One of Nora's biggest strengths is her wonderfully flawed, quirky, sexy, fully-fleshed out male characters; and with Northern Lights she finally gave the man a starring role.
Depressed and broken Nate arrives in Alaska and finds a reason, a multitude of reasons, to not give up. That's the gist of it, in a nutshell. But Nora does it in such a way that it's an incredibly entertaining read. This book wasn't so much about the romance and the hot sex - yes, there was some, but it was by no means the focal point of the story. Nor was the growing relationship between Nate and Meg. It was the story of Nate making himself a place.
Going from 'Outsider' to belonging and becoming more or less at peace with his past. Some of my favorite scenes were Nate interacting with his deputies, Otto and Peter, and his office manager/dispatcher/aide-de-camp, Peach. How they all came to like and respect one another despite suspicions and events getting in the way.
Other favorite scenes included Nate constantly butting heads with the natives and long-time residents of Lunacy as he spends his first long night of winter as the town's police chief. Wonderfully colourful and endearing characters, a beautiful setting, a mystery that kept me wondering until the very end; Northern Lights was a juicy and fun read and left me with a big smile on my face.
Yeah, Nate and Meg got their happily ever after, but the more satisfying end was that Nate allowed himself to heal and make a new and better place for himself.