More Than Anything
A Magnolia Beach Novel, Book #3
By Kimberly Lang
Author’s Website: www.BooksByKimberly.com
The small, waterfront town of Magnolia Beach, Alabama, gets its fair share of tourists breezing in and out, but one handsome visitor might just be tempted to stay.
Running the Bay Breeze marina means Shelby Tanner is used to fielding strange requests from vacationers, but she is still less than amused when she gets a call in the middle of the night to rescue a boat stranded nearby. The clueless sailor is infuriatingly inexperienced—yet also frustratingly attractive.
Architect Declan Hyde only planned on stopping in Alabama briefly on his move from Chicago to Miami, but Magnolia Beach is proving to be more captivating than he imagined. For one thing, there’s the sweet, Southern charm. For another, there’s the stunning tomboy who rescued him from the bay and keeps invading his thoughts.
As the time draws near for Declan to weigh anchor, he begins to realize that Shelby may have saved more than his boat that night—and leaving Magnolia Beach might set his lonely heart permanently adrift.
As I continue on this journey I like to call “living life in Magnolia Beach”, I am continually amazed by the writing of Kimberly Lang. She never fails to pull me in to the story wholeheartedly. In this third book of the Magnolia Beach Series, More Than Anything totally captivated me. I found the characters endearing, relatable and just like everyday folk.
I love one of the first scenes where the Lady Jane (boat that Declan is living on) is adrift and Shelby is required to go out and rescue the boat as well as Declan:
“Sir, is there something wrong with your boat?”
“No, not that I know of.”
“Then why don’t you just come back?” she said carefully.
He laughed. He actually laughed, causing Shelby’s hand to curl into a fist.
“That would make sense, except I don’t know how. I’ve never driven a boat before. I wouldn’t know where to begin.”
The number of wrong things in those sentences made Shelby’s head hurt. He’d been living on that boat for six freakin’ weeks.
And he didn’t know who to operate it.
Who the hell lives on a boat when they don’t know how —
She took a deep breath to calm herself….
Oh Lord, deliver me from idiots.
That scene had me loving this book – at 2% in! And trust me – there is more to this scene that kept me entertained than this, but I should let you read it for yourself. I knew this was going to be a fun and engaging read. And I would just love both Shelby and Declan. I am happy to report that I was right!
Shelby has her dreams and frustrations, mainly (as we learn later on) as a result of lack of communication with her family and the fact that the townsfolks are holding on to an old vision of Shelby. Shelby is living at the Bay Breeze Marina, running the place. Deep down….she thinks the townsfolks and her family think she may not be up for the job. She is out to prove them wrong, and then some.
Shelby was more than a little fed up with this town and everyone in it. She could handle – and understand – the fact she’d probably never outlive the “sweet, but not too bright” label she’d earned as a kid, but jeez, she was dyslexic, not stupid.
I found the slow and steady love story component of this book very moving and realistic. Given the auspicious meeting of Shelby and Declan, slow and steady was the ONLY way a relationship between the two of them could come about. When the relationship began to get more intense, I felt sad for Shelby because she was going into it knowing it would end…and she kept saying that was okay. I am not sure I bought that. Declan kept up with his self talk that he was moving to Miami and going to love his new life. This journey that he was on certainly showed him that it is not where you live or what you strive for, but whom you are with that makes this life enjoyable and with meaning.
I got more than one chuckle when Shelby interacted with the “knuckle-headed” over protective males in her family. But it was also endearing to see a family care for one another so whole heartedly. Best not forget man’s best friend…. Cupid… a big, shaggy dog that was a constant companion to Shelby as she looked after the marina.
I quite enjoyed how Declan and Shelby each helped the other realize that their personal dreams and goals could be achieved, just with a little help from those they love, that one does not have to do everything by themselves. Certainly a lesson one should carry into the land of real life as well.
Oh…did I forget to mention the hot, steamy, sexy parts of the book? Well, needless to say, they were hot, steamy and sexy. The chemistry between Shelby and Declan was definitely there. Oh la la ☺.
All in all, a very engaging, sexy, steamy, funny and overall entertaining continuation of the Magnolia Beach series. Thank you Kimberly Lang.
*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*