Tuesday, July 24, 2012

All Summer Long by Susan Mallery

Title: All Summer Long
Author: Susan Mallery
My Rating: A

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Fool's Gold #9
Main Characters: Clay and Charlie
Release Date: July 2012
ISBN: 978-0373776948
Publisher: Harlequin
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Can a summer fling turn into love that lasts a lifetime?
Former underwear model turned entrepreneur Clay Stryker has loved, tragically lost and vowed that he'll never risk his heart again. After making his fortune, the youngest of the rugged Stryker brothers returns to Fool's Gold, California, to put down roots on a ranch of his own. But he's frustrated to discover that even in his hometown, people see him only for his world-famous...assets.
Firefighter Chantal (Charlie) Dixon grew up an ugly duckling beside her delicately beautiful mother, a feeling reinforced long ago by a man who left soul-deep scars. Now she has good friends, a solid job and the itch to start a family-yet she can't move toward the future while she's haunted by painful memories.
Clay finds an unexpected ally, and unexpected temptation, in tomboyish Charlie, the only person who sees beyond his dazzling good looks to the real man beneath. But when Charlie comes to him with an indecent proposal, will they be able to overcome their pasts and find a love that lasts beyond one incredible summer?

My Review:

Ever since Summer Nights, I've been dying for Charlie's book and it lived up to all my expectations. I loved Charlie and Clay's story...OMG, *sigh*...so sweet and romantic!!!

I have never known what to expect from Charlie's story. She's a muscular, non-girly firefighter who's 5'10" tall. She doesn't have a feminine bone in her body. She's also completely straightforward and honest to a tee. But in Summer Nights, we learned the "why" for a lot of this. She was raped as a freshman in college and then blamed by everyone from the police to her mother that it was her own fault. She's never been intimate with a man since. She realizes that's an issue and HATES that she's afraid. She also wants to have kids and wants to be able to raise them as a whole person so she knows that she has to confront those fears.

Clay is a model...famous for his really incredibly hot butt. But he's retired now and has come home to join his family in Fool's Gold. He's trying to get taken more seriously and has plans for a business out on the family ranch. He also has a bit of his own tragic history. He was married and desperately in love with his wife (who was 14 yrs older than him and hated models), but she died suddenly in a car accident. He's accepted that he'll never love again.

These are two wonderful characters who deserve some happiness. They come together first out of friendship and things develop really incredibly slowly out of that. Yes, they are sexually involved, but it's completely as friends...nothing else, for a long while. I loved how their emotions developed. It was really incredibly written and I really enjoyed the two of them together. They're friends and they give each other sass like friends do. It's a nice, easy, fun relationship and no one is more surprised to find that it's more than each of them. This book was so good!!

And, as always, we got the beauty and fun of the small town of Fool's Gold. Seriously, can I move there?? I love this little town with all it's quirks. In this book, we got to add Charlie's mother...oh my. She is a character...totally self-absorbed prima ballerina, but now Fool's Gold is her home too. And I've really loved getting to know the Stryker family. I cannot wait for Evie's story. How can you not feel for this shunned Stryker?? She's going to have such an amazing story and I've loved Dante's wit and sarcasm ever since he was introduced as Rafe's lawyer and partner. It's going to be another fabulous book!!!
 I received a complementary copy of this book in return for an honest review.


Shannon Horton said...

All Summer Long by Susan Mallery sounds like the perfect follow up to all 3 books this summer. Can't wait to get started at Midnight!

Melissa said...

I also really loved this book!! There is something about the Stryker boys that just makes you fall in love!!
Great review on another great one from Susan!!
Rah Rah Yee Haw!!

Blessed x3 said...

I love Fool's Gold! I love how All Summer Long starts out! Summer Nights is a great book & this is a great book, too!! Charlie is strong. When your only option is to be strong, then you have to be strong. I know what it is like to be strong. My daughter is disabled & has been since she was 2. I am glad Susan Mallery wrote about a strong woman we can look up to.