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Title: Strollers & Stilettos
Series: In Stilettos, #4
Author: Nana Malone
Release Date: October 20, 2014
Genre: Contemporary Romance
What happens when real life gets in the way of Happily Ever After?
Chronic list-making, event planner Jaya Trudeaux Westhorpe envisioned a fairytale ending once she married hotel magnate, Alec Westhorpe—complete with a steamy, extended honeymoon and an eventual family. What she didn’t expect was a baby on their doorstep and a family-phobic husband.
When reformed playboy Alec Danthers Westhorpe married the woman of his dreams, he thought he’d finally found peace. But a long-hidden secret threatens to jeopardize what he holds most dear.
Warning: Sexy, sass talking women will make you laugh, cry and want a pair of killer footwear.
Strollers and Stilettos, the fourth book in Nana Malone’s In Stilettos series, continues the story of Jaya and Alec (from book one, Sexy in Stilettos ) and looks for an answer to the question how is life after the HEA? Does the “H” continue?
The novella works as a standalone, though fans of the series will definitely enjoy a look into the future lives of the heroes and heroines of the previous series books–all three sets play a role in this one.
Strollers takes place six months after Alec and Jaya’s wedding, and things aren’t quite going as planned. Alec, having made some major changes to adjust to their life together, is working far more than Jaya would like and out of town a lot. They’re reduced to stealing moments when they can get them (supply closets will never be seen the same way again!) but neither is feeling quite satisfied. Jaya’s been making offhand comments about starting a family someday, but Alec worries that there’s more of his father in him than he’s ever been willing to admit.
What if he won’t be able to pull off the role of family man either?
When a surprise baby shows up at Alec’s hotel, their lives become even more chaotic. Alec’s determined to get to the bottom of the mystery, even though he’s sure–well, reasonably certain, anyway–mostly–that Alexa’s not his. Jaya, seeing only a child in need, wants to care for the baby while her mother is found. Alec believes CPS is a better choice.
When the foster family she’s placed with appears overburdened, Jaya finally gets her way. But Alec, still searching for the absent mother with a sick feeling in his stomach, refuses to even touch the baby. Is it a sign of things to come? One Jaya would be wise to heed?
The mystery of the baby’s origin is eventually solved, though parts of the drama aren’t quite sufficiently explained. [spoiler]Why exactly Alec doesn’t remember that night, for example. Sure, he was drunk–but how did the baby’s mother know that he wouldn’t remember any of what happened? It seems to have been a key part of her strategy, so you’d think she’d have tried to guarantee it. I thought maybe it would turn out that he’d been given some type of date rape drug to ensure his cluelessness and increase the likelihood he’d pay a bribe, but no mention is made of one. When you find out who she is, her whole plan takes on a fairly cringe-worthy aspect. Because…no.[/spoiler]
Still, there’s a happy ending for everyone involved, and both Jaya and Alec learn some important things about themselves and each other. By the book’s end, the two are back on their path to a lasting HEA.
Rating: 3 1/2 stars / B-
I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
USA Today Bestselling Author Nana Malone’s love of all things romance and adventure started with a tattered romantic suspense she borrowed from her cousin on a sultry summer afternoon in Ghana at a precocious thirteen. She’s been in love with kick butt heroines ever since.
With her overactive imagination, and channeling her inner Buffy, it was only a matter a time before she started creating her own characters. Waiting for her chance at a job as a ninja assassin, Nana meantime works out her drama, passion, and sass with fictional characters every bit as sassy and kick butt as she thinks she is.
Nana is the author of twenty novels. And the books in her series have been on multiple Amazon Kindle and Barnes & Noble bestseller lists as well as the iTunes Breakout Books list and most notably the USA Today Bestseller list.