Thursday, April 16, 2015

review || BAD FOR ME { blog tour }

Bad for Me by Codi Gary

Publisher: Avon Impulse (4/7/2015)
Series: Rock Canyon, book 5  
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Source: Tasty Book Tours
Purchase links || amazon | bn | ibooks | kobo || add to goodreads

Rating: ★★★★1/2

Codi Gary returns with another fabulous Rock Canyon romance: when veteran marine Everett Silverton meets the town’s smooth-voiced DJ Callie Jacobsen, sparks fly—but is passion enough to give these wounded souls another chance at love?

Callie Jacobsen isn't about to open her heart to just anyone. Not so very long ago, trusting someone changed her life forever—and not in a fun way. Now she's better off focusing on her career, her friends, and her dog. So when former Marine Everett Silverton takes an interest in her, Callie's more than a little wary. No matter how charming he is, men are a bad idea. In fact, she's got the scars to prove it.

But Everett isn't convinced Callie should shut everyone out—especially not him. He may be a hero to the people of Rock Canyon, but he's got his own demons, and he bets they're not that different from Callie's. Still, he knows it's going to take more than chemistry to get her to let her guard down. Everett will do whatever it takes to show her she's safe with him. All she has to do is take a chance, take a step … and take his hand.

about Codi || An obsessive bookworm, CODI GARY likes to write sexy small-town contemporary romances with humor, grand gestures, and blush-worthy moments. When she’s not writing, she can be found reading her favorite authors, squealing over her must-watch shows, and playing with her children. She lives in Idaho with her family.

{ excerpt }.
“I’ve almost got it.”

“Thank you. This was really nice of you, especially when I haven’t given you a reason to be.”

Everett looked up at her, wiping the rain off his face so he could meet her gaze. “You seem to assume that just because people are kind to you, they want something. Sometimes people help because it’s the right thing to do.”

Her gaze shifted away, and he went back to tightening the nuts on the wheel. He’d said his piece, but knew he wasn’t going to convince Callie with words that his intentions were honorable. 

He had to prove it to her.

When he finished, he released the jack and gathered up all the tools, sliding them back in the spare tire kit. “I’ll put this and the new tire in the back, and you’ll be good to go. I’ll haul this one off to the dump for you.”

She knelt down next to him and took the kit from him, their fingers brushing. Despite the chill of their skin, heat sizzled between them, sending a shot of awareness down his throat.  Her blonde curls were wet and falling out of her messy top knot, and drops of rain were clinging to her cheeks. Before he could stop himself, he traced the pad of his thumb across one, catching the cool droplet on his skin. Her amber eyes widened, and he dropped his hand, cursing his impulse.

“Sorry. You had something on your cheek.”

Callie cleared her throat and stood up. “It’s okay.”

He climbed to his feet and couldn’t help wondering if she’d felt something too. Was that why she kept pulling away? 

But if she didn’t want him, why was he pushing?

Because she doesn’t treat you like a defective puppy she’d have to fix. 

Grabbing her spare tire from the back of his truck, he slid it into the back of her Jeep. She stood back as he closed the door, and he could tell she was nervous—her hands kept twisting.

“Well, you’re all set. You should get home and change out of those wet clothes. If you get sick, I’ll have to listen to one of those ridiculous weekend deejays, and they play nothing but crap.”

Everett started to head back to his truck, but she caught his hand. “Hey.”

Just the touch of her hand sent his heart from a trot to a gallop. He loved the way her soft skin wrapped around his.

Facing her, he waited, afraid to move a muscle and scare her off.

But she moved so fast, he wasn’t prepared when her lips brushed the scarred side of his face. He stiffened as the warmth seeped through his cheek, his stomach twisting up as a thousand thoughts and insecurities made him wince. Had the roughness repelled her? Why hadn’t she picked the untouched side?

“Thank you. For being kind.”

Callie dropped his hand and ran to her car, as if afraid he would come after her. As she started it and pulled forward, he was finally able to move again, backing up a ways to watch her disappear down the road. 

Everett’s hand came up to rest against his cheek, and he realized that he’d lied to Callie when he said he didn’t want anything from her.

He wanted everything.

{ review }.
Because I'm a cover lover (ha, that rhymed; shhh, I've only slept 5 hours in the last 36...), I just have to make a comment on BAD FOR ME's before I get into the review...

I would not have expected the book I read based off of the cover alone.

I get that the cover image goes with the theme of the other books -- all primarily faces, all dark and slightly brooding -- but this book, while it had it's dark moments... well, I would have expected something else. Especially seeing as when comparing this cover to the others, the series theme changed with this title.

So again... didn't expect the book we get by the cover.

...but the book was very good, so I guess I can forgive it.

We have two pretty broken people -- Everett, a Marine who lost his best friend overseas as well as being scarred in the accident that took his friend, and Callie, a country radio DJ who's ex-fiance had a psychotic break and killed her family.

Like I said.

Pretty broken.

For the past year, Callie has been taking a six-thirty call from a man named Rhett. She enjoys their conversations and they seem to have similar tastes in music. One day, he asks if they can take their talking off the radio station number and she freezes.

Everett isn't one to punish himself and he feels like a heel for even asking for her number. Who does that? However, one day he runs into her at the store -- 
Everett’s heart skipped a beat as her words sank in, and he realized she was his Callie. The Callie he’d been calling nearly every morning for over a year. The one who pretty much thought he was a creep.
And from there, it's as if a seal had been broken; they run into one another often... so often that Callie fears he may be stalking her (for a quick minute, anyway).

What Everett likes about Callie when they do meet is that she isn't focused on his scars. His burn scars take up 40% of his body, and the people in town stare at his face and pity him, yet call him a hero -- a title he doesn't feel he deserves. 

When Callie finds out that Everett is her Rhett, she feels betrayed, though, and questions everything in their budding friendship.
"...I didn’t know how to just come out and say, ‘Oh, by the way, I’m the dork who tried to pick you up over the phone...I was just afraid to scare you off."
I love how telling that comment is from him. We have a very confident man -- he walks tall with his shoulders back, he's forthright and fights for other vets, but when it came to Callie, he was terrified of how he would come across. She scared him.

Callie has her own scars, scars that she refuses to show. She only has sex in the dark, or with her shirt on. If her shirt comes off, she's sure to be out of the bed and dressed before sun shines in. It takes her a long time to trust Everett with her fears and scars.

One of the biggest obstacles that these two will come over is more than their scars -- it's what their scars come with. Callie dealt with her scars and loss with alcohol. Everett dealt with PTSD after his accident. Callie's ex had a psychotic break and the very last thing she wants to do is be in a relationship where the other person can just snap with no warning. Everett lived with his alcoholic father -- and alcohol was slowly taking his dad away from him.

But Everett accepts Callie for who she is, and I felt that that was very telling of his character. And when his brother and sister-in-law condemn her? Everett is quick to stand up for her, showing his fiercely protective side. 

As a huge believer in dreams, I absolutely loved when Robbie came to Everett one night. Some may say it's just your subconscious working through things, but others will say that loved ones will visit to tell you that they're ok, and I fully believe that that was what Robbie was doing, and trying to push Everett in the correct direction.

But it takes more than Everett in this relationship; Callie needs to break a little more before she learns to accept her life for what it is, and allow the gift of Everett's love into her life. And when she does? Well, I feel that these two will have a beautiful life together.

"...I feel like we’ve got something amazing. Something that’s going to last. I look at you, and I see my future [...] But it’s almost like we take two steps forward and four back, every time. You let me in a little, and then you push me away. I just need you to know that I’ll wait. I’ll be here for whatever you need, whenever. Just don’t shut me out, baby. Please.”

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