ARC Review Book Review

ARC Book Review | The Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morgenthaler

Title: The Tourist Attraction (Moose Springs, Alaska, #1)
Author: Sarah Morgenthaler
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published On: May 5, 2020
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Source: digital copy
Pages: 352

Synopsis: 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. 

My thoughts

I started The Tourist Attraction prepared to be disappointed. I knew the synopsis sounded cute, but I’d recently read The Simple Wild and Wild at Heart and I was afraid I’d be comparing it to two books that had completely swept me off my feet. But try as I might, I couldn’t fight the grin that overtook my face within the first few pages. And I kept finding myself smiling and laughing out loud as I read the rest of this adorable book. 

“I’m not Cinderella, Graham. I have a good life, and I don’t need to be rescued.” Graham chuckled, low in his throat. 

“No rescuing from me, gorgeous. I’m definitely not the prince.”

~Sarah Morgenthaler, The Tourist Attraction

What I liked: Graham and Zoey are adorkable together. Their banter and chemistry is on point. I loved that Zoey was adventurous despite being quieter than her more confidant friend, Lana. Sometimes when our leading lady is the nerdy, quiet type, the author also makes her shy and timid. Not Zoey!

I loved the setting. I think I’m developing an Alaskan fixation with all the books I’ve been reading lately. Morgenthaler does a beautiful job of setting the scene and giving the reader memorable (and romantic) experiences. 

I also loved the plot point of the town vs. the tourists. I love to travel, but I’m always thinking about how the locals must feel about strangers constantly rotating through the place they live and love. While tourism is sometimes necessary to keep money coming in, it often also means destroying some of what there is to love about a place. It’s definitely a rock and hard place, and the author succeeds at showing a bit of both sides. 

But what I love most about this book is the humor and heart. I laughed, smiled, and got misty-eyed, and that’s the kind of escapism needed right now.

While I love this book and highly recommend it, a few things did bother me. I wanted more of Zoey’s backstory. I kept waiting for it, thinking we’re going to find out why Alaska has always been her dream destination, but we never get it. I also found myself confused by some of the dialogue–backtracking and rereading–but overall these small things weren’t enough to kill my happy reading experience. 

The Tourist Attraction is so much fun, and I can’t wait to read the next installment.

Thank you to the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, for providing me with an advance copy.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars (4 / 5)

About the Author

Geologist and lifelong science nerd, SARAH MORGENTHALER is a passionate supporter of chocolate chip cookies, geeking out over rocks, and playing with her rescue pit bull, Sammy. When not writing romantic comedy and contemporary romance set in far-off places, Sarah can be found traveling with her husband, hiking national parks, and enjoying her own happily ever after. Sarah is a two-time Golden Heart Finalist and winner of the NOLA STARS Suzannah award.

Check out Sarah’s website here!

A Song For A Book

On Bookstagram I created a hashtag for when I include a song that reminds me of the book I’m sharing, #ASongForABook, I thought I’d make it a regular feature on my reviews, too. This time I’ve chosen “I Choose You” by Sara Bareilles. This fun, poppy song is perfect for Graham and Zoey. I especially love the lyrics:

We are not perfect we’ll learn from our mistakes
And as long as it takes I will prove my love to you
I am not scared of the elements I am underprepared,
But I am willing
And even better
I get to be the other half of you

Amazon | B&N | Apple | Kobo | IndieBound | BAM | Bookshop

Have you read The Tourist Attraction? Or is it on your tbr? Let me know in the comments!

Happy Wandering!

12 thoughts on “ARC Book Review | The Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morgenthaler”

  1. This book sounds fun even though the last review I saw didn’t say so. It said the chemistry is off and banter too long. Anyway, I love the cover and want to give it a try. But I am reading Wild At Heart now. So, Maybe I’ll take a break and then come back to this. Thank you for the awesome review. It makes me want to give it a try.

  2. This sounds cute! I’ve also thought about what it must be like for the locals in places that depend on tourism income. I hope they’re doing okay right now, when tourism has essentially stopped everywhere. 🙁

  3. Another one that’s new to my shelf! So glad to see you enjoyed this one too. Hoping it’ll be another contemporary I enjoy. Thanks for the review!! 🙂

  4. Omg I Choose You is also one of my all time favourite songs and I love that you used it for this book 😍 This is another one that I was already very excited to read but now I am even MORE eager to pick up! I love good banter and these two sound adorkable (so cute)! Plus, that lowkey Alaska obsession is not letting me not read this so YAY! 🤣 Grand review, Dedra <3

    1. Oh yay! I love Sara Bareilles. She makes it onto soooo many of my playlists. 😉 I think I’m pretty obsessed with Alaska right now, too. It’s a great escape, right??

  5. Great review Dedra. I saved reading it as I was listening to the book. I agree with all your points. I loved the banter most of the time, but there were a few moments that got a bit repetitive. I love your choice of song, it is perfect. “I Choose You” fits so well.

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