Meet Cassaundra Keaton, an adult orphan raised in the foster system. She's overweight and struggling to survive in a world that makes her feel like she can never fit in. Follow her journey as she learns to trust and love herself, and watch her grow as she finds love. But will an issue from her past rise up to ruin her new life?
I was recommended this book by a friend. This is not a genre I read often, but I was curious and decided to give it a try. I'm glad I did, because I loved it!
Cassaundra Keaton is a very realistic character, and woman I totally relate to. She has a very low self esteem issue, which is compounded by being overweight and suffering with depression.
This is one contemporary romance that actually touched me very deeply. This story was not easy for me to read. I could actually empathize with this character, as I too have suffered with being overweight for most of my life and hating my body. However, her situation is not exactly the same as mine. Cassaundra (or Cass to her friends) is a loving and caring person, who hates her body shape, and is spiraling into depression. It doesn't help that her foster brother, Rick, is a total bully and jerk; his verbal abuse batters her already low opinion of herself. The way the author described Cass's internal conversations eerily followed some of my thoughts I've had over the years. It was a refreshing change to know that I am not alone with these feelings. I got so sick of having these conversations with myself and, after a rather embarrassing conversation with someone who thought I was pregnant, I decided enough was enough and went on a diet. Cass, on the other hand, takes another route and visits a therapist. There are some really likable characters in this story, none more so than Cass's adopted sisters, Chelsea and Renee. They are both fun loving, supportive and very protective of their adopted sister. I also liked Andrew (Drew) Kingsley. He is a cop with his own issues, but he sees Cass as a beautiful and charming woman. There is chemistry between Cass and Drew, and it was wonderful to see how their relationship bloomed. The romance aspect was sweet, but hot too. I hope to find someone like Drew one day. The end of the story left me with a happy feeling and a smile on my face.
Brandi Kennedy has written a fantastic contemporary romance that will probably stay with me for a long time. Her characters are lifelike and (mostly) likable. I would definitely consider reading more of this author's books in the future.
Due to some scenes of a sensual nature which, although not explicit, is rather on the hot side, I do not recommend this book to younger readers. However, I highly recommend this book if you love contemporary romances. - Lynn Worton