“You and Barry got something going on I need to know about?” I looked up at Jack and watched his jaw go tight, as he watched Barry walk away.
“Um, no, we’re just friends. He took me for coffee once when I first moved here, and we bump into each other from time to time.”
“Good, keep it that way; I don’t like to share.”
“Share? I’m not sure I’m ready for any type of relationship, Jack.”
“Babe, you may not be ready, but that’s not going to stop me from changing your mind.” He replied smiling, his rough voice washing over me. Damn. My traitorous heart liked hearing that and started racing. My head told me to run, but I stupidly listened to my heart, and I smiled back at him. (I know, I know, it’s that damn smile.)
“Ok, Jack,” I whispered in reply. Jack’s smile turned to a sexy grin and then his eyes dropped to my lips. I sucked in a breath as his head lowered, his lips gently brushing mine. A warm tingle coursed through my body, as he wrapped both arms around me and crushed me to his chest. We were in public, but I didn’t care. Jack deepened the kiss, his hand coming up my back and into my hair, securing me deeper into him. Slowly the kiss ended, and he lets me go. I took a wobbly step back and looked up at him. Jack’s brow moved together in reflection, like he was working something out in his head. Then he smiled and my knees got weak.
“Now that’s more like it, boy.” I turned my head to see Lorraine grinning from ear to ear. My face flushed in embarrassment, and Jack just grunted, grabbed my hand, pulled me towards the door, and then mumbled. “You got that right.”
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*
Jennifer Stewart moved to Gunnison for a fresh start. Little did she know in four short weeks her life would be turned upside down, for better and for worse. Jenn wanted the quiet life, to work at the local newspaper and make new friends. Attracting a serial killer, the local Sheriff and just about every man in the county was not on her agenda but her smart mouth and sharp wit had everyone sitting up and paying attention. I immediately liked Jenn’s character she was tenacious and witty, a girl after my own heart.
Now Jack Gunnison was a sexy, older Alpha character, being the Sheriff was an added bonus. He connected with Jenn right away. Her stubbornness paired with his bossiness made for some fun scenes. I loved the way in which he was so protective of Jenn, and although the independent woman in me should have been cursing him, I couldn’t help but melt every time he took control of the situation and tried his very best to control Jenn, which he soon realised was an impossible feat.
Jack and Jenn were great together. I loved their banter and even though their personalities clashed, they were perfect for each other. I really liked that they were both two strong characters. Their arguments due to both of their stubbornness were comical at times. My only issue of their relationship was the quickness of it. I'm not a great fan of instalove and Jack and Jenn moved at breakneck speed. The bulk of the story spanned over four weeks and that wasn't a lot of time for all that went down. With that being said, I did love Jack and Jenn so I could get over this niggle ;-)
I did guess who the killer was not long before he was revealed, but that didn't ruin my enjoyment of the story, it just wasn’t shrouded in mystery like I thought it would have been. I did like the investigation side and Jenn's journalism shenanigans. The climax happened at 70% so I did worry what would fill the last 30% and to be honest the story lulled until 90% when the action picked up again so I felt the story could have been streamlined better to keep my interest to the end.
I felt the book could have been more refined; it needed polished around the edges in terms of writing and editing. A few times the narrator would 'speak' to me as the reader and I felt that pulled me from the story. The changes in POV was labelled during a chapter, yet not at the beginning of most and therefore it was quite confusing if one chapter ended on Jenn's POV and switched to Jack's at the beginning of the next. It was small details but enough to make me focus on them when I should have been immersed in the story.
I do love my epilogues, the longer the better in most cases but I felt this epilogue didn't read well as it was broken down into small chunks and it disrupted the flow of the story. If one time frame was focused on and Jenn had recalled the last year, I felt that would have worked better. I did question a few of the medical facts (can't help the midwife in me ;-)) some seemed a little farfetched but for the story and Jenn and Jack's luck it was to be expected.
Overall, A Reason to Breathe was an enjoyable story. I really liked the beginning and loved both Jenn and Jack as characters. I enjoyed the mix of mystery, romance and humour. It made a nice change from my usual New Adult reads.
*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*
After her husband dies, and her daughter Bailey leaves for college Jennifer Stewart moves to Colorado to start fresh, and to fulfill her dream of living in the mountains. She gets a job as a journalist, and when there is a murder in town Jenn wants to investigate, and she soon meets Jack Gunnison the local sheriff, and without a doubt sparks fly between these two.
“I’d been dazzled…That man was lethal on more that one part of my body”
“I’m telling you right now; I’m not backing off, you intrigue the hell out of me with your smart mouth, and sweetness”
I’m on the fence when it comes to the storyline, as there were parts that I liked, and other parts not so much. I liked the premise of it. It had suspense, not to heavy, action, romance, sexiness and some twists thrown in. I did enjoy the humor were many times that I was laughing or smiling to myself. I will admit my suspicions on whom I thought was the killer were so completely wrong, and I like that the author was able to do this as I loved to be surprised. The plot is very fast paced, and I did find myself rolling my eyes at a few inconsistencies, and the parts that just didn’t work for me. I mean a lot happens in this town and to Jennifer in a space of a week.
I really like Jack, and apparently so did a lot of other women in the town. Loved that he was very alpha, bossy, over protective, possessive, and a dirty talker. He hadn’t found the right woman until he meets Jennifer there was something about her, something different from the other woman he dated.
"Twenty years, not once in twenty years have I ever met a woman who tied my stomach in knots, and you stomped into my life four days ago, and just the thought of you, Christ… you’re my kryptonite, Jenn… You’re a danger to me, because when you’re around, I can’t see anything else,”
I like Jenn she's feisty, stubborn, sweet and knew what she wanted, but at the same time I found her slightly frustrating as she did some stupid things. Although I felt that there relationship was too insta love I did like it. Jenn and Jack are good together; their relationship was fun as was the banter they shared. They definitely had hot sexy chemistry
"You with me baby, cause there's no turning back after this, no way, once I slip into that sweet heat of yours, you're mine, do you hear me? You. Are. Fucking. Mine."
The secondary character, such as Ben and Gerry, Rosie Lorraine, and Mandy added to the story. I loved that as it’s a small town everyone knows what everyone else doing, also how they all want to help catch the killer.
Overall I like A Reason To Breathe, I did think the plot could have been wrapped up sooner, but despite my issues about some of the aspect of the storyline it was fun romantic read, and after reading the epilogue, which I loved I was left with a big smile on my face. The way things worked out for Jenn and Jack was sweet. I'd definitely read more of C.P Smith work in the future; I could see Bailey getting her own book.
C.P. Smith is a mother of five and resides in Oklahoma. An avid reader with a vivid imagination, Ms. Smith set out to write books for the older reader. She is passionate about romantic suspense and hopes her stories leave you cheering for the good guys as well as inspire those over forty to never give up on love.
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