Debbie Macomber is most of the time a guarantor for easy-to-read novels and a plot that entertains you in a wonderful way. Well, this time I finished the novel with some mixed feelings. The book started great, but then things went a bit down. I hope the next novel will be better or at least show me the skills I expect from the author again. But maybe it is only me, and you might enjoy it. Who knows.

Liebe Mit Aussicht*
by Debbie Macomber
Translation Nina Bader
Original Title It´s Better This Way
Publisher Blanvalet on April 18, 2022
Genre Novel
Pages 347
Format Paperback
Source Blanvalet

For about six years, Julia has been suffering from a broken heart. When she found out that her husband loved another woman, she fought with all her might for her marriage - but without success. Together with her two daughters she sells her former home and moves into an apartment where she hopes for a new beginning. Julia has initially sworn off men. But when she meets her handsome neighbor Heath while playing sports, she can't help but feel attracted to him. The two fall head over heels in love, but they quickly realize that juggling two families is anything but easy...
Julia fights for her marriage, deals with the new woman in her husband´s life, and does everything within her power to keep her daughters out of the mess her husband has put her into. And when Heath steps into her new life as a divorced woman, she finally starts to open up again. Only to fall deep when she has to learn who he is.

Despite the short version about the divorce of the main character, the novel starts off wonderfully easily and is a great read. Not to say it was a page-turner for the first few chapters. But then the author, unfortunately, changes the dynamics of both the action and the plot, and the tone becomes much heavier. From then on it was only half as much fun and the rating slipped from five to four.

No question, it's always nice to read a novel by Debbie Macomber. The author has a lightness in her writing style and is usually very good at presenting the plot to the reader in an entertaining and simple way, despite often difficult topics. And I usually find it easy to unwind while reading one of her novels. Unfortunately, this time it was different.

Debbie Macomber's novels depict real-life people like you and me. As a reader, I can usually identify with her characters and often have great fun following the events surrounding her fictional characters. Was the same here until it got to the point where I realized everything was way too beautiful to stay like this. And bingo. Only a few chapters later, the bomb literally bursts and the lightness and happiness that had prevailed up to that point was gone, both in the characters and in me.

Julia is a strong woman who, unfortunately, has put up with a lot during her marriage to Eddie. When his demand for a divorce comes out of nowhere, Julia realizes that some things must change without losing herself in the process. And that's exactly what fascinated me about her. This inner strength to remain positive towards her daughters despite all the pain and to do everything so that what is left of her family can heal.

All in all, a nice read with a few flaws. The main character is wonderful and shows sides that have me immensely intrigued. If it hadn't been for the mood swing, the novel would have gotten another star. If you're just looking for a book for a day at the beach or a relaxing afternoon and don't have any expectations, this is the book for you.

Happy reading

*This book was kindly provided to me by Blanvalet in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. Thank you. Therefore, the cover of the German edition is shown first in this review.

Deutsche Rezension

Der Roman fängt trotz der Kurzfassung über die Scheidung der Hauptfigur herrlich leicht an und lässt sich prima lesen. Um nicht zu sagen, es war über die ersten Kapitel ein Pageturner. Doch dann ändert die Autorin leider die Dynamik sowohl in der Handlung als auch im Plot und der Tonfall wird deutlich schwerer. Ab da machte es nur noch halb so viel Freude und die Bewertung rutschte von fünf auf eine Vier.

Keine Frage, es ist immer schön, einen Roman von Debbie Macomber zu lesen. Die Autorin hat eine Leichtigkeit in ihrem Schreibstil und versteht es normalerweise ausgezeichnet, die Handlung trotz oftmals schwerer Themen ebenso unterhaltsam wie einfach dem Leser zu präsentieren. Und normalerweise kann ich prima abschalten, während ich einen ihrer Romane lese. War diesmal leider etwas anders.

Debbie Macomber zeigt in ihren Romanen Menschen wie du und ich aus dem realen Leben. Ich als Leserin kann mich meist mit ihren Figuren identifizieren und hab oft großen Spaß, die Ereignisse rund um ihre erfundenen Charaktere zu verfolgen. War hier genauso, bis es zu dem Punkt kam, wo mir klar wurde, dass alles viel zu schön war, um so bleiben zu können. Und Bingo. Nur wenige Kapitel später platzt buchstäblich die Bombe und weg war die bis dahin herrschende Leichtigkeit und Fröhlichkeit sowohl bei den Figuren als auch mir.

Julia ist eine starke Frau, die sich nur leider während ihrer Ehe mit Eddie so einiges hat bieten lassen. Als wie aus dem Nichts seine Forderung nach einer Scheidung kommt, erkennt Julia, dass sich einiges ändern muss, ohne dass sie sich selbst dabei verliert. Und genau das war es, was mich an ihr so fasziniert hat. Diese innere Stärke, trotz allem Schmerz noch positiv gegenüber ihren Töchtern zu bleiben und alles zu tun, damit das, was von ihrer Familie noch übrig ist, heilen kann.

Alles in allem ein schön zu lesender Roman mit kleinen Schwächen. Die Hauptfigur ist wunderbar und zeigt Seiten, die mich ungemein fasziniert haben. Wäre der Stimmungsumbruch nicht gewesen, hätte der Roman noch einen Stern mehr bekommen. Wer nur ein Buch für einen Tag am Strand oder einen entspannten Nachmittag sucht und keine Ansprüche hat, der ist mit diesem Buch gut bedient.

*The book was published in the English language by Ballantine Books on July 13, 2021.

Debbie Macomber
Debbie Macomber ©Dan Gregory Meyer

Debbie Macomber is the owner of the Victorian Tea Room and the yarn shop A Good Yarn, which was named after the store in her successful book Blossom Street. She is the author of Sweet Tomorrows, among many other books, and a leading voice in women´s fiction. Ten of her novels have reached #1 on the New York Times bestseller lists, and five of her beloved Christmas novels have been hit movies on the Hallmark Channel, including Mrs. Miracle and Mr. Miracle. Hallmark Channel also produced the original series Debbie Macomber´s Cedar Cove, based on Macomber´s Cedar Cove books. She has more than 200 million copies of her books in print worldwide. Debbie Macomber, who likes to be a grandmother, lives with her husband Wayne in Port Orchard, Washington, where her novels play and spends the winter in Florida.


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