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Take the Lead

(Dance With Me #2)

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  122 ratings  ·  57 reviews
Growing up in foster care, Officer Traci Lucky had a rough start to life, but things are looking up now that she's found a place in Bridgeport with two sisters she never knew she had. One night while on the job Traci finds Gwen, a pregnant teen caught up in a dangerous world of drugs, and takes her straight to the hospital. There Traci encounters the oh-so-charming Dr. Mat ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published September 8th 2020 by Blackstone Publishing
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Average rating 4.22  · 
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Linda (not getting friends updates at this time)
This was a likable ’meet-cute’ between a doctor and a police officer. I enjoyed it when Dr. Matt Rossi and Traci Lucky were on the pages. There was something charming about their insecurities and dating.

There was some minor suspense with a teenage pregnant girl and the drug-addicted father of her baby. And just enough drama between Traci and her new-found sisters. They had the same mother, but different fathers. Each of them was raised differently.

The chapters were short and each began with a
Amy Clipston
Oct 04, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Love this series! I'm enjoying spending more time with these sisters. The story is a wonderful story of finding love and second chances. ...more
Patti Whitson Stephenson She Lives to Read
Shelley Shepard Gray writes compelling stories, and this series has become one of my favorites among her many series. I’ve loved following the story of these three sisters. This book focuses on Traci, who is the police officer. I liked Traci—she’s smart; brave; and compassionate. I admired the way she had overcome her difficult childhood and uses her memories to make her a better officer. I was cheering on her sweet romance with Matt, and I loved the way the sisters rallied around to help Traci ...more
Patty Montoro
May 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Traci is the second sister in this trilogy. She is smart, determined and has a wonderful vulnerability. While trying to help a young woman, Gwen, get away from her past life she meets Matt. Matt is a doctor who senses her vulnerability underneath all her strength. Matt knew from the first that Traci is someone special. Traci has some emotional baggage from her past. Traci is afraid of getting hurt so she keeps people at a distance. Traci is champion for Gwen and girls in need. Traci and Matt gro ...more
Connie Saunders
Sep 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Captivating--realistic--romantic. Author Shelley Shepard Gray captured my attention with the realistic characters and true to life circumstances in this story and I'm so glad to get to know another sister from her Dance With Me series. The main character in Take the Lead proves that a person doesn't have to be defined by their past and they can use this awareness to build a promising future. This is the case with Traci Lucky! Her mother was addicted to drugs when Traci was born and she spent her ...more
Nora St Laurent
Aug 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
“Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass; it’s about learning to dance in the rain” Vivian Greene

I enjoyed all the dancing quotes sprinkled throughout this novel. I liked this story more than the last as two professionals Officer Traci Lucky and Dr. Matt Rossi meet in their efforts to save Gwen and her unborn child. Things are not what they appear at first. Gwen is 19 lost and alone. She does want to save her baby, but she has an abusive boyfriend and an equally mistrusting older brother.
Pam Pavkov
Sep 17, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Take the Lead is the second drama filled story written by Shelley Shepard Gray in her Dance With Me series. The characters are very likeable and really draw the reader into the story. There is never a lull in this story keeping the readers interest and turning pages. This story is filled with love of family and friends, compassion for those struggling with life, and dealing with past demons. The author has done a fantastic job continuing her series with this story and I definitely will be antici ...more
May 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this story from NetGalley for a honest review.

Take the Lead by Shelley Shepard Gray is the second book of the(Dance with Me) series, a series about 3 sisters that find each other after not knowing they even had sisters. Take the Lead is Officer Traci Luck story and I have to say, I really like Traci how she was strong but a soft center especially with Gwen, the pregnant girl she found in a crack house. I also like Matt the doctor who treats Gwen and is Traci's new love inter
Connie  Lynch
Jan 16, 2021 rated it it was amazing
This is book 2 in The Dance with Me Series and can certainly be read as a stand alone. This is the story of Officer Traci Lucky and Dr Matt Rossi and they are adorable. It is a great story of compassion and trust. When I began reading I was immediately drawn in and found myself putting the book down only to have it back in my hands a few seconds later. I have read book one and two, I now have a bond with these characters and love each one of them. Don't miss this series. ...more
Amy Bradsher
Sep 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelley Shepard Gray excels at telling stories with heart and truth. Her new series, the Dance with Me series, is about three sisters reunited as adults. Take the Lead releases today, and it’s a compelling look at how we should treat people around us who may appear to be different than we are.

This book brings so many questions to the surface: what role should our families play in our relationships? At what point does danger trump our ability to help other people? What informs our identity, and c
May 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Having been a dancer for several years and one still at heart I did enjoy reading this book and loved all of the little descriptions of different dance styles and quotes at the start of each chapter. I did enjoy the characters in this book, they worked so well together and I was disappointed when the book ended. I would read more of Shelly Shepard Gray’s Dance With Me Series and will be following her new books as they come out. I love finding a new author!

I received this book in kindle format fr
Sep 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I received this book in exchange for an honest review. You can purchase your copy here:

This is my fourth book by this author. I actually had the pleasure of meeting her at Book Con a few years ago and was so honored to have received an autographed copy of her book! This is the second book in the Dance with Me Series. I did not read the first book in this series, but the third book comes out on November 17, 2020, so I am hoping to get my hands on that one!
Nabiha Tahsin
Aug 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
After reading the first book in this series, I couldn't wait for the next book in this tale of three long lost sisters who find each other again. It would be a lie if I say I wasn't biased towards Traci. From the first book, I really liked her strong personality and the fact that she had a traumatic experience growing up unlike her sisters, made my heart ache for her even more.
I love the sisterhood mentioned in this book. The sisters gang were seriously amazing and are actually the main plot of
Sep 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing

“Take the Lead” is the second book in Shelley’s Bridgeport collection, once again encountering three sisters who recently found each other! None of them knew that the others existed! That alone, grabs my attention immediately This book centers on one of my favorite sisters, the second sister in this triiogy . A little tough on the exterior but a caring, loving individual who takes a young pregnant girl under her wing , without hesitating.

The characters are all described in such a realisitc deta
I can't win this month with my reading list! I have three major issues with this book.

(1) The story actually started out well and then got incredibly slow and was overly long. There were entire chapters that could have been cut. The editor could have axed 100 pages and the book would gave been better for it.

(2) These characters are in their 20's and they all speak like 80 year olds. It was so odd to read. Starting sentences with "You see, ..." and saying "She's a young thing and she's eight mont
Stephanie Panach
May 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
Traci Lucky is a survivor. She was born addicted to drugs as a result of her mom's addiction and ultimately grew up in foster care. Living outside of Cincinnati with her two natural sisters is a really big change for her. When she encounters a very pregnant teenage Gwen as part of a drug bust - she feels an immediate connection to Gwen and her baby. Traci goes above and beyond to get Gwen medical care and the help she needs to get back on her feet.

Matt is the Ob/Gyn on duty who takes care of Gw
May 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2020-books-read
I really enjoyed reading Take the Lead. It was a great escape for me during this Covid-19 pandemic.
This is the second book in this series that surrounds a dance studio. Three sisters live above the studio and their lives are full of adventure.
Traci Lucky is a police officer who was born from a drug addicted mother then placed in many foster homes and then a group home. She's opinionated due to her hard life. She also a very caring person for the same reason.
One night she pulled a pregnant teen (
Yvonne Cruz
Aug 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I loved the author’s series Bridgeport Social Club as well as book one in this series titled, Shall We Dance? and this one was just as touching, thought provoking and wonderful.
If you are new to the series, it centers around three sisters that at a very young age were given up for adoption. separated and never knowing the others existed. It was a Shannon , the main character in book one, that discovered she had sisters and reunited them in the town of Bridgeport. Each of their upbringing was tot
Jun 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a heartwarming read that continues the author’s series about three sisters who were separated at birth and now have found each other and settled together in a small midwestern town.

This book’s heroine is Traci Lucky who was the one sister who was not adopted, but raised in many foster homes. She is slow to accept new people and has a certain prickliness that hides a very soft heart. When she meets a pregnant girl strung out on meth, it really triggers her because her mother was also add
Maureen Timerman
Aug 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2020
I loved being back with these amazing sisters, yes, this is the second book in this series that I have read, and you might want to read the first, but this can stand alone.
Amazing DNA, and these sister's finding one another, and while we are with all three sister's, and we are updated, this story focus is on Traci Lucky, and she seems to have had the hardest life of all. She grew up in foster homes, and never was adopted. She sure has a heart for the less fortunate, and being a Bridgeport police
Sep 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Take The Lead is book two in The Dance With Me Series and focuses on Traci. It is fun getting to know these three sisters who weren’t raised together and in very different ways as they get to know each other. It makes you feel like you are listening in on their conversations. I love the dance quotes as headings for each chapter and living over a dance studio sounds fun especially when you get free dance lessons from your sister. Traci is a strong independent woman who is also smart and hides a h ...more
Oct 20, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
** ARC kindly provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. **

This was a heartfelt, engaging and romantic story.
Shelley Shepard Gray is a new author to me and it won’t definitely be my last. I will read more about this series about sisters who reunited after being separated at birth.

This is the second book about Tracy Lucky, who in contrast to her last name, had a tough and rough childhood. She was a bit rough around the edge, not afraid to speak her mind even if she seemed a bit
Megann Zeigler
Jan 15, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Book two if this series was just as wonderful as book one. Kept my attention throughout the story as we learn more about the sisters in this group. We follow along as we find out what makes Traci Lucky tick and how her experiences were so different than her sisters. We are introduced to Gwen and the life she has lead and how,she fits in with the other three even though she is no relation. Matt comes into Traci's life after they meet in the hospital when Gwen is brought in and the experiences tha ...more
Aug 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I LOVE this series. It’s about three women who find out that they’re sisters and decide to live together to get to know one another. As they come to trust and rely on each other as family, their circle starts to grow.
In this book, Traci, a policewoman, takes an 18 year old pregnant girl on drugs to the hospital and becomes entwined with her and the handsome doctor, Matteo. Gwen blossoms as she realizes she is worth caring for. I found Matteo’s family fascinating and fun. I would love to see a b
Veronica Duran
Aug 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book was both sweet and thought provoking. It discussed heavy and important topics such as: foster care, teen pregnancy, abusive home life/relationships, and drug addiction. I enjoyed the varying storlylines and how they all weaved together.

I do wish the terminology pertaining to fostering and adoption were handled with more care. Specifically using more proper terms such as "foster mom", "adoptive mom", "biological mother" instead of "real mom". My fiance is adopted and it's been explaine
I read the first title, Shall We Dance, in fall of 2019 and gave it a warm review. Last month, I eagerly read an advanced readers copy of the second title in the series, Take The Lead, and was not disappointed in the least. It continued along familiar lines with charming characters and a heartwarming celebration of family. While part of a series, it could easily be read as a stand alone title.

The characters are flawed but charismatic and, as a girl with absolutely no rhythm, I enjoy the beauty o
Feb 20, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Take the Lead is the second book in Shelley’s new Dance with me Series and wow she has outdone herself once again. The story continues with Traci Lucky who is a cop. Traci has lived a hard life unlike her sisters and so her mind works a bit differently when it comes to talking about her past and allowing others into her heart. Dr. Matt Rossi is up for the challenge though and their story is woven in with the teenager Gwen that Traci is trying to help. Gwen’s story is so heart-wrenching that I wa ...more
Kathleen Gray
Aug 30, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A sweet love story! Traci had a rough time growing up in foster homes but now she's a police officer and she's found her sisters Shannon and Kimber. She's also found Gwen, a pregnant teen with an abusive ex and a history of drug use. AND she's met Matt, the OBGYN who is caring for Gwen. Matt is part of a large boisterous family and there's a wedding coming up where he will need to dance. Luckily, Traci's sister Shannon has a dance studio and well, the rest is history. This has a nice balance of ...more
Sep 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
'Take the Lead' is book #2 in the 'Dance w/ Me Series' (book #1 is 'Shall We Dance') & also my 1st SSG book. Being a lifelong Ohioan, & living in a small town, I was drawn to the location of this story Bridgeport which is a small village in Belmont County, Ohio. Gray does a fantastic job w/ creating atmosphere in this charming, clean, contemporary romance.

This heartfelt story has such well-developed characters that you will love & want to know more about after the book ends (I need to know more
Sep 24, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Take the Lead is the second in the Dance With Me series. I loved the first book so I looked forward to the next. I wasn't disappointed. Three sisters were separated at a young age and grew up under entirely different circumstances. Traci Lucky grew up in the foster care system. Now a police officer, Traci is a little cautious in excepting new people. When she and her partner find an unwed teen mother in trouble, Traci steps in to help. Little does she know this will change her life. This story b ...more
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Librarian Note: AKA Shelley Gray (Western Romance).

Shelley Shepard Gray has published over seventy novels. She currently writes Amish romances for Harper Collins, Kensington, and Simon & Schuster and contemporary women’s fiction for Blackstone Publishing.

Her novels have been Holt Medallion winners and Inspirational Readers Choice and Carol finalists. Shelley’s novels have appeared on both the New

Other books in the series

Dance With Me (3 books)
  • Shall We Dance? (Dance With Me #1)
  • Save the Last Dance

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