The Tourist Attraction (Moose Springs, Alaska #1) by Sarah Morgenthaler
Publication Date: May 5th, 2020
Publisher: SourceBooks Casablanca
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Rom-Com
When Graham Barnett named his diner The Tourist Trap, he meant it as a joke. Now he's stuck slinging reindeer dogs to an endless string of resort visitors who couldn't interest him less. Not even the sweet, enthusiastic tourist in the corner who blushes every time he looks her way…
Two weeks in Alaska isn't just the top item on Zoey Caldwell's bucket list. It's the whole bucket. One look at the mountain town of Moose Springs and she's smitten. But when an act of kindness brings Zoey into Graham's world, she may just find there's more to the man than meets the eye…and more to love in Moose Springs than just the Alaskan wilderness.
I had such a great time reading this one. When I first picked it up, I thought it was rather long for a rom-com but I definitely enjoyed every second of it and could have read more.
Right off the bat you are in Graham’s POV and that is honestly such a fun place to be. His internal dialog is just super fun and witty and true to his character. He has a slight touch of old man crotchety-ness but it’s obvious that it’s not his real personality; but as much as people claim he is, he's really open to a lot when it comes to interacting with people. It’s almost like a nod to Luke from Gilmore Girls in the way that he ACTS like he hates everyone but he actually has a soft spot. And just in case you as the reader need more clarification that Graham is a sweetheart, he has the BEST dog ever that he absolutely adores and has full on conversations with which I love.
Our other POV is, of course, Zoey who is in Alaska on her dream trip - on a budget. She has no shame in wanting to do all of the stereotypical touristy things and at every turn, she gets the short end of the stick. Throughout everything though she keeps up a great attitude and is a wonderfully realistic character. She’s staying in a swanky hotel thanks to her BFF but everything else has been planned based on an honest budget and LOTS of research. Zoey is the type of character I can totally relate to and wish I could be a bit more like in the sense that she is not afraid to experience things on her own and feels completely comfortable doing things solo while still being spunky and smart and challenging.
Now, when these two are together? Perfection! Their banter is amazing, the addition of Graham’s dog Jake was impeccably added, each of the side characters were needed to flush out the rest of the story and used smartly… basically I loved this story.
I had a great time reading about the different natural attractions in Alaska and having Zoey’s optimism with Graham’s playful pessimism along with their obvious attraction. The ending was pretty clear from the beginning (I mean, it is a rom-com after all) but I appreciated the added conflict near the end to throw just the right size of a wrench in things. There really is a plethora of plot in this story and it was all woven together in a wonderful way.
This is a series that I do think I am going to continue because I enjoyed reading about the cast of characters in Moose Springs and it will be fun to hear what happens to them. I’d recommend this if you want a contemporary romance written in an uncommon setting with wit and wilderness and a small town feel.