When I Fall in Love by Wendy Lindstrom is a bit of an odd one, it's counted as number seven in the Grayson Brothers' series, but it is actually set before the other six. Not that a prequel is that unusual, but of course we know how this one is going to end. Having said that, this is a romance book, so I suppose the end is hardly a surprise in any case.
I have read and enjoyed the other books in the series, starting with the four Grayson brothers' stories, and then moving onto the next generation in novella form for book five and full story some years later for book six, so of course I couldn't resist going back to find out about how the parents got together.
The story begins with Hal Grayson, loosing his brother and work mate John, in an accident. Consumed with grief and a little guilt, he suddenly finds that his brother had arranged for the arrival of a mail order bride to be. Although he knows that he should send her straight back home, there's just something about her that makes him want to let her stay.
Nancy Mitchell has left her home and her family, to travel to a new town, and marry a man she has never met. Faced with the prospect of a marriage to man she could never love, but that her beloved sister does love, she feels that her only option is to get away and marry someone else. When she finds out that her intended is dead, she decides that she would rather stay and marry his brother Hal.
Of course, as is often the way with these things the course of true love never did run smooth, but Hal and Nancy fall for one another as they learn more about each other. Even so, Nancy is still hiding something from Hal, something she is worried that he will never forgive.
The whole story is well written and although quite sweet, it does have it's slightly steamier moments. I liked the idea of Nancy, who had come from a wealthy background, trying to learn about cooking and house keeping, throwing herself into the tasks willingly. The only slight problem with this, is that being a prequel, I already know what is in store for the couple further down the line, even if it is much further down the line, which does tinge it all with a slightly bitter-sweet feeling. But perhaps that's me just me being a bit silly? It wasn't my favourite of the Grayson Brothers' series, but it was certainly an enjoyable one that I'd recommend.