A sexy red-head who knows his way around a kitchen … I’ve found my new book boyfriend!
by Lauren Dane
Mass Market Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: HQN (June 26, 2018)
Sometimes what you find isn’t what you were searching for
Beau Petty has been searching his whole life. Searching for a place that fills all the empty spaces in him. Searching for a way to tame the restlessness. Searching for answers to the secret he’s never stopped trying to solve. What he wasn’t searching for was a woman to claim all of him, but when Cora Silvera walks back into his life, he’s ready to search out all the ways he can make her his.
Cora has spent her life as the family nurturer, taking care of others. But now she’s ready to pass that job on to someone else. It’s time to make some changes and live for herself. It’s in that moment that her former teenage crush reappears and the draw and the heat of their instant connection is like nothing either of them has experienced. He craves being around her. She accepts him, dark corners and all.
Beau thinks Cora’s had enough drama in her life. He wants to protect her from the secrets of his past, even if it means holding back the last pieces of himself. But Cora is no pushover and she means to claim all those pieces.
(minor spoilers ahead, maybe, I don’t know – details aren’t in the blurb but I think they are told pretty early on)
I started this series here (no surprise!) so I came into it with no preconceived notion of the characters. And I really enjoyed myself. Beau and Cora together are cute and sexy and pretty much melodrama free. But that doesn’t apply to the rest of their lives.
Cora has spent the last who-knows-how-many years being at her mom’s beck & call and she’s done. She’s ready to stay in one place and create a life for herself, something that fulfills her and isn’t just being minder to her diva mother. And the timing is perfect as it brings her back in time to connect with Beau again.
Beau was raised in cult as the son of its leader. He got out when his dad started doing things that Beau didn’t agree with and worked with the authorities … which sent the others on the run. He’s managed to make a good life for himself and was a very successful model before becoming a chef. He’s in Seattle spending time with friends and is surprised to see Cora again.
The connection between the two is instantaneous and works for me. They get along very well and make for a believable (and steamy) couple. I also like the bond between the two of them and their friends. They have created a support group from themselves that is quite awesome and those interactions are fabulous to see.
There are some weaker moments – mainly Cora & her mom and Beau & his past. While Beau’s does have a bit more resolution by the end, there is still a little bit of an open-ended feel to it. Maybe Dane plans on it being a tie-in to a future book? It definitely feels like it could lead to more. And Cora & her mom definitely didn’t have the resolution that some will feel they need. Cora does stand up for herself and works to make the situation the best it can be, but her mom is just not very likable. Reading it you’re not sure why everyone is OK with her attitude and the way she treats people, especially family. They maneuver her well and there is a subtle addressing of things, but I think that it isn’t going to be enough for some readers.
Overall, as my first book by Dane, I found it to be a good read – enjoyable characters all around and a hot romance. I couldn’t ask for more in a summer read.
The story goes like this – While on pregnancy bed rest, Lauren Dane had plenty of down time so her husband took her comments about “giving that writing thing a serious go” to heart and brought home a secondhand laptop. She wrote her first book on it before it gave up the ghost. Even better, she sold that book and never looked back.
Today Lauren is a New York Times bestselling author of over fifty novels and novellas across several genres.
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