Series: Cedar Ridge #3
Published by Grand Central Publishing on March 29th 2016
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SOMETIMES YOU CAN GO HOME AGAIN…
After an overseas mission goes wrong, Army Special Forces officer Jacob Kincaid knows where he must go to make things right: back home to the tiny town of Cedar Ridge, Colorado. All he needs to scrub away his painful past is fresh mountain air, a lakeside cabin, and quiet solitude. But what he discovers is a gorgeous woman living on a boat at his dock.
Sophie Marren has nowhere else to go. She’s broke, intermittently seasick, and fighting a serious attraction to the brooding, dishy, I’m-too-sexy-for-myself guy who’s now claiming her dock. Something about Jacob’s dark intensity makes her want to tease—and tempt—him beyond measure. Neither one wants to give any ground . . . until they realize the only true home they have is with each other.
An incredibly annoying, selfish ‘heroine’ and an indecisive ‘hero’ tested my patience in this long-awaited installment of the Kincaids of Cedar Ridge, which was such a shame because I truly wanted to like this book. Instead, all I got were main protagonists who played stupid mind games about promising each other not to fall in love, odiously determined to cling onto their issues and previous hurts (particularly Sophie) so as not to get hurt…once again.
The consequence is a huge amount of emotional prevarication (once again, Sophie, whose passive-aggressive determination to see the worst in everyone grated enormously on me) and a huge load of sex to gloss over it, which is annoying and frustrating because I only saw both Jacob and Sophie simply behaving like the juveniles that they aren’t.
To be fair, Jill Shalvis does chart out difficult pasts for both of them, but I never felt as though both of them grew in any way likeable even midway through the story, to the point where I wished I was actually reading about Kenna and Mitch – whose story, had it been written, would have been way more interesting – who got sadly relegated as secondary characters. In the end, I skimmed quite a few pages, rolling my eyes in the process, especially parts about Sophie’s internal monologues about not wanting to be a victim and her own insecurities because they simply emphasised her as someone who gave mixed signals when all she needed to do was to kick up some courage where it mattered – but never did. Worse yet, getting too many affirmative phrases repeated throughout the book like ‘she’s an amazing woman’, as though needing to convince me of Sophie’s stellar character did just the opposite of my impression of her.
Not Ms. Shalvis’s finest effort, sadly, when I find myself hating the female protagonist so much that it was impossible to support this pairing at all.