Book: Straight Up Love
Series: The Boys of Jackson Harbor #2
Author: Lexi Ryan
Release date: 8 May 2018
Main characters: Ava McKinley, teacher about to lose her job, divorcee and desperate to become a mother. Jake Jackson, her best friend who loves her madly.
For my thirtieth birthday, I’m giving myself the one thing I want most: a baby. Sure, this would be easier if I had a husband – or even a boyfriend – but I refuse to be thwarted by minor details. When I drunkenly confess my plans to my friends, they convince me to ask Jake Jackson for help. Jake, the best friend who’s been there for me through thick and thin. Jake, who also happens to be smart, funny, ridiculously good-looking, and the winner of all the genetic lotteries. So when Jake takes me up on my request – with the stipulation that we get the job done the old-fashioned way – I’d be a fool to decline. The only problem? I don’t know if I can separate sex from all the things I feel for this amazing man. If I can’t keep my heart under lock and key, I risk losing the relationship I need the most. Jake has his own reasons for granting my baby wish. But when I discover his secrets, it could mean the end of us. I have to choose – run or stay and fight for love.
Why you should read it: I really do love Lexi Ryan. She invests so much time and energy into her series to create multi-faceted characters. Straight Up Love was no exception – I enjoyed revisiting Jackson Harbor – it’s so vividly depicted that I feel like I know it. Its inhabitants each have their own characters and I’m looking forward to delving deeper. The chemistry between Ava and Jake was off the charts (once they finally woke up!) and it was an angsty and romantic story.
What you may not like: Did I mention it was angsty? Well it is – turned all the way up to eleven! I loved the characters but Ava’s obtuseness at times really exasperated me! The guy told her how he felt, yet she spends half of the book wondering how he feels?! They were quite dumb at times, considering they’re best friends and all, but it did make the HEA that much more satisfying! There’s plenty of family secrets that are about to get cracked open so I’m definitely sticking with the series.
Rating: 4/5 for an engaging and addictive read. Stick with it and you will be rewarded.
“Do you think . . . I mean, should we get screened or anything? For infections or whatever?” I step back and force myself to take a breath and remember I’m not going to rush into this. Slow the fuck down, Jackson. This is a marathon, not a sprint. “I’m okay with that if it would make you feel better.” She nods sharply. “It seems like the responsible thing, right? I mean, I haven’t been with anybody since Harrison, so they’re not likely to find anything but dust up there, but—” I cough to cover my laugh — not at the dust joke so much as my shock that she hasn’t been with anyone since Harrison. And she’s planning to sleep with me. I won’t let myself think that means more than it does. “I don’t think vaginal dust mites are a thing, so you should be good.”