New Audiobook Review! HIDE YOUR HEART by Tracey Alvarez (Far North #1)

Hide Your Heart
by Tracey Alvarez

Synopsis:

Love will bring them together. Distrust will tear them apart…

Alexandra Lauren Knight has reinvented herself in the safety of her rural New Zealand hometown to become Lauren Taylor. She’s cut all ties with her past as a former model whose ex-husband turned out to be ruthless in both the boardroom and the bedroom. While Alexandra allowed other’s expectations to propel her into the spotlight, Lauren prefers the safety of anonymity; restoring classic cars with her brother, and snuggling with her four-year-old son.

Nate Fraser, a burned-out photojournalist, plans to fix up the property next door to Lauren and sell it as a celebrity retreat. Always on the move, Nate is only comfortable with short-term assignments and even shorter-term relationships. But it’s not just his buyer’s tight deadline or that the restoration is far beyond his expertise which turns a short-term project into an ordeal. Nate’s plan of travelling the globe is in jeopardy—created by the intensity of his growing feelings for Lauren and her little boy.

As the sparks of passion ignite between them it reawakens Nate’s long forgotten dream of having a home and family. Lauren must find a way to trust Nate not only with her secrets, but with her heart—before her safe haven is exposed and she can no longer hide in the shadows.

 

Review:

Such a sweet read! I loved the characters–Lauren and Nate, naturally, but also Lauren’s brother Todd and sister-in-law Kathy and Drew, of course–he is absolutely adorable, with his monkey-roni and the Superman picture–too cute! 🙂

Lauren’s fighting some pretty big demons–she and her son escaped an abusive relationship and a life she’d never asked for in New York City, seeking refuge in rural New Zealand. Once a world-famous model, she’s dyed her hair, changed her look, and keeps herself apart from everyone but her immediate family. She’s afraid of being recognized, afraid of the paparazzi, and afraid to let anyone outside her family in. She originally befriends Nate somewhat reluctantly in order to get him to change his plans for the property next door, but the more she gets to know him, the more she wants him, even though she knows their relationship can’t last…

Having recently lost his mentor, Nate’s taking a break from his photojournalism to rehab a house he’s bought sight unseen. (Okay–he saw pictures, but they were misleadingly old and hugely inaccurate.) He’s in way over his head, so he enlists the help of a neighbor–a neighbor who’s less than thrilled to notice his new boss’s interest in his sister. Nate’s drawn to Lauren and charmed by his son, but has always believed that his would be a solitary existence–leaving a family to chase work around the globe just wouldn’t be right, after all. That’s what his mentor always told him…didn’t he?

I loved watching Lauren and Nate grow closer, and seeing Drew work his magic on the confirmed bachelor. Tracey’s new series is starting out beautifully–this book doesn’t quite have the same lighthearted feel to it that her Due South series does, but it’s written with her same trademark humor. I loved every minute I spent reading this one, and look forward to book two–which will star Nate’s equally famous (and in at least one aspect, equally infamous) cousin.

The audiobook version added the extra dimension of an awesome New Zealand accent–so fun! The narrator did a nice job of bringing Tracey’s story to life–here’s hoping that the duo will get together in the future to bring more of her books to audio!

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

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Release Day Review and Giveaway! KNOW YOUR HEART by Tracey Alvarez (Far North #2)

Book two in the Far North series is out now!

He is the one she couldn’t remember. She is the one he couldn’t forget…

After being unexpectedly kicked off a movie set, her part given to a younger actress, Savannah Payne flees to her holiday house in Bounty Bay. There, in her little hideaway managed for her by her older cousin, she’ll be able to lick her wounds privately, and prepare for an audition of a lifetime in L.A. Only her cousin has rented the place out to an old friend for the next month. A friend whose knowledge of the law means she has no easy way to evict her stop-the-heart sexy tenant. He tempts her, challenges her, and sees to the heart of who she is with knowing ice-blue eyes.

Glen Cooper has woken up and smelled the decaying roses. Working in his father’s law firm is murder on his creative heart. A month in New Zealand’s sub-tropical Far North without the distraction of family and work is what he needs to finally complete writing the book he’s worked on for years. He hadn’t anticipated the woman who’d haunted his university days arriving on his doorstep, demanding her house back. But the distraction of her close by must stop. With a literary agent’s deadline approaching, he has to ignore his growing attraction to Savannah or his dream may never become a reality.

Something about Glen stirs Savannah’s blood and the slippery memories of a quiet young man she glimpsed in the background of her tumultuous teenage years begin to return. But how can they make the sacrifice love requires when she has one foot out the door—ready to walk away from him a second time?

 

Review:

Another winner!

Know Your Heart is both a enemies-to-lovers story and a lovers with a past story–although for a good chunk of the book, one of the characters doesn’t quite remember the brief past they had together. Still, it happened, and eventually it comes back to her, so it totally counts. 😉

Savannah, the heroine of Know Your Heart, is Nate’s ( Hide Your Heart ) cousin. She’s bought the property that Nate spent his book renovating to use as a retreat between projects, and at the book’s beginning is supposed to be far away from New Zealand, on her latest movie set. But when she’s bumped from the project for an actress twenty-five pounds lighter and five years younger, she decides that her new home is exactly the right place to be.

On teensy, tiny problem: Nate’s rented her home out to an old friend of his who’s trying to finish writing his book. And he’s not willing to leave–not even for the Savannah Payne.

Especially not for the Savannah Payne, when he realizes that she has absolutely no memory of the first time they met–no memory that she’s acknowledging, anyway.

So, yeah. Glen’s got a rental contract and he’s sticking to it. Savannah Payne can just find somewhere else to stay until it’s over.

Except that her “somewhere else” turns out to be in an eyesore of a mobile home, parked the requisite ten feet away from the house, right in plain view of her office window giving Glen an unobstructed view all day long. So begins the “enemies” portion of the book, where Sav does all she can to try to drive him away in her “campaign of passive-aggressive tackiness” (LOL!), as Glen describes it at one point.

Lawn gnomes, pink flamingos, and really loud country music at god-awful early hours of the morning are involved.Through it all, though, they both find themselves fighting an attraction they’re finding harder and harder to deny.

“You know, I liked you a hell of a lot more twenty minutes ago than I do now.”

“Really?”

“Yeah.” She met his gaze. “Because then you weren’t treating me like a porcelain doll who might shatter if you looked at it the wrong way. You’ve gone head-to-head with me, assuming I’m tough enough to take anything you dish out. So go back to the guy who kissed me without worrying I’d flinch or run away.”

Something flared hot and hungry in his gaze. “You like that guy, huh?”

“A little. But don’t get smug about it. You’re insufferable enough as it is.”

Sav and Glen go from enemies to friends to lovers, but through it all they both know that there’s an expiration date on their relationship. Savvy’s just marking time until her next LA project, and Glen’s got to get back to his “real life” where he works in his dad’s law firm.

In other words, there’s no future there.

Or is there…?

I loved Savannah and Glen, both when they were getting along and when they weren’t. Their chemistry was undeniable, and especially during Savvy’s “campaign of terror” there were a whole lot of laugh-out-loud moments. Nate, Lauren, Drew, and Java, the stars of book one, wander in and out of their story as well; though this one could work as a standalone, there’s enough references to book one events to seriously whet your appetite. (Plus, if you have read Hide Your Heart you know just howawwwwww-inducing it is to hear Drew calling Nate “Daddy”. Seriously. So. Sweet.)

Now I’m left anxiously awaiting book three… 😉

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

Release Week special

Hide Your Heart 99-cents buy links:

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Know Your Heart:

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About the author:

Tracey Alvarez lives in the Coolest Little Capital in the World (a.k.a Wellington, New Zealand) where she’s yet to be buried under her to-be-read book pile by Wellington’s infamous wind—her Kindle’s a lifesaver! Married to a wonderfully supportive IT guy, she has two teens who would love to be surgically linked to their electronic devices.

Fuelled by copious amounts of coffee, she’s the author of contemporary romantic fiction set predominantly in New Zealand. Small-towns, close communities, and families are a big part of the heart-warming stories she writes. Oh, and hot, down-to-earth heroes—Kiwi men, in other words.

When she’s not writing, thinking about writing, or procrastinating about writing, Tracey can be found reading sexy books of all romance genres, nibbling on smuggled chocolate bars, or bribing her kids to take over the housework.

 

Know Your Heart Prize Pack

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Release Day Review and Giveaway! HIDE YOUR HEART by Tracey Alvarez (Far North #1)

A new series from Tracey Alvarez! Yay! 🙂

Synopsis:

Love will bring them together. Distrust will tear them apart…

Alexandra Lauren Knight has reinvented herself in the safety of her rural New Zealand hometown to become Lauren Taylor. She’s cut all ties with her past as a former model whose ex-husband turned out to be ruthless in both the boardroom and the bedroom. While Alexandra allowed other’s expectations to propel her into the spotlight, Lauren prefers the safety of anonymity; restoring classic cars with her brother, and snuggling with her four-year-old son.

Nate Fraser, a burned-out photojournalist, plans to fix up the property next door to Lauren and sell it as a celebrity retreat. Always on the move, Nate is only comfortable with short-term assignments and even shorter-term relationships. But it’s not just his buyer’s tight deadline or that the restoration is far beyond his expertise which turns a short-term project into an ordeal. Nate’s plan of travelling the globe is in jeopardy—created by the intensity of his growing feelings for Lauren and her little boy.

As the sparks of passion ignite between them it reawakens Nate’s long forgotten dream of having a home and family. Lauren must find a way to trust Nate not only with her secrets, but with her heart—before her safe haven is exposed and she can no longer hide in the shadows.

 

Review:

Such a sweet read! I loved the characters–Lauren and Nate, naturally, but also Lauren’s brother Todd and sister-in-law Kathy and Drew, of course–he is absolutely adorable, with his monkey-roni and the Superman picture–too cute! 🙂

Lauren’s fighting some pretty big demons–she and her son escaped an abusive relationship and a life she’d never asked for in New York City, seeking refuge in rural New Zealand. Once a world-famous model, she’s dyed her hair, changed her look, and keeps herself apart from everyone but her immediate family. She’s afraid of being recognized, afraid of the paparazzi, and afraid to let anyone outside her family in. She originally befriends Nate somewhat reluctantly in order to get him to change his plans for the property next door, but the more she gets to know him, the more she wants him, even though she knows their relationship can’t last…

Having recently lost his mentor, Nate’s taking a break from his photojournalism to rehab a house he’s bought sight unseen. (Okay–he saw pictures, but they were misleadingly old and hugely inaccurate.) He’s in way over his head, so he enlists the help of a neighbor–a neighbor who’s less than thrilled to notice his new boss’s interest in his sister. Nate’s drawn to Lauren and charmed by his son, but has always believed that his would be a solitary existence–leaving a family to chase work around the globe just wouldn’t be right, after all. That’s what his mentor always told him…didn’t he?

I loved watching Lauren and Nate grow closer, and seeing Drew work his magic on the confirmed bachelor. Tracey’s new series is starting out beautifully–this book doesn’t quite have the same lighthearted feel to it that her Due South series does, but it’s written with her same trademark humor. I loved every minute I spent reading this one, and look forward to book two–which will star Nate’s equally famous (and in at least one aspect, equally infamous) cousin.

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.

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