ARC Review

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“5 – Can people change when they realize what they’ve lost – Stars?”

This book wrecked me.
This book, as in as so many of Natasha Ander’s books is one of misunderstanding, confusion, and miscommunication.

This book really stuck with me because I became emotionally involved.
I related to the characters, in
particular, Libby who was raising her daughter by herself and trying to do the absolute best by her all by herself.

I was reading it and crying so hard, that I couldn’t see the words on my kindle at the end of the story, that I had to stop and get a coffee so I could finish the book.

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Okay, let’s start by saying that this book runs parallel with “More Than Anything” https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42994451-more-than-anything

I think you can read this book as a standalone, BUT you would benefit greatly by reading “More Than Anything”, so you would understand what the bet was they refer to in the story and what it did to Harris and Tina, and why their relationship was so volatile, even after 10 years.

I have to admit, I absolutely hated Greyson at the end of “More Than Anything”.
He reminded me so much of Dante Damaso from “A Ruthless Proposition” https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25896664-a-ruthless-proposition?ac=1&from_search=true.
(I despised him too).

I thought he deserved every which way Libby was treating him.

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I had Absolutely no compassion or remorse for how she was treating him because she trusted him once with her heart, and he trampled all over it.

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BUT, once again Natasha Anders has an amazing talent of letting her readers see the other protagonists point of view.
How Greyson was ostracized, made fun of, and excluded from social interaction. He just didn’t “tick” as other people did.

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We are able to see how Greyson felt, what he experienced, how he grew up not making friends and trusting people easily because he was so reserved and quiet.

It certainly doesn’t forgive what Greyson thought or how he acted, but it explains “why” he acted the way he did.

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Now, he has to fight for his daughter and his wife, and he’ll do anything to do right by them.

His journey to forgiveness, reconciliation, and FINALLY admitting love was SO worth the battle and wait.

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I highly recommend this book, but I recommend that you read “More Than Anything” to totally enjoy and understand the dynamics of the story and the characters involved.

 

Pre-Order Links

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“I voluntarily read an ARC of this book which was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.”

Release, Review and Excerpt

Natasha-Bammer

Synopsis

Two lovers strive to trade a grim past for a bright future in this story of bittersweet yearning.

Tina Jenson belongs to the same social stratum as Harris Chapman, but he’s out of her league—at least that’s what she thinks before they jump in bed together. It’s the perfect night, but when she overhears crude, hurtful comments the next morning, she can’t get away fast enough.

Ten years later, Tina’s life is a mess. That night with Harris didn’t just hurt her feelings; it started a cascade of disappointment and heartbreak. Every time she bumps into Harris, her heart twists inside out. She still wants him, but she’s harbouring a painful secret from their night together that she’s not ready to reveal.

Crossed signals, high-society whispers, and shame have kept Tina and Harris apart for years, but deep down, they’re hungry for each other and eager to write their own rules. Can they let go of the past and find their way back to each other, or are the barriers between them too high and too strong?

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“5 -Then, Now, and Forever Stars!”

As with all of Natasha Anders’ books, I always feel a whirlwind of emotions when I’ve finished one of her stories.

Her characters are so damn complex and layered.
The characters and histories are heartbreaking, sad and painful.
But, the journey to forgiveness and healing is SO worth the read.

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This story is no exception.
I absolutely adored Tina’s character. She went through so much at such a young age, and
the consequences of that “one night” still affect her.
The strength it took to persevere (even though she was so broken) was inspiring.
Unfortunately, in order for her to survive, she had to build an almost indestructible wall around her heart.
It was the only way she could cope and semi-function for the last 10 years.

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Until… she started spending time with Harris.
There is so much history and hurt between the two of them.
Some things are just unforgivable, and Harris doesn’t know the whole story about what happened after that “one night”.

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So many secrets are screaming to come to light and now is the time.

I loved Harris! He was such a great character.
His perseverance, gentleness and love for Tina was beautiful.

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I really enjoyed this story.
It is a story of loss, regret, forgiveness, love and learning to move forward and second chances.

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“I voluntarily read an ARC of this book which was provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.”

Excerpt

“How you’d like your steak cooked?” Harris asked.

“Medium rare.” Tina retreated to one of the mismatched tall stools at the breakfast bar and clambered up onto it. She watched him competently move around the kitchen, cleaning and washing the spuds before readying them to go into the oven. He hummed softly beneath his breath as he worked … the tune was very familiar, but because his humming was so off-key, she couldn’t quite place it. The title hovered on the edge of her brain.

“Ugh, what is the name of that song? It’s driving me crazy!”

He looked up, startled. “What song?”

“The one you’re humming.”

“I’m not sure. Wait…” He hummed again and then breathed a few lyrics in a falsetto voice that reduced Tina to stitches. He repeated the same two words over and over again. And the words, combined with the seriously off-key tune, were definitely familiar to her.

He shook his head before saying, “I’m not sure what that song’s called … hey, stop laughing. I know for a fact your singing voice isn’t much better.” His offended observation just made her laugh harder. “Do you know the song title?”

“It’s…” She gasped for breath, then broke down into gales of laughter again when she glanced up into his expectant face. She folded her arms on the countertop and dropped her head for a moment as she tried to bring her giggles under control. Once the laughter abated, she lifted her gaze to his smiling eyes—he didn’t really look offended at all, just gently amused. “I’m sorry. It’s not your singing … okay, it kind of is. But I think I found it funnier that you were asking for the song’s title when you k-kept…” She inhaled deeply when it felt like the laughter was threatening again. “Kept singing it in that godawful voice.”

“What do you mean?”

“The song’s called ‘No One,’ Harris. By Alicia Keys.”

“Oh.” He twisted his face into a sheepish grimace before chuckling, the sound deep and masculine. “That makes sense. I like that song.”

She did too. In fact…

“We danced to that song. On my twentieth birthday,” he said, his voice quietly reminiscent. She nodded, surprised that he remembered the song, considering the state he had been in that night.

“I know.” Danced. And then kissed. Her very first kiss. The song had come to mean so much more to her, but she determinedly tamped down those particular memories.

Amusement fled, and they exchanged an uncomfortable look before both averted their eyes. Silence descended, their troubled history once again asserting itself between them. Tina nervously drummed her fingers on the Formica countertop.

“Tina.” His voice sounded anguished. “If I could do it all over again…”

She stopped tapping and lifted her hand to prevent him from saying anything further.

“Let’s not go into this again, Harris.” She watched him screw his eyes shut as he battled with what looked like some pretty powerful emotions.

“Damn.” The word was soft and fierce and sounded like a prayer.

“Why don’t we…” She paused as she considered the words she was about to utter. No matter which way she phrased them, they would seem like an olive branch. And she wasn’t sure if she wanted to extend one yet. Or ever. Still, she was in his—temporary—home, about to break bread with him, so to speak, and maybe—for her emotional health—it would be best. “Why don’t we set this aside? For today at least.”

She watched his throat move as he swallowed and then shifted her gaze to his navy-blue eyes, which were alight with gratitude.

“I’d like that,” he said gruffly, offering her the tiniest of smiles.

Tina heaved a relieved sigh, feeling lighter than she had in months. Possibly years.

“Good. Now, how about you get those steaks on? I’m starving.”

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About the Author

Since making her publishing debut in 2012, Natasha Anders has drawn praise and attention as a unique voice in romance. Montlake author and 2018 RITA® Finalist, Anders was born in Cape Town, South Africa. She spent nine years as an associate English teacher in Niigata, Japan, where she became a legendary karaoke diva. Anders currently lives in Cape Town.

Connect with Natasha Anders

website: https://natashaanders.com/
Twitter: @satyne1
FB: https://www.facebook.com/Natasha-Anders-Author-298896293558306/

The Wrong Man (Alpha Man, #3) by Natasha Anders

The Wrong Man (Alpha Men, #3)The Wrong Man by Natasha Anders
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

 

 

 

Date of Publication: September 4, 2018


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Synopsis

No commitments. No expectations. No way this could possibly go wrong…right?

Former special-ops soldier Sam Brand is used to getting what he wants. What he wants is to unbutton the buttoned-down, sweet, and shy Dahlia McGregor. He’s hot to find her wild side. She’s eager to let him explore it. So he makes his proposition—no strings, no hurt feelings, and no promises—save for one: she’ll have the time of her life.

After a broken engagement, Lia’s looking to someday find the right man and settle down.
That’s some day.
Now it’s all about the night.
A hot, meaningless fling with a magnificently weathered blue-eyed stud like Sam couldn’t hurt: he’s sexy, and sure he’s arrogant, but best of all, he’s here. In other words, he’s perfect…for now.

But when Sam is wounded in the line of duty and left in Lia’s tender loving care, all bets are off. Because the more time they spend together, the more it becomes clear: this “one-night” deal is getting steamier and lasting longer than they counted on.
It started as a fun little game.
Is it possible they could be playing for keeps?

No commitments. No expectations. No way this could possibly go wrong…right?


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“5-I won’t settle for anything less Stars!”

This book had so many things about it that I liked and one of them being Dahlia McGregor’s character and how she grew from being a woman who was so used to being a person everyone expected her to be, to a woman who became self-confident, stood up for herself, and someone willing to have a “fling” that she set the rules for.


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I also really liked Sam Brand’s character.
I liked how he grew from a man who was happy to not have any commitments to a man who could see himself wanting more… with Dahlia.

This was a wonderful story with complex characters and a journey that was difficult, but so worthwhile.

This story can be read as a standalone, but the reader would certainly benefit if they read the two previous books in the series just to have a better understanding of the secondary characters.

“I voluntarily read an ARC of this book.”

View all my reviews