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New Release Review: FANNING THE FLAMES by Victoria Dahl (Jackson: Girl’s Night Out #.5)

This book was like Becky-nip. Soooo good! Plus, it’s FREE right now at Amazon and B&N–can’t beat that!

Image courtesy of Apolonia/
Image courtesy of Apolonia/

Fanning the Flames
by Victoria Dahl

I absolutely loved, loved, LOVED this book. First off, the hero and heroine are over forty–yay! The hero is a widower, and he was able to move on without vilifying his first spouse–double yay! And finally, it’s the first in a brand new series–whooo hooo 🙂

I enjoyed the fact that Lauren wasn’t sitting around, bemoaning her man-less state or heaping blame on her ex for ruining her life. In fact, she didn’t want to get into another relationship anytime soon–but it was because she was enjoying her freedom (son away at college, ex-husband obviously not there anymore), not because she was so bitter about her failed relationship. All she (thought) she was looking for was to get an itch scratched and she didn’t mind lusting after a nice looking man in the meantime. But the fact that the man in question was 1) a friend of her ex-husband’s and 2) someone she used to do couple-type things with (which meant she hung out with him when he was married to his wife) made her very resistant to even attempting any kind of actual relationship with him.

Plus, she’s sure she’s way to opinionated, crude, and bossy for a guy who used to be married to someone as sweet and nice as his dead wife. In her opinion, anyway.

Jake–a fire captain who likes to jog around shirtless (let’s all just pause a moment and picture that, shall we? Sigh.)–has been a widower for four years. He’s done some dating–heck, the whole town is eager to get the poor widower matched up to another nice woman–but the whole thing feels…off. His daughter, who’s about to get married, tries to convince him it’s time to “get back in the saddle” (and yeah, it’s just as awkward a scene for him as you imagine it would be). He still tries to resist the idea, however, until he sees Lauren the librarian in a tight black dress. Then all bets are off….

I loved the interactions between Lauren and Jake, every single one of them, even the really awkward one the first time they get together–that one  made my heart cry 🙁 Whether they’re discussing the firemen’s choice of music (bad and loud–the library and firehouse share a building; what Einstein came up with that idea?) or they’re having a more intense kind of encounter, their chemistry is undeniable. Not to mention really, really hot.

My only complaint is that the ending is very abrupt, and not every issue (like Lauren’s ex’s response to their relationship) is addressed. However, it’s the first in the series, so I’m optimistic that we’ll see more of what’s in store for these two in the future. I can’t wait!

Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A

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

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