Julie Porter's Reviews > Stranded in Love

Stranded in Love by Victoria  Grant
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New Book Alert: Stranded in Love by Victoria Grant; A Charming, Cute, But Formulaic Romance Novel For The Holiday Season
By Julie Sara Porter
Bookworm Reviews

Spoilers: While the weather outside is frightful
Two strangers find each other delightful
Cute Characters and a plot that's so-so
As romance grows, as it grows, as it grows.

There are worse ways to spend your time this Holiday Season than to read a romance novel. Romances spring to life around Christmas as often as they do on Valentine's Day. Many Readers delight in the scenes of winter pageantry, cozy passages of togetherness between the main couple, a subplot involving someone trying to help others such as the poor or injured or ill family members, and of course exchanges of gifts (one of which is no doubt a small box just the size of a ring), and of course a kiss under the mistletoe. Romances are big business right now. (That's probably why the Lifetime and Hallmark channels are saturated with Christmas Romance films this time of the year.)
One of those romances is Stranded In Love by Victoria Grant, a cute charming novel about a cute charming couple that meet during a big snowstorm and through several days of the female party getting stuck in the man’s home, a romance develops between the two.

Laney Calderone is the somewhat spoiled, but smart only daughter of Boyd Calderone, a prominent Toronto businessman and CEO of Calderone Industries, a leading telecommunications company where Laney works as a Vice President. On what will qualify as the worst day of her life, Laney discovers that she is pregnant and her fiancé, Ramone breaks up with her claiming he “isn't ready to settle down with a kid.” Not only that but her car breaks down during a blizzard (in Toronto snowstorms can last for several days) and she is stranded.

Fortunately, she receives assistance in the form of Tyler Hammond, a soon-to be-divorced Investment Adviser. He takes one look at the beautiful woman and invites her to stay at his apartment to wait out the snow.
In reality or psychological thrillers, this invitation would receive more suspicion and mistrust and Laney would be shoved into a basement where she would be regularly tortured. Fortunately for Laney, this isn't that kind of book. Instead she and Tyler spend the next few days arguing, getting on one another's nerves, apologizing, talking about childhood memories and current goals, and dancing together (except Laney doesn't tell him about her pregnancy). During their short time together, the two become lovers and settle into a comfortable existence until the snow stops, the plows arrive, and Laney realizes that she has to return to reality, her close and smothering family, and impending single motherhood.

Laney and Tyler make for a sweet charming couple. There are times where their emotions are all over the place and the two bicker like high schoolers. However, there are plenty of sweet moments to spare particularly when they are stranded at Tyler's apartment during the snowstorm. In one passage, Laney panics after Tyler leaves concerned that the flickering power means that he got stuck in a powerless elevator. Of course he returns and all is well, but this moment solidifies their relationship from one of animosity between strangers to one as friends and potential lovers.
Laney and Tyler also show a deep physical connection when they observe the Toronto skylights on the cold rooftop and dance together (earning each other the pet names of “Fred” and “Ginger.”).
Their time together is complete bliss that while creates conflict between two stubborn argumentative people is also one of affection and kindness.

At times the plot of Stranded in Love is formulaic, so formulaic that even someone who does not read many contemporary romances, like me, can recognize the patterns. We see the Other Man, who is superficial and only reappears in Laney's life so he can get a good paycheck. The Other Woman is also present and she is conniving and manipulative towards her ex and rival. We also have the Heroine's Snobbish Mother who doesn't care for her daughter's savior even though he is handsome, kind, helpful, and polite. Of course these characters are mere distractions on the road to the inevitable Happy Ending. This book sticks to formula so much that it is a nice surprise that Laney's father and four brothers are genuinely friendly towards Tyler and supportive of Laney's pregnancy and her new relationship.

This makes it sound like I don't like the book. On the contrary, it is sweet the way Romances often are. It is the type of book that a person reads to be entertained and for the pure escapism that can be found in such a love story. Stranded in Love makes for a nice stress reliever for the pressures of the season including shopping for gifts, decorating the house, and welcoming relatives. For a book like this, all that is needed is a pleasant setting and a sweet couple to inhabit it. Victoria Grant delivers what is a great early Christmas gift for the Romance lover.
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Reading Progress

Finished Reading
December 1, 2018 – Shelved

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