REVIEW – WHAT HE DOESN’T KNOW (What He Doesn’t Know Duet, #1) by Kandi Steiner

SYNOPSIS

On the northeast side of town, there is a house.

The house was once magical, filled with love and joy and plans for the future.

Inside its walls are many things that belong to me — my books, the china from my mother on my wedding day, the beautiful cage once home to two birds, now empty, just like me.

And a man.

A man who also belongs to me.

A man I no longer wish to keep.

A man who, no doubt, has not slept, though the sun is rising. Because the house where he waits is where I laid my head to rest every night for eight years. Until last night.

No one who knows me would believe Charlie Pierce, the quiet, bookish girl who never made waves is pulling out of the driveway of a man who isn’t her husband.

But they don’t know me at all.

I don’t even know me.

Not anymore.

They say there are two sides to every story, and I suppose in most cases, that’s true. But the one I live inside of? It has three.

On the northeast side of town, there is a house.

But there is no longer a home.

 

*****Patty’s Review*****

*****FIVE STARS*****
{ARC Generously Provided by Author}

Reese shook his head with a lazy smile, tucking his hands in his pockets. Then, he looked at me. I never knew so much could be said with a look. Sure, I was in tune with Cameron, or at least, I had been. We could share a look and communicate a hundred different things. But with Reese, there were no words behind the gaze. There were feelings. There was heat, and concern—want and denial. And I was like a moth drawn to that flame, wanting so badly to see inside it, to figure out how it burns, to live within its warmth. But I knew to touch it was to die.

 

 

FANTASTIC!! I was completely consumed by this story. This is not for the faint of heart and those of you who can’t do love triangles and cheating will probably want to avoid this book. I think it would be a travesty not to read this one but I do understand about having hard limits. My heart and mind were so twisted throughout the journey of the main characters that I had a tough time figuring out who was to blame. In most love triangles there usually is that one character that you can easily find fault with, but the author really blew that all away by the time we get to the end of this installment. There truly are three sides to this story and while I feel they all had to shoulder some of the blame, I had a difficult time deciding which man Charlie should end up with in the beginning. As the story unfolds I was starting to have a clear picture of who the right guy was, but then BAMthat ending left me right back at square one!!

Charlie Pierce lived a charmed life when she married her college sweetheart. Cameron wasn’t a man who was good with expressing himself with words but his actions spoke volumes about the love he felt for his wife. Three years into their marriage the couple suffers a devastating loss and they were never the same after it. For five years they’ve been merely existing. Each of them just a shell of the person they used to be, but Charlie loves her husband desperately and yearns to get back what they once shared. Then on her first day back to work at Westchester Prep, a blast from the past comes barreling back into her life.

Reese Walker was Charlie’s older brother’s best friend and the boy next door. She had been in love with him from an early age but back then their five year age difference kept them from being anything more than friends. Reese was always captivated by Charlie but knew that it wasn’t their time back then. When he went off to college in New York, they lost touch for nearly fifteen years. A few years back, Reese lost his parents and sister to a horrific act of violence. His grief had turned him into a lost soul without a place to call ”home”. Then he gets a teaching job in the town he grew up in and he takes it hoping that it will help give him some feeling of peace to be back where his family had set up roots. He had hoped he’d run into the girl who had stolen his heart all those years ago but never imagined she would be working at the same school as him.

All those years apart have not been able to diminish the feelings that Reese has had for Charlie but learning that she’s married was a huge disappointment, to say the least. Charlie starts off being the ”devoted wife” even when it’s been years since her marriage has been stable and her husband, Cameron seems to have become married to his work instead of an active partner in their relationship. But as Cameron continues to neglect his wife, she ends up turning to Reese for comfort.

The story ramps up with the angst and I can’t deny that it was severely gut-wrenching. Throughout almost the entire first part of this duet, we get alternating POVs between Charlie and Reese, which had me leaning towards Reese as the chosen Hero, but there was always this small part of me that was thinking that maybe it would be great to actually get inside Cameron’s head as well. I felt like it wasn’t fair to pass judgment on him when we couldn’t get his side of the story. We get pieces of him through Charlie’s voice and things we learn did have me wondering if there was so much more to Cameron.

After having finished the book, my heart is more confused than ever! I’m not sure who Charlie should end up with and I gotta say I was empathizing with her until she did something that pissed me off towards the latter half of the story. Even though she does feel remorse over what she did afterward, I’m having trouble forgiving her at the moment!

Here are my overall ratings:

Heros: 4.5
Heroine: 4.5
Plot: 5
Angst: 5
Steam: 4.5
Chemistry Between Heros & Heroine: 5

WHAT HE DOESN’T KNOW is currently available! The conclusion, WHAT HE ALWAYS KNEW releases on March 29th. At least the author was kind enough to not make us wait too long to get all the answers to our burning questions, but I have to admit I am dying already to get my hands on the next book!

FREE in Kindle Unlimited
Amazon US: http://amzn.to/2HwSJC8
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2FEFeUo

 

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