Friday, June 26, 2015

review || LAST FIRST KISS { blog tour }

Last First Kiss by Lia Riley

Publisher: Avon Romance (6/23/2015)
Series: Brightwater, book 1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: Tasty Book Tours/Edelweiss
Purchase links || amazon | bn | ibooks | kobo || add to goodreads

Rating: ★1/2

New to Avon author Lia Riley makes a splash with her first sexy, hilarious book in the sizzling Brightwater series!

A kiss is just the beginning…

Pinterest Perfect. Or so Annie Carson’s life appears on her popular blog. Reality is... messier. Especially when it lands her back in one-cow town, Brightwater, California, and back in the path of the gorgeous six-foot-four reason she left. Sawyer Kane may fill out those wranglers, but she won’t be distracted from her task. Annie just needs the summer to spruce up and sell her family’s farm so she and her young son can start a new life in the big city. Simple, easy, perfect.

Sawyer has always regretted letting the first girl he loved slip away. He won’t make the same mistake twice, but can he convince beautiful, wary Annie to trust her heart again when she’s been given every reason not to? And as a single kiss turns to so much more, can Annie give up her idea of perfect for a forever that’s blissfully real.

about Lia || Lia Riley writes offbeat New Adult and Contemporary Adult romance. After studying at the University of Montana-Missoula, she scoured the world armed only with a backpack, overconfidence and a terrible sense of direction. She counts shooting vodka with a Ukranian mechanic in Antarctica, sipping yerba mate with gauchos in Chile and swilling XXXX with stationhands in Outback Australia among her accomplishments.

A British literature fanatic at heart, Lia considers Mr. Darcy and Edward Rochester as her fictional boyfriends. Her very patient husband doesn't mind. Much. When not torturing heroes (because c'mon, who doesn't love a good tortured hero?), Lia herds unruly chickens, camps, beach combs, daydreams about future books, wades through a mile-high TBR pile and schemes yet another trip. Right now, Icelandic hot springs and Scottish castles sound mighty fine.

{ excerpt } .
He tilted back his Stetson, running his intense gaze over her face. “You haven’t changed much.”

The simple statement threatened to fell her. He had no idea everything was different. The dreamy, hopeful girl she’d been, the one he’d known all those years ago, had her atoms obliterated and her soft underbelly refashioned, armored with titanium plates. She didn’t run barefoot through meadows or jump blindly into rivers. 

Not anymore. 

“Thanks for the repair job,” she said, stepping back, blinking rapidly. He’d fixed the coop, but no one could fix the cracks in her confidence and imploded self-esteem. She needed to do that—if only she knew how. Was there a Self-esteem for Dummies? 

Then he moved. Close. Closer. Way too close. The old magnetic pull between them hadn’t lost any potency. The air charged. So much so that when he reached out, cradling her cheek, she expected a zap. “I missed you, Annie Girl.”

Her heart beat sideways at his use of the old nickname. 

“I . . . ” missed you too. God. So much. “I have to go.” She took another step backward and then another. “And anyway, I’m not staying, at least not for long. My family’s decided it’s time to sell the farm.” 

“Sell?” His body went rigid. “But this place has been in your family forever. All your history is here. How can you let it go to a stranger?”

Who was he to come around at an ungodly hour, in those tight faded jeans that showcased his . . . everything, touching her cheek, giving her unsolicited guidance? Her chest heated. 
Is that why he was here—being the good cop to Grandma Kane’s bad cop? “I appreciate your help with the coop, but let’s not pretend you’re giving impartial neighborly advice. 
Your family wants the property back. Trust me, I get the situation. I was raised with it, but we can get more for Five Diamonds than your grandmother could ever offer.”

He dropped his chin, leveling a penetrating stare. “That’s not what I meant, it’s not about the feud. You know I don’t care about any of that.”

She used to believe that, had once fooled herself into believing they were kindred spirits. “I don’t know anything about you anymore, Sawyer. Maybe I never did.”

She pivoted and strode toward the house, clenching the scotch bottle. Why did he come, force her to feel things better forgotten? She was almost at the stairs when a large, powerful hand closed on her upper arm, not a grip, but a gentle touch that halted her mid-step. Her heart pounded, her belly breaking into wild flutters. 

Slowly, so slowly, she turned. 

He held her gaze squarely, as if daring her to look away. “You know who I am,” he said. 

She couldn’t reply, even if she knew what to say. She couldn’t blink or swallow or think. 
The only sound beside the wind came from their shallow breaths. She and Sawyer might be water under the bridge, but it looked like that water was churning, roiling whitewater. 

{ review } .
Ten years ago, after a seven minutes in heaven that did not go according to plan, cooky Carson's daughter, Annabelle, fled town and vowed to never come back. She also swore she'd never talk to the boy who stole her heart and then made a joke of her.

Now Annie's back. Her father wants to move and is leaving the selling of the family farm, Five Diamonds, to her.

I liked Annie. Recently divorced, she was now a mommy-blogger (like Casey Leigh and Little Miss Momma). She's only stopping at her old home long enough to put the place together and then she and her son, Atticus, are heading to San Fransisco to start over, where she hopes to put her journalism degree and blogging to serious work. Only there's one small complication.

And his name is Sawyer.

Sawyer has loved Annie since they were teenagers. Their classmates didn't exactly approve of the star baseball player liking the crazy man's hippie daughter, and at a party, they did their damnedest to read the two apart. And they succeeded. All Sawyer wants to do is apologize and explain to her, but he has a few obstacles -- his grandmother's dislike of her, her moving to San Fransisco, and her son.

Sawyer never saw himself in a father role, and at first the thought of Atticus terrifies him, but the boy worms his way into Sawyer's heart quickly -- that one was a bond that was extremely enjoyable to watch.

Annie finds herself falling for Sawyer all over again, and is terrified to let herself go. He hurt her once before, but she has much more at stake now.

"...It wasn’t a joke to me. You have never been a joke to me." --Sawyer

Sawyer proves again and again that Annie's it for him. He was a good guy who fought the town for her and her son. He didn't care about the talking, about the snide looks when Atticus chose to sport a pink cast. He never cared, as a teenager or now. He has always accepted Annie for who she was, and even fights to show her that same thing, going as far as baking her tofu ;)

It took them ten years to get their first kiss. It took ten years to set everything right. They had some struggles certainly, but they finally get to that place that was taken away from them all those years ago.

This woman wasn’t a kooky Carson, or Annabelle, or even his Annie... 
That woman, she was home.

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