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February 20, 2022

The Desert Inn series by Judith Keim ~ a Review

by Susan Roberts

Three talented women are brought together by a man they all love, becoming his Desert Flowers, who work together to save his hotel from being ruined by the company buying it…
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The Desert Flowers - Rose 

The Desert Flowers Rose
January 2021; Wild Quail; 978-0999900918
audio, ebook, print (300 pages); women's fiction

Judith Keim is one of those authors that you can always depend on to give you a great story with fantastic characters.  I'm excited to know that she is writing a new series and after reading book 1 in the series, I can't wait to read the rest of the books.

Alec Thurston owns a hotel in Palm Desert California.  When he found out he was dying of cancer, he made plans to sell his hotel to a large hotel chain but wanted to make sure that they didn't make changes that would diminish the history of the inn so he calls on three women that he has loved in the past to help.  He wants to make sure that there is a smooth transition while ensuring the new owners will maintain the reputation and image of the upscale property after the sale.  He asks Rose, Lilly, and Willow to help him and pairs each of them with a person on the hotel's team.  He gives them the nickname of the desert flowers and knows that he can depend on their expertise to help.

Book one in the series is Rose's story.  She had lived with Alec for 12 years and she still loves him after many years apart.  She has marketing expertise and owns a very successful lifestyle blog.  He pairs her with Hank on the hotel team and assigns her to work on the transfer of the hotel.  She doesn't like Frank at first - he's an ex-sports figure and uses sports analogies to explain everything.  Once she gets to know him better, she thinks he has the potential to be more than a work colleague.  Her hopes are dashed when she meets his daughter who is totally opposed and very vocal about her father getting involved with another woman after her mother's death.  Can Rose and Hank overcome the daughter's negativity and is there a chance that they can find love?

Rose is a strong independent woman who knows what she wants out of life and works to meet her personal goals.  She was a great character and I thought it was wonderful to have a main character in her 50s who was still working hard to make her dreams come true.  I can't wait to read the rest of the books in this series.  Based on earlier books by this author, I know that they will all be strong women who face challenges and find love on their life journeys. 

The Desert Flowers - Lily

The Desert Flowers Lily
October 2021; Wild Quail; 978-0999900932
audio, ebook, print (300 pages); women's fiction

This is Book 2 in the series and it's Lily's story.  Three strong and resilient women have all traveled to the desert to help their good friend Alec complete the transaction of his hotel to the new owners.  Alec has cancer and needed the expertise of each of these women to help him complete his sale before he dies.

Lily, Rose, and Willow are all in different places in their lives but when Alec brings them together to help him sell his hotel, they become best friends;  all united to do what they can to help Alec.   Lily worked in a lawyer's office and was overworked and underappreciated so she was thrilled when Alec asked her to come to his hotel to help with the transition. Her only regret was leaving her sister and her three-year-old niece but her goal was to bring both of them to California to live with her.  Alec puts her in charge of the transition and she starts working with Brian who is employed by the new hotel.  The more time they spend together, the more their feelings for each other grow.  Life throws them into some difficult situations - will they be able to work through the problems and have their happily ever after?

As with all of Judith Keim's books - her readers get characters who are very realistic along with a plot that will keep them anxiously turning pages.  This book is about the love between family members, friends,  new loves, and working to overcome the tragedies that life throws at you.  I am anxious to read the next book in the series which will be Willow's story.  This is a fantastic series that you don't want to miss.

The Desert Flowers - Willow

The Desert Flowers Willow
February 2022; Wild Quail; 978-1954325227
ebook, print (316 pages); women's fiction

Judith Keim is one of those authors that you can always depend on to give you a great story with fantastic characters.   She loves to write stories about strong women of all ages coming together to help one another face life's challenges.  This is Book 3 in her Desert Inn series and this is Willow's story.

Alec is dying of cancer and before he dies, he asks three women to help him with the transition of his hotel to new owners.  He gives the three women the nickname of the desert flowers and because he loved all three of them at different times of his life, he knows that he can depend on them to fulfill his final wishes.

Willow grew up at the hotel because her parents worked there.  Alec was her mentor and encouraged her to be successful in her life.  She took a job in Boston but always missed Alec and her parents.  When he asks her to return to help him with the hotel transition, she is eager to return.  She is asked to work with the son's hotel chain owners.  Brent attended college with her and was a big bully and a pretty nasty guy.  Trace is much nicer than his cousin.  There is a job opening for the job of executive assistant and Willow competes against the two men for the job.  After she makes a decision to stay in the area, she begins to wonder if she'll ever find love with the right man.  Several men are vying for her attention and one of them ended up giving her their happily ever after ending.

This was a fantastic addition to the first two books in the series.  As the three women bond together as friends and always have each other's backs, they all realize what strong and resilient women they really are.

Susan Roberts lives in North Carolina with her husband of over 50 years.  She grew up in Michigan but now calls North Carolina home. She enjoys reading, traveling, and spending time with her family. She reads almost anything (and the piles of books in her house prove that) but her favorite genres are Southern fiction, women's fiction, and historical fiction. Susan is a top 1% Goodreads Reviewer. You can connect with Susan on Facebook.

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  1. Thank you so much for such kind words. I'm thrilled that you loved the books and appreciate your support! It makes all the hard work worthwhile! Hugs...