⭐️⭐️ REVIEW: The Refiner by Kristy Marie

Sister swap romances are not a favorite of mine by any means, but I can be won over by the right book. This wasn’t it. Since I loved the first book in this series of interconnected standalones, I decided to take a chance on this installment. Unfortunately, the first 40ish percent is all about the heroine taking her sister off of life support and grappling with her sudden loss. Super heavy and not romantic. After that, much of the story is spent talking about the heroine’s sister and the circumstances that lead to the hero having a baby with her. There was so much time spent talking about the sister and parenting a new baby that the romance was completely overshadowed. Sure, they bonded over the loss that connects them. Sure, they hooked up. But I never felt the romantic love.

The story follows Keagan, a woman whose entire life is upended when she discovers that her sister hid a pregnancy from her… and she didn’t survive the birth. Grieving and reeling from all of the surprises, Keagan takes her anger out on the baby’s father, Astor. But it turns out that Astor didn’t know about the child either, and they’re both shaken by the situation. As these two complete strangers process their emotions, they also have a new baby to think of. And as Keagan spends time with her niece’s father, she realizes that he’s actually a good man. But falling in love while grieving is never a good idea, and Keagan will never be able to forget that Astor was her sister’s first.

Plot-wise, I wouldn’t have picked up this book if I wasn’t already a fan of Marie’s work and had already started the series. I’ve been won over by books with semi-similar scenarios in the past, but they’re always a tough sell for me. The essential component is developing the romantic relationship separate from the troublesome one – and this fails at that. There’s a LOT of time spent reflecting on Astor’s (non-romantic) relationship with the heroine’s sister, more time than is spent on swoony moments. It’s successful at showing Astor and Keagan bonding and getting closer, but I didn’t feel the sparks there. And the tone was much heavier than anticipated. The first book in the series, The Potter, is a great mix of intensity, humor, and romance, with some emotional moments but an uplifting tone. This is almost somber, with only a few brighter moments to lighten it up. Certainly not the “humorous” book that the blurb hints at. Without those lighter, romantic moments, I didn’t feel the right kind of vibes between Astor and Keagan – they felt more like friends who bonded over tragedy. It ended up being a bit of a miss for me, but I’m looking forward to reading more from Marie once this series is over – the tease about the next book didn’t do it for me either, unfortunately.

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3Go6enk


Blurb:

From bestselling author Kristy Marie comes, The Refiner, a steamy, enemies-to-lovers contemporary romance packed with all the feels and laughter your heart can take.

Wealthy.

Entitled.

Monarch.

Dr. Astor Potter was everything I despised in a man.

It didn’t matter that he was my sister’s one-night stand or her closest colleague.

I wasn’t charmed by his philanthropy or the way he made babies laugh using those ridiculous voices.

Dr. Potter was cold, detached, and reeked of disdain.

Nothing mattered to him.

Not the messages I left.

Or the tears I shed.

Nothing brought him to life.

Until my sister died.

And I placed my newborn niece in his arms.

Her father’s arms.

He didn’t know about the baby.

Neither did I.

They say love can’t be born from hate and grief.

I’m inclined to agree.

But then he asked me to stay…

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3Go6enk


Start the series today!

Blurb:

From bestselling author Kristy Marie comes a brand new witty standalone about a grumpy doctor and his hopeful patient who find love in the unlikeliest of places… the exam room.

A brilliant surgeon.
A master sculptor.
The media touted Dr. Potter as a savior dressed in a crisp suit.
I think he’s a vicious madman of jerk-sized proportions.
But fate is a wicked tease.
Only Dr. Potter can give me what I need.
A fresh start.
A new identity.
But he refused, leaving me to take matters into my own hands by accepting a job as his partner’s new secretary.
Dr. Potter can’t turn down my case forever.
Or at least I thought so until I found him on the floor.
Broken.
Angry.
With a venomous warning… I failed to heed.

The Potter is a standalone grumpy-sunshine rom-dramedy.

Read the review here

Amazon: https://amzn.to/3LHyaEO


About the Author:

Kristy Marie is an international bestselling author who loves writing witty heroines and temperamental heroes. She is also a six-pack of abs biggest fan. When Kristy isn’t writing, she’s being a total dude and screaming at the TV while watching baseball. Go Braves!

Sign up with her VIP Crew for special deals and offers at https://bit.ly/3fS8W5O

Join her reader group on FB for exclusive excerpts and offers: https://m.facebook.com/groups/147968202596232/


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