I became a woman I didn't recognize, someone riddled with jealousy, because they didn't know that—to me—he was much more.
They didn't know about our past.
He'd chosen my school for his son on purpose, because Mack and I, we had unfinished business.
As my friend, Lorelai, so eloquently put it: "Unfinished business between two people who are clearly attracted to each other is like an eternal case of blue balls." And I was suffering in pain from my case.
I was still intensely attracted to Mack. I tried to resist him, immersing myself further into a relationship with someone else just to protect my heart.
Not to mention, getting involved with a parent was strictly against school rules. But seeing Mack day in and day out was breaking me down.
And soon I might be breaking all the rules.
Holy crap, I love Penelope Ward. I swear to you, folks, that no one writes better sexual tension than this woman. That tension—so thick it could choke you—is present in every minute her main characters are on a page together. That’s the mark of a talented romance author, in my humble opinion. (Check out our interview with the romance goddess herself on our sister site.)
The sexual tension in this book is even stronger because Mack and Frankie are already in love. Sure, past circumstances tore them apart and they were separated for years, but that didn’t change the way they felt about each other.
“He’ll be okay. We’ll take care of him. Even when he’s having a bad day, we’ll do our best to make him feel safe.”
Frankie is one of the best heroines I’ve read in awhile. She’s smart, funny, quirky, a little weird, and passionate about everything she does. Mack’s her perfect counterpart. They bring out the best—and sometimes the worst—in each other. She needs a little of his outward strength and confidence, and he needs a little of her quiet, inner strength and emotional peace. Together they have balance.
We all have that one person. It’s not necessarily someone we end up with. But it’s that person who, for whatever reason, gets under your skin and stays there. You can move on, but parts of them are always with you. Sometimes, if things never had a chance to develop, if feelings are still unresolved, that person becomes an even more powerful force in your life, even in absentia.
I’ll be honest with you, folks. I hate high-angst books, and I HATE love triangles. If this storyline had been left in any other author’s hands, I probably would’ve hated it. But because it’s Penelope Ward, the angst and the love triangle were handled in a way that didn’t make me want to throw my Kindle against the wall in rage. Everything worked perfectly, beautifully.
(And seriously, is there anything hotter than a dad who is completely devoted to his kid and willing to do whatever it takes to be the best father possible? That’s the kind of dad Mack is. He’s prime book boyfriend material if I’ve ever seen it.)
Long-story-short: Penelope Ward is an automatic one-click for me. I don’t read the blurbs, I don’t care about the covers, I don’t download samples. And I haven’t been let down yet.
Does this book contribute to or help crush the romance stigma?
Crushes it! No rehab needed. This one’s clean and sober.
Other reading suggestions
For another sexy read about a hot, devoted single dad, try Egomaniac by Vi Keeland. For another great second-chance romance, try Stepbrother Dearest by Penelope Ward, Truly, Madly, Yours by Rachel Gibson or For You by Kristen Ashley.