Drew Foley and Sunny Archer are both in Virgin River visiting family for the holidays. Drew decides to take a break from studying to pay a visit to Jack's bar, not knowing that Jack is hosting the bar's first New Year's Eve bash. Sunny's fiancé left her at the altar the previous New Year's Eve, something she's still bitter about, so she isn't really in a party mood. However, her Uncle Nate and his soon-to-be wife, Annie, persuade her to go anyway. When Drew sees Sunny across the crowded room, he's instantly smitten, but Sunny cruelly rebuffs his initial introduction. As Sunny shoots photographs of the party, Drew bravely tries again, and this time, the pair find they have some things in common. Perhaps a little confession will be good for the soul, and a stolen kiss at midnight will help this couple to mend their broken hearts and begin building a new romance in the new year.
Midnight Confessions is a holiday-themed side story in Robyn Carr's Virgin River series. It features Drew Foley, the brother of Marcie (A Virgin River Christmas) and Erin (Moonlight Road) as the hero. He's a doctor of orthopedics, serving his residency at UCLA Medical and is an extremely outgoing charmer. Sunny, his heroine, is the niece of Nathaniel Jensen (Under the Christmas Tree from That Holiday Feeling) the local veterinarian. Both are in Virgin River visiting family for the holidays, and both have suffered fairly traumatic breakups within the past year. Drew's long-time, live-in girlfriend broke up with him not long after moving with him to L.A., while Sunny was literally left at the altar on her wedding day the previous New Year's Eve. Needless to say, she's pretty down on men and not looking for another relationship. Drew, on the other hand, is pretty upbeat, so when his instant attraction for Sunny leads him to approach her at the New Year's Eve party at Jack's bar, she can't really resist his positive attitude and charisma. They end up ringing in the new year alone in Drew's family's cabin on the mountain where they get to know one another and share a few heated kisses.
I had a really hard time settling on a rating for this story. It is Robyn Carr we're talking about, so I did enjoy reading it, but there just isn't a whole lot to it besides what I outlined above. This was definitely more the beginnings of a romance than one that is fully realized. It takes place over only two days time, so I admit it wouldn't have been realistic for much more than that to happen within the time frame alloted. However, it simply didn't feel as satisfying as all of Ms. Carr's other stories I've read to date. Drew and Sunny spend most of their time together on New Year's Eve discussing their respective breakups, and while that was an area of commonality they shared, it seemed a tad too much information for a "first date." Aside from them talking and having a mishap with a deer on the road to the cabin, little else happens. Perhaps because of the two main characters, especially the heroine, dwelling on past relationship hurts quite a bit, I didn't feel the connection between them as deeply as I typically do with this author's heroes and heroines. Sensitive readers will appreciate knowing that this is a sweet, kisses-only romance, but the lack of any deeper interactions or the intensely romantic moments that I know Ms. Carr is capable of writing contributed to a sense of distance. Also, the story doesn't exactly have a solid ending, just a tacit agreement that they're going to see more of each other when they both return to L.A. and a hopefulness that something more will come of it. Overall, Midnight Confessions was a decent read that is worthwhile for fans of Virgin River, since most of the main characters from previous books put in appearances at the party, but in my opinion, not a stand-out in the series. Midnight Confessions can be found in the anthology Midnight Kiss.
The Hope Chest Reviews on Facebook