Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Taken with You by Shannon Stacey

Title: Taken with You
Author: Shannon Stacey
My Rating: A

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Kowalski Family #8
Main Characters: Hailey and Matt
Release Date: April 2014
Publisher: Carina
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Hailey Genest has seen most of her friends marry and have babies, and she's happy for them, but it was a lot easier before she hit forty. She's spent her entire life in Whitford, Maine, and if she hasn't found her Prince Charming by now, she has to accept she's probably not going to. When a new friend suggests they go on an adventure and embrace being single, Hailey agrees.

Surviving in the woods is game warden Matt Barnett's idea of a relaxing vacation. But when he meets two women in need of help, he leads them back to safety - a task that proves more fun than expected, thanks to a certain hot blonde. He can't resist pushing her buttons, even though she's made it clear that the rugged, outdoorsy type just isn't for her.

Hailey is glad to see the back of her tempting-tour-guide-slash-pain-in-the-ass. When he shows up in her life again, she's determined to avoid him, no matter how good he looks in his uniform. But that's easier said than done in Whitford, especially when he's renting the house right next door...

My Review:
Yay...a new Kowalski book, even if it doesn't feature a Kowalski family member. And that's totally okay because this book was so good. I really, really loved it AND we did get to see glimpses of a lot of the Kowalski clan so it was all good. 

The book starts out with Hailey out in the woods, simply miserable, with her friend. Hailey is NOT an outdoor girl...something that's pointed out right from the start. They are supposed to be on a group adventure and because of blisters, quickly get separated from their group and lost. That's where Matt comes in. Matt is a game warden, but when he finds the girls, he's actually on the last day of his two week vacation. He looks and smells like he's been in the woods for two weeks and Hailey is NOT impressed. Neither is Matt with her. He made the mistake of dating a girly girl before and that just won't work with his outdoorsy lifestyle. 

Neither Hailey nor Matt can see things working between them, even with their incredible chemistry. They are both very upfront about their differing needs from a relationship, but as things progress and they become friends, it becomes harder and harder to resist that draw to each other. 

I liked this book just because it showed how much about relationships...any relationship...is about compromise. You do things with your significant other because it makes them happy and if you truly care about them...you want them to be happy. It was a great "moral to the story" kind of book and I love books that have a message like that. 

And like any of Shannon Stacey's books, this one featured tons of great characters, great interactions, and beautiful scenery. I loved the outdoor scenes. I enjoyed Matt's dog, Bear, and how he reacted to Hailey. I liked Hailey's girly moments and giggled through a lot of them. 

Shannon Stacey definitely tops my list for contemporary romances that I like to read to escape and enjoy some happy time to myself. This is right at the top of my list for one of my favorites for her. I don't think any of them will ever replace Exclusively Youres in my heart, but this one comes darn close. I loved it!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

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