Friday, June 3, 2016

Damaged by Jessica Blake

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Christmastime in cozy Crystal Brook, North Carolina is for tree trimming and family dinners, not for falling in love. Besides, Gwen Lawrence doesn’t believe in love. Not since her heart was broken a year ago back in New York. She’s yet to recover and finds that love only taunts and teases but never fully delivers. So she keeps herself busy in a whirlwind of lattes and paperbacks via her new business – a hometown bookstore coffee shop – and avoids all chances of love… until Jason Adler arrives in town.
Jason, a billionaire real estate mogul, once did believe in love – until his wife divorced him out of the blue. No longer believing in a happily ever after, he is content to use women for one night stands and weekend flings. Until he meets his match in the headstrong, deceptively aloof Gwen, who isn’t impressed with what’s in his pocket or his pants. An unusual set of circumstances find them spending Christmas week under the same roof – Gwen’s parent’s house – and the holiday sparks start flying.
In the midst of a family holiday, can a Christmas miracle occur? Or will Santa only deliver heartbreak once again?

I liked this story. It was kind of unique. The main characters were really different. I loved Jason. He was smart, strong, sensitive and sexy. We meet him fresh off a divorce and he is going to spend Christmas holidays with one of his employees. On this vacation he meets her sister Gwen. He is immediately taken with her.
I love when men know what they want, even if they are not sure its right, they know it and they go for it. Well Jason goes for it. He propositions Gwen with in a few days of being there with promises of unbridled sex with no strings attached.
Women by nature may be less impulsive so Gwen, no matter how much she wants to jump his bones, does not jump on the opportunity.
The cat and mouse game that follows is hot and cold. He has misgivings because he sees what a strong and wonderful family she comes from and he is trying to balance his carnal desires for her, with the growing affection he has for her. So he struggles with himself.
She had a breakup and doesn't trust men anymore, so she struggles with her attraction to him and the fear of being hurt again.
Gwen, had a drive and ambition that I loved. She was so invested in her business that she slept there sometimes. That's dedication. I love strong female characters. It gives me hope that the days of Disney princesses needing rescuing are behind us. We as women are capable of being the heroes that we need.
The reason for the four and not five stars? Well, I loved Jason, but Gwen's character could have been stronger, loved her business ambition, but personally she was whiny and exaggerated. I know we all handle break ups differently but nothing in the book suggests that her previous break up was anything  so traumatic that it would instill a deep, debilitating fear of intimacy. So I personally did not understand her strong aversion to him. She is closed off  and kind of a bitch. Not only to Jason, but to her family as well. A lot of times, her outbursts to her family is not warranted, I didn't like the way she treated her parents. They were magnificent. That was one thing that confused me. Another thing confused me was the sister. In the book it is mentioned several times the pensive or almost hurt expression on her sisters face. I'm thinking maybe we will get that back story in a book two.
All in all I liked the story and Jason's character is strong enough to keep the book enjoyable, also her grandparents are funny and the town she lives in seems delightful, for that I give this book four beautifully damaged stars. 

Jessica Blake is the author of the hot alpha billionaire romance series, The Billionaire Prisoner, along with her friend Alice Ward.
Since she was a young college girl reading and writing romance was what she loved the most and she enjoys entertaining her fans through her books.
Living in Miami, she likes to sit by the pool with her laptop and write her next hot romance.
However, when she is not reading or writing romance, she also enjoys being with her beautiful family.

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