Like a bowl of vanilla ice cream, this hit the spot – even if it didn’t bring anything new to the table. With small town vibes and a grumpy single dad, this felt lighter and cozier than some of Harlow’s other work. It still featured a hearty dose of spice, with sexual tension that probably would’ve been more successful if I had been emotionally invested in the relationship. It felt like these two jumped in physically right away, but it was a much slower emotional burn. The denial of feelings for SO long left me pretty frustrated, and I definitely rolled my eyes a few times. I might’ve wanted to shake some sense into this hero, but that’s just me. I still binged it in one sitting, and I’m intrigued by the cast of characters, so this was successful as a series starter. And there was also nothing major standing in the way of my enjoyment, even if I wasn’t quite sold on certain elements. So this sits solidly between 3 and 4 stars for me – definitely not one of Harlow’s better books, but an easy, popcorn read.
The story follows Veronica, a woman whose fiancé shows his true colors on their wedding day. It’s only once they break up that she realizes how much he’s been controlling her life. Broke, jobless, and still in her wedding dress, Veronica encounters a sexy single dad and his two cute kids. Turns out, Austin has been looking for a nanny, but he’s not convinced that hiring Veronica is the best idea. Not only is he hesitant to trust an unqualified stranger with his kids, but he’s also wildly attracted to Veronica. Since neither one is in the market for a relationship, their mutual attraction is more of an unwelcome distraction than anything else. But falling into bed together feels inevitable, especially once Veronica becomes a part of Austin’s everyday life.
There’s a lot to love about this – I love a grumpy single dad, a runaway bride is always a fun time, the spice was smokin’, and Harlow can certainly write a great book. It was just missing that wow factor for me. There are a ton of single dad romances out there, especially lately, and this one didn’t stand out from the pack for me. It definitely satisfied my light and sexy craving, though I’m confident I’ll forget the whole plot in a week or two. Fans of friends with benefits-style relationships and restrained, devoted dads might have a better time with it, because those were both big components of the story. It doesn’t take long for things to heat up between these two, and I can see why that was the case, given the headspace of both characters. I liked Veronica, but Austin mostly frustrated me – especially towards the end. I did like some of the other characters who were introduced, and I can already see future love stories taking shape, so I’m ready for more from the series. I clearly have complicated, underwhelming feelings about this specific installment, but it was easy to devour.
The audio was great, no complaints there! You can’t go wrong with Sebastian York and Sophie Daniels, who are both talented narrators. Their voices were easy to listen to, and their performances made for an excellent audio experience. The runtime (around 9 hours) was also perfect for bingeing, which is one of the reasons I was able to finish in a single day. Probably too spicy for the workplace, especially since it starts up towards the beginning. But the vibe was ideal for an audio experience, and I think the format definitely enhanced my enjoyment. So I don’t hesitate to recommend the audio.
Yes, I’m a single dad who needs a nanny for the summer.
But hire the stranded runaway bride who shows up on my doorstep in a wedding gown with no references, no skills, and no experience?
No one is that desperate.
Except within twenty-four hours, down-on-her-luck Veronica Sutton manages to charm my kids, my family, and half the population of Cherry Tree Harbor into believing she’s perfect for the job.
And for me.
It’s not that I can’t see the appeal–those baby blue eyes? The endless legs? That mouth made for trouble? But I’ve got enough on my plate, raising two kids on my own and keeping the family business alive. I don’t have the time or the inclination to fall for an outspoken city girl.
So I should have kept my hands to myself.
Holding her in my arms was a big mistake. Even worse? Spending the night together. She ignites a possessive fire in me that I’m finding hard to snuff out.
But the most unforgivable? Growing attached to the sound of her laugh, the scent of her skin, and the way her body wraps around mine in the dark.
At the end of the summer, she’ll be gone.
And if I’m not careful, she might run away with my heart.
More from Harlow!
Runaway Love is the start of a brand new series, but it’s got me thinking about one of my favorites from Harlow – Drive Me Wild. Drive Me Wild is the first book in the Bellamy Creek series, and it features another heroine who comes bursting into the hero’s life. So definitely worth a read if you haven’t checked out that series yet!
When Blair Beaufort literally crashes into Bellamy Creek wearing a ball gown and a tiara, I should have towed her car, said goodnight, and sent her packing.
I’m a mechanic, not a hotel manager.
I’ve got enough on my plate trying to keep my shop from going under, my overbearing mother off my back, and my baseball team in contention for the league championship. I don’t have time for a former debutante with zero street smarts and a cash flow problem, even if she is crazy beautiful.
Problem is, she’s stranded in my small town, and I’m hiding a protective streak underneath my broody exterior that runs deep. So I offer her a place to stay and keep my hands to myself.
For exactly one night.
If only she weren’t so gorgeous. So funny. So eager to please. She’s a disaster behind the wheel, but she drives me wild without even trying–at work, at home, in the back of my truck . . . I can’t get enough of the way she makes me feel. But I know better than to think it can last.
She wants a fairy tale, and I’m no prince.
So when it comes time for her to leave, there’s nothing I can do but let her go.
No matter how much it hurts to say goodbye.
Read the review here
About the Author:
USA Today and #1 Amazon bestselling author Melanie Harlow writes sweet, sexy, feel-good romance. She likes her martinis dry, her heels high, and her history with the naughty bits left in. If she’s not writing or reading, she’s probably at Orangetheory or watching Schitt’s Creek again. She lifts her glass to readers from her home near Detroit, MI, where she lives with her husband, two daughters, and pet rabbit.
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