Brought to you by OBS reviewer Sammy
Perfection isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Stacey Barlow-Barrett has the perfect life-or, at least, the illusion of one. She’s married to the man her parents approved, and she’s making it work. But keeping up appearances is wearing her down. Her husband, Jace, wants to start a family. Her former lover, Mason, is a business associate she can’t cut off, and he twists the knife at every opportunity. Trying to make everyone happy-everyone except herself-has her on the verge of a breakdown. When Jace’s best friend moves in, everything that seemed tenuously tolerable is now completely unbearable, and Stacey realizes something is very wrong in her marriage. Jace is keeping up appearances too, and it’s at Stacey’s expense. Mason is the only one she can turn to for help…if he can forgive her for marrying Jace while the sheets were still warm from their last encounter. And even if he does forgive her, and she does dig her way out of the mess her marriage has become, Stacey may not be ready for what he needs in return: love.
CONTENT WARNING: This book contains some mild m/m encounters, language and violent situations that may make some readers uncomfortable. A Lyrical Press Contemporary Romance. (Goodreads)
This is a super fast read, with some very dark plot lines and others that were more of the fluffy romance type. I enjoyed this book and found it to be an interesting read. The writing was good, the pacing was off in a few places, but mostly spot on.
I gave this a 4 star rating because the story held my interest and had many new things pop up that you didn’t see coming. With that said, here’s why the story didn’t get 5 stars. Stacey seemed very young and immature and was a shock to me that she was turning thirty years old. She missed so many things that were going on right under her nose. But, even more than that the way she “listened” to what her parents wanted was ridiculous. Keep in mind I am not a rich person so I have no idea of how something like this would work in a real life family dynamic, such as she was brought up with.
Jace was unbalanced, vile and just a plain loser. He never did get what was coming to him. Stacey and Justin tried very hard to help him as best as they could. I did feel some pity for Jace because he must have really hated himself and who he was to act the way he did. But overall I would have like to see him get his.
There were many characters in this story, which I thought could be in other stories, so when I got done reading this story I checked and low and behold it is a series. Which is good as I will be going back and reading more by this author.
One thing I do want to say is about the synopsis, it doesn’t convey what the story is about clearly. The first time I read it, it seemed to almost sound like Stacey was having an affair, which is not the case in this book.
I recommend this story to adults, not because of explicit sex or violent scenes those were written very well and on the lighter side. However, what they did to Stacey without her knowing was over the line of a happy romance with some Alpha male punching each other, it was extremely harsh part of the story.
This is the first story by this author I have read, but I am looking forward to reading more of her work.