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review 2020-05-25 13:19
Undone by Shannon Richard
Undone - Shannon Richard
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I just loved this book! I have had this book for years but failed to take the time to read it until now and I must that I am a little mad at myself for not picking it up sooner. Once I started reading this story, I was hooked and did not want to put it down and found myself reaching for it every chance I had. I am so glad that I finally decided to give this one a try.

Things have not been going great for Paige. She has lost her job, her apartment, and her boyfriend in short order. As a result, she was forced to move back in with her parents who now live in the small town of Mirabelle, Florida. It has not been an easy transition and she feels like most of the town is against her. Her vehicle breaks down after a horrible interview and the town's handsome mechanic comes to her rescue.

Brendan has lived in Mirabelle all of his life and knows how hard some of the residents can be on new residents like Paige. He hasn't had things easy in his life but he has a great support system including his grandparents, his sister, and a great group of friends. He decides to help Paige out just a bit and he also plans to spend a little more time getting to know her.

I really liked Paige and Brendan. I thought that both of these characters felt very real, like someone I wouldn't be surprised to meet. They were fun together and I loved the chemistry between the pair. This was a pretty low drama story for much of the book and I really enjoyed just spending time with these two as they fell in love. There is some excitement before the book is over but I must say that I liked the parts of the book that just focused on these two getting to know each other. Paige and Brendan were not perfect and they made some mistakes but I think that helped them to feel more authentic. The secondary characters were very well developed and I appreciated what they brought to the story.

I would recommend this book to fans of contemporary romance. I thought that this was a really well-done romance filled with wonderful characters and a lot of sparks. I would not hesitate to read more of this author's work in the future.

I received a digital review copy of this book from Forever (Grand Central Publishing) via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
I just loved this book and I am kind of mad at myself for not reading it sooner. Paige and Brendan were fantastic characters and they were so good together. The bulk of the story is rather drama free and I really enjoyed stepping back and watching Paige and Brendan fall for each other. Some drama does show up before the story draws to a close but I had a pretty good feeling that these two would find their happily ever after at that point.

 

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review 2020-05-25 08:17
Reach
Someday, Someday - Emma Scott

Max is quickly burning out on his current job, when a co-worker tells him of a job that may be too good to be true.  He figures what can it hurt to interview?  Then he finds out who is connected to the job.

 

Silas has been hiding.  His father cannot have him be himself, for fear it will ruin the family name.  Can he impress him and become the next CEO of the family business?  

 

Sweet story with an excellent way of explaining about love over expectation.  Some dark elements, with additiction, and abuse.  I loved that the author had such a new way to make us feel it can be discussed.  I liked that the characters had a sense of self, and were able to show development.  The friendship explored was also a treat to read.  I enjoyed this book and give it a 4/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

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review 2020-05-25 07:43
Unforseen
Managed (VIP Book 2) - Kristen Callihan

This is book #2, in the VIP series.  This book can be read as a standalone novel.  For understanding the series, and to avoid spoilers, I recommend reading this series in order.

 

Sophie meets Gabriel on the airplane to a new job.  Only to find out he is basically her new boss.  Can she fight the attraction that is thrumming between them?

 

Gabriel AKA "Scottie" find himself annoyed, and then enchanted by Sophie.  She is getting under his skin quickly.  Is it even possible to resist at this point?

 

This book covered a subject we do not often see written so openly.  The loneliness that is felt by these characters in their lives is unexpected from an outside point of view, as they are both normally surrounded by others.  I liked the fresh approach.  I also liked the humor, the heat, and definitely loved the connection between the two main characters.  I enjoyed reading this and cannot wait to read the next installment to the great series.  I give this read a 5/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

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review 2020-05-25 07:16
Chance
Always a Bridesmaid - Cindi Madsen

This is book #2, in the Getting Hitched In Dixie series.  While each book in this series in listed as a standalone and can be read that way, I recommend reading them in order.  Well worth it if you do.

 

Violet comes to visit and help her sister.  She has crashed and burned recently with the bad breakup she has just experienced.  Then she meets Ford, and its like she just has to tell herself she is here to recover temporarily.  

 

Ford never expects one woman to knock him off his feet.  Since they have met, he has felt like he always wants to be around her all the time.  Is it turning in your man card if you like being around someone so fun and full of life?

 

This author is a 1click standard for me, I will be honest about that.  Not since her Taking Shots series have I stayed up and not put a book down. (I surely would love if she wrote more hockey - whoo!) Anyway, this story was full of rich characters with full backstories.  The people in this town are all quirky and interesting to read.  I laughed and eagerly turned the pages.  Excited to see the next installment!  I give this read a 5/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

 

 

***This early copy was given by Netgalley and its publisher, in exchange for honest review.

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review 2020-05-25 04:46
Second time around for "Second Chances"...turned out to be even better...
Second Chance - Jay Northcote,Hamish Long

"Second Chances" is another of those stories that I read earlier this year and loved. So when I got a second chance to enjoy this one on audio...what else could I do but say yes.

 

If I loved this one the first time around, I'm not even sure what word to use for this second chance with a story that holds a special place in my heart. I have to admit I really wanted to come up with a whole lot of new and creative ways to express my appreciation for this story, but truth be told I listened to the audio book, I re-read my original review and my brain stuttered to a screeching halt as realized two things... 1 that I enjoyed the audio book just a tiny bit more than I had the e-book and that adds up to a whole lot of 'loved this story' right there and 2, I still love this story for all the reasons that I originally loved this story. So, yes I'm going to borrow some things from that review to help me create this one.

 

This book had me not just from the beginning but from the first word of the title...'Second Chances'...we all want them, need them and mostly we deserve them and that's what this story is about...second chances for so many people but mostly for Nate and Jack.

 

At 45 years of age and after a plethora life events, childhood friends, Nate and Jack are reunited. (Ok, let's hear it for mature MCs who can have a relationship with someone their own age) It's not that I'm opposed to age gaps or daddy kink more like sometimes I just need a break from it...anyways, these are mature men who have been through a lot...good and bad and now they've each come home for their own reasons and dealing with the problems of the present brings them both face to face with memories of the past...both the good and the bad.

 

Jack's dealing with a break-up that led to a downward spiral into depression and addiction but with the help of his parents and a lot of determination he wants to change that and regain control of his life.

 

Nate's come home to get his daughter away from life in a big city and the temptations that she was finding around every corner and to help his mom following the death of his father. For Nate there's also the added challenge of the fact that when he lived here before everyone knew him as Natalie...not Nate unlike in the city where everyone knew him as Nate.

 

As Nate and Jack become reacquainted against the backdrop of everyday life the reader gets to know these two men not just through their efforts to reclaim their lives but through the people they love as Nate's daughter Cass deals with her own efforts to put her life back on track, Nate's mom who not only has a second chance with her granddaughter but her son and Jack's parents who as they try in their own way to repair their fragile relationship with Jack.

 

While these are some of the second chances that happen in this story not everything is perfect and each chance has it's own solution and degree of positive outcome which went a long way towards making this story work for me. 

 

Of all these second chances for me the most important one was Nate's...this is Nate's chance not just with Jack, but to live his life as Nate the man, he was meant to be.

 

'Second Chances' is a story that's told from a realistic perspective. It's doesn't come with over the top magical solutions. It's two men dealing with what life has thrown at them...one gay, one gay and transgender...both seeming very real.  The story feels real...there's passion and humor, awkward moments, interruptions and even moments of frustration...yes, folks it's just like real life.

 

Hamish Long's is once again the narrator for this Jay Northcote story and for me, his narration has only helped to enhance the depth of reality that this story contained and when it comes to stories set in the UK, he's fast becoming a favorite narrator of mine.

 

In spite of the fact that each story is unique, we can often see bits and pieces of ourselves or someone we know in a story and it's that commonality that frequently draws us in and lets us relate to what we read. For me, "Second Chance" held small pieces of a story that while it's not mine, it is that of someone so very precious to me. Whose story I know nearly as well as my own and it was these pieces that connected me to this story and kept me listening and wanting to hear it all. 

 

*************************

An audio book of "Second Chance' was graciously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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