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 USA Today 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.
He kisses me on and on, and slowly I feel my doubts disappear. I let myself believe, just for a second, that he wants me the way I want him.
Lauren Layne has written another story with a couple of my favorite tropes- ”in love with the older brother’s best friend” & “second chance romance”. The premise had me so excited about this one – a sexy & brooding Hero and a sassy Heroine on the outs and forced to endure each other’s company on a two-week road trip across the U.S. There was sure to be a lot of heat due to the tension that existed between the H & h, and I can confirm that there are several steamy moments that will please readers, but this reader was more than a little annoyed with the constant push and pull between the two characters. I was literally exhausted from all the trips between the past and the present during the story and more than that, the immaturity of the Hero began to chip away at my patience.
Lucy and Reece have been friends since their early childhood days. Reece was Lucy’s older brother Craig’s, best friend, and her family unofficially adopted him as their own once his mother passed away and his family life kind of fell apart. Reece had always been protective of Lucy and she harbored a crush on him almost from the start. If Reece were being truly honest with himself, he’d admit that Lucy pretty much had his heart from the beginning too. Things get serious between them when Lucy is eighteen and Reece is nineteen, but Reece’s insecurities cause him to do something really stupid which ends up tearing the couple apart. Lucy goes off to college with a broken heart and leaves Reece behind back home. They see each other briefly, several years later at Reece’s father’s funeral and then once more when Lucy is twenty-four and Reece is twenty-five. They’re both moving across the country to Napa to start new jobs and Lucy’s parents give them their old car as their form of transportation. Neither are particularly happy about being travel buddies as they still haven’t gotten over their painful past. Two people with years worth of hurt and animosity, spending almost every waking hour together for two weeks straight in such close proximity seems to be a recipe for disaster.
For most of the road trip Reece and Lucy alternate between sexy innuendos and heated arguments. Lucy still hasn’t gotten over how Reece’s stupid actions tore them apart six years ago. Reece still holds on to the ridiculous notion that he’s not good enough for Lucy and that she’ll only end up leaving him just like she did when she went off to college. Reece’s insecurities, to me, seemed unfounded and for that reason, I had a hard time finding him a swoon-worthy book boyfriend. Lucy was clearly putting herself out there to him and he was just completely blind and lacked the confidence to realize that he was everything to her.
The story wasn’t a complete disappointment for me, there were some really tender moments from their childhood that touched my heart and the steamy moments throughout held my interest. I wanted these two to get over all of their immature insecurities and give love another shot. There was no denying that they had white hot chemistry sparking between them.
LOVE STORY releases on Valentine’s Day! I think those of you who love angst-filled romances just might enjoy this one.