Tag: family drama romances

Review: Things We Never Said by Samantha Young

thingsweneversaidforweb-2Book: Things We Never Said

Series: Harts Boardwalk #3

Author: Samantha Young

Release date: 7 May 2019

Main characters: Dalia McGuire, talented metalsmith who’s lived in Hartwell for nine years and loves it. Michael Sullivan, an old flame from Dalia’s previous life in Boston, who never expected to see her again.

Plot: Dahlia has a quiet and successful life in Hartwell, Delaware and she is surrounded by a small, but close-knit group of friends. They’re the only family she has these days and she’s found a peace she didn’t believe was possible. When she receives a call out of the blue from her beloved father, she knows she has to return to Boston, even if her reception will be less than welcoming. Seeing her siblings again is tough but necessary to put the past to rights, but nothing prepares her for seeing Michael Sullivan again. After nine long years, if she thought that she was finally over him, then she’s sorely mistaken.

Michael is in the midst of getting divorced, he’s a detective and his life basically revolves around his job and Dahlia’s family. Seeing her again brings back memories of the hurt and destruction caused when she left Boston and he’s determined to get some answers, even if he has to relocate to Hartwell to do so. Can the pair reconcile and trust each other again? Or will past grief and pain obscure their future forever?

Why you should read it:  My, my, my! I feel like I’ve been through the ringer with this book! It was so packed full of intrigue, secrets, martyrdom and repressed feelings – I couldn’t get enough! I loved the theme of familial love (in whichever form it can take) that runs through the book. Dahlia and her friends are a family – the kind that you choose, and her reconciliation with her blood family was beautifully done. I shed several tears, I’m not ashamed to say. The simmering chemistry between Dahlia and Michael was interesting too – and it kept me guessing. Their interactions were often laced with hurting each other and that cycle made it difficult to see how they’d ever get their HEA. It felt real though – love in all its messy glory. Their love for each other and all the ways their love was denied for so long made my heart hurt.

What you may struggle with: Ok honestly, at times, Dahlia was her own worst enemy. Even her friends called out her martyrdom so many times, it was so strong. She comes across as pretty stubborn, and at times you wonder exactly what it is she’s fighting against. The self-denial got a little bit old towards the end, but when you find out the WHY, it does becomes clear and somewhat understandable.

Rating: 4/5 for a truly gripping and nuanced read. I loved the story, love the series and adored the characters. Strap yourself in, because this book is A LOT! There’s so much going on, there isn’t time to take a breath. I thoroughly enjoyed the story – couldn’t put it down and I cannot wait for more in the series – hopefully Emery’s story is in the offing?

Buy Now Links:

Amazon – https://amzn.to/2ULN5m0
iBooks US – https://apple.co/2UNdsbu
Kobo US – http://bit.ly/2BnLADq
Nook – http://bit.ly/2MTxuy4
Smashwords – http://bit.ly/2HZeUFT
Amazon UK – https://amzn.to/2I9twlt

About the Author

Samantha Young is the New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of adult contemporary romances, including the On Dublin Street series, Hero, and Fight or Flight. Samantha’s crossover romance/women’s fiction novel titled Much Ado About You will be published by Berkley (release date tba). Her debut adult paranormal romance novel War of Hearts releases under the pen name S. Young in October 2019.
Samantha is currently published in 30 countries and is a #1 international bestselling author. When she’s not writing books, she’s buying shoes she doesn’t really need and searching for nooks and crannies to shelve her ever-expanding book collection.

Connect with Samantha Young

Facebook Author Page – https://www.facebook.com/AuthorSamanthaYoung/
Join “Sam’s Clan McBookish” – https://www.facebook.com/groups/1520019958258238/
Instagram – @authorsamanthayoung
Twitter – @authorsamyoung
BookBub – http://bit.ly/2vuzsOc

 

Secrets of a (Somewhat) Sunny Girl by Karen Booth

EA9F5807-BEAD-43A7-927C-5ADF673A95E5Book: Secrets of a (Somewhat) Sunny Girl

Author: Karen Booth

Series: a standalone

Release date: 16 October 2018

Main characters: Katherine Fuller, committed singleton, who is about to have her life turned on its head. Eamon MacWard, an old flame who is keen to reconnect with Katherine.

Blurb:

As sisters, they tell each other all their secrets…except one.

With divorce and infidelity hanging from nearly every branch of her family tree, Katherine Fuller sees no point in marriage. Boyfriends? Sure. Sex? Of course. Wedding vows? No, thanks. Still, when her younger sister Amy gets engaged, Katherine gathers all the enthusiasm she can. She won’t let Amy down. She’s done enough of that for a lifetime.

As the sisters embark on wedding plans, Katherine’s college love resurfaces. It nearly killed Katherine to part from sexy Irish musician Eamon more than a decade ago, but falling under his spell a second time forces her to confront everything she hid from him. The secrets surrounding her mother’s death are still fresh and raw in her mind, but one has haunted her more than the others. She can’t bear to tell anyone, especially not Amy. It could ruin far more than a wedding. It could destroy a sister’s love forever.

Why you should read it: Karen Booth is a seriously talented writer. She gets into the heads of her characters and spins an intricate tale of family secrets and human frailty. I really empathised with Katherine’s character, who, more than anything, just wants to keep her family together. This story was a family tale more than anything, with a romance bubbling in the background. It was quite unusual that the crises in the book related to Katherine’s relationship with her sister, rather than with her old flame, Eamon. Eamon is pretty straightforward as characters go. He knows what he wants and he wants Katherine. It was quite refreshing that Katherine is the one to balk at the idea of committing to him, rather than vice-versa. At times I thought maybe Eamon was too good to be true, but it turns out he was just a good guy! They do exist!

Katherine and Eamon have strong chemistry and it’s palpable. Reading about their evolving relationship kept me engaged and invested in their journey.

What you may not like: One word: Amy. God I couldn’t stand this spoilt little brat! Oof she made me sooooo mad! She was self-absorbed, took her sister’s love for granted and basically made me want to smack her! She has her own journey to go on and she does evolve as a character. I thought Katherine was so strong, despite the rough deal she got. The adults in this book do some pretty shady stuff and poor Katherine bears the brunt of most of it.

Rating: 3/5 for an engaging, if somewhat tense tale of familial guilt, making peace with the past and love, in all its forms.

About Karen Booth:

Karen Booth is a mid-western girl transplSunny Girl Teaser 4anted in the South, raised on ‘80s music and repeated readings of Forever by Judy Blume. An early preoccupation with rock ‘n’ roll led her to spend her 20s working her way from intern to executive in the music industry. When her kids came along, she traded late nights for early mornings, writing contemporary romance and women’s fiction. Karen was a finalist for RT Magazine’s Series Romance of the Year and Gold Seal of Excellence, and the 2018 National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award. Her books have been translated into seventeen languages.

Connect with Karen: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

Giveaway: Win a signed print set of Karen Booth’s three Romantic Women’s Fiction novels: Secrets of a (Somewhat) Sunny Girl, Bring Me Back and Back Forever, or 1 of 2 e-copies of Bring Me Back! Enter the the Rafflecopter giveaway.

About Bring Me Back: Nearly forty, Claire Abby had thought life would be a whole lot smoother by now. Single parenting her college-bound daughter is trying, her journalism career is fading, her sister’s a handful, her dad is worse, and her mom has been gone so long it’s hard to remember what it was like when she was here.

So it’s both a lucky break and a jaw-dropping distraction when Claire lands an interview with British rock star Christopher Penman. Claire spent her teenage years fantasizing he was her boyfriend. In person, Chris is everything Claire feared—off-the-charts sexy, ridiculously charming, and utterly nerve-wracking. He’s not about to discuss the rumors he’s dodged for a decade. She must earn his trust and unearth the truth, but she never banked on the heartbreaking secret behind it.

His blockbuster story is her first priority when she returns home, a nearly impossible task when Christopher starts calling. And flirting. There’s no denying his wit or his buttery British accent, and once she agrees to see him, it’s beyond anything her teenage brain ever imagined. But when Christopher’s painful past repeats itself, can Claire smooth out her life and save the man she could never forget?