Review: Sweet Comfort by Kimberly Fish


Comfort and Joy Trilogy, #1

Women's Fiction / Later-In-Life Romance
Second-Chance Romance / Cozy Mystery
Publisher: Fish Tales
Page Count: 359 pages
Publication Date: January 21, 2023

Scroll down for a giveaway!

Welcome to the hometown everyone wants to call their own.

Gloria Bachman, a retired bank executive, has eight weeks to flip a location on Comfort’s High Street into a boutique chocolate shop. Defying expectations for “women of a certain age,” Gloria rediscovers talents and a sharpening of skills. If only she could read people as well as she does a spreadsheet. Even with the renovation in good hands, the subsequent struggle to name the shop brings Gloria and her business partner into conflict with a shady citizen. While Gloria is capable of remaining in her retirement rut while opening a business, two competing social groups try to lure her into their networks, causing Gloria to wonder if she ever knew Comfort at all. A murder rocks the community and revives investigative instincts honed by years in the banking industry.

Mason Lassiter, a disgraced CEO, has his own dramas to escape and the offbeat town seems the perfect place to recover his self-esteem. What was to be a quick reversal of fortunes becomes a quest to right a deeply felt injustice. Fascinated by the women driving the energy of Comfort, he extends his stay to find out why the small town is the backdrop to their best tales. Tangling with his neighbor Gloria becomes his favorite pastime and the key to unlocking the mystery of his past—if he can convince her to trust him.

Chocolate and joy become the glue bringing an unlikely cast together, which just might change Gloria’s and Mason’s course for the better. With characters familiar from previous Comfort novels and introducing fresh names, Sweet Comfort will entertain those who like their stories seasoned with coziness and sweet, second chances.

Kimberly Fish has been a professional writer in marketing and media for over thirty years, with regular contributions to area newspapers and magazines. As an accidental historian, she wrote two novels, The Big Inch and Harmon General, both based on factual events in Longview, Texas that changed world history. Kimberly also offers a set of contemporary women’s fiction novels and novellas, based in the Texas Hill Country, that reveal her fascination with characters discovering their grit and sweet, second chances; all four of the novels have won distinguished awards. Sweet Comfort is her latest novel, the first book in the Comfort and Joy Trilogy.

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I sometimes  admit to being a ‘woman of a certain age’ and it was with great pleasure that I dove into this story of a fictional contemporary. Gloria Bachman is a retired banking professional whose career ended on a bitter note. She’s happily childless and her ex-husband, who she nursed during his final days, has left her without a partner. But she’s not alone. Gloria has a collection of colorful friends both young and old. She’s determined to launch a new career with her partner Kali in a food retail business. Kali is a master in crafting all things chocolate and together they are opening a shop in Comfort, Texas.

My motto in life is ‘Nothing’s Easy’, and this holds true for Gloria. Ted, the owner of their building, is a curmudgeon who insists the shop’s name honor him and his demands all but sink their plans. Construction issues also threaten to delay their grand opening. Add a handsome gentleman and a murder to the mix and you’ve got a heck of a story. 

The author brings the town of Comfort to life with her engaging characters and descriptions of the town. I appreciated the portrayal of Gloria as a vibrant woman, full of life, admired by the younger women who surround her and seen as a problem solver. She is the one her friends run to when they need help and she generously gives it. I especially appreciate the budding and realistic romance between Gloria and the handsome Mason Lassiter. Yes, older people do fall in love!

With its engaging layered plot, the story draws you into Gloria’s life until you find yourself wishing you could play bunco with the ladies of Comfort and gossip about the neighbors. I really enjoyed this book and look forward to reading more in the series. 

I rate this book: 5 Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Two winners each receive a signed copy of Sweet Comfort plus a box of
Sweet Shop USA candies!
(US only; ends midnight, CST, 3/31/23)

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  1. Great review! I also love that the story revolves around someone I can relate to as a contemporary. And love this setting. Can't wait to read the book.


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