Monday, 20 April 2015

Book Blog Stop, Review & Giveaway: Crushed by Lauren Layne.


Redemption # 2
By: Lauren Layne
Releasing April 14th, 2015
Loveswept: Flirt 


Redemption Series

Lauren Layne’s latest novel about the healing power of redemption tells the story of a crush gone wickedly wrong, proving that what you want isn’t always what you need.

Growing up in New York, Michael St. Claire never expected to spend his twenties wearing cowboy boots. But that was before he learned about his real father, a total stranger with a family in Cedar Grove, Texas. Once in the Lone Star State, Michael meets Kristin Bellamy, who is exquisitely refined and everything Michael always thought he wanted in a woman. The only problem is that Kristin is dating Michael’s new half-brother, Devon.

Kristin’s mouthy, curvy sister Chloe has always been in love with Devon Patterson. So when Michael offers to help Chloe break up Devon and Kristin, Chloe agrees to a deal that seems too good to be true. Before long, Chloe finally gets her man, only to make a startling discovery: She no longer wants the guy she had to fight for—she wants the one who stood by her side.

After all he and Chloe have been through, Michael swears he’s damaged goods. Can Chloe convince him that love is 
worth the risk?

I haven't read Broken, the first book in the Redemption series so was slightly concerned that I may need to do that first to fully appreciate and enjoy Crushed. I needed not to have worried because it quickly became apparent that this is a standalone novel, leaving me with a yearning to now read Olivia's story too.

Crushed is so much fun, keeping me entertained throughout the whole book. I was kept on my toes too, as my brain tried to decipher exactly which directions Michael, Devon, Chloe and Kristin were heading. There is plenty to keep us turning the page as unrequited love, love triangles and sibling rivalry are just three elements that play a part in this story based in Cedar Grove, Texas.

Michael abruptly left his old life in Manhattan to move down to Cedar Grove in search of his biological father. To make ends meet, he works as a tennis pro at the Cambridge Country Club where the rich cougars are looking for far more than coaching from their tennis instructor! Although still hurt from his previous relationship, Michael can have any woman he wants but intimately only one ends up turning his head.

Kristin is the epitome of a modern day princess. Stunningly beautiful, she fills her day full of pretentious activities when she's not at college – not that she takes her studies seriously. She intends to marry someone with an equally impressive pedigree and bank account and hopes that Devon is the guy to fulfill her dreams?

Devon was once a geeky, spotty teenager with crooked teeth until he had treatment to fix his looks. Now he's a popular golden boy with a trophy girlfriend. He's just graduated college, but his future plans don't fit with the expectation of his family or girlfriend – he only shared that tiny nugget of information with his best friend Chloe.

Chloe is a breath of fresh air. She doesn't fit into any stereotypes, she's just herself – smart and confident, although tries to brush aside her insecurities about her weight. After all, anyone can look fat next to Kristin, can't they? Chloe is happy with her trademark masses of unruly curly hair. She's not entirely immune to peer pressure, especially when it comes to transforming herself to attract the attention of the guy she's in love with.

This is a fast paced, laugh out loud funny and well written story. There's a lot happening to keep you engaged within the plot, but not overwhelmingly so. It's intriguing to witness the protagonists interacting with one another and the author does a fabulous job at building the sexual tension between them drip by drip - generating heat, but not so much sizzle, which is totally fine within the context of the story line. There is an unexpected twist in the end, readers of Broken may foresee? Overall a humorous, light read, with dialogue full of playful banter and a superb introduction to a new author for me.

4½ Stars

***arc generously provided by Random House Publishing via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.***

Link to Follow Tour: Here 

Lauren Layne is the USA Today Bestselling author of contemporary romance.

Prior to becoming an author, Lauren worked in e-commerce and web-marketing. In 2011, she and her husband moved from Seattle to New York City, where Lauren decided to pursue a full-time writing career. It took six months to get her first book deal (despite ardent assurances to her husband that it would only take three). Since then, Lauren's gone on to publish ten books, including the bestselling Stiletto series, with several more on the way in 2015.
Lauren currently lives in Chicago with her husband and spoiled Pomeranian. When not writing, you'll find her at happy hour, running at a doggedly slow pace, or trying to straighten her naturally curly hair.
Author Links: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Rafflecopter Giveaway ($25.00 eGift Card to Choice Book Seller, Loveswept Mug & Nail Polish)

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