It's not easy losing the love of your life...
But when Maggie Graham freed Rowan Mackenzie from the curse that bound him to this world, she took the first step toward her new life as director of the Crossroads Theatre. As a hectic new season begins, magic takes a back seat to ticket sales as Maggie balances the demands of her interfering board president and a company of actors that includes bewildered amateurs, disdainful professionals, a horde of children, and an arthritic dog. But magic is hard to banish from the old white barn, where memories lurk like ghosts in the shadowy wings and the unexpected is as time-honored a tradition as the curtain call. And when the tangled spells of the past turn Maggie's life upside down, it will take more than magic to ensure the happy-ever-after ending she longs for. June 5th, 2012 | DAW
Fantastic sequel in a magical, emotional, heartwarming series.
Maggie Graham is making a life for herself in Dale, spending her time as executive director of the Crossroads Theatre and managing the newly renovated Golden Bough Hotel.
She's making attempts to move on from the loss of Rowan Mackenzie. Even after nearly 2 years apart, and despite the many distractions that the busy life of a theatre director provides, he still constantly invades her thoughts.
Luckily, the Crossroads family have fully embraced Maggie as one of their own and offer her the support that she needs, especially when she continues to doubt that the theatre can be a success without Rowan's magic. But the staff carries a little fae magic of their own and are still able to hold their traditional calling of the Mackenzies.
I found the diverse cast of secondary characters that Ashford has created to be just as entertaining and enjoyable the second time around. Mei-Yin, Reinhard, Hal, Janet, Bernie, and even the new board director Long, all bring something unique to the story.
Once we are eased back into Maggie's world and the story takes off, it becomes an emotional roller coaster full of surprises, both good and bad.
It's difficult to explore certain aspects of the story line without worrying that I'm venturing into spoiler territory. And honestly, I feel like the larger developments are better left a surprise. But what I will say is that two important characters enter Maggie's life, and while one you will want to hold and comfort, the other will leave you feeling incredibly frustrated. But I appreciated Ashford's ability to create a character who managed to be so aggravating, disappointing, and entertaining all at the same time.
Despite the cover and synopsis, you won't have to be a fan of the theatre to enjoy this wonderful series. If you're a fan of romance, vivid writing, well-crafted and relatable characters, then I suggest you give Ashford's series a try, starting with her debut Spellcast.