State of Grace is an impressive debut novel from Addison Clarke. It is the first offering in the Moonflower Cove series, set in idyllic Moonflower Cove, Maine.
Actress Blake Calloway has spent seven years starring on a hit tv show. Her ex-girlfriend and current manager is waiting to hear whether it will be picked up by another network. Blake is cleaning out her father’s condo after his death and finds letters from her mother that her father had kept from her. Her father had told her she was unfit and Blake, at five years old, never saw her mother or sister again.
Blake decides to head to Moonflower Cove, Maine to reconnect with her mother and get some of her questions answered. Blake’s mother, Isla, is shocked but thrilled to see Blake again after so many years. She takes Blake to her farmhouse and introduces her to her wife Vera and their children as well as Blake’s sister Mason, who was only three years old when they last saw each other.
Alexis Holland has worked at Isla’s bar, Straight to Ale, since she was eighteen years old. Alexis is a big fan of Blake’s show and even writes fanfiction. She has a five year old daughter Harper. Alexis’s best friend Sophia and her partner live near door to Alexis and have been a lot of help to her in raising Harper. Alexis’s relationship with her family is nearly nonexistent but her chosen family have been there for her through a lot of difficult times.
Blake and Alexis have chemistry almost immediately. They are both so comfortable around each other. Blake always has people who want something from her but with Alexis she feels as if she can just be herself. Alexis can’t fathom what a rich, beautiful actress would want with her. Alexis has been through a lot and is weary of opening her heart when Blake will be leaving to return to her acting career. Will they find the courage to listen to their hearts or will fear and self doubt destroy their chance for love?
I really enjoyed this book. Blake and Alexis are charming and it’s easy to feel empathy for them. Blake having been separated from her mom and sister and the trauma that Alexis suffered make it very easy to want the best for them. The supporting characters fit perfectly, from Alexis’s adorable daughter, Harper, to her best friend and protector Sophia. Blake’s mother and her wife are important characters who give Blake the first semblance of a home and a family. Moonflower Cove also seems to be the mecca for lesbians in Maine, even the mayor likes the ladies! This is my kind of town and I am looking forward to the second book in the series.