Well, this book was certainly the cutesy that I needed right now.
Chase Sanders is called back to his hometown to help save the football team that he Well, this book was certainly the cutesy that I needed right now.
Chase Sanders is called back to his hometown to help save the football team that he was once part of. With his life currently in shambles, he drops it all to go back to Stewart Mills and to the coach who was more like a father than his own ever was. Having been part of the championship team, Chase and other teammates arrive for two weeks full of events and parades to hopefully raise enough money to fund the current football team.
Kelly McDonnell is the coach's daughter and one of the three women putting these festivities on. She will stop at nothing to make sure the teenagers in her town have something positive to look forward to. And just because she had a crush on Chase back in the day doesn't mean that would affect anything now, right?
Chase and Kelly have immediate chemistry from the moment he drives back into town, blowing through the stop sign and getting pulled over by Kelly herself. She's a cop now and fights daily to maintain the respect she has from the community. She doesn't need Chase messing that up. Not that Chase would even go near Kelly. She's the coach's daughter, and that means she's off limits. But try as they might, they keep finding their way back to each other.
What began as a teen crush evolves into a friendship with the hopes of more. Stacey really takes the time to build the friendship between the two so that when Kelly is worried about taking it further as to not hurt the friendship, you believe it.
The small town feel really helped set the scene of the book. Everyone knew everyone else and one persons business was everyone else's. The side characters added to the flow and made me want to know more about them as well. When this book showed up on my doorstep from the publisher, I was a little wary. But I am happy that I gave it a chance and am looking forward to seeing what else the patrons of Stewart Mills get up to in the next books.
I received a copy of the novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
It's interesting to me that this is considered a standalone book when we've met these characters (and others) in another series of Lee's. I'm assumingIt's interesting to me that this is considered a standalone book when we've met these characters (and others) in another series of Lee's. I'm assuming it's because of the jump from New Adult to Adult? Anyway...
After the death of her father, Dakota Nakos finds herself running the casino he left behind. As if dealing with this loss wasn't enough, now it seems like the Native American community Dakota was raised in doesn't want her or her mother there anymore. Add that to her ex showing up, and Dakota is just thrown out of sorts. She feels like she's drowning and it's looking like the only way out is the boy from her past and she's not quite sure that's a road she wants to go down again.
When Shane finds out about Mr. Nakos death, he stops at nothing to get home. Not only was Mr. Nakos father to his best friend and the girl he loved, but Mr. Nakos was also like a father to Shane. Upon his arrival, he instantly notices that somethings not right. Tensions are high, but no one is talking. Shane decides he's sticking around to find out what's going on - and to finally figure out what's between him and Dakota.
I really like Lee's writing. She's an author that I warmed up to, having not been to impressed with the first book I read from her. In Two of Hearts, Lee ups the game by jumping into adult with these characters and also throws in a little mystery: who killed Mr. Nakos and why? The setting was also one I hadn't read before. Set on an Indian reservation in the Midwest, I enjoyed how this book placed emphasis on the importance of culture and family.
The chemistry between Dakota and Shane was clearly visible. The two share a past - his best friend is her older brother, not too mention the almost relationship they had. Their past actually lends itself to moving the plot forward instead of getting us stuck there. It's because Shane knew Dakota so well that he was able to anticipate her reactions and also investigate the murder of her father more indepthly. However, despite their obvious chemistry, there was a giant game of push and pull happening. Shane knew what he wanted and was going after it. Dakota had no clue what she wanted and even after she figured it out, still pulled away. She was very up and down with Shane, but it was believable given what her family was going through and the stress of owning a casino. I enjoyed both the drama and the romance of this book.
In my mind, this will always be grouped in with the Between Breaths series. I can't help it. My mind just associates it with that set. That's not a bad thing, though, as I thoroughly enjoyed that series.
I received a copy of this novel from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Well, the conclusion to the Body Works trilogy is definitely explosive. I will give it that.
Months after Anna leaves Alec because of the danger he keeWell, the conclusion to the Body Works trilogy is definitely explosive. I will give it that.
Months after Anna leaves Alec because of the danger he keeps putting her and her friends in, she's still pining for him. Like "fantasizing sexy times with her while with clients" pining. While it's obvious that everyone around her is worried (there's somebody with her at all times), she tells them that she's fine. No need to worry. Alec who? And all that jazz. No one's buying it, not even me.
When Anna's life is threatened again, Alec reappears and it looks like he may be sticking around for good. Or maybe not...? This guy was all over the place. With the impending trial and his future on the line, his inability to talk about any sort of future with Anna was understandable. He didn't want to make promises he couldn't keep and he didn't want to hold her back. Honestly, Alec is a pretty stand up guy. But after all of this, he would then turn around and swear that he would never leave her, that he would always be there for her. It was a constant back and forth that it's no wonder Anna was so messed up.
Then there's Anna. It was nice to see her relationships with people outside of Alec. I'm not a fan of relationships where the two people seem to disregard everyone around them once they're together, and in the first two books, this was Alec & Anna - wrapped up only in each other. In Confession we get to see more of her relationship with her father, who I loved. I also liked the extra additions of Mike (honestly, I wouldn't mind reading a story about him and Amy). Also, seeing Anna figure out what she wanted to do with her life and finally seeking out help to talk about what happened to her both in her past past and the more recent past. It takes courage to ask for help, but it showed a strength that the author talked about a lot, but it finally came to light.
So, here's the thing, I liked these books, but I didn't love them. The first one was insta-love. The second one was more of the getting to know you type faze. The third was non-stop drama and action. Oh, and sex. A lot of sex. I didn't really feel an emotional connection with the lead characters, only the physical. I didn't understand why Anna couldn't live without Alec. The author never seemed to go beyond the physical connection and I had a really hard time understanding how Anna felt safe with Alec when all he did was constantly put her in danger.
The parts that I really liked were the crime bits. I liked the unraveling of secrets and the 'who done it' mystery that surrounded this one. That's what kept me reading, not the love story.
Heartbreaking, heart-stopping, emotional rollercoaster - and that's just the prologue. A Shattered Moment starts off on a very painful note and over tHeartbreaking, heart-stopping, emotional rollercoaster - and that's just the prologue. A Shattered Moment starts off on a very painful note and over the course of the book manages to break through that pain into a book about learning to live again.
On what should have been one of the happiest nights of her life, Mackenzie Robinson's life changes in the most unexpected way. Loss like she has never known now plagues her everyday. In order to try to shed the pain, she in turn sheds her own identity, now only answering to Mac. But Mac's not really living, she's just going through the motions. Wake up, go to class, study in the library, avoid roommate, sleep, repeat. That is until she meets Bentley James.
Bentley was the EMT on duty that night when Mac's life changed. It's a night he also will never forget. When Bentley sees Mac in their school library, he makes it his mission to get to know her - even if she's resistant. Something about her pulls him in, he knows what happened to her and he wants to help. Only he doesn't see that when Mac sees Bentley, she also sees that night.
King's writing is so raw that it just demands to be felt. Bentley is so full of light and warmth, which is the opposite of Mac's darkness and cold attitude toward the world. I mean, he fights with his roommates iguana. How adorable is that? He's also the only person who doesn't make Mac feel...wait, no, scratch that, he is the only person to make Mac feel. And she's not sure how to deal with that. Having been in her own personal bubble, she doesn't realize that she was missing human interaction until he wakes that up in her.
Mac was a complicated little cookie. She wanted to be left alone, for people not to notice her disability, to just get through the day. Over the course of the book, she starts to come alive again. And as she faces the past, we learn more about what happened that fateful night. And when she finally grieves and forgives, the anger she felt starts to disappear.
I loved this book much more than I thought I would. King has become one of those authors where I will just read anything she publishes. I cannot wait to see where the next book takes us. I have a feeling it will be just as hard to get through as this one.