- File Size: 4928 KB
- Print Length: 374 pages
- Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1546960988
- Publication Date: May 30, 2017
- Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B0714MDP9H
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #16,194 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Top customer reviews
OK, so wanna hear the weird thing about this one? I LOVED so much of this book, but the one thing I was meh on? The romance. *rolls eyes* Like seriously, isn't that odd? It's kind of a romance book. It's not the whole point, but it's kind of a main point. *sigh* I was going to leave that til the end like I've been doing lately, but how about we just get it out of the way and end on a high note?
I 100% felt the lust and attraction between Olivia and August. I did. It made it a little frustrating that this ended up being a slow burn book, and that the author tended to rely heavily on the interruption to stop things from going in a physical direction (I can't even tell you how many times they were about to kiss and someone/something interrupted them). I don't mind that in general, but if it's multiple times, I tend to start rolling my eyes. My problem was not in their physical chemistry, it was that I didn't completely follow the development of their feelings and emotions. I got some of it, but these two were just so ridiculously damaged that they were just not healthy with each other. I mean, like I said to my husband, it was quite a bit of hate boinking (except I used a more colourful word that definitely won't make it past the 'zon's approval process). I know some people really enjoy those kinds of angsty relationships, and I honestly actually got how it made sense in some ways, given what they'd been through in each of their pasts, but it just kind of leaves me feeling icky and unsatisfied. And it probably didn't help that I didn't understand the point where Olivia got fed up...it didn't feel like it fit, I didn't understand how she got to the end of her rope. Oh well, sometimes I am dense. And I *really* didn't like how she handled the PTSD stuff with both August and Dalton. Honestly, I was a bit surprised how often she made really silly mistakes, and then the author would excuse it away as she should know better...but for realz people, SHE DOES THIS FOR A LIVING. She *should* know better. I didn't buy being distracted by her feelings for August. It was just too much to watch her constantly putting herself in dangerous situations.
OK! Now onto the fun stuff!! Well, and heartbreak. But the good heartbreak. The elements that put this book up there for me are actually kind of diverse. I actually thought Olivia was hilarious and sassy and in general she had an amazingly tender heart. It's kind of a strange mixture actually. But I just fell in love with the way she took in strays, from animals to humans. I loved the way she interacted with many of the strong secondary characters. She was wonderful with Bettina (though can I just say I'm never a fan of writing out 4 year old dialogue with the lisps included? Personal preference). I was pleasantly surprised with the way her relationship with Josiah progressed, and my heart ached in that storyline (though I will admit I read another review that mentioned some race issues, and in the end I agree with that reviewer, even though my little white reader self didn't completely ferret that out on my own). I thought Josiah and Beau added to this full, hilarious household. And, being an animal lover, I ADORED Betty, Zora, and the bit we saw of Xena.
And while I never really felt like I got to know August quite as much, and particularly not until the second half, I loved a lot of what I got to see in his story. I felt for him with the Jude/Sav storyline. But where he really shone was in watching him with his dogs (either Havoc or Zora). I felt like I learned a LOT about Marine Working Dogs, and how that all works, and while heartbreaking at times, it was also fascinating and gave me EVEN MORE respect for both the animals and handlers.
So yeah. It's weird when you like characters on their own, but when they don't bring out the best in each other. Or at least not in my opinion. So, needless to say, this book left me feeling very mixed. The parts I loved I REALLY LOVED. But if I can't connect on a romance in a romance book, well...I don't know. It's a bummer, at minimum.
"I'll face his violence and demons head on because I'm the hurricane now, and August Cotton better batten down the hatches or run for cover."
I loved the story and the way Olivia was such a force to be reckoned with. She came with a purpose and she wasn't going to back down from her goals. She had so many obstacles thrown her way, but she was steady in the midst of it all. And then there's August who had a past that was more than he could deal with on his own. Add in the added pressure of current family obligations and he is one man wound up tight.
Carmen has obviously done her research on PTSD and she hits this head on and doesn't let go. I thank her for doing justice to a subject that isn't written about in such a serious matter. The subject was always there no matter what is going on in this romance story and it's hard to live it, but it's true and ugly and can end in such a devastating way.
"Illness has raped his mind and left only madness in its place."
Carmen handled it with grace but also gave us some love and frustration and small town heroics mixed in with it. It was a little slow going and once it really got to where I felt in needed to go, it felt rushed and ended sooner than I would've wanted. That is the only reason I knocked a star off. Otherwise this story really has it all. The feels, the passion of one's life and work and the pasts of characters that affect their lives now. I really enjoyed the characters and I'm loving the small town love she has created with these characters.
Olivia, Birthday Cake Oreo Cookie Addict, Dog Lover and Fixer of the Broken comes to town. She is determined to open Paws with Cause for the local Veterans. However, she faces opposition everywhere and from everyone. Small-minded townspeople, the local sheriff, vandals, and even August. Plus, Olivia has some demons of her own that occasionally rears its ugly head.
Of course, as situations would have it August and Olivia are thrown together and eventually work together. The troubles she faces are heavy and she is coming to the conclusion that she may not have it in her to fix everyone. It's a tough row to hoe, (like my small town expression) but Olivia is determined and so is August. Except he is determined to keep her at a distance and ignore the pull they are feeling for each other. OH MY.......the heat between them is palpable. There are limited sex scenes but the ones we got are sexy and made me want MORE.
A few of the secondary characters had significant parts in the story and later made a big impact in Olivia's life. I loved the way the story developed, the awesome outcome and the beautiful ending, I DID NOT want it to end.
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