REVIEW – HEAT WAVE by Karina Halle

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SYNOPSIS:

They say when life closes one door, another one opens.
This door happens to lead to paradise.
And a man I can never, ever have.

~~~

Still grieving the loss of her sister who died two years ago, the last thing Veronica “Ronnie” Locke needed was to lose her job at one of Chicago’s finest restaurants and have to move back in with her parents. So when a window of opportunity opens for her – running a kitchen at a small Hawaiian hotel – she’d be crazy not to take it.

The only problem is, the man running the hotel drives her crazy:
Logan Shephard.
It doesn’t matter that he’s got dark brown eyes, a tall, muscular build that’s sculpted from daily surfing sessions, and a deep Australian accent that makes your toes curl.
What does matter is that he’s a grump.
Kind of an asshole, too.
And gets under Ronnie’s skin like no one else.

But the more time Ronnie spends on the island of Kauai, falling in love with the lush land and its carefree lifestyle, the closer she gets to Logan. And the closer she gets to Logan, the more she realizes she may have pegged him all wrong. Maybe it’s the hot, steamy jungles or the invigorating ocean air, but soon their relationship becomes utterly intoxicating.

There’s just one major catch.

The two of them together would incite a scandal neither Ronnie, nor her family, would ever recover from.

Forbidden, Illicit, off-limits – sometimes the heat is worth surrendering to, even if you get burned.

Note: this is a standalone novel, unrelated to any previous books. It does NOT contain cheating of any kind.

*****Patty’s Review*****

*****FOUR STARS*****
{ARC Provided by Author via Inkslinger PR}

The darkness and the doubt and the guilt are banished for this sweet moment. It’s just us, all of our flaws and imperfections exposed. It’s us and we’re in this together, stronger for it. I’m starting to think this man is my world. I’m starting to think he’ll never not be.

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I have been dying to read and review a Karina Halle book since I started blogging last year and finally I’ve gotten my chance. I knew that Ms. Halle was a very talented writer because I’ve read the Artist Trilogy series and thought it was one of the most original and well-written stories I’ve come across. That series contained characters who were seriously flawed and guilty of some despicable acts but somehow Karina made you feel for them and ultimately root for their happily ever after. Heat Wave had some of those same elements. The main characters were truly flawed and I have to say I was a bit angry at one of them for almost the entire first half of the book. This is a tale of forbidden love and how it can be messy and challenging, but ultimately it can be freeing as well.

Veronica “Ronnie” Locke, is the youngest daughter of a Chicago politician. She has always lived in the shadows of her older, more beautiful, and utterly perfect sister, Juliet. Ronnie went through life feeling less than her sister, and her mothers constant ridiculing didn’t help the situation either. One night at a political fundraising party, Ronnie notices a handsome stranger. They end up chatting and just when they’re about to leave the party early together, Juliet enters the room and steals the man’s attention right out from under Ronnie’s nose. I was so upset at this point because I had a feeling this guy was going to be the Hero in the story and the fact that he just dropped Ronnie in a hot second for her older sister really had me furious!

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Seven years later, Juliet was in a car accident that took her life, and Ronnie is being shipped off to her sister and brother-in-law’s Hotel & Resort in Kauai, Hawaii, to take the job as one of the chefs at their restaurant. Ronnie had some drama at her last place of employment which ended up putting her on the blacklist with most of the restaurants in Chicago. A change of scenery might be just what she needs. But the thought of seeing Logan Shepard again is leaving her with a mixed bag of feelings. Her sister once told her in confidence that Logan had been cheating on her. Ronnie has a tremendous amount of animosity towards Logan for the adultery, and even deeper than that, for choosing Juliet over her all those years ago. She also can’t deny that she still has held on to her feelings of deep attraction for him as well. This has her struggling with guilt for quite a while. I, on the other hand, thought she was the victim in this whole mess and that she had no reason to feel any guilt.

Logan and Ronnie’s reunion on Kauai is anything but pleasant. You can feel the heat from the animosity and dare I say, pent up attraction, burning from most of the chapters during the first half of the book. Ronnie tries to hold on to her anger but every time she’s in Logan’s presence she can’t deny how insanely attracted she still is to this sexy and often surly man. Being on one of the most romantic islands and having to spend a lot of time together will inevitably spark fireworks between our tumultuous couple, and let me just give praise to the author for writing some of the most highly erotic scenes that had me in need of a few cold showers!! Anger turns to scorching hot desire and soon the couple is faced with a huge dilemma. How to pursue something deeper when there is such taboo engulfing their coupling?

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I was enthralled by this story and found the writing to be superb. My reason for not giving this a five-star rating was due to the fact that I still held a grudge towards Logan for being like everyone else in Ronnie’s life by being blinded by Juliet’s fake charm and beauty. Even though he does become beyond swoon worthy and he explains his poor judgment call in the beginning, I found that my heart was still a bit broken by his actions and I couldn’t completely forgive him. But that’s just indicative of how well this story is written. The author invoked really strong emotions from me and for that, I would give her five stars!!!

HEAT WAVE is currently available. I am sure that Karina Halle fans and those who may be first-time readers of hers, will find this one to be truly decadent and wildly entertaining.

AMAZON: http://bit.ly/HEATWAVE-KH-Kindle
Paperback: http://www.bit.ly/HEATWAVE-PB
iBooks: http://bit.ly/HEATWAVE-iTunes
B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/heat-…

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