who loses her husband, the love of her life, in an unexpected murder when he chances upon a convenience store robbery in progress. She moves to a small town seeking solace, anonymity from overly concerned a
I'm a big fan of audiobooks; unfortunately, I've almost blown through's generously-sized romance collection completely. Recently, a ton of Stephanie Lauren's books were released on audio. Not being too familiar with her work, I listened to Devil's Bride and decided I would embark down that long Cynster road, knowing I'd have enough listening material for the next 6 months. However, 2 books into the series I was already feeling a restless urge to move on. Virgin River by Robyn Carr ca ...more
Feb 26, 2008 Eastofoz rated it it was ok
Hokey Americana. Never seen so many pregnant women in such a small area.
Dec 19, 2008 Holly rated it it was amazing
Shelves: robyn-carr
Melinda Monroe is tired of the heartache, tired of the sympathy, and most of all, tired of living in a home where memories of her once happy future constantly assail her. All but dead inside with grief over the death of her husband, Mel discovers a job opportunity in the charming and idyllic town of Virgin River, up in the untouched splendor of Northern California. Although her sister pleads with her that running away to some mountain region backwater will not solve her problems, Mel packs up he ...more
Duchess Nicole
Jan 17, 2013 Duchess Nicole rated it really liked it
Recommended to Duchess Nicole by: Alexis
I've had this on my shelf to read for what seems like forever. The ratings are outstanding for every single book in this now eighteen plus book series, and now I understand why.

The story is very slow moving but I never got bored. Life in Virgin River is easygoing...a small town atmoshphere in which everyone knows everyone and they're all there for each other. When Mel moves to Virgin River in a spur of the moment decision in answer to an add placed for a nurse, she is under-impressed at first.
Oct 28, 2008 Pygmy rated it did not like it
A generic "strong" female with "heart-shaped lips" and a fabulous figure + generic whitebread cleft-chin He-Man gentleman (even when hooking up!) with a soft spot for babies + a po-dunk town where nothing happens == boring book!

These people have no personality. Where's the humor? If not that, where's the intellectual intelligence? Or if not that, where's the sarcasm, the quirky attitudes, or some kind of color?? Or even if the characters were supposed to be ridiculously nice and laid-back, put t
Apr 17, 2009 Corrine rated it really liked it
Full Disclosure:This book features one of my least favorite tropes, the still grieving widow(er) who is consumed with guilt at find new love. Of course, this did skew my reaction to this book.

Nevertheless, I did enjoy this book when it wasn't weighed down by Mel's grief and guilt. Honestly, Jack made this book for me, although half the time, I just felt sorry for him. But he's a great male protagonist: patient, protective, caring, and he has a past that rounds his character out.

Mel, on the othe
4 Stars

These books are the perfect "getting into the holiday spirit" type of read. They have a quaint, almost Hallmark-movie type feel to them that leaves me feeling uplifted. That said, I don't think I'd have the patience to read them, as they're not as couple centered as I prefer in my romances. However, I've loved listening to them as I go about my day.
Mistress   ~ ♠ Mistral's Kiss ♠ ~ (Mist)
I love this small town setting to bits and I'm going to continue reading the series for this alone The romance on the other hand while sweet, dragged for me, and all the conflicts-that-really-weren't didn't thrill either. Also the heroine never really choose the Jack. He was willing to bend over backwards no matter how far or for how long, and she never evolved to the point were she could openly accept and return his love. Yup, they end up together... but only out of circumstance; and cheesy let ...more
Beanbag Love
Jan 09, 2010 Beanbag Love rated it really liked it
This is a really good start to a series, if only for the location. I've actually visited that area of Northern California and I think Carr does a great job of creating the atmosphere for the reader.

When we begin the story, Melinda Monroe is on her way to Virgin River to take a year assignment as a nurse practitioner/midwife. She's desperately grieving her late husband, murdered in LA just nine months before. She's running away from the chaos of the urban ER and the pitying looks of her friends a
Jonel Boyko
Carr develops this novel with a flair for scenery. Virgin River comes to life in a big way. I thoroughly enjoyed how Carr allowed me to picture each and every aspect of the area and its people. Carr presents a well-rounded introduction to Virgin River as a whole. At the same time, she creates an emotionally fulfilling, wildly exciting novel that brings all the aspects of life forward. The story was full of plot twists that kept me from guessing what would happen next. There were definitely a few ...more
Aug 29, 2015 Quinn rated it it was amazing
What a wonderful book. I really enjoyed Virgin River, and I’m not sure exactly why. It was just such a comfortable and pleasant read. Kind of like putting on your comfiest slippers, your snuggly dressing gown and curling up in front of a fire with a steaming cup of hot chocolate and marshmallows at your elbow, listening to the rain patter on a tin roof.. Maybe a golden retriever curled at your feet. Just…… comfortable. Nice. Peaceful. Relaxed. Rejuvenating. Content. In fact, that would be the pe ...more
Nov 22, 2013 Kari rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1st-in-series
This is the first book in the Virgin River series. It's a sweet story about Melinda, a nurse/midwife who leaves LA and accepts a job in a small town called Virgin River. Melinda lost her husband tragically the year before and is anxious to start over somewhere new and different. Her first impression of the town is not too positive, however the town and its people grow on her slowly, and of course eventually she makes it her home.

Mel meets Jack in Virgin River. He's a retired war soldier who is c
Jun 30, 2008 Christa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: library
I loved this book. The sense of community and small town America was really appealing to me and left me feeling nostalgic for the small towns in which I have lived. The characters were enjoyable, especially the hero, Jack - he was so patient and willing to take care of everyone while also being very masculine and appealing. I liked the heroine also, and enjoyed watching not only her relationship with Jack develop, but also the one with the crusty town doctor. I am getting ready to read the next ...more
Mar 28, 2014 Jonetta rated it really liked it
I absolutely loved this book. The romance between Mel and Jack progressed realistically and the sense of community in the town was enviable. Carr does an admirable job in creating a completely different value system that works. The conflicts presented are also normal and the appropriate timeline was used for resolution without dragging the reader through the pain of inevitability.

I'm invested in this series and am on to the second book.
Lisa Kay
Enjoyed the narration. Nice to revisit this little soap-operaish community set in the mountains of California. ...more
Aug 13, 2009 Karen rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2009-reads
Virgin River is Robyn Carr's first book in the series of the same name. Running from the pain following her husband's murder, Mel Monroe accepts a job in Virgin River as a nurse/midwife. Once she gets to the tiny town, things aren't exactly as advertised. The house is a dump and the town's only doctor isn't happy to see her. Mel decides to leave right away, but one thing after another convinces her to stay for just a bit longer. As she works and gets to know the people of Virgin River, Mel gradu ...more
Aug 03, 2014 Sally rated it it was ok
Thank goodness this was cheap. It's like Twilight for adults with baby driven wish fulfillment fantasies.

I found the characters likeable and empathetic, unfortunately too much so. The plot was lame, the premise of why the protagonist stayed on in the town totally unbelievable, the dialogue simplistic and the whole book consistently told what was going on rather than showing us. All conflict was resolved within a few paragraphs (if not sentences); and I was accurately predicting the progress of t
Lani ⚔⚔  the Destroyer ⚔⚔

Did I read the same book as everyone else? Because there are so many great reviews, I wonder if I read something else.

This was my first book by Robyn Carr and I should point out firstly that I didn't like the writing style. RC is a teller rather than a shower, and just the execution kept me from really engaging with the characters. My preference for reading is third person, past tense, which is what this book is, but somehow it didn't work for me. There were also some weird references that dated
Mar 30, 2010 Julianna rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of Heartwarming Contemporary Romance or Small-town Stories
Reviewed for THC Reviews
Overall, Virgin River was a pretty good book, but it didn't quite live up to all the hype for me. The actual romance was a little more low-key than I was expecting, and even though the book is categorized as contemporary romance, I thought it bordered on women's fiction. I would estimate that approximately 75%-80% of the story was told from the heroine, Melinda's perspective. There are a few short scenes from the point of view of Ricky, a teenager who is coming of age and
Michelle [Helen Geek]
Jan 24, 2012 Michelle [Helen Geek] rated it really liked it
Recommended to Michelle by: Wendy T.
4 solid stars.

I just loved this book. I'm probably the only person, seriously into reading romance novels, who hasn't read this author or series. Rather interesting why really. I didn't like the covers. They looked a bit cheesy and kind of "Debbie Macomber" like. I'm not a huge fan of DM. I suppose she is good, but too light for me normally. Maybe a good airport read. Call me a romance snob, but based on the covers, I thought this author and series rather too light for me. WRONG!

I liked everythi
Aug 21, 2015 Sue rated it it was amazing
Reread August 2015 for a reading challenge.

Narration by Theresa Plumber

First and foremost this is one of my favorite "It takes a village" series, the town of Virgin River is a character in this book as much as destination. I feel like it's a step back in time when leaning on your neighbors and friends was as natural as breathing. This series is in an ideal setting and definitely celebrating our service men who all seem to flock to this area of the country... lol.

Not that this area doesn't have
Re-read 2011 - it was interesting to go back to the beginning of Virgin River again after reading a dozen others further along in the series. I still love the audiobook narrator, and I still found Mel (the heroine) to be way too weepy. In short - Mel = melodramatic.

Original review July 2010: 3.5/5 stars. This book was a mixed bag for me, mostly because I found the heroine to be exhausting. She had so much emotional baggage that it tired me out listening to the book on audiobook while I trav
ᴥ Irena ᴥ
A cute and well written romantic story with great and lovely characters. It is about moving on with your life after a tragedy. It left me depressed in the end. Don't worry, that's just me.
I mean, Mel comes to a place of only a few hundred people and finds someone like Jack! I know I should accept it because it is that type of story, but it annoyed me. Again, that's just me.
Anyone who likes reading contemporary romance in a really small town setting (view spoiler)
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
  • That Holiday Feeling (Virgin River, #7.5; Those Manning Men, #5)
  • Angel's Rest (Eternity Springs, #1)
  • One Reckless Summer (Destiny, #1)
  • Hot on Her Heels (Lone Star Sisters, #4)
  • The Sweetest Thing (Lucky Harbor, #2)
  • The Inn at Eagle Point (Chesapeake Shores, #1)
  • My Sunshine (Kendrick/Coulter/Harrigan, #6)
  • Skin Deep (I-Team, #5.5)
  • Baby, Drive South (Southern Roads, #1)
  • Sweet Lullaby
A RITA award-winning author of 25 novels, Robyn Carr has found a whole new following with her stories about the independent women and former marines of Virgin River."

RT's Career Achievement Best Author Award winner (2010) for Contemporary Romance.

RWA's Nora Roberts Lifetime Achievement Award recipient 2016
More about Robyn Carr...

Other Books in the Series

Virgin River (1 - 10 of 18 books)
  • Shelter Mountain (Virgin River, #2)
  • Whispering Rock (Virgin River, #3)
  • A Virgin River Christmas (Virgin River, #4)
  • Second Chance Pass (Virgin River, #5)
  • Temptation Ridge (Virgin River, #6)
  • Paradise Valley (Virgin River, #7)
  • Forbidden Falls (Virgin River, #8)
  • Angel's Peak (Virgin River, #9)
  • Moonlight Road (Virgin River, #10)
  • Promise Canyon (Virgin River, #11)

Share This Book

“He reached out and lightly touched her hair. There’s no way, he thought. I’m sunk. And my heart hasn’t beat the same since she walked into town.” 34 likes
“I just wanted to make you happy,” he said. “Are you happy?”
“I’ve been happy a couple of times. What can I do so that you can join me?”
He laced his fingers through hers and holding her hands, stretched her arms up above her head, holding them there. “Baby, you don’t have to do anything but be present.”
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