- Title: The Lemon Orchard
- Author: Luanne Rice
- Genre: Contemporary Fiction
- Published: July 2013 – Pamela Dorman Books
- Source: Publisher
Synopsis: In the five years since Julia last visited her aunt and uncle’s home in Malibu, her life has been turned upside down by her daughter’s death. She expects to find nothing more than peace and solitude as she house-sits with only her dog, Bonnie, for company. But she finds herself drawn to the handsome man who oversees the lemon orchard. Roberto expertly tends the trees, using the money to support his extended Mexican family. What connection could these two people share? The answer comes as Roberto reveals the heartbreaking story of his own loss—a pain Julia knows all too well, but for one striking difference: Roberto’s daughter was lost but never found. And despite the odds he cannot bear to give up hope. (publisher)
My take: The Lemon Orchard is an emotional tale about two people drawn together by fate. We learn their stories through numerous characters’ voices. From Julia and Roberto to their relatives and friends to people they meet along the way, the details of their sad circumstances are revealed at an even pace.
Luanne Rice’s vivid descriptions of the Connecticut, California, Mexico, and Arizona settings made it easy to visualize the various scenes of the novel.
Like I mentioned, this is an emotional story. Roberto lost everything when trying to make things better for his family by coming to a new country. Julia needed to put some space between herself and the place where she blames herself for the loss of her family. When she meets Roberto she finds a way to gain a sort of redemption by helping him. Falling in love was never their intention. The love story of Julia and Roberto unfolded in such a way that I became invested in their future happiness.
I liked this romantic novel and recommend it to fans of the author and women’s fiction.