Elephants, Africa’s wild savannah and three best friends…
When attorney Maddie Corallis returns to Kenya to fight a humanitarian vs animal rights case, the last thing she expects is for her childhood friend, wildlife veterinarian Haki Odaba, to be the very man she’s up against. Loyal and protective, Haki would never turn his back on the elephants he’s devoted to saving, any more than Maddie could abandon the native tribes she’s come to protect. An impossible battle…but nothing compared to the fight they face when old feelings surface and the soul-deep connection they’ve always shared threatens the worst kind of betrayal...that of their dearest friend Pippa. The one Haki is expected to marry.
Denying their feelings is torture, but giving in is not an option. Not with the suffering it would cause. Besides, Maddie left Kenya once and she’ll be leaving again soon. An ocean, a case and a friend between them. Maybe love can’t always find a way…or can it?
It is not everyday that a novel set in Kenya pops up in my review feed. Most American authors stick to the US of A, or else some of the more "romantic" countries of Europe. So it was a joy to find something that was a little more unique. And since I had read an anthropological study in college that dealt with Kenya and the tribal laibons, I was excited to see where the author took this story.
To begin with, Sinara did a great job of depicting Kenyan culture. She mentioned greetings and gift-giving, all without making these parts of the culture seemed forced to the story or else needlessly exotic. And she included simple details, such as the correct gifts to bring, without stating that those were the expected gifts, creating a sense of normality to the exchange between characters that I appreciated.
However, the romance itself felt like something that was forced in between the conflict of farmers killing elephants in retribution for destruction of crops. Though the narrative hints that there were feelings between the two as children, it seems to come out of nowhere that they suddenly love each other so much after only a few days together, days in which they have been on opposing sides of a legal battle.
There is also a lot of backstory to the characters that is largely glossed over, which I assume is because it was part of the other three books, which made it difficult to get a sense of just who this cast of characters are as people. Why do any of them have such a drive to protect the elephants? And why does that drive result in Haki being judgemental and sometimes callous to the local tribes people when it comes to their livelihoods?
I think that if I had read the rest of the series beforehand, that I would have enjoyed the romance in this one much more. However, reading it as a standalone left me wishing for more when it came to the characters' history and relationship.
I have provided an honest review after having received an ecopy through I am a Reader, Not a Writer.
Other Books in the Series
About the Author
National and USA Today Bestselling author Rula Sinara lives in rural Virginia with her family and crazy but endearing pets. She loves organic gardening, attracting wildlife to her yard, planting trees, raising backyard chickens and drinking more coffee than she'll ever admit to. Rula's writing has earned her a National Readers Choice Award and HOLT Medallion Award of Merit, among other honors. You can discover more about Rula at her blog A Writer’s Rush, on Twitter, on Facebook as RulaSinaraAuthor or on her website www.RulaSinara.com, where you can also sign up for her newsletter.
November 14th: Mello & June, It's a Book Thang!
November 21st: Wishful Endings
November 23rd: underneath the covers
November 24th: Becky on Books
November 25th: Grand Finale
Prize Pack #1: (one winner, U.S. residents only)
- A set of three, 15X15 in cotton canvas ‘From Kenya, With Love’ tote bags
- A handmade wooden ‘Believe’ star ornament
- A set of 3 plush wild animal TY Teeny Tys (great stocking stuffers!)
- An autographed copy of A Heartwarming Christmas Craft & Cookbook
- An autographed copy of After the Silence
- An autographed copy of Through the Storm
- Every Serengeti Sunrise bookmark
Prize Pack #2: (one winner, open to U.S. and International residents)
Amazon Kindle (gifted) copies of The Promise of Rain and After the Silence (Winner may substitute a different backlist book by Rula Sinara, if one of the above titles is already owned. No other substitutions apply.)
Ends November 29th