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House on Blackberry Hill (Jewell Cove #1)

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  139 ratings  ·  47 reviews
When a young woman inherits a rundown mansion, the last thing she expects to find is the key to her heart…

Abby Foster is a fish out of water in the Maine coastal town of Jewell Cove. The crumbling Foster estate, left to her by a relative she never even knew, has everyone’s eyes on her—an eerie reminder of the long-buried family secrets that have haunted her…forever. Single
ebook, 320 pages
Published April 29th 2014 by St. Martin's Paperbacks
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Abby Foster has a mind of her own and determines which way her compass points. She's an independent woman traveling from Canada to the USA to put a mysterious family connection behind her.

Problem is that Jewell Cove is a small town with plenty of historical skeletons to unearth. Abby is in for an adventure she didn't see coming when she meets Tom Arsenault.

Tom is hired as her contractor but their connection is strong and helps them form a friendship. They argue with each other, they listen to ea
Heather Felder
I LOVED this book! It's the first I've ever ready by Donna, but it definitely won't be the last! The story started strong and stayed that way until the end. I didn't have to "skim" any boring parts because there were none! Definitely going to be (im)patiently awaiting book 2!!!
Blodeuedd Finland
A cute contemporary romance, I could leave it like that, because that is really enough.

But fine, I will say more ;)

Abby has inherited lots of money and a house, and all from a relative she did not know about. So she goes to see the house and discovers family secrets. It was a bit strange, cos there was this paranormal aspect of a ghost. Most of the time you can leave it to the fact that she only imagined it, but no, there really was a ghost here. Ok forget about the ghost. Abby always wanted fam
Fresh off my enjoyment of Her Rescuer Rancher, I stumbled across House on Blackberry Hill by Donna Alward on NetGalley. This is Alward's first non-Harlequin and I was curious to see where she would go with it.

The Short Review:
I didn't love it, nor did I dislike it. Alward has a lot of potential in this market, but the book did have some flaws.

All the Deets:
First, the good. Jewell Cove (the series) has promise. I can see Alward becoming one of those authors who write small town series that I p
I was fortunate enough to get an ARC of Donna Alward’s upcoming book The House on Blackberry Hill, which will be released on April 29, 2014.

It’s the first of a trilogy set in Jewell Cove in Maine and a terrific read. It’s also Donna’s first book with St Martin’s Press....

Abby Foster has inherited a house & estate from a great-Aunt she never knew she had. Reluctantly taking a leave of absence from her work as a teacher, she drives to Maine to check out the property. It needs plenty of TLC, a
Guilty Pleasures
Autry‘s review posted on Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews


Review copy provided for an honest review

The House on Blackberry Hill had me on the edge of my seat waiting to see what happened next. It’s a very touching story, one that makes readers want to see more of Jewell Cove and it’s unique small-town cast of characters. Each character is well developed and adds to the story line; each one makes the small community feeling all the more relatable.

Abby wants little to do with handouts from rela
Abbi Wilder
First, I have say I had to distinct pleasure of receiving an ARC to read.

There's so much I adored about this book. From the heroine, Abby (gotta like the name) who has to find her way in a place where she's really not sure she wants to be to the house which is almost a character in itself. Abby is honest, smart and very relatable. Tom, the hero, is honorable, strong and caring. I'm such a sucker for honorable heroes and Tom falls firmly into that category.

What really caught my reading eye was t
Love Laughter & Suspense!
The first in the Jewel Cove series by Donna Alward. You know you can count on Ms. Alward’s books to be a great love story, but The House on Blackberry Hills includes a little mystery as well. Well written and fast paced – you won’t want to put it down! I loved the characters and felt like I was right in town listening to the happenings and progress on the House! Join me in pre-ordering book two in the series – Treasure on Lilac Lane. Enjoy! NetGalley and St. Martin’s
"The House on Blackberry Hill" by Donna Alward is a lovely contemporary romance with historical ties and a strong feeling of roots and family connections.

I liked this book very much. Every once in a while I am lucky enough to find a book that has such wonderful atmosphere that it transports me from the world I know to the same place the characters are in. This is one of those books. The descriptions are perfect. I could smell the scent of blackberries in the air and feel the breeze upon my skin
In The House on Blackberry Hill by Donna Alward, Abby inherits an estate in Jewell Cove, Maine, from a great aunt that she didn't know she had. With her immediate family long gone, this mysterious connection to Jewell Cove is not what Abby expected. Abby is angry and hurt about this hidden side of her family, that no one reached out to her while they were alive. The estate needs a lot of work, and Abby's plan is to fix it up, sell, and head back home to Canada - alone. Along with the house there ...more
Shirley Jump
Donna Alward has knocked it out of the park with her first Jewell Cove book. I loved the story, loved the town, loved the hero and heroine. I wanted to live in Jewell Cove, with all its quirky shops and welcoming residents, and loved, loved, the old, sad house on Blackberry Hill that just needs a little TLC and a love story between two wounded people. A fabulous read, from start to finish!
Cocktails and Books
This is the first book I have read by Donna Alward and it most certainly won't be the last. I loved the setting of a small town and the closeness of small town life. Abby an elementary teacher from the big city inherites a large old house from an aunt she has never met and plans to fix and sell it. Enter Tom a carpeter in the town who wants to restore the old house to original. Both have baggage from the past that they are dealing with that will challenge the relationship between Abby and Tom. I ...more
I was lucky enough to win a copy of this book from Goodreads! This was the first novel that I've read from Donna Alward. It's a well-written story that dealt with the budding relationship between Abby Foster and Tom Arseneault. Abby doesn't know much about her family, but she was left an estate or as the people of Jewell Cove call it, "the house on Blackberry Hill." It's a beautiful mansion that the mayor wanted to become a historical site for the town. Abby's relative never wanted to sell it - ...more
Stevie Carroll
Previously reviewed on The Good, The Bad, & The Unread:

All kinds of stories can be enhanced by the addition of an understated ghost, and this is no exception, although even without the ghost I’d have enjoyed the characters, plot, and setting. Small-town America doesn’t always work for me, but when it does, I’m gripped by the place and its inhabitants. In this case, we get to learn about the town along with the heroine – an outsider, for all that her family name and history are well-known to
This is the story of two broken souls, brought together by a house that needs as much repair as they do. Our characters are real people who have been so hurt by their lives that neither ever thought they could be happy again. Abby's story is one of secrets kept from her, and years of losing everyone she cared about. Tom's was caused by the woman he loved not being strong enough to fight for him, and dying on her "last" tour overseas.

I couldn't put it down, and when I was forced to step away fro
See this review and others like it at Badass Book Reviews!

The House on Blackberry Hill was my first Donna Alward book and I loved it! The romance was sweet, the characters were quirky, and the town of Jewell Cove was amazing. Watching Abby and Tom fall in love was wonderful and I loved imagining the old Foster mansion being restored. The paranormal elements were a little jarring but I did enjoy learning more about Abby's family and what drove the sisters apart.

Abby Foster inherits an old mansion
 Gigi Ann
This book started off alright and as I was drawn into the story lo and behold a ghost shows up. That is where I draw the line. I never finished the book. Why oh why does a fun beginning of a story have to have a ghost? I hate stories with ghosts in them. Why wasn't this addressed in the synopsis of the story. I hate when I waste money on a book I will never finish reading because of the supernatural nonsense that is completely unnecessary. That is why this book received 1 star.

I bought this book
Michelle Cable
Received digital ARC from Edelweiss.
Sophie Pembroke
This is one of those books I devoured in every spare moment I had over just a couple of days, and was desperate to get back to whenever other demands called!

The town of Jewell Cove is the perfect escape from a busy day, and the characters so finely drawn they feel like old friends by the second chapter. Donna Alward has crafted a delightful, believable romance, a wonderful community, and an engaging plot full of secrets, history and, above all, family.

I cannot wait for the next in the series.

Well, wasn’t this nice! Okay, confession time: I pretty much knew I wanted to read The House on Blackberry Hill when I saw the cover because it gave off such sweet vibe, but when I saw the setting, I knew I had to read it. I honestly didn’t even read the whole blurb, nor have I yet. Good thing it turned out to be a worthwhile gamble.

Abby & Tom – We get both POVs. I liked her, I really liked her! She’s independent and feisty, which is always a good thing in my eyes. She has commitment issues
I enjoyed this book very much. A couple parts felt a little slow. It wasn't an "I can't put this book down" book like her shorter books, but was very good. It's a stand-alone book, but it does make you want to read the next one which is about a character I'd like to know more about. I liked all the secondary characters in addition to the main characters, almost better. I can't wait to see what they get up to. Very nice, sweet story. Loved the history about the house.
I've read many of this author's books, and was excited to receive a copy from the publisher through the Goodreads Giveaway program. This is the first book (hopefully of many!) set in the fictional town of Jewell Cove and centers on Abby Foster, a teacher who inherits an estate from a great-aunt she never knew. She meets Tom Arseneault, a local contractor and her eventual love interest, when he shows up to try to talk her into hiring him. I love the interaction between them, and both characters' ...more
Jewell Cove sounds like a wonderful town and this new series is a good romance with some great men for future books. Abby inherits a house from a relative she never knew she had. Along with the house comes some money, a family mystery and several ghosts. Tom is the contractor that Abby hires to restore the home to greatness. He is influential in her decision to sell or keep the house. Looking forward to book 2 set in Jewell Cove.
Abby's aunt that she has never met dies leaving her a historical mansion in Maine that needs to be fixed up.She meets Tom a local contractor when he shows up at her door and falls through the porch trying to convince Abby he should be the one to fix the house up. A crush begins to develop between the two and even after they kiss they are uncertain of whether they should pursue a relationship with Abby living in Nova Scotia and Tom holding on to a past relationship that went bad even after the wo ...more

Beautiful beginning to a great series...Mystery and secrets of a house that start to unfold right before your eyes.


Abby Foster is leaving her home in Nova Scotia and is heading off to Maine, to be precise Jewell Cove where her Great-aunt Marian lived. She has inherited the Foster Estate after her Marian passed . "She had to be here. She didn't have to like it". "A family who could have reached out to her at any time over the last twenty-five ye
I know, I know - a romance novel gets 5 stars --- well, it is well deserved. It is original, not redundant in so many ways that others are, it is fun, gripping, well written, and I really loved it.
Abby Foster didn't know one side of her family, when she comes to sort out the inheritance, the big Foster House aka the House on Blackberry Hill, in the small town of Jewell Cove - maybe she has more than she bargained for.
Tom Arseneault has dreamt of working on the house and restoring it to it's form
This was a beautifully written romances novel. I loved everything about. I won this book on Good reads. Thank you
Standard small town romance. If you love them, you'll probably like this. If you're a curmudgeon, there's not a lot here that's probably going to sway you.

I liked the mystery surrounding the heroine's long-lost family. I also thought the author did a good job of writing the hero's emotional baggage without having him come off like a total jerkface (he was in love with his cousin's now-dead wife - seriously, the hero should look like an ass for that, but he doesn't!). Was less enamored with the
Donna Alward has the start of something good with The House on Blackberry Hill. This is a small town romance/women’s fiction that hits the sweet spot. The writing is excellent and the setting and characters very welcoming. The heroine Abby has been given a new start in life. She is pretty much a loner with only had her grandmother to rely on. Now with her grandmother dead, she’s on her own, but finds out she’s an heiress and property owner to a huge house in Jewell Cove. She was left this house, ...more
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A busy wife and mother of three (2 daughters and the family dog), Donna Alward believes hers is the best job in the world: a combination of stay-at-home mom and romance novelist.

An avid reader since childhood, Donna always made up her own stories. She completed her Arts Degree in English Literature in 1994, but it wasn't until 2001 that she penned her first full-length novel, and found herself ho
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