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on March 22, 2014
This book, where to start? It was amazing! I really enjoyed this book, but felt it ended too quickly. I do see that there is a novella, so hopefully I get more of this story!

Alex is broken, still grieving over her husband's death 3 years ago, taking care of her children, going to work, and basically going through the emotions, but no longer living. One day fate intervenes and puts her back in the path of her child hood best friend Blake, and for some reason this pisses her off. It's actually quite hilarious how much it pisses her off, and how angry she becomes each time she sees him, so much so you know something is going to happen.

Alex has survived the past three years because of her best friend Harlow, her in laws, and her daughters, but something about having Blake back in her life starts a spark of life in her no one has seen since Derek (her husband) died. Harlow, her children, her mother in law, everyone seems to be pushing her to try to live again, and believe Blake is the one for her to try to live again with.

Blake and Alex decide to be friends, and they fall into the easy friendship they had growing up, her children adore him, and Alex starts to feel something she never thought she'd feel again. Then BAM s*** hits the fan!

This story was amazingly written, the heartbreak you feel for Alex, and the hope that maybe she can move on are so powerful you just become immersed in the story and don't want to let go. You yell, you cry, you scream, you laugh, everything is brought on emotionally in this book. Alex's children and Harlow are definitely some of the best secondary characters I've read in a long time. L.B. Simmons's writing is powerful and will have you loving, hating, crying, laughing and feeling content with the book is over.

This was the first book of L.B. Simmon's that I've read and I definitely will be reading more of hers in the future. Her writing is amazing, and the characters are brought to life on the pages (or screen in my case) and you feel as if you are part of the story. I really enjoyed Running on Empty and can't wait to see what else is in store for the Mending Hearts series.
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on February 17, 2015
For more reviews, please visit fortheloveoftheread.blogspot.com

I loved this book.

This author did a really great job of putting the characters in interesting situations and she gave them great dialogue. I love reading books that have a little bit of silly wit and good bantering between characters, and this one did not disappoint. I also loved how the author took three girls and gave them all distinguishable personalities.

I also thought that the author built a great friendship between the main character, Alex, and her best friend, Harlow. The author makes it clear that they have a friendship that runs deep and that is important to both women. There are also times in the book when the two friends disagree and do not get along, which rings true for any friendship.

The one thing I didn't like about the book was the abruptness of Alex's relationship with Blake. The part that the reader gets to experience is developed at a great pace, but the reader finds out in the book that Blake and Alex have been friends since junior high. This felt lazy, especially coming from an author who has such a skill at illustrating and developing relationships. Blake could have been a new guy to enter the picture and this author could have made the whole thing believable. It was a time when I think I rated the author's skills higher than she rated her own.

Overall, I enjoyed this book. I think the characters are excellent, the book moves at a great pace, and it kept me reading, despite being one of the longer Kindle books I've read. I didn't ever feel like the author was padding the story to make it longer, which I appreciated. This was just a good, fun read.
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on February 21, 2013
enny: 4.5
Gitte:4.5

Jenny: What an absolutely delightful read this was Gitte! I enjoyed every minute of this book.

After reading a gut-wrenching book and then not connecting with a couple of others I had previously picked up, this book was just what the doctor ordered! It was such a beautiful heart-warming story and really did give me the reading experience I was looking for at the time. There were so many things I loved about this book. It was moving, it made me laugh, I had a bit of a cry and I just an overall feeling of happiness reading it. The writing was flawless. What more could you want!

Gitte: Oh I absolutely loved this story. I was hooked from page one. What an absolute treat; so beautifully written so flawless and so very poignant. This story is an extremely emotional read about love, loss of a loved one, forgiveness and realising that finding love again after losing your heart is okay.

Jenny: This book about second chances, letting go, moving on, friendships, loyalty and family introduces us to Alex who is a young, once vibrant woman, bringing up three adorable girls following the death of her husband.

Somewhere along the way Alex lost sight of herself. She is so devoted to her children and trying to cope with the loss of her husband 3 years earlier that she doesn’t think for one minute she will ever get a chance at love again. She has accepted that her place in life is to care and bring up her daughters.

Derek was the love of her life and the thought of having kind of love again is something Alex doesn’t consider is in her future.

Gitte: Alex was an amazing character. She had one of the worst life experiences happen to her and she was left to pick up the broken pieces of her 3 daughters hearts as well as her own, mine broke for her too reading this story.

Alex was strong, courageous, sweet, funny and vulnerable. Her relationship with her daughters was admirable and I have to say those three little girls had me in stitches at times. I completely fell in love with them.

“I love you infinity.” “I love you infinity times infinity”

I loved that Alex had a friend like Harlow. The support, the love, the tough talking, Harlow gave it all. She gave Alex strength and the guidance she needed when her head and heart was out of sync.

Alex needed to know and accept that it is okay to continue life and really live and love again after losing the man you love. Not loved as that love can never be replaced. That will live forever in your heart.

Jenny: I adored Alex. I loved her inner dialogue, her little notes to herself. She warmed me and she really did give me a laugh at time

“I stare at him with the best mommy death stare I can conjure up, and he holds it with no fear. S***…this stuff always works on the girls”.

The interaction with her daughters was nothing short of delightful. What a great mother Alex was and how lucky they all were to have one another.

I have to say these little girls stole the show! They were feisty, funny, cute as buttons and I simply adored them!

Alex and her best friend Harlow run their own company together “so we could smoke in our office all day long, consume adult beverages during work hours, and do nothing but giggle and gossip all day” and what a close bond these two share.

They’ve been through so much together and Harlow is Alex’s rock and I was so happy Alex had someone like Harlow by her side in those tough times. Any lesser friend would have bailed but Harlow was her lifeline and the bond they share is rock solid. They had a great balance and you really did describe Harlow perfectly Gitte.

Gitte: Now, Blake. Oh wow….I have to say his story touched me so much making me cry, truly. I can’t even put into words how much this amazing, gorgeous, generous and completely perfect man affected me.

Blake has never had the love of his life, experienced it or even lived it. He has watched it from afar. His heart lost without return, patiently waiting for a possible chance, not wishing for it, but there waiting should it ever be able to find its true home. A love stemming from a friendship which went through the years and stayed put. A true love, the honest and pure kind.

“I love you, Alex. I loved you when we were just kids…and I’ve continued to love you every day since.”

“I’ve always wanted this future. I was just waiting on you to catch up.”

Jenny: Oh yes, and then we have Blake! Well, what can I say about Blake. I think you pretty much said it all GG!

What a guy! He really was really special and I loved Blake with all my heart!

Alex knew Blake growing up and he has just moved back to her home town. He’s been living in Colorado but returns for family reasons. He sends Alex for a loop as she starts recalling their childhood and teenage years – he unsettles her because he makes her “feel”.

He brings something alive in Alex that she thought had died along with Derek. He brings out feelings she doesn’t want to acknowledge. Blake was just what she needed even though Alex herself didn’t realize he was exactly what she needed.

“I don’t think I have felt anything in years”

Gitte: The relationship between Alex and Blake from their childhood was beautiful. The fact that he has harbored this love for her, felt the pain of rejection, albeit unintentional and unbeknownst to Alex when she fell in love with Derek and completely left her best friend at the wayside.

I can’t even say how much this affected me. I actually think at times this became Blake’s story for me. I wanted HIS happy ending more so as he had missed out on one of the most beautiful things in life; love in return.

“….It just really hurt. You meant a lot to me. You were my best friend.” – Blake

“All I could do was watch it happen and hate myself for never saying anything. I should have fought harder for you…” – Blake

Jenny: The story, told through Alex’s eyes and the flashback glimpses we had of her life the 3 years prior really do allow us to connect with her and experience the devastating loss she went through.

The scene with her husband’s death so moved me and it was heartbreaking. You really did garner the strength of Alex during this time. Even though it crushed her and nearly destroyed her, you really do connect with her and admire the fact she got through it at all.

Watching Alex put up her walls to protect her heart from Blake and see Blake trying to break down her defenses was handled so well.

At times I did get a bit frustrated with Alex, but in her shoes, I’m not sure how I would have coped. I think I just loved Blake so much and saw how perfect he was for her that I immediately wanted Alex to feel the same. I wanted them to be happy together. I truly wanted it with all my heart because these two, along with those beautiful little girls utterly and completely stole my heart.

Gitte: Truly a beautiful story that has left my heart in a puddle on the floor. Alex worked her way into my heart but Blake truly took a piece of it.

“I feel safe. I feel protected. I feel relief. I feel scared. I feel vulnerable. I feel sure. I feel…. Everything.”

Jenny: Absolutely agree with you Gitte. Such a beautiful story and one I thought about for days after. It really did capture my heart.

“But you’ll never have your happy ending unless you’re brave enough to open the book and start your story”

Initially I was a bit surprised that there was no epilogue, but I was satisfied in the knowledge that there will be another book in this series and I’m looking forward to catching up with my new friends Alex, Blake, Harlow, Trace and the Meyer family because there’s no way I’m not ready to say goodbye to them just yet! .

On a side note I would like to add that this book so beautifully edited, it was flawless and a pleasure to read.
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on October 14, 2014
This book was definitely not my usual type of read, but it was free and the synopsis sounded good so I was all in.
Turned out to be a funny and sweet story of a young widow with three (!!) wild and crazy little girls who ran her ragged with their antics and left her little time or energy for anything else besides work and raising them. Not to mention the crazy best friend/work partner who was her voice of reason, emotional support, sometimes babsitter/helper and basically told her everything "like it is"...no nonsense and real.
When someone from her past rides into town on his motorcycle, swoops in to save the day and sparks some old feelings in her, she is left to decide if she wants to try to move on and love again or stay in the darkness and loneliness she has surrounded herself in since her husband's death.
A cute, sweet and fast paced romance with some relatable characters and some hysterical situations many single parents will understand.

**** 4 **** "10 reasons to love you" stars
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on August 8, 2014
After having read The Resurrection of Aubrey Miller I knew I was going to love the other books that L.B. Simmons wrote and I was not disappointed with Running on Empty. I thought it was a very true to life depiction of how someone's life is after they've suffered a terrible tragedy and they are left to continue on. Alex is now a widowed mother of three young girls after her husband dies suddenly. It's been three years since his death and she struggles through each day just trying to survive and get through the days without losing or injuring a child. And Alex is pretty accident prone herself so some days this poses quite a challenge for her. Her best friend Harlow who is her business partner and has been her rock through her whole ordeal basically helps her to make it through each and every day.

Enter her childhood best friend Blake Morgan, who happens to come to her rescue when she runs out of gas on the highway. She hasn't seen him since he left for collage immediately following graduation. They grew up together, were best friends their whole lives until at the age of 13 Alex meets Derek Meyer and Blake is pretty much forgotten. Blake helps Alex but has a bit of an angry attitude towards her, and she has an attitude in return because she can't stand having to ask anyone for help.

After a pretty rocky start Blake and Alex call a truce and get back to being friends as they were as kids. Blake ends up spending a weekend with Alex and her girls when she gets injured. Alex quickly realizes she has feelings for Blake that may go beyond their "friends" status. She struggles with this intensely because she doesn't want to let herself feel something for any man other than her husband.

L.B. does an amazing job at describing the turmoil that Alex feels, the guilt she's carrying inside herself for feeling she would be betraying her husband if she allows herself to feel again. She also describes the fear that Alex has that she will fall in love only to have that person snatched from her suddenly as well. The commentary from Alex is so real life, her thoughts are so raw and unpolished. She's a walking train wreck with a lot of emotional baggage and some pretty good anger issues as well. It was refreshing to see a character who showed a lot of flaws and messed up constantly and showed anger and emotions and the struggles of being a single mother of three rambunctious kids.

I loved how L.B. shows Alex and Blake's past relationship through flashbacks of when they are kids and how Blake truly felt about Alex from the time they were young. And once Alex realizes that Blake has always loved her and would always be there for her even when she pushed him away and left him behind, we finally start to see some of the emotional walls she built up finally start to break down.

This book shows how someone who has lost a loved one struggles through how they think they're supposed to get through each day. How they struggle with the guilt of moving on and feeling like they're leaving the loved one behind. And how hard it is to find the courage to "open their book and start their second story"
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on November 29, 2014
Running on Empty begins when Alex is on her way to work and runs out of gas. She had a tough morning with her three little girls, and remembering her dead husband. Now, her day seems to get worse especially when her oldest friend who she hasn't seen in almost twenty years shows up to help her. It seems Alex can't help herself, and lets all her anger and frustration out on him... But then Alex seems to remember what it use to be like between her and Blake, and all of the mistakes she made in the past, and has made now. So, these two start to form a friendship again, but sometimes things aren't as easy as they seem.

Alex has problems with people helping her, and with getting over her dead husband. And Blake has always been there for Alex no matter what, but sometimes enough is enough...
These two have a whole lot of issues to work out before they can continue to be friends, or even hope for more.

When I started reading this book I thought it was actually pretty interesting. Then I learned pretty fast the the heroine was a major bit*ch. I seriously could not stand her at all. Even when I should have felt bad for her, I didn't. She had no sympathy from me. I hated the way she acted, and the way she treated others. I also didn't really care for her friend Harlow either. The only person I liked in the book were the little girls and Blake.

Other then that though, I did like the plot line for the most part. I think it could have been better if the heroine was a nicer person.
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on August 11, 2015
This book was one of those reads where you want the world to switch off whilst you lose yourself in the story. It is a story of hearts healing after a terrible bereavement, learning that it's okay to feel again and old friends to something more. It was a story that didn't feel repetitive with characters I completely loved. Alex is the broken widower with three young children, just existing as a person but giving her all as a Mom. Blake is her old childhood friend back in town but Alex wants him at arms length. Blake for me was a 'dream man', not unrealistic, but described in such an enticing way with a great characteristics, that I fell for him! Sometimes the children in a book are pure background but these three girls were key to rekindling friendships and finding a new way of living. I loved them.

LB Simmons can surely write sizzling sexual tension and it bubbled perfectly through the book. I devoured this read and I'm certainly going to read more from this author.

Reviewed for Jo&IsaLoveBooks Blog.
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on March 6, 2014
4.5 Stars

L.B. Simmon’s Running on Empty is a heartfelt story of love lost and second chances. It was a pleasant surprise on how much I loved this story and all the characters in this book. The emotions that each of these characters portrayed felt genuine and it was a roller coaster of a ride of ups and downs. In the blink of an eye, Alex Meyer lost her perfect life. She had a loving husband, 3 wonderful kids and a good career. Her husband was killed in an auto accident and she just couldn’t deal with the loss. Thank goodness her good friend and business partner, Harlow, helped her get through this difficult time. Now it is three years later and she’s just getting by. What she never expected to see is a person from her past stop to help her on the highway when she runs out of gas. Enter Blake Morgan.

Alex is a complex character who knows her limits, faults and how fragile things are for her. She does everything to insulate herself from feeling anything because she couldn’t go through that pain again. I love her witty banter with her friend Harlow and the complete attention she gives each of her daughters. Her daughters are absolutely precocious and adorable. Each of them has their own identity and personality. It took a child’s perspective to show Alex that she isn’t as happy as she thought she was. When Blake enters her life again she begins to feel things she thought she never would again. But she holds back waiting for that sign. And boy does she get a sign!

What can I say about Blake Morgan? He’s a man on a mission to claim something that he let slip through his hands all those years ago. Alex and he were best friends growing up. When Derek showed up in their early teen years, Alex was smitten with Derek and pretty much left Blake behind without a glance backwards. He is his own man and doesn’t cow tow to her but gives her space and slowly enters her life and the lives of her daughters. He’ll pursue her at her pace because he’s a patient man. He has to be in order to put up with Alex and her temper!

Running on Empty had so many aspects of the story that I loved from her “Note to self” points, to 80’s movie reference and Alex’s many novelty t-shirts. Ms. Simmons created her characters so life like with large personalities and many dimensional. The story was definitely leading up to a confrontation and it didn’t disappoint. Lucky for me that there is a novella to continue their story called Recovery and a very quick read and an even better ending. I can’t say enough about Ms. Simmons writing because it just impressed me with her candidness and her bringing out so many different emotions from me. There are tender moments that touched my heart and will stay with me for quite some time. I hope you check it out and see for yourself how much of a gem this story really is.
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HEY...HEY YOU!!! YES YOU...Please read my review because I'm in LOVE with this book and I want you to read it. SERIOUSLY....I absolutely loved and adored it!!

What do I think about this book??? Wellll

I LOVE it...like seriously, deliriously love it AND guess what?? It had NO sex and I still loved it BIG TIME!!Yip, I know!!!! To me that says something about the author, she just scooped me up and invaded my heart while these characters burst to life in me. They wormed their way into my heart and I just could not get enough. When I reached the last page I actually had tears in my eyes and my heart hurt because I was SO NOT done with them. I wanted more, needed more.

I think one of the main reasons I loved this book so much was because I related to the main character Alex. She's a mother of 3 girls (I’m a mom of 3 girls too) who’s struggling to put the death of her husband Derek behind her. I just kept imagining myself in her position with my kids and my husband passing away and honestly it ripped my heart in two. I just couldn't imagine it.

Derek's been dead for three years! I live with that knowledge every single day of my life. Every day, I wake up still expecting him to be lying next to me. Every day, I look at these children and wonder if they have any inkling of how wonderful, caring, smart, beautiful, strong, and loving their father really was. I live my life, every day, with the heart that is completely empty. I have a heart that unfortunately is irreparable. - Alex

Even though Alex is struggling to move on with her life, she’s still an amazing mother to her three girls. She’s attentive and loving; it warmed my heart like NOTHING else. I loved the way she interacted with them. She has this amazing snarky and dramatic personality that I completely adored. The little eye rolls and motherly death stares made me laugh out loud. I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the constant giggling and her little sarcastic comments. The “note to self’s” were completely awesome. In fact I think those NOTE TO SELF’S were one of the HIGHLIGHTS of the book. It’s not often that I fall this hard for a female lead but I think Alex easily takes the top spot on my list. She’s the quintessential strong, independent and inspirational woman.

Blake....oh my, my, my! Where do I start. This man....swoon! Seriously he's completely swoontastic. We first meet Blake when he pulls up on the side of the road to help Alex out of a Jam. He gets off of his motorcycle and its

BAM
BAM
BAM

LUST at first freaking site. He’s deliciously sweet and so giving and patient. His love for Alex poured from the pages. He slowly brings her back to life, repairs her heart and makes her whole. It was beyond what a girl could dream. He made me smile, gave me butterflies! He just came in and loved Alex. There was no crazy jealousy over her love for Derek, only understanding for her situation. He made me all melty inside and I can’t say enough I was completely CAPTIVATED and CONSUMED by him.

With one whiff I am completely overwhelmed. So many feelings at one time. I feel safe, I feel protected, I feel relief, I feel scared, I feel vulnerable, I feel desired, I feel....Everything - Alex on the way Blake makes her feel

When Alex and Blake get back together after years of not seeing each other it’s a little rough. They go way back and have know each other since they were kids. They use to be best friends and were inseparable until Alex met Derek and things between her and Blake drifted apart. Alex’s is not the type of girl that likes to ask for help. She doesn't like handouts unless they are from her bestie Harlow (who I just want to add is AMAZING, FUNNY and the PERFECT bestie). So when Blake shows up and tries to help her she fight’s him big time. Feeling bad that she’s been a complete jerk to him she decides to go to his house and tell him sorry. Well lets just say Blake accidentally does something that leaves Alex a bit on the injured side (what happened was so funny), and as life would have it, it just so happens that the weekend she's injured all of her helpers are busy. This leaves Alex in a tight spot because she’s too injured to watch the girls by herself. So you guessed it....Blake has to help. Well that’s the start of a rekindled friendship that will bring a heartwarming happiness and silly smile to your face.

I love you, Alex. I've loved you when we were kids....and I've continued to love you every day since - Blake

I just really can’t say it enough. I felt L.B Simmons did such a remarkable job at showing us that there is life after something tragic. Sometimes things happen and they are earth shattering but we can move on and live. Not only for those around us but for ourselves. Happiness is found in relationships with others. Those are important human elements. To be loved and to love back and this was an incredible moving story that touched me deep. Alex lost her love, the father of her children. She struggled with moving on, dishonoring his memory and letting him go. She learned to overcome those things and make the best of a life that she was left to live and with those choices she got the second chance at a fairy-tale romance!! AND if anyone knows me they know that I am a HOPELESS romantic. So this book was FOOD for my SOUL.

I’m sure you've guessed it but I would absolutely, most definitely, positively RECOMMEND this book. It was absolutely brilliant.
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on October 12, 2014
I just finished Running on Empty and I really enjoyed it! It was such a cute story, and who doesn't love second chances??!!! Alex is a widow with three rambunctious girls. Always running and taking care of the girls but never herself. What's the point? She never gonna have another love like she had with Derek. But what she didn't count on was Blake Morgan. A childhood friend that she had lost touch because of growing up and at that point had met Derek. Will Blake be able to show her that she can have another love? You will have to just read and see.

I enjoyed it, I thought that it also flowed really well. I love stories about second chances and this didn't disappoint. I love the girls. So sweet and wild but in a good way! It just took me back to when I was younger with my sisters so I could totally relate. Never a dull moment that's for sure. This story just had me from the get go.

My only complaint is that I wish it was in both POV's. I felt like wee would have been able to get me depth from Blake's side that way. I wanted to see how he felt.

All in all it was a good story!

Story 4
Sex 1
Overall 4

Reviewed by Beggin from Mommys a Book Whore
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