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Holding Out

(Returning Home #4)

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  149 ratings  ·  45 reviews
She’s done being a virgin. He’s willing to help her out. Only now he has a problem of his own: He can’t stop wanting more.

The answer has to be no, of course. No way Griff Ambrose is going to help Becca Drake lose her virginity. Not only is she his friend’s little sister, but Griff doesn’t do commitment—not since the day he came home from war to find his house empty and hi
ebook, 267 pages
Published May 21st 2019 by Jelsba Media Group
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Average rating 3.94  · 
Rating details
 ·  149 ratings  ·  45 reviews

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May 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: shit-hot-series
4 - "Amazing... Every time." Stars!

The fourth book in Serena Bell’s Returning Home series gives us Griff and Becca’s story. Holding Out initially starts with a couple who originally agree on one night together for a specific reason, in that Becca wishes to lose her virginity.

"If you hire Griff Ambrose for a job, he’s going to do it right."

Griff having been burned by love previously is happy to take up the challenge as long as Becca understands it will be a strictly ‘one and done’ deal.

"The firs
Becca was holding out for that special man who deserved to take what she saw as her most valuable possession, but he hasn’t come along yet, and she isn’t getting any younger or happier about her situation. Why not turn to the man who wants no commitment, wants a one and one relationship and has the experience to make losing her virginity one to remember with passion forever? It doesn’t hurt that Griff is handsome and charming, either. Too bad he is her brother-in-law’s best friend which puts him ...more
4 stars!

I loved this book. A friends-to-friends-with-benefits-to-lovers romance that is fun, sweet and heartfelt with fantastic characters and a sexy and emotional love story, I was completely hooked!

This is book #4 in the Returning Home series, but you can read this as a standalone. The characters from previous books all appear as the main group of friends, but you don’t have to have read their stories to enjoy this one.

Becca is the younger sister of Alia from book #2, Can't Hold Back. She had
Maria Rose
The first story in Serena Bell’s Returning Home series about wounded war veterans readjusting to life back home, Hold on Tight, made my best romances of 2014 list. Five years later, I’m happy to say that the author hasn’t lost her touch when it comes to giving the reader an emotional, heartfelt and sexy read with the latest book in the series, Holding Out.

Becca Drake is finding that the dating scene is really complicated, particularly when her prospective partners find out she’s a virgin. Then t
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was the first book that I have read from Serena Bell and I am really glad that I found her. I really enjoyed this book. It was a friends to lovers book which is one of my favorite romances. I like that I didn’t have to read the previous books to know what was going on in their story. You get to revisit with other characters but with this being my first book by this author, I didn’t really feel like I was losing out on Griff and Becca’s story. I loved the journey each character had to do wit ...more
Renee Entress
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
4 star

The story has laughs, pain, sadness, and heartbreak.

If you have not read the below I would recommend reading those books(s) first
Hold on Tight (Returning Home, #1)
Can't Hold Back (Returning Home #2)
To Have and to Hold (Returning Home, #3)

This is Becca and Griff’s story. Becca wants to lose her virginity and she knows who she wants to help. No way is Griff helping her. She is his friend’s little sister and he is not doing commitment. But really, it’s just a request and he can just avoid he
May 07, 2019 rated it really liked it
I simply adored Holding Out. It was sweet and sexy. I especially loved the way the things started between Griff and Becca and how their relationship progressed. I also loved their journeys individually and collectively. I definitely recommend this book and series.

Copy provided by author
May 11, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 Stars

While I LOVED the previous installments in the series, this one just wasn't for me. First of it felt VERY different from the previous ones, the issues it deals with and mostly the WAY it is dealt with. For me the main problem with this book was the amount of sex, sex talk and constant thoughts about sex. If I could I would have deleted round 90% of that and THEN this book would have been GREAT. I just felt like instead of DEALING with anything really, they turn to sex as a sort of escap
May 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Holding Out is the fourth in Serena Bell's Returning Home series, about veterans returning to civilian life after service. It's about Griffin Ambrose and Becca Drake. Becca's sister Alia is married to Nate (the focus of Can't Hold Back, the second in this incredible series), who works with Griff at R&R, a retreat focused on serving veterans and providing care and services to help them heal and reintegrate.

Griff's been deeply wounded by the devastation of his wife leaving him while he was overse
Heather andrews
Apr 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Griff, just needs to hurry his woman along at times, “I think we should probably go to dinner. Right now. The sooner we eat, the sooner we can have dessert.” Becca needs to make her man work for things at times, “hey,” Becca said. “Eyes up. Groveling before ogling.” I liked this book, I loved Griff.
4 stars
Christi Snow
Jun 09, 2019 rated it really liked it
B rating...
E-Reader Addict
Oct 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
There has never been a time when I finished a book I didn’t like and I blamed it on a case of “it’s not the book, it’s me.” But this time, that really is the case because I knew the basic plot line of Holding Out, knew it is one I don’t generally like, and I chose to read it anyway. Which begs the reason why…

Basically, I suffer from OCBSD. Obsessive compulsive book series disorder. It’s where, if you’ve read all the other books in the series, you are completely unable to NOT read the next one. I
The fourth book in this series features Becca, the younger sister of Alia, the heroine of book 2, Can't Hold Back. In that book, Alia introduced Nate, the hero, to Becca rather than dating him herself because she'd always taken care of Becca and wanted her to have a good man. That didn't work out too well for anyone, and Alia and Nate finally ended up together. From the glimpses we got of Becca in that book, I was looking forward to her story as she came off as a level-headed young woman who'd b ...more
Candyce Kirk
May 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
So far every book in this series has made me love the characters even more. Holding Out definitely isn't an exception. Once again this book pulled me right in from the start and made me love the characters. The way Serena Bell writes sucks you in and won't let you go!

We already met Becca in Can't Hold Back so I was really excited to see she was also getting a story. She's had enough of being a virgin, but just can't seem to find a guy that's suitable. Griff is a part of her sister's friend group
Jackie (Jackie's Book World)
***Review can also be found at Jackie's Book World. :)***

Having read and loved a previous book by Serena Bell, I couldn’t wait to read her newest book Holding Out. As the fourth book in the Returning Home series, this book focuses on Griff Ambrose and Becca Drake as they navigate their way through ups and downs in order to be together. Now it is important to state that although this book is part of a series, it can be read as a standalone.

At the beginning of the story we get to meet Griff Ambro
KarenJo Custodio
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
4.25 Stars!

Holding Out is a delightfully sweet, steamy and swoony romance that made me smile, filled me with wonderful feels, and undeniably captured my heart.

Becca is done being a virgin. She wants to lose her V-card and sets her eyes on her sister’s ridiculously sexy friend, Griff. While reluctant at first, Griff can't seem to forget about Becca and soon finds himself unable to resist her request. They make a deal. One and done. But, is it? What happens when they realize they want more?

I love
May 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Review is also here:

Main characters: Becca Drake, younger sister to Alia, and drifting along through life. Griffin Ambrose, mutual friend, supposed good time guy who hides his pain down deep.

Why you should read it: Oh how I love Ms. Bell! And I have a particular fondness for this series too. All of the books in this series deal with some pretty hefty issues such as PTSD and both physical and mental trauma. At NO point did it feel inauthentic, or as though
Misty (Reds Romance Reviews)
Apr 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
After a painful divorce Griffin Ambrose has turned himself into somewhat of a ladies man, the kind that doesn't do attachments and can only promise one night of fun... the emotionally unavailable kind of man. The last time he put his whole heart into a relationship it wound up shattered into a million pieces and his girl ended up in the arms of another man. So the idea of opening himself up to love again is a hard no, and keeping someone around long enough to catch feelings is far too dangerous ...more
May 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc
Reviewed on my blog, Becky on Books, on 5/23/19.
First rule of Operation V-Card is, there is no Operation V-Card...
I absolutely loved Holding Out! Griff and Becca's story was just wonderful. It was sexy, funny, and fun--with a refreshing lack of BS (beyond the traditional "we're just going to do a one and done and move on like nothing happened" that a premise like this demands--but let me tell you, when the delusional "one and done" is as good as this one is, I am here for it). They did attempt t
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book (given by the author)...

3.75 stars

This book is majorly steamy ;)

We meet Griff and Becca in Can't Hold Back so we already have a little background on both characters: Griff, is part of R&R first as patient and now worker, and Becca, is Alia's baby sister.

This was a very enjoyable read, I always love books where the hero is oh so willing to help the heroine out as long as they follow the rules, but unfortunately is never works out as they plan. I will sa
Leanne Davis
May 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Becca caught my interest from book number two when her insecurity made her so fragile due to a lifelong learning disability that made reading difficult and therefore all of her schooling hard and mostly unsuccessful. She didn't have parental help or guidance and it was left to her big sister Alia to first notice her issues, and then help her. The influence wasn't enough to fully make up for the damage it did to her self-confidence. Now, however, Becca is all grown up and she's trying to embrace ...more
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another great read by Serena Bell! I think Holding Out was my favorite yet in the series! I absolutely adored the story line. I was pleasantly surprised because I found myself not liking Becca in Alia's book. However, she definitely turned herself around and made me like her in her own novel. And Griff. UGH. I knew I was going to love him. I found myself liking him in the other series as a secondary character so I was super excited to find more about him.

Now, with all of that said, even if you
This is the fourth book in Serena Bell's Returning Home series and fans will recognize the two main protagonists, Griff and Becca, since they've been a part of the series from the beginning. They get their own book now and what a story it is, with Becca wanting to get rid of her V-card and Griff being allergic to being The One but at the same time hates the thought that some idiot might do the deed without taking Becca's feelings into consideration. It sounds like a fluffy story with lots of lau ...more
Trader (RedHotBlueReads)
Becca has had with all the guys that are turned off when they find out she's a virgin. She's on a mission now to take care of what she sees as a problem, and she decides that Griff would be the right guy to help her. I really loved how Becca talked about her virginity being an issue -- it's a reality that some guys think that a woman will expect forever under those circumstances.

After Griff's wife left him without telling him, he's sworn off any relationships, preferring to just settle for one-
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
I have read all of the books in this series, which always makes it difficult for me to know if it can be read as a stand alone when familiar characters are a factor in the story. That being said, I do think this book would be ok to read if you haven’t read the previous ones. This series focuses on veterans returning home and dealing with the life they must now lead with war wounds, both internal and external. I have enjoyed them all and gained new appreciation for the difficulties they are facin ...more
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is book #4, in the Returning Home series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. For reader understanding, and to avoid spoilers, I recommend reading this series in order.

Griff finds himself attracted to the most off limits woman. She is the little sister of his friend. He also does not do commitment. Best to avoid her for now. If only she wasn't so attractive......

Becca has a thing for Griff. If he could help her with her predicament, things would be so much better for her. She just
Becky Baldridge
May 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
If ever a book were suitably named, it would be this one. Griff and Becca certainly know how to hold out on each other - except in bed, that is. Both are so closed off to relationships, each with their own reasons, which makes them kind of perfect for each other. They certainly have great chemistry, and I loved how they pulled each other out of their comfort zones without even trying. This fourth in the series can be read as a standalone, but for those who have followed from the beginning, we ge ...more
Sherry Sias
Apr 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I love Griff and Becca's story. Griff is a player, trying to sleep with as many women as he can to forget his ex. Becca is a virgin who wants Griff to help her out. First he declines, then when he agrees, he finds that one time isnt enough for him. They both realize they bring out the best in each other. One snag, his ex shows up. Becca sees them come out of Griffs apartment and hug. Did Becca misread the situation or jump to conclusions? This is my first read of this author and it will not be m ...more
Beth McLeod
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is the fourth book in Serena Bell’s Returning Home series. I really enjoyed them all, but this was probably my least favorite. It was good seeing what the couples from books 1-3 were up to, but Becca and Griff’s story didn’t resonate with me. Partly because it’s a Take My Virginity story, which I don’t love, and partly because it felt really rushed. One minute, they were making rules for their One and Done, and a few chapters later, they were in love. The other books in this series has a lo ...more
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USA Today bestselling author Serena Bell writes contemporary romance with heat, heart, and humor. A former journalist, Serena has always believed that everyone has an amazing story to tell if you listen carefully, and you can often find her scribbling in her tiny garret office, mainlining chocolate and bringing to life the tales in her head.

Serena’s books have earned many honors, including an RT

Other books in the series

Returning Home (4 books)
  • Hold on Tight (Returning Home, #1)
  • Can't Hold Back (Returning Home, #2)
  • To Have and to Hold (Returning Home, #3)

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56 likes · 11 comments
“I know you don’t want to make a big deal of it. So I’ll just say this. It’s an honor, okay?” 1 likes
“It’s one and done. Just to keep things simple. And clean.”
“Well, yeah,” she repeated. “Don’t flatter yourself, Ambrose.”
That made him laugh. “Oh, honey. Just you wait.”
“Arrogant bastard.”
More quotes…