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Totaled Paperback – May 17, 2014
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About the Author
I am a mother, wife, Registered Nurse, avid reader, and most recently have pursued taking my own writing to the next level. Born and raised in Jacksonville, Florida, the beach is my happy place. Being an astute people watcher gives me constant inspiration for my stories. But my characters, like many authors, are conceived from actual people in my life. A hodgepodge of personality traits, real world instances, and conversations that I have directly taken part in are the foundation for my fictional world. Likes: attending and/or hosting ANY kind of party; dancing (not very well but like no one is watching); jamming out to any and all music that is not in the country genre (especially 80’s); girls’ nights out (preferably with wine); a good cup of strong coffee with enough creamer to make it blonde; painting (also not very well); getting pedicures; comedy movies, shows, and books; a wicked sense of humor; brutal honesty but not cruelty; taking impromptu nature walks with her daughter and husband; people watching (for research purposes, of course); eating good food (especially cheese, bacon, chocolate, and anything with any of those three items in, on top of, or around it); wasting obnoxious amounts of time on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, and Goodreads; and of course I luuuurrrrvvvveeee to read! Dislikes: people who are closed-minded; hotdogs, peaches, and cantaloupe; doing the dishes; cleaning the litter box; the smell of fresh cut grass and anything to do with yard work; wearing a bra and/or spanx (especially the combination of wearing them both at the same time); slow internet speed; slow drivers; slow people; slow anything; not being in control; the smell of cigarette smoke; when people spoil books in their reviews; not having lip gloss on at all times; when the toilet paper is not put onto the holder correctly (with the roll coming over the top); and of course that there aren’t more hours in the day to write.
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Top customer reviews
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The author does such a great job of shaping the characters. Drew & Bree are the type of people you root for in life. They seem like people you know. People you have had dinner with or that went to school with you. The weight of disaster that they pull along with them doesn't seem hold them back but certainly shapes them into the damaged souls they are. And once they meet, WOAH! After a few awkward run ins and blunders, they accept that they can't stop what's starting. The way the author lays out the story you can feel the beach, the summer and the flirtatious attraction. The small town setting stirs up nostalgic feelings of budding romance, of butterflies and pet names, and all the things that make you giddy over love. Very quickly they realize that this is the best thing that has happened to either one of them in a very long time .Once they realize that the heart wants what it wants, their relationship turns from flirtations to intense. Drew fills in the gaps of Bree's heart she didn't even know existed, and before she even knew she wanted it to happen.
I love the supporting cast- Mick, Pat, Sue, Liam. They all help the reader to understand not only where Drew & Bree come from but also what helped them get there. The sense of family is both admired and mourned, making every character in this story a key piece in the journey to finding true, faithful, trusting love.
I can not wait to find out how these two overcome the newest hurdles life has placed in their path. I am rooting for these two to make it!!!
Drew is an MMA fighter in training; he's running from his tragic past and along his journey meets Pat (who I just loved) who helps him overcome a mishap then takes him under his wing. Eventually Pat sends Drew to meet and train with Mick Murphy and it is from that point on that the story really takes off. Drew is not just another gorgeous fighter (although he is), he's funny, caring and very easy to fall for.
Bree Murphy runs her household although she's barely an adult herself. Having lost her mom at a young age, she's grown up caring for her twin brother Liam (who has Asperger's) and her father, Mick; she does it all: cooking, cleaning, even home-schooling her brother so that he can get the best education possible, all while sacrificing her own social life of any kind. She's got a big heart, she's smart and she's determined to make life the best it can be for those around her.
Of course this is a love story so when Bree and Drew meet, sparks fly. And they meet in an unconventional way which made the story that much more enjoyable. I love how they had such a quick connection to each other and as they got to know each other more and more, their feelings for each other grew stronger. This is something the author does really well, you can feel the emotions of each character, almost as if you're right there with them. (And Drew is so cute I often wanted to be right there with him haha!)
In addition the supporting characters are great too. Bree has a best friend, Sue, and she is everything a best friend should be and more. And she's funny too, providing laughs every time we see her. Liam, Bree's twin, plays a pivotal role in this story and he is amazing. I think the author did a wonderful job portraying Asperger's in a very realistic way; it is clear she did her research, which to me is something very important to a good story.
As a debut novel, Totaled hits the mark for me. I am very impressed with Stacey Grice's writing style and believe she has a gift in her ability to tell a love story. I absolutely cannot wait for the next book (yes you will be left hanging) and I thank her for bringing Drew and Bree's story to life.
I've been friends with Stacey for a while, so I fully expected to like this book. But what I *didn't* expect was to love it as much as I did.
Now anyone who knows me knows that I love broken characters, so Drew was really right up my alley. He's more than broken. He's wrecked. But his heart is so good. And he's trying so hard to put that nasty past behind him. Bree is caught in a trap of her own. Having lost her mother at a fairly young age, she's been acting as mom and wife to her brother and father for years and she's stuck there.
The beginning of their relationship is something of a comedy of errors. I won't spoil, but let's just say that one begins to wonder after a while if they'll ever get it together.
But then they do, and their love grows and makes them both happier than they've ever been. They weather a family crisis and their relationship grows even stronger.
Just when I thought they were going to get their happily ever after, the unthinkable happens, and I'm left wondering what the future will hold for them.
I read a lot of books. I even read a lot of first time publications from authors, and this is one of the best I've read. I can't wait to see where Stacey takes me in her next book.
The story is well written, told from the point of view of the two main characters, Bree and Drew. I really enjoy these stories, because in a love story, or romance, especially I think seeing both sides is really important. It makes the story not seem so desperate as it does when it is told just from one side. There is a great balance of "action", fighting and romance, to keep you hooked and wanting to get to the end as quick as possible!
These two characters have made their way into my heart and the end was a killer, I was not happy with her "cliffhanger"...she better get to writin' so I can know what happens!