Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The Day He Kissed Her by Juliana Stone

Title: The Day He Kissed Her
Author: Juliana Stone
My Rating: B+

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: The Bad Boys of Crystal Lake #3
Main Characters: Mac and Lily
Release Date: April 2014
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:

He can’t wait to leave…

Mac Draper finally has everything he’s always wanted: An amazing career. A New York City apartment. He’s this close to being free of his past forever. But a mind-blowing encounter with the sexy yet tough-as-nails Lily St. Clare has him delaying his plans to put Crystal Lake in his rearview mirror for good.

She’s finally found a place to stay…

For Lily St. Clare the charming small town of Crystal Lake is her haven – a place she can hide from her famous, back-stabbing family. It’s as close to happy as she’s ever been. Until an unforgettable night with tall, dark and tortured Mac Draper gives her a glimpse of what true happiness feels like.

Lily can’t help but melt a little under the sizzling heat of Mac’s touch. But Mac’s scars run deep, and Lily’s afraid she may be falling for the one man who can never return her feelings...

My Review:

While this is an extremely sexy, hot book to read just because the chemistry between Mac and Lily is sizzling, it's also a difficult book to read because both of these characters are so mentally wounded. So, yes, there is a lot of angst in this book. 

Most of the angst came from Mac, who's back in Crystal Lake for the summer to help out his best friends, which were the only happy thing about his childhood. Mac grew up in an abusive home and now his father is in prison, but Mac still suffers from that abuse. He's borderline alcoholic (maybe more than borderline with his family history) and has issues with his temper. He accepted a long time ago that all that combined meant that he could never have a real relationship and family. Mac is a charmer with fantastic looks. As a result, he gets lots of women, but is very upfront with them about the fact that his time with them will go nowhere besides their satisfaction in bed. 

It's the same with Lily and she seems like the perfect match to him because she has just as much emotional baggage and isn't looking for anything deeper either. Well, you know that's never going to fly long-term in a romance novel. When two characters have this much in common and incredible chemistry, their emotions get involved whether they want them to or not. Everything between them in the book was good. I really enjoyed both their characters and the emotional angst they both felt at the build-up of things they didn't want. 

Minor, niggling things about the book that I wish were changed. Lily is the heroine's name; Lila is Mac's mom's name...confusing much!?!? Then there were hints that Lily's background rivaled Mac's in the trauma it left her with, but besides a visit from her sister that was basically blown off in the story, it was just referenced to. That would have been a great thing to have explored more for depth of Lily's character development. And I'm not sure I quite believe the resolution for Mac's drinking issues. 

But even with those things, I still thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It was entertaining and literally sizzled with the chemistry between the two characters. I did love them together and how much they simply fit each other so completely. There were little things like how much more settled that Mac felt in Lily's presence that just made me happy as a reader. The build-up of their relationship was really well-done and I like how the author executed that part of the story. Also...huge plus to the story...moments between Mac and his nephew Liam were very sweet. Again, this is a little thing that could have been developed just a tiny bit further and it would have helped to make this book outstanding, not just really good. 

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

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