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Archive for the ‘The Best Books You’re Not Reading’ Category

The Best Books You’re Not Reading is a new-ish feature at Novels Thoughts. Long ago, TV Guide had The Best Shows You’re Not Watching, where they would highlight great shows that weren’t high in the ratings. We wanted to do something similar. We’ll be spotlighting books that we love but haven’t seen a lot of buzz about in Romance Land.

Today’s spotlight is on Fix You (Second Chances, Book 1) by Mari Carr.

FixYou72web

Zoey and Rob have been best friends for more than 20 years, roommates for over a decade. They’ve been each others rock, sounding board, support system, and comic relief for years. Now they’ve both reached the point of accepting the love they feel for each other is more than friendship but before either can act on it, Zoey gets devastating news. She has breast cancer. More than anything Zoey wants her best friend but he’s on tour, finally realizing his dream of being a rock star and she won’t pull him away from that.

When Zoey calls Rob a few minutes before a gig “just to check in” he knows something is wrong. He finishes his current gig then immediately catches a flight home. Whatever the problem is, he’ll be there for her. He never expected what he would find when he got home but once he knows, he’ll do anything he can for the most important person in his life. And he won’t waste any more of their precious time denying the passion they both feel.

I can’t remember the last time every aspect of a book worked so perfectly for me. The strength of their bond came through immediately and I loved the flashback scenes that showed the building blocks of this amazing love. Their first meeting, the first kiss, when Zoey missed a period at age 17 and Rob was there to hold her hand and offer to drive her to another town to buy a pregnancy test, the fights, and the teasing. Then seeing where they are now. Rob sitting in the room, helpless, as the woman who means the world to him has poison pumped into her veins in an attempt to save her life. The fear, anger, and love come across so clearly as well as his determination that everything will be okay because there is no other option in his mind.

There is a head shaving scene that had me giggling through tears that pretty much sums up everything I loved about this book. It’s not all sadness and angst. They have fun together and there is plenty of heat in this story.

Another thing that I loved about Fix You was the strong friendship Zoey has with her girlfriends. I don’t see nearly enough of this in romance and that support system for Zoey took this from being a good romance to being a great book that will stick with me. This is one of my favorite scenes involving “the wine girls.”

When she told the “wine girls”, as Robbie called them, about her breast cancer, they’d found a way to make her laugh, and then surrounded her with more love and support than a single person could hold. They’d promised to throw a going away party for her tumor at this Thursday’s happy hour. Josie texted her this morning to say she’d composed a poem for the event entitled Good Riddance: Fuck You Cancer. Zoey was looking forward to hearing it.

Fix You was a perfect blend of spice, angst, and sweet and was so much more than I was expecting. It was one I finished in one sitting, not because it’s short but because I couldn’t put it down. I can’t wait to see the other “wine girls” get their well-deserved HEA.

Author’s website:

maricarr.com

Order:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble

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The Best Books You’re Not Reading is a new feature at Novels Thoughts. Long ago, TV Guide had The Best Shows You’re Not Watching, where they would highlight great shows that weren’t high in the ratings. We wanted to do something similar. We’ll be spotlighting books that we love but haven’t seen a lot of buzz about in Romance Land.

Our first spotlight is on The Edge of Courage (Red Team, Book 1) by Elaine Levine.

I read this book this week and it absolutely blew me away. Rocco Silas has spent the last 7 years undercover in Afghanistan. An explosion sent him back home a shattered man with memory loss and PTSD. When the book starts, he is in a homeless shelter after being discharge from Walter Reed. His nightmares and hallucinations make it impossible for him to stay around that many people and he ends up living in his truck until his best friend and Red Team handler Kit calls him and asks Rocco to help his little sister Mandy at her therapeutic riding center. Strange things are happening there and she is currently without a handyman.

Rocco broke my heart. He is so incredibly broken and his flashbacks are so realistically written that it hurt to read them. He is determined to beat the PTSD so he can go back to Afghanistan to find his son, whom everyone else believes died in the explosion. Mandy is unaware of his plans but is determined to help him heal. As Rocco and Mandy grow closer, the trust he places in her is beautiful. He is terrified of touch, but allows hers. When he has a hallucination, if Mandy doesn’t see what he sees, then he can logically know it’s not real and fight to find his way out of it. And when danger shows up at her riding center, he makes it clear that they will have to go through him to get to the woman that has become his everything.

The suspense plot was good but that wasn’t what made this such an amazing read for me. The romance was front and center, with emotion practically dripping from the page. I haven’t enjoyed a romantic suspense this much in a long time and I can’t wait for the next book in the series.

As a bonus, it is only 99 cents right now. Less than a buck for a book I would have happily paid hardcover price for. It really was that good 😀

Author’s website:

www.elainelevine.com

Order:
Amazon
Barnes & Noble

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