The Secret Ingredient of Wishes by Susan Bishop Crispell

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26-year-old Rachel Monroe has spent her whole life trying to keep a very unusual secret: she can make wishes come true. And sometimes the consequences are disastrous. So when Rachel accidentally grants an outlandish wish for the first time in years, she decides it’s time to leave her hometown—and her past—behind for good.

Rachel isn’t on the road long before she runs out of gas in a town that’s not on her map: Nowhere, North Carolina—also known as the town of “Lost and Found.” In Nowhere, Rachel is taken in by a spit-fire old woman, Catch, who possesses a strange gift of her own: she can bind secrets by baking them into pies. Rachel also meets Catch’s neighbor, Ashe, a Southern gentleman with a complicated past, who makes her want to believe in happily-ever-after for the first time in her life.

As she settles into the small town, Rachel hopes her own secrets will stay hidden, but wishes start piling up everywhere Rachel goes. When the consequences threaten to ruin everything she’s begun to build in Nowhere, Rachel must come to terms with who she is and what she can do, or risk losing the people she’s starting to love—and her chance at happiness—all over again.

MY REVIEW

ARC provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

3.5 Stars

This was a super charming little book…

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This one had Sarah Addison Allen feel to it. Rachel Monroe has a secret, she can make wishes come true. Sometimes with disastrous results. When one accidentally gets granted, Rachel decides it’s time to pack up and leave town. She lands in Nowhere, North Carolina where she meets a great cast of characters hiding secrets of their own.

I enjoyed the heck out of this one. It was light-hearted, and easy to read, but also had some “feels” dotted throughout. The secondary characters were interesting and well written. Especially CATCH the old lady that takes Rachel in. All those descriptions of pies that they baked made me super hungry! I wish we would have gotten some recipes for them included in the book.

That said, I did have a few things that had me lowering my rating. I wasn’t crazy with the romance between Ashe and Rachel. One, Ashe is actually still married to Lola for 90% of the book. He is getting a divorce, but for me, he seemed way too hung up and hurt by her still for me to buy that he would want to start something with Rachel. The other issue I had, is that it had a rather abrupt ending. Now I don’t know if there is going to be another book to follow this one, but there were a TON of loose ends left.

Overall though I would recommend this one to anyone who enjoys a sweet and charming small town story, with magical elements.

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