Monday, March 31, 2014

RIPPLE EFFECT ROMANCE BLOG TOUR: REVIEW & GIVEAWAY: SILVER LININGS by Kaylee Baldwin




Title: Silver Linings
Series: The Ripple Effect Romance Novella Series, #2
Author: Kaylee Baldwin
Publisher: HEA Publishing
Publication Date: March 24, 2014
Genre: Romance
Reviewed by: Angie Edwards
Source: Received Review Copy for Blog Tour
My rating: 4/5

SUMMARY

Drew Westfall wants nothing more than to forget what he had to do in the name of "smart" business. Cutting off all ties with his parents—including handing over the entire contents of his trust fund to a charity—he takes off for Bridger, Colorado where his best friend has an extra room for him. It doesn't take long for him to realize that his business degree won’t do him much good in a town as small as Bridger, but he's broke and has nowhere else to go.

Eden Torresi has every reason to wallow. Not only did she have to sell her house to pay for her mother’s medical expenses, but she had to drop out of school and is in a relationship with a guy unwilling to commit. But Eden isn't the wallowing type. Instead, she spends most of her time taking care of the seniors at Silver Linings Assisted Living. When she learns that her boyfriend's new roommate is down on his luck, she reaches out to offer what help she can. But the more time they spend together, the more complicated things get, especially when the seniors of Silver Linings decide to play matchmaker.




REVIEW

The minute I finished Home Matters, the first book in this set of romance novellas, I couldn’t wait to get started on Silver Linings! I was enthralled by the first book, and I just knew the second book was going to be as fantastic. Drew, a character we meet briefly in Home Matters, unexpectedly finds himself in a small town he hates on arrival. To him it seems the town dislikes him as much as he dislikes being there. What he doesn’t count on when he literally stumbles into Silver Linings, is falling in love with a girl who offers help to others as much as she needs it for herself. The catch? She is already in a relationship with his best friend, Jace.

I enjoyed this short story for many reasons. One reason is that Drew and Eden doesn’t fall in love at first sight. It’s more a progressive kind of falling in love. Very little focus is placed on their physical appearance, and their attraction to each other rather stems from how they react to each other, what they learn from each other, and how they connect on an emotional level by being supportive. In fact, there are very little physical displays of affection between them. That’s how I like my romance novels: more emotional intimacy and connection, and less kissing and...well, you know what follows once the hormones kick in.

***SPOILER ALERT***

The one tiny thing that bugged me a little is the fact that Eden leaves Jace once she realizes she’s in love with Drew. What I mean to say is that she was relatively content with how things were between her and Jace, but once she falls in love with Drew, suddenly the flaws in her relationship with Jace are magnified. I would’ve felt better had she fallen in love with Drew long after she had broken up with Jace instead of breaking up with him, and finding fault in their relationship, because she realizes that she’s actually in love with Drew. This bugged me because in the real world I take issue with people who only end problematic relationships they’re involved in once they already have their sights set on, or are involved with, someone else, instead of ending said relationship BEFORE meeting or getting involved with their next love-interest.

***END OF SPOILER***

Despite my personal opinion on such matters, I still had fun reading this novella, and finished it in one afternoon. I didn’t particularly bond with any of the characters, but I had my favorites. Wanda and Maud’s distinct personalities stood out, and they shined in their roles as matchmakers. The writing is flawless, and the pacing is perfect. Overall this is a feel-good romance with a great ending, and I’m looking forward to reading Jace’s story in the third book titled, Righting a Wrong.




EXCERPT

Eden opened the door and hopped out. “I’ll be just a second, if you want to stay out here.”

          Drew could tell a non-invitation when he heard one, so he nodded. He did get out of the car—where somehow it was less cold—and stomped his feet a few times while she walked up the stairs, a firm grip on the rail. She disappeared through the door.  A few minutes later, she came out, the worry lines back on her face. Instinctively, he moved closer, but before he could say anything, her heel slipped out from under her and she slid down several stairs. He rushed over to stop her fall, catching her just before she fell down the last three steps.
          “Are you okay?” Drew’s heart pounded with adrenaline.

          She moaned and used the railing and his hand to pull herself up to standing. “Guess I should have scraped and salted those this morning.”

          “Your landlord doesn’t do it?”

          She let out a short, humorless laugh. “No.” He noticed her limping when they started toward the car and he slid his arm around her waist.

          “Do you need to go get that looked at? Did you break something?”

          “No. I just twisted my knee. It’ll be okay. This happens like once a week.”

          Drew stopped walking and stared at her in disbelief. Once a week?

          “I’m fine. Really. But we’ve got to go before it gets too late. Thank you, though.” She glanced up at him and Drew’s breath caught in his throat. The sunlight kissed her pale hair, skin, and eyes, reminding Drew once again of an angel. She was so beautiful. So kind. And so taken.

          He forced himself to step back and pretended nothing weird had just happened by running a hand through hair still slick with the gel he’d put in it after his shower. He discreetly wiped gel off onto his pants. “So, Silver Linings?”

          “Yes. Silver Linings.” She wouldn’t meet his eyes, and he didn’t think it was his imagination that she sounded breathless too.


PURCHASE LINKS



ABOUT the AUTHOR


Kaylee Baldwin grew up in Mesa, Arizona, and graduated from Arizona State University with a degree in English literature. She currently lives in southern Arizona with her husband, Jeremy, and their three children. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, starting new craft projects, and spending time with her family.


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