Book Review, Favorites, Romance Review

ARC Review: Truly, Madly, Deeply by Erika Kelly

What’s the worst thing that can happen to a single dad trying to avoid temptation? Crossing paths with the sexy runaway bride who’s looking to get as far away from her ex as possible.

When runaway bride Grace Giordano needs somewhere to regroup, groomsman Jaime Dupree offers her a guest house on his ranch. It’s no skin off his nose—she’s only in town a few days. Besides, between his daughter and his professional hockey team, he’s got his hands full. Surely, their paths won’t cross.

But when Grace gets the opportunity to run a food truck at the town’s annual music festival, she decides to stay all summer long. The singing baker’s a hit—at the festival and on the ranch.

Jaime might want to focus on his kid and his team, but the singing baker proves to be a mighty big distraction.

One he’s not sure he can resist.

This story was so much fun to read. I liked Grace immediately and admired her strength. She walked out on her wedding to her childhood sweetheart just minutes before it was supposed to begin. A lot of brides would have felt pressured to go through with it anyway but she discovered what he’d done and washed her hands of him just about instantly. She walked out the door with no plan and no safety net, but the unknown didn’t deter her one bit. She knows she deserves better than Ian and refused to settle.

Jaime is the groomsman sent to find the missing bride but when he finds her, he’s totally sympathetic to her predicament and helps her escape. In fact, he takes her on the plane with him, moving her from Rhode Island all the way to his ranch in Wyoming and gives her a place to stay. She quickly falls in love with the freedom to do as she pleases and starts questioning her place in the family business. Soon, she’s found her one true passion again and is living her dream, thanks to Jaime. Grace knows it’s crazy to want him so badly when she was about to marry Ian days ago, but Jaime Dupree is everything she never knew she needed and more.

Grace is just about perfect as far as Jaime’s concerned so the feeling is definitely mutual, however the broody rancher can’t let himself be happy. He has a complicated past that wears on him every minute of every day. His daughter Kinny is his saving grace because she’s the only hoy he’ll allow himself to feel. Even a decade after that fateful night, Jaime can’t forgive himself or let go of the crippling guilt that controls not just his own life but also his daughter’s as well.

Jaime wants Grace but he can’t give her the happily ever after she deserves. Grace says he’s wrong; he can be what she needs, he’s just afraid to free himself from the prison he’s constructed. She’s torn between her old life on the east coast and the endless possibilities in Wyoming since Jaime seems stuck in his ways. It would be crazy to uproot her entire life and leave her family if he doesn’t give her a reason to stay, but he’s lived with this burden his entire adult life, so getting rid of it won’t be easy. I loved everything about Grace and Jaime’s story, from the fun cast of characters to the banter between them. These two are super steamy together but also sweet and real. This is a book I’ll definitely read again. I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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