Close to You by Kristen Proby

Posted in Advanced Reader Copy/ Chick Lit/ Contemporary Romance/ Edelweiss/ Reviews 20th April 2015
Close to You by Kristen ProbyClose to You by Kristen Proby
Series: Fusion #2
Published by William Morrow Paperbacks on August 9th 2016
Pages: 320
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three-stars

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Kristen Proby comes the second novel in her sizzling Fusion series.
Camilla, “Cami,” LaRue was five years old when she first fell in love with Landon Palazzo. Everyone told her the puppy love would fade—they clearly never met Landon. When he left after graduation without a backward glance, she was heartbroken. But Cami grew up, moved on, and became part-owner of wildly popular restaurant Seduction. She has everything she could want...or so she thinks.
After spending the last 12 years as a Navy fighter pilot, Landon returns to Portland to take over the family construction business. When he catches a glimpse of little Cami LaRue, he realizes she’s not so little any more. He always had a soft spot for his little sister’s best friend, but nothing is soft now when he’s around the gorgeous restauranteur.
Landon isn’t going to pass up the chance to make the girl-next-door his. She’s never been one for romance, but he’s just the one to change her mind. Will seduction be just the name of her restaurant or will Cami let him get close enough to fulfill all her fantasies?

Carrying a torch for the best friend’s brother for years isn’t going to go anywhere and Camille LaRue is just on her way to accept that unfulfilled dream, until it becomes a reality when Landon Palazzo returns from a Navy after a fighter-jet accident that rudely inserts him back into civilian life and straight into the arms of a girl he could never forget.

‘Close to You’ surprised me in several ways, but what stood out was the cruising speed at which Cami and Landon picked up where they left off. Strangely light-hearted and nearly angst-free, I expected their story to be more gutting and painful, given the unrequited feels and looks thrown between them in the first book. There is much to like about the characters – their steadiness, the chemistry and the lack of denial about their feelings – yet I thought they could have been greater depth perhaps, had PTSD been briefly addressed, as well as the burning question that was never really answered: would Landon have come for Camille at all had the accident not happened? As serendipitous as their burgeoning relationship was written, it felt as though that that this pairing could have succeeded only because of a twist of fate, rather than a deliberate attempt on either side to do something about their feelings.

I’d been hoping for more friction, a little more doubt on both sides and got a sweet story instead – though not without bumps and some drama which thankfully are resolved fairly quickly – which is not a bad change considering the sheer amount of heaving bosoms, plate-throwing tantrums, irrational alpha males and overreacting females that populates the romance shelves these days.

Ultimately, a sweet read, albeit with a very abrupt end that tries to set up Kate’s story but left me gobsmacked and hanging.

three-stars

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