The Lights on Knockbridge Lane by Roan Parrish

 First off - this is a milestone to be celebrated - a M/M romance in a Harlequin Romance main line!

Second though, it means that it's balancing a lot of sensibilities - The Lights On Knockbridge Lane feels just like the first M/M Hallmark Movie in a lot of ways... but we'll get to that...

From the Author:

Can one man’s crowded, messy life fill another man’s empty heart?

Raising a family was always Adam Mills’ dream, although solo parenting and moving back to tiny Garnet Run certainly were not. After a messy breakup, Adam is doing his best to give his young daughter the life she deserves—including accepting help from their new, reclusive neighbor to fulfill her Christmas wish.

Though the little house may not have “the most lights ever,” the Mills home begins to brighten as handsome Wes Mobray spends more time there and slowly sheds his protective layers. But when the eye-catching house ends up in the news, Wes has to make a choice: hide from the darkness of his unusual past or embrace the light of a future—and a family—with Adam.

From Harlequin Special Edition: Believe in love. Overcome obstacles. Find happiness.

Heather's Review:

I haven't read a Harlequin Romance in years - I used to be obsessed with them and devoured hundreds of titles over the years, but since they were firmly in the M/F realm and I stopped reading M/F over a year ago for the most part, I haven't even looked at one in probably 18 months... so I was shocked when I got a Netgalley notification of a Harlequin Special Edition in my LGBTQ+ lit listings...

The Lights On Knockbridge Lane is definitely a Hallmark Movie style romance with one surprisingly steamy bedroom scene and a lot of stolen kisses and a bit of making out.  It fits the pattern of the Harlequin Special Editions that I remember reading and has a very sweet, wholesome vibe throughout.
This book is going to be a gentle way to ease Harlequin's M/F readers into the amazing world of M/M romance - as a gateway drug, it's amazing!

I struggled with my rating for this - mostly because I read so many dedicated M/M authors and so many indie authors who don't have to follow the trope formulas that Harlequin sets out - it was the best written book it could have been given the parameters required to fit in the Harlequin Special Edition series... I love both MC's, struggled a bit with the daughter Gus' behaviour and character and was rooting for them all throughout the book... I also struggled a little with the end because the book doesn't resolve how the guy who is terrified of spiders and creepy-crawly things is going to live with the guy who has a house full of weird and wonderful creatures, but, this story is meant to be a Hallmark Christmas movie in book form, so I'm sure they'll magically figure that out...

I'm rating The Lights On Knockbridge Lane 4 stars because it's a well written book, sweet story and breaks the long established barrier of Harlequin Romance,  but I didn't absolutely love it like I wanted to.