The Stone In The Road

Australian At Heart Series Book 2

Romance - Contemporary
276 Pages
Reviewed on 03/26/2022
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Jamie Michele for Readers' Favorite

The Stone in the Road by Frances Dall'Alba is a contemporary romance that finds its heart in Australia's outback. Kelly and Patrick have both hightailed off-path from what they are expected to follow. Kelly is a wanderer and Patrick is a guy who found sobriety in Australia and is reluctant to return to life back in Boston. What Kelly wanders into on this particular occasion is an inheritance: her grandfather had built a castle for her grandmother in a rainforest. Patrick, who has grown notably fond of Kelly, shows up in a banger of a car with perfect timing. Kelly needs serious help on the property. And Kelly and Patrick get serious...until they are interrupted and forced to take independent paths once more. “It’s a castle. A bit ramshackle but magical. It was impossible to express in a few words how the place had affected him. The setting, the forest, the turrets had all cast a spell...”

How the heck do you even review a book like The Stone in the Road? It's a castle. IN A RAINFOREST. With a waterfall and lush surroundings. I'm still letting out bursts of squeals thinking about it. The bonus here is that Frances Dall'Alba knows how to tell a story. The highs were high and the emotional lows came dangerously close to ugly-cry territory. A scene between Patrick and his father was painfully, heartbreakingly beautiful. Another is where Patrick gives Kelly the most thoughtful gift in the history of gifts. And Kelly's secret, which was a massive twist. I loved, loved, loved this book and its expertly written sizzle, organic dialogue, a setting that is unreal, and because it now makes me want to go dance in the rain. Very highly recommended.

Anelynde Smit

The Stone in the Road by Frances Dall’Alba is a classic romance with a twist. Kelly Sheppard and Patrick Van Der Meeliko meet at a rehabilitation facility in Samdarra and became fast friends. Both have their own struggles to deal with. They have a very big accident and vow to tell each other everything if they survive. They do. Kelly inherits a large estate from her grandfather and goes to clear the place up for sale. Patrick soon follows after a stint in hospital. Their romance blossoms and they become closer until Gemma enters Kelly’s life and she is fully absorbed in pushing Patrick away. He leaves with a cold feeling between them. Disaster brings them back together but will it be enough to heal the wounds? Will Kelly ever forgive herself and move on with Patrick? Set in the beautiful Australian outback, this story delves deep into your heart, wrenching your gut with its emotional twists and turns. A must-read for romance lovers.

The Stone in the Road by Frances Dall’Alba was something I really enjoyed reading. A little predictable at times but this was not a thinking romance; this was a pure joy to read. I loved how you could see the characters' thoughts as if you could read their minds. I even loved the predictability of the story; it held a certain warmth where there was none. Patrick was a character you could relate to and I could feel his pain in loving someone who didn’t love him back at times. The romance was very well written and the erotic scenes were very tasteful and classy. Not all about the physical, this story went deeper into the emotional, really pulling on the heartstrings. The struggle was real but the ending was spectacular.

Asher Syed

Patrick, a recovering addict ready to turn a new page, and a young Australian woman named Kelly who is working on herself so she can be who she needs to be to another, are the main characters in The Stone in the Road by Frances Dall'Alba. Kelly is the beneficiary of a rundown castle that her grandparents bequeathed in a will. Patrick, who Kelly teasingly calls “Yanko” because of his American accent, is there for Kelly when renovating the castle to sell is moved to priority status, at least as far as property goes. The property is hauntingly gorgeous and Kelly and Patrick get lost in moments between restoration and swimming under a waterfall until a tragedy in the same spot steals the beauty of the setting in the most horrible way.

I went into The Stone in the Road by Frances Dall'Alba not knowing what to expect, assuming it would be a good diversion in a light romance. It is that at the beginning, where all that separates two young people who are deeply connected to one another are misunderstandings and perhaps too much pride. Kelly and Patrick click as a couple and the castle is their sanctuary. I never expected the turn the story took or how two people with chemistry could also be joined in guilt, for different occurrences but the same outcome. The scenes that make the book a new adult novel are really hot and melting into the physical chemistry keeps the person reading it hopeful. There should be a trigger warning but otherwise, this is a good steamy romance with a heart of jade