**spoiler alert** This is the second book in the Kowalski Family series written by Shannon Stacey. The first book, Exclusively Yours, is Joe & Ker...more**spoiler alert** This is the second book in the Kowalski Family series written by Shannon Stacey. The first book, Exclusively Yours, is Joe & Keri's story...and where we meet Joe's brother, Kevin. The book was so enjoyable and Kevin was such a fun character I had no doubt that Undeniably Yours, Kevin's own story, would be even better. *sigh* Think it's time I strike the haughty, over-confident phrase from my vocabulary and simply look upon it as the name of a good band.
Kevin Kowalski, youngest of the 3 K. brothers, is handsome, smart, funny, charming, gracious and just about every other complimentary adjective you can tag a person with. He's the standard by which your mother compares all of your boyfriends...and finds them woefully lacking. Kevin's appeal, however, doesn't stop at the senior level. Working at the sports bar he owns, Kevin's hard body and chiseled features, made perfect when he smiles and reveals his dimples, have women propositioning him on a daily basis. At the end of each night, Kevin can be certain of one thing - a nice-sized pile of lipstick-kissed napkins bearing phone numbers of beautiful women - all ready, willing and more than able to satisfy his every sexual desire. The "no strings" relationship was exactly what Kevin wanted after a short but disastrous marriage to a woman he caught cheating made him rethink the whole concept of "love". But lately, seeing how happy Joe was with Keri, as well as his parents, his other brother Mike, sister Teri, and their spouses, had him feeling pangs of longing and lonliness . It was time to starting thinking about a serious relationship.
For all intents and purposes, Beth Hansen should have been just another one-night-stand for Kevin. Having first met under less-than-ideal circumstances (he had tossed her drunken boss out of the bar and Beth was fired as a result), when they meet again at Joe & Keri's wedding reception, not 10 words are exchanged between the two before they are banging away in Kevin's hotel room. Morning comes and Beth's plan is to sneak downstairs & grab 2 coffees & a few pastries from the continental breakfast cart in the hotel lobby and then sneak back in before Kevin wakes up. But as she opens the door, she hears Kevin say "lock the door on your way out". She doesn't return.
One month later, the stick turns blue and Beth is at Kevin's bar informing him he is going to be a father. That's it. She wants no financial help, no quick marriage, nothing...not even a chance to get to know Kevin better. In keeping with character, Kevin totally embraces the idea of becoming a father and spends the majority of the book trying to warm Beth up to the idea of a permanent relationship. But she plays the "I am woman..hear me roar" card at every opportunity, claiming she needs nothing at all from Kevin - no money, not a better place to live than the cramped, unheated apartment located in a crime-infested neighborhood that is her current residence, no friendship from and certainly no romance with the father of her baby. WTF is her problem, you ask? What else? Her feelings were hurt because he had not tried to contact her after their one night together, and she would be damned before she would be another faceless telephone number on a drink napkin!
Kevin's total devotion to Beth and then to the baby was sweet and sigh-worthy. However, Beth's continued resistance to Kevin - maintaining they were nothing more than "friends who had a baby together" - her insistent yapping that she needs no help from him and that they maintain separate apartments - finally took its toll on both Kevin and me. While Kevin issued an ultimatum that resulted in a HEA for him, Beth's admission of love and her subsequent redemption didn't sway my belief that she was acquiescing simply because she was afraid of losing her free babysitter and cushy meal ticket.
Beth = 2 stars, Kevin & the Kowalski family = 5 stars, Undeniably Yours = 3.5 stars(less)
I thought the storyline sounded okay...42-yr-old divorced romance author hooks up with the 30-yr-old model who graces the covers of her novels. But th...moreI thought the storyline sounded okay...42-yr-old divorced romance author hooks up with the 30-yr-old model who graces the covers of her novels. But the prudish author with very little personality pushed my willingness to suspend disbelief past the boundaries. With her 2 teenaged children staying the summer with her cheating ex and his new gf, Kelly Michaels plays the prick tease card with Derek during their stay at a romance writers' convention. Why? She has insecurities (which are understandable), she worries that Derek is only in this for a fling (and the problem with that is?) and she insists on being a June Cleaver role model for her children. Unfortunately, that lasted over half of the book and I just wasn't feeling the sexual tension that I am sure the author intended to project. When the couple finally made love, it was rather unremarkable.
The second half of the book did pick up as Kelly's inhibitions began to melt away; however, what bothered me was that Kelly, her ex, Alan, and their 2 kids together presented quite the dysfunctional family. First of all, while at the convention, Kelly learned that her 16-yo daughter, Mia, was seeing a 19-yo guy and promptly grounded her from 3000 miles away - even though Mia was staying with her father who had given his permission. In a state of rebellion, Mia slipped out of her dad's home, got drunk, had her naval pierced and promptly laid the guilt at Kelly's feet. When Alan brings the kids home & finds Derek at the house, Alan starts in with the insults about Kelly's "boy toy", Mia hurling remarks about Kelly being a hypocrite and wailing that she wants to live with "daddy". Infuriated, Kelly picks up "the first thing she can find" and throws the box of kleenex at Alan. Good thing it wasn't a paperweight. Later, Derek punches Alan when he boasted that his new gf taught him what good sex was because Kelly was such a dead lay. Alan storms over to Kelly's house to show her what "the neanderthal" did and Mia scowls at Kelly with contempt...urging her father to press charges. Kelly raises her hand to strike her ex but at the last minute refrains.
Ladies and gentlemen: June Cleaver has left the building...
...and this family needs some serious counseling! Derek, the package of total perfection...what is he willingly getting himself involved in? And, more importantly...why?
At this point, having listened to 6 hours of the 9-hr audio book and not being any more invested in the story than I was at the onset, I pitched the book into the dnf pit. Thunk!(less)
**spoiler alert** I have zero tolerance for a "heroine" who has a baby without telling the father simply because she felt like he chose the air force...more**spoiler alert** I have zero tolerance for a "heroine" who has a baby without telling the father simply because she felt like he chose the air force over her. AND, when he accidentally meets his son at age 12 and tells the mother he wants to be a part of the boy's life, she says she'll think about it. What a bitch!
This is Beautiful Disaster from Travis' POV and I loved it even more than its predecessor. Really...the book boyfriend mold was broken when Travis Mad...moreThis is Beautiful Disaster from Travis' POV and I loved it even more than its predecessor. Really...the book boyfriend mold was broken when Travis Maddox was created! They just don't get any better than him. *sigh*(less)
Bf cheats so gf has secret baby. 10 years later baby daddy returns and slides right into the role. Too easy! Angst should've been ratcheted way up for...moreBf cheats so gf has secret baby. 10 years later baby daddy returns and slides right into the role. Too easy! Angst should've been ratcheted way up for this one.(less)
I don't know what I was expecting when I purchased this book but what I got was one helluva dramatic, suspenseful, heart-stopping journey into the see...moreI don't know what I was expecting when I purchased this book but what I got was one helluva dramatic, suspenseful, heart-stopping journey into the seedy underworld of hijackings and terrorists and the kickass men trained to thwart them. This is the book that defines the genre "romantic suspense" and anyone who enjoys a story that is one huge adrenalin rush from beginning to end will love Forged in Fire. Kudos to Trish McCallan for penning such a powerful debut novel. I'm not even a fan of the genre yet couldn't bring myself to rate it anything less than 5 stars!
I enjoyed the first two books in the series but felt that Crush was a bit of a letdown. I kept waiting for something to happen and it never did. Also,...moreI enjoyed the first two books in the series but felt that Crush was a bit of a letdown. I kept waiting for something to happen and it never did. Also, the big focus was on Lucy which made Jude seem like a secondary character since he was away at football training for most of the book. I missed all the angst and drama so prevalent in Crash and Clash. In fact, this book could've been condensed into an epilogue, added to Clash and worked just as well for me. (less)
A new take on the bad-boy rockstar theme. The girl's father is the leader of a bad-ass motorcycle gang so there are all sorts of crazy things going on...moreA new take on the bad-boy rockstar theme. The girl's father is the leader of a bad-ass motorcycle gang so there are all sorts of crazy things going on in this story. The book ends with a cliffhanger but I've got book #2 Heart Song ready to roll. This is great...I can visualize the cast of characters...Katey Sagal as Violet's mother, Ron Perlman as her father, Charlie Hunnam as Travis Phoenix, etc...it's totally Sons of Anarchy!(less)