Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Take My Breath Away by Christie Ridgway

Title: Take My Breath Away
Author: Christie Ridgway
My Rating: A-

Genre: Contemporary Romance 
Series: Cabin Fever #1
Main Characters: Poppy and Ryan
Release Date: May 2014
Publisher: Harlequin
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
From USA TODAY bestselling author Christie Ridgway comes a sparkling new series set in the California mountains, where Hollywood glamour meets rustic charm, and the sparks fly among the unlikeliest of couples… 

Poppy Walker has a plan to restore the family resort, and she's sticking to it. So when a good-looking guy with plenty of cash rents one of her half-repaired vacation cabins, she figures he's just what the handyman ordered. But when a late-winter storm blows through, it takes down some trees, her roof and then…her self-control. Even though she's been burned before by a wealthy passer-through, she can't stay away from the brooding but gorgeous stranger in the bungalow next door. 

Former teen idol turned Hollywood exec Ryan Hamilton wants a private place in which to endure his very personal heartbreak. Finally, at this rustic mountain cabin, he has all the seclusion one man could want—until sparks begin to fly with his sexy, formerly chilly landlady. By the time the weather dies down, they're both hot, bothered and certain they're still wrong for each other. But there's no telling how they'll face the new storm brewing on the horizon…
My Review:
I definitely enjoy a feel-good contemporary romance and this one definitely worked for me in that regard. The book was really good, but I think part of the reason I liked it so much was the setting. The first half of the book takes place in a group of old, tiny resort mountain cabins that completely captured my imagination. I'm especially excited about this because it looks like the entire series is going to be built around the family refurbishing these old little rental cabins. I love both that idea and the mountain ambience. I'm a mountain girl and this hits all my reader hot-buttons for what I enjoy in setting. 

But there is so much more to the story...Poppy and Ryan. I LOVED these two characters. 

Poppy is one of four siblings who grew up in this tiny mountain town. She's the optimistic one...the dreamer. She's also the one who's the first to get her dreams smashed because she trusts too readily and too easily. She's the one in the family who thinks they can fix the cabins to be worth something...none of her 3 siblings agree. Right off the bat, I loved her. She's determined. Her 5 yo son is gone for 10 days. She plans to use every minute of those days working on the cabins to fix them up...and is fully planning to do it all on her own to prove that it can be done. This girl has gumption and grit.

Then there's Ryan...the infamous hollywood A-lister. Throughout much of the book, it's a mystery as to exactly what's happened in previous March's to make it such an awful month for him. But he's in the mountains hiding out and Poppy's abandoned cabins seem like the perfect escape until they literally begin to crash down around them. Ryan is definitely hiding something and at first I just assumed that it was some sort of shallow hollywood-driven infamous occurrence, but as the details of his past are revealed, I fell even more and more in love with him. This guy...*gah* my heart hurt for him.

The story is set up fabulously. It starts completely focused around Poppy and Ryan and as more of their story is revealed, more characters become important to the story so that by the time the end rolls around, I was fully invested with about 12-15 character lives in this small town. I loved that about it. There's also a side romance between Linus and Charlie that at first I got annoyed about because it was taking time on the page away from Poppy and Ryan, but as we delved further into it, I became just as emotionally invested with them as I did the MC's. Their story is also told in a rather inventive way with flashbacks told via script from the summer before. It took some getting used to but then I loved it.

Overall, it was a great start to this new series and I am definitely looking forward to more stories about this family. I'm excited!

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

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