Monday Review: Stranger in Town

Monday Review: Stranger in Town

Stranger in Town by Brenda Novak



A woman with an abusive ex-husband has never experienced real love. The man she falls for is the one that she was responsible for paralyzing. Along with that, a mean guy wants to take the coaching job away from the hero and is going to illegal lengths to accomplish it.

The Good:

A very proficient, standard romance novel.

There’s plenty of plot going on here. The premise is really strong and I definitely felt tense about how things were going to work out. New¬†obstacles¬†were introduced regularly and I was rooting for them to overcome.

The story moves well and even the child characters are not annoying or too precious.

I really appreciate that there was no “cure plotline.” Matt was not going to become magically unparalyzed and that was something that they both had to deal with, since she caused the accident.

The Bad:

I have trouble relating to the characters in this. They live in a small town and care a lot about football.

I didn’t have much interest until about half way through when the hero and heroine slept together. I felt like the story hit its stride then.

Yummy Hero Factor:

Gabe is charming and laid back, a former big time star, but small town boy at heart. It’s hard to get sexier than him! He’s very capable in his life as a football coach. He’s smart and quick witted, and able to see through the pretense of overly glamorous people. He is worth getting to know.

Great Line:

He struggled against a smile and indicated his wheelchair. “Look what you’ve done to me. It’s tragic.”

She pursed her lips¬†together. “Somehow it’s more tragic when you’re not trying to capitalize on it.”

He couldn’t help laughing. “Can you really begrudge me a little fun?”


For me personally, I was kind of bored by the characters. I’m not really sure why. The book has a lot going for it, but it didn’t quite connect for me. So I still recommend it (or at least reading the sample/look inside to see if the writing grips you).

Buy Now:

If you’ve written a book or know of a book that features a character with a physical disability, send me an email with “review” in the subject line:



  1. Devushka
    Jun 15, 2012

    I read this one a few months ago and I mostly enjoyed it. I also could not connect to the strong football theme of the book, but I do remember enjoying the read more than many other similar books, particularly the “no magical cure” aspect of it. It’s been a while since I read it, so I don’t really remember the details of the book very well, but I definitely liked it. I’d recommend it to others.

    Thanks for the book reviews, Ruth! They’re much appreciated.

    • RuthMadison
      Jun 15, 2012

      My feelings exactly! The ending was super adorable, too, so that made up for the slogging through football drama. lol.

      I’m reading one now called Cowboy Down that I’m really loving (as far as romances go). I plan to review it the Monday after this coming Monday.

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