Just about every review of this book mentions the slowness of the story, so I went in anticipating that. And I'm not usually put off by slow stories--as long as I feel like the reasons for the slowness are worth it. I'm not sure I do with this one. It seems like one of the reasons for the slowness was that so much attention was given to explaining and describing things over and over again that didn't need to be.
Honestly, the weather was discussed so much and so often throughout the whole book--not just the bits with the blizzard--that I couldn't help but wonder if the author was initially fascinated by the blizzard of 1888 and so decided to write a story that takes place during it. I feel like the weather was the main character and the rest of the story happens as an afterthought to help us understand just how bad the blizzard really was.
Some other reviewers also mentioned how vibrant and real the side characters felt, but again I have to disagree. Liliane was the only one who didn't seem one-dimensional and stereotypical. And I swear, if I had to read one more scene of one of Jonah's landladies telling him what was or wasn't appropriate, I was gonna give this up.
All of that said, the story did turn out to be good. Both Jonah and Reid were delightful, sympathetic characters, and it was great good fun to watch them progress from rivals to lovers. It was beautiful to see the way Jonah transformed into a kinder, more open, friendly, and happy person because of his relationship with Reid.
This book was also fantastically beautifully written. Lyrical and vivid and enough to convince me to be patient reading a book about the weather... :P