KALEIDOSCOPE by Kristen Ashley (December 16, 2014; Forever Mass Market; $7.00)
When old friends become new lovers...anything can happen.
Sexy, gifted, and loyal, PI Jacob Decker is a tall, cool drink of perfection who had Emmanuelle Holmes at "hello." His relationship with Emme's best friend kept them apart for years, but things have changed. Now that a case has brought him to Gnaw Bone, Colorado, the road is wide open for Emme and Deck to explore something hotter and deeper than Emme dreamed possible. So why is she sabotaging the best thing that's ever happened to her?
It isn't easy to catch Deck off guard, but Emme does just that when she walks back into his life after nine long years. The curvy brunette had her charms back in the day, but now she's a bona fide knockout . . . and she wants to rekindle their friendship. Deck, however, wants more. Emme's always been the one; she excites Deck's body and mind like no other woman can. But a dark chapter from Emme's past overshadows their future together. Now only Deck can help her turn the page-if she'll let him . . .
My rating: 4.5 beautiful stars!
When I heard Jacob Decker was getting his own story I was all kinds of excited! Deck is a PI. He’s best friends with Chace (Breathe). He’s helping with a case in Gnaw Bone when he runs into a familiar voice. He doesn’t recognize her face from a distance, but he’d know that voice anywhere. Emme. His Emme. Emme was best friends with Deck’s ex. They always had a special bond. But Emme has changed in the past nine years. She looks different, but good. Really good. They start chatting and it’s like no time has past at all. Emme is seeing someone, but it’s not serious. She and Deck start to hang out. Rekindle their friendship.
Emme has had feelings for Jacob Decker for as long as she could remember. When her ex best friend dumped him, she was shocked. Jacob was perfect. Who would do something like that? Emme was mostly sad that she lost touch with this man she cared for so much. But she wants a shot to have Jacob in her life. Whatever way she can have him. Over the last few years, Emme spent some time sick. It made her realize how alone she truly was. She is trying to change that, but the guy she’s with (who adamantly gives her the creeps) isn’t that guy. Jacob Decker, now he’s a whole different story. He’s everything she ever wanted and it scares her to death.
Jacob wants to be more than just friends with Emme. It’s obvious. He wants her. Emme is a little freaked about it. She’s not very experienced and she feels they’re moving fast, but we all know how those alpha men are...
“This is, well... kinda weird.” Understatement! “And fast.” Extreme understatement! “Met you twelve years ago and we’re just gettin’ here. I don’t call that fast. I call that a waste of fuckin’ time. I’m about to rectify.”
Jacob and Emme’s chemistry was explosive! They’ve always had a connection, a spark. Deck just didn’t know what it meant when they first met. 9 years have passed... he finally knows and he needs to pursue it. Nothing will get in his way. Emme doesn’t let anyone get to close, she doesn’t let anyone in. Something traumatic happened to her as a child and she’s never addressed it the right way, which means she’s never got passed it. She has her parents, siblings, and a few friends, but never lets anyone get too close. Jacob has always been the ideal guy. He’s nice, smart, sweet and a great friend. He also dated Emme’s ex-best friend for years. She thought he never saw her like that way, seeing her now, he totally does.
Everything isn’t smooth sailing for this couple. Emme has issues she has to get past. Things she has to face to be able to move on with her life. Jacob means so much to her, she wants to do that. Move on.
I adore friends to lovers stories. It was nice that the two mc’s had a past, a history. Their relationship was beautiful. Emme was the best kind of quirky, she was funny, cute and sweet. Jacob Decker was another amazing KA alpha. He had that tough, protective male side, but he was also very smart, kind and understanding. Jacob Decker... How can a tough alpha man be so damn lovable? I really did adore this guy! I had a few moments of frustration with Emme, but overall she was a likable character. I got her. I got where she was coming from.
This had all the wonderful elements of a CM Kristen Ashely book. Romance, steam, suspense and humor. Although it didn’t compare to books like Lady Luck or Sweet Dreams (IMO) it was better than Jagged for me. As much as I liked the story, I felt a few of their obstacles with her ex, their issues, the big conflict in the story was anti-climactic in a way. This wasn’t a short book necessarily, but compared to some of the earlier CM books, it was a little on the short side. The ending and epilogue felt a little rushed to me. Overall, still a worthy read!
About the author:
Kristen Ashley grew up in Brownsburg, Indiana, and has lived in Denver, Colorado, and the West Country of England. Thus she has been blessed to have friends and family around the globe. Her posse is loopy (to say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write. Kristen was raised in a house with a large and multigenerational family. They lived on a very small farm in a small town in the heartland, and Kristen grew up listening to the strains of Glenn Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon, and Whitesnake. Needless to say, growing up in a house full of music and love was a good way to grow up. And as she keeps growing up, it keeps getting better.
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