My biggest issue with this? Besides the fact that it’s really more women’s fiction than romance, it’s without a doubt the heroine’s story… and I didn’t like her. She’s a hot mess who is so absorbed in her own problems that she doesn’t treat the people in her life well. She casually dates a genuinely nice, interested, hot guy for a SIGNIFICANT portion of the book, despite the fact that she knows she’s leading him on (not the hero, by the way). She makes such little effort to get to know the hero that we don’t know ANYTHING about his past, his feelings, his intentions, etc, until the book is almost over. Until the end, I knew more about HOA requirements and divorce proceedings than I did the hero, which… is not really the way I like my love stories to go. I’ve seriously enjoyed romances from both of these authors in the past and this is well written, but I definitely had some issues with it.
The story follows Mallory, a 35-year-old woman who is going through a divorce. Looking back, she sees all the ways she went wrong in her marriage, but that doesn’t do anything to help her present situation – she’s broke, jobless, and carrying around a pile of baggage. So when she inherits a rundown home with a string of HOA violations against it, it’s Mallory’s second chance at life… maybe. First, she has to get the house (and herself together). The men in her life all complicate that: there’s the sexy yet infuriating neighbor who always seems to be around, the hot contractor who should be giving her butterflies, and the soon-to-be ex who continues to weigh her down.
This one is probably going to work better for readers who enjoy women’s fiction, because about 75% of the book is focused on Mallory getting her life back together. I really loved the hints of romance that were in this, but they were just too few and far between for me. Plus, Mallory doesn’t treat Nick well, and he is nothing but a good guy to her, despite a few grumblings in the beginning. I wanted more Nick; I wanted a LOT more Nick. This does get pretty steamy towards the end and it started to feel more like romance at that point, but it also felt very rushed. I could’ve done with about a hundred fewer pages about the house and a hundred more about Nick, but that’s just me. Like I said, it’s well written; these are two talented authors who know how to write a great book, so I’m sure this will resonate with some readers more than others. I received an early copy and am voluntarily leaving a review of this second chance at life story.
Two powerhouse authors bring you a hilarious tale of one woman’s journey to find herself again.
Ever have one of those days where life just plain sucks? Welcome to my last three months—ever since I caught my can’t-be-soon-enough ex-husband cheating with his paralegal. I’m thirty-five years old, and I’ve lost my NYC apartment, my job, my money, and frankly, my dignity.
But the final heartache in the suck sandwich of my life? My great-aunt Maggie died. The only family member who’s ever gotten me.
Even after death, though, she’s helping me get back up. She’s willed me the keys to a house in the burbs, of all places, and dared me to grab life by the family jewels. Well, I’ve got the vise grips already in hand (my ex should take note) and I’m ready to fight for my life again.
Too bad that bravado only lasts as long as it takes to drive into Huckleberry Hills. And see the house.
There are forty-seven separate HOA violations, and I feel them all in my bones. Honestly, I’m surprised no one’s “accidentally” torched the house yet. I want to, and I’ve only been standing in front of it for five minutes. But then my hot, grumpy neighbor tells me to mow the lawn first and I’m just…done. Done with men too sexy for their own good and done with anyone telling me what to do.
First rule of surviving the burbs? There is nothing that YouTube and a glass of wine can’t conquer.
About the Authors:
When Avery Flynn isn’t writing about alpha heroes and the women who tame them, she is desperately hoping someone invents the coffee IV drip. She has three slightly wild children, loves a hockey-addicted husband, and has a slight shoe addiction. Find out more about Avery on her website, follow her on Twitter, like her on her Facebook page, or friend her on her Facebook profile. Also, if you figure out how to send Oreos through the internet, she’ll be your best friend for life. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. She’d love to hear from you.
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New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Tracy Wolff is a lover of vampires, dragons, and all things that go bump in the night. A onetime English professor, she now devotes all her time to writing dark and romantic stories with tortured heroes and kick-butt heroines. She has written all her sixty-plus novels from her home in Austin, Texas, which she shares with her family.
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