Over the course of one wild road trip, feuding childhood sweethearts get a second chance at love in this charming rom-com—a standalone novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Blurred Lines and Good Girl.
When Lucy Hawkins receives a job offer in San Francisco, she can’t wait to spread her wings and leave her small Virginia hometown behind. Her close-knit family supports her as best they can, by handing over the keys to a station wagon that’s seen better days. The catch? The cross-country trip comes with a traveling companion: her older brother’s best friend, aka the guy who took Lucy’s virginity hours before breaking her heart.
After spending the past four years and every last dime caring for his sick father, Reece Sullivan will do just about anything to break free of the painful memories—even if it means a two-week road trip with the one girl who’s ever made it past his carefully guarded exterior. But after long days of bickering in the car turn into steamy nights in secluded motel rooms, Reece learns that, when it comes to Lucy, their story is far from over. And this time, they just might have a shot at a happy ending.
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About the Book!
by Lauren Layne
Love Unexpectedly #3
February 14, 2017
The Love Unexpectedly Series
Friends to lovers? Second chance romance? This book is actually both of those things. When you grow up with the one you fall first in love with, that fits this friends to lovers story. When you break up in a horrible way and it’s years later, then it’s second chance and fits. It’s also a book within a book at times, telling both the early story, and the now. I pretty much like all of those scenarios so I was a pretty happy reader for this book.
Lucy and Reese grow up next door to each other. Although he is her brother’s best friend, he is pretty much her best friend as well. Lucy and Reese become involved secretly, in their later teen years. Secret, so as to keep both their families in the dark. Well mostly Lucy’s, as Reese doesn’t exactly have much of a family. Lucy’s family is pretty much Reese’s family by then. When she is betrayed in the worse way possible, Lucy goes away to college never speaking to Reese again. And Reese has his reasons for not trying to get her back. On my part, I just wanted to knock some sense into Reese’s head-mostly anyway. Several years later, Lucy’s parents give their old clunker of a car to Lucy with the stipulation that she must drive Reese with her to start her new life in California where she now has a job. He has a new job there as well. Coincidence? Not really as they both are involved in the wine industry and Napa Valley is the place to be.
I enjoyed Lucy as a character. She’s intelligent, articulate, outgoing,and totally not over her heartbreak from years before. Reese is another story. He’s quiet and more introverted, but also intense and super handsome. The two together are combustible. Both in their coversations with each other and when they make it to the bedroom together. A two week odyssey of a trip, becomes something else. It doesn’t help matters that Lucy has a boyfriend she is driving way out of the way to visit and Reese is along for the ride. It also didn’t help that I saw what would happen there almost from the beginning of the read. But that really was okay with me.
The title Love Story gave me pause at first, because aren’t most romance’s love stories? And of course my mind went to the 1970 drama/cry fest book by Erich Segal of the same name. And yes, I loved that book. I promise you that before you finish this read that you will understand why it was titled, Love Story. Pretty great reason, I thought.
I love a good romance with lots of good banter, and this one has it in spades. It’s mainly a drama, but does have some lighter moments at times. Not a lot, but some. I enjoyed the authors writing style of a book within a book and thought it worked especially well with this story. The pacing was good and the chemistry between the two was off the charts. Other than being a bit put off with Reese’s actions in the past, there wasn’t much to dislike here. Of course, if he hadn’t done what he did, we wouldn’t have this story. And that would be a shame because it ended up being a good story, and one that I enjoyed.
I highly recommend this to adult romance readers. Adult due to some sensual scenes.
The review copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a fair and honest review.
About Lauren Layne
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLING AUTHOR
Prior to becoming an author, Lauren lived in Seattle with a cushy job in e-commerce/web-marketing. On a whim, she quit her job and moved to NYC to pursue a writing career. A year later, she had an agent and two publishing contracts.
She now lives in midtown Manattan where she writes full time, although has been known to be lured away from the computer by a well-made cocktail.