Friday, February 23, 2024

Living La Vida Mocha by H.M. Shander: Book Review

 *Book received for consideration. All thoughts are my own.

Brewing Up Second Chances and Love in the Heart of the Rockies

Cara Gallagher had it all: the perfect apartment, a charming plus one, and a dreamy marketing job. Until, in the blink of an eye, she had nothing. Fired and dumped in a matter of minutes, Cara finds herself at rock bottom. Desperate for a moment of respite, she stumbles upon the Coffee Loft, hoping for a burst of sugar and caffeine to mend her wounded heart. Instead, she walks straight into the unexpected - the person she never thought she'd encounter again, the one who had always held her heart.

Thirteen years has passed, but Carter Cross remains the enigmatic soul she remembers from their college days. The pain of his departure for European adventures still haunts her, but her heart yearns for another chance. Carter, too, longs to be with her, yet secrets hold him back.

With the gift of a fresh start in her hands, Cara sets out to rewrite her destiny. Her focus? Ridge Heights, the picturesque small town brimming with opportunities for redemption. And the center of her mission is Carter.
Will their second chance at love be as sweet as the coffee at the Coffee Loft?

Living La Vida Mocha is a light-hearted and emotional sweet romance.

USA TODAY bestselling author H.M. Shander is a star-gazing, romantic at heart who once attended Space Camp and wanted to pilot the space shuttle, not just any STS – specifically Columbia (and it's loss was deeply upsetting). However, the only shuttle she operates in her real world is the #momtaxi; a speedy electric car that transports her two kids to school, work, and whatever sporting events they are involved in. When she’s not commandeering Elektra, you can find the elementary school librarian surrounded by classes of children as she reads the best storybooks in multiple voices and tries desperately to remember each of the 700+ student names to make them feel special.

After she’s tucked her endearing kids into bed and kissed her trophy husband goodnight, she moonlights as a contemporary romance novelist; the writer of sassy heroines and sweet, swoon-worthy 'cinnamon-roll' type heroes who find love in the darkest of places.

She knows and speaks four languages (two exceptionally well); English, French, some American Sign Language, and Sarcasm, some of which serve her well within her variety of real world jobs (in no particular order) as Wife, Mother, Birth Doula, Teacher, and Librarian (and countless others). Despite how busy her life can be, there is always time to watch the sun rise, try to catch a rainbow, wish on stars, and listen to the robins sing.

She can be reached at, followed on Goodreads, and would love to read your comments about her novels.

Living La Vida Mocha is part of the Coffee Loft series. This is a multi-author series with all books centered around or featuring a Coffee Loft shop, but all books can be enjoyed as standalones with no confusion. 

If you think you're having a bad day, just wait until you see Cara's. Dumped and fired in a span of just ten minutes, she finds herself driving to clear her mind. She winds up at a small-town coffee shop that just do happens to be owned by her ex- Carter. The feelings might be resurfaced... but they have a lot to work through, including the secrets that caused their breakup in the first place. This was a super sweet second-chance romance. Throughout the story, we are given the hints that there is something more going on... and I thought the author did a really great job of giving just enough throughout the story to keep me wanting to read on to find out what the big secret is. I won't give anything away, but I really loved these characters and enjoyed seeing them get their happily ever after. 

Living La Vida Mocha is a closed-door romance with kisses only and no language. 

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"Pleasant words are as a honeycomb: sweet to the soul and health to the bones." Proverbs 16:24