Over the Fence
– SUMMARY –
Two neighbors—strangers—with one thing in common—they share a fence. But is that the only thing they share?
Nathan Fraser lives a solitary life, never letting anyone get too close. It’s safer that way. Kourtney Whyte hides from the world and behind her work, too afraid to really live her life to the fullest. Rejection is what she knows best.
But one night, the sound of her soft voice and the tantalizing aroma of her evening meal, prove too enticing for Nathan to ignore. That is, until the day Nathan braves the high fence to protect Kourtney from her past, and changes everything forever.
So begins their unconventional relationship—talking, learning, texting, and gradually opening up to one another, all over the fence.
Can they move forward together, without the buffer of the fence?
Or will their pasts prove to be too much of a barrier?
“I’m going in now. Good night. Your dinner is…up there.”
I turned, looking back in the direction of her voice and I saw it. A plate was perched on the top of the wide top rail of our fence, waiting for me.
“Hey, wait!” I yelled, picking up my chair, and heading to the fence. Reaching up, I grabbed the covered plate, wondering how she managed to get it up there.
“Enjoy your dinner, neighbor.” I knew from the distant sound of her voice, she was already at her door.
“Nathan!” I blurted out.
“My name is Nathan.”
“Nice to meet you, Nathan. Enjoy your dinner and have a nice evening.”
“No, wait! You can’t go in and not tell me your name!” I pleaded.
There was a tiny sigh. “Kourtney. My name is Kourtney—spelled with a K.”
A grin tugged at my lips. Even her name was soft.
“Well, nice to meet you, Kourtney, spelled with a K. Whatever this meal is, I know it’ll be great.”
– REVIEW –
A simple act of kindness sets the theme for Melanie Moreland’s latest novel, Over the Fence.
When new neighbor Kourtney Whyte moves next door to Nathan Fraser, Nathan finds the aromas of Kourtney’s cooking to be irresistible. Starved for a home cooked meal, Nathan compliments, the “Chefgirl” next door on the mouth-watering scent, and in a gesture of goodwill, a plate appears atop the fence that separates their two yards.
Through shared “fence” meals, Chefgirl and Nathan (now known as the stray “Tomcat” that Kourtney feeds) begin to know one another. Realizing that his feelings for her are more than just neighborly and having recognized Kourtney’s reluctance to be seen, Nathan respects her wishes — he stays on his side of the fence. What happens when Tomcat finally comes face to face with his Chefgirl sets the stage for a steamy romance fraught with dramatic twists and painful revelations. And when all the fences have finally come down, what is revealed is an endless landscape of love.
Author Moreland has effectively used the fence as the metaphorical boundary Kourtney has set up between herself and a painful world. Tormented by years of taunting, she believes herself to be unloveable. Nathan, plagued with guilt from a tragic past, sees Kourtney as the bright light in his bleak life:
“I looked over my shoulder, grimacing at the barren appearance of my own yard. I thought how similar the two were to the people who owned them; Kourtney’s yard reflected the bright, lovely oasis she had become in my dark, lonely life.” (p. 139)
Both of these characters are well crafted and Moreland has gifted them with witty dialogue that reads at a fast pace. Her plot is so engrossing and her writing so contagious that Over the Fence was easily read in one sitting.
Through Moreland’s writing, we see how simple acts of kindness and generosity can dramatically change a life for the better. There are lessons to be learned here and the author repeatedly weaves into the story examples of goodwill and compassion. Adult reading, Over the Fence teaches us lessons that are valuable at any age.
* I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review *
– ABOUT THE AUTHOR –
Melanie Moreland lives a happy and content life in a quiet area of Ontario with her beloved husband of twenty-six-plus years. Nothing means more to her than her friends and family, and she cherishes every moment spent with them.
Known as the quiet one with the big laugh, Melanie works at a local university and for its football team. Her job, while demanding, is rewarding as she cheers on her team to victory.
While seriously addicted to coffee, and highly challenged with all things computer-related and technical, she relishes baking, cooking, and trying new recipes for people to sample. She loves to throw dinner parties, and also enjoys travelling, here and abroad, but finds coming home is always the best part of any trip.
Melanie delights in a good romance story with some bumps along the way, but is a true believer in happily ever after. When her head isn’t buried in a book, it is bent over a keyboard, furiously typing away as her characters dictate their creative storylines to her, often with a large glass of wine keeping her company.
Category: Contemporary Romance
Publication Date: August 4, 2015