Author: Claudia Connor
Title: "Worth it all"
Book 3 in series The McKinney brothers
Main characters: Jake "JT" McKinney and Paige Roberts
First of all, I am able to post this review on the day of the release, because I was generously provided with the ARC of this book by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest opinion :) it was one of the books that I was really hoping I would get, because even though Claudia Connor is a new author to me, I was very curious about this story :) it's book #3 but can totally be read as a standalone :) there are no spoilers about the previous couples, but I have to warn you... after reading about them you'll definitely want to go back and read their books if you haven't done that already :) I know I will ;) but back to this story... :) it's a surprisingly sweet contemporary romance that will leave you with the biggest smile on your face... :) and now let me tell you more about it... :)
Paige is a single mom of an almost five-year-old Casey :) and why that little girl stole my heart is gonna be explained in a moment :) she got pregnant when she was a teenager and now she works two jobs as a waitress, trying her best to provide for her daughter and taking some classes whenever she has the time... she's a hard-working and dedicated mom, who always thinks too much :) but I can totally relate to the "analyzing everything all the time" attitude :) not to mention that she tends to babble when she's nervous... another thing that we have in common ;) and of course there's Jake :) he lost part of his leg in a car accident when he was nineteen and now he's a biomedical engineer and co-founder of a company who works on different kinds of prostheses :) he's a bit of a loner, concentrating on work and few friends, until a certain someone catches his eye... ;) but before I get into more details about their story, I have to tell you more about secondary characters... :)
Casey, as I said earlier, absolutely stole my heart... :) a sweet little pixie, who have a prosthesis instead of a part of her leg... she's adorable and talkative and there's one scene between her and Jake near the end of the book that I can't really tell you more about because, well... spoilers, duh... ;) but that scene got me all teared up... <sniffs> but in a good way, don't worry :) then there's Jenny, Paige's cousin and friend :) she's super fun, loud and entertaining :) I absolutely loved her :) and of course Simon, Jake's friend and co-founder of the company :) he's a great friend and I was really happy for him when he found someone in this story... :) don't worry, no spoilers from me ;) but they do make an adorable couple :) and I can't forget about Jake's family :) even though he lives on the other side of the country, we see them on a few occasions :) and that scenes only made me want to read the story of Matt and Abby and Stephen and Hannah :) and like I said before, there's no spoilers about their stories but once you see them together, you're gonna want to know how they ended up at that point :) I know I am definitely curious :) but all his family is fantastic, and the group scenes with all the siblings, cause Jake is one of the seven :) and the partners and the kids were probably one of my favourite ones in the book :) now let's go back to our main couple :)
Paige caught Jake's eye, when he started to visit the diner that she works in more frequently... :) when he sees that her daughter have a prosthesis, he offers to help :) it's sort of a slow burn romance between them, and I absolutely adored that :) it was sweet and realistic :) it's only natural that she can't just fall head over heels for someone in two days... first of all, she's much too busy for that :) and second of all, there's Casey to think about in all this situation... :) so I love that their story takes over some time... they slowly get to know one another and the bond between them only gets stronger... :) and the connection Jake makes with Casey is just so lovely... I couldn't stop smiling :) not to mention that the book ends with the most adorable epilogue :)
I have to honestly say that I really enjoyed this book... it was sweet and lovely, with the writing style that reminded me a lot of Nora Roberts which is a huge compliment, because I love that woman and her books :) the story was beautiful... it was hopeful and optimistic and it left me feeling all warm and good inside :) and I appreciate that, cause I was afraid that it would be much darker... so if you are looking for a contemporary romance with great writing style, loveable characters and a wonderful ending, definitely give this one a try :) it's such an easy read... you'll turn page after page and the book will suddenly end before you even know it ;)
I have a few quotes for you today, because I really wanted to give you a little glimpse into all the fantastic interactions between characters :) but since they are from the ARC version, they might be slightly different in the finished one :) but you will definitely get the vibe of the book ;) happy reading :)
Part of the first conversation between Jake and Paige, with the addition of Jenny ;)
"Paige set his glass on the table, then sat down across from him. 'I'm not that hungry,' she told Jenny.
'Brussel sprouts it is.' Jenny pretended to write on her pad.
'Okay. Grilled cheese. To go. I'll eat it in the car.'
'She's single by the way,' Jenny added, before leaving them. 'I am too, just in case you want to store that info away for another day.'
Paige rolled her eyes at her cousin's back. 'I'm sorry. She's...'
'Outgoing?' he asked with a lift of his brow and a slow, playful smile that brought a smile of her own.
'I was going to say something else, but she's also my cousin.'"
A little something with Jake and Simon on one of the company's meetings ;)
"Simon, who oversaw the therapy and testing side, sat to his left, drawing what appeared to be a... mermaid? JT shook his head. Not even a mermaid could swim with boobs that big. Simon scribbled Do your own at the top of his paper."
Part of a conversation between Paige and Jake ;)
"She could do this. Walk to the front of the room. Sing five songs. Go home. Kill Jenny. Bury body.
She gave Jake one last look and almost sat back down. Was it possible for alcohol to kick in this fast? Because when his smile broadened and sparked something in his eyes she felt a little dizzy.
'I'll be a gentle audience,' he said softly. 'Pretend it's just me.'
'Right. Okay. I'll count on you for a rescue if people start throwing things.'"
Part of a conversation between Paige and Jenny about Jake before a group outing ;) Paige first
"'Do not run off and leave me.'
'What? Casey's not enough of a chaperone? Afraid you'll maul the man? I would be.' She sighed dramatically. 'So hot.'
'I mean it, Jenny.'
'Of course you do.'"
A little something with Jake and Paige ;)
"Paige smiled at him, nodding in agreement, but he could see her mind was somewhere else. He wanted it back here, with him. 'So you think I'm hot, huh?'
That did it.
Paige sucked in a shocked breath that drew his eyes to her rising chest. She started to look at him, then changed her mind and stared straight ahead.
'I didn't say that. Jenny said that.' She licked her lips.
'Oh. So you don't think I'm hot?' He'd never had fun with a woman, not this kind of fun, and the blush staining her cheeks was sexy as hell. So was the obvious guilty expression.
'You know what you look like. Women would wallpaper their bedrooms with your face,' she muttered. 'I bet you have plenty of women to tell you that.'
'Not in a while.'"
And one more between Paige and Jake :) Paige first
"'Are you always competing?'
'I'm the youngest of seven children. I came out of the womb competing. Come on. Close your eyes, feel the force.'
No way would she close her eyes and channel Luke Skywalker. She might kill someone.
Then it was Jake's turn again. 'Aren't you going to close your eyes?' she challenged.
He flashed her a quick grin. 'I have skill. I don't need the force.'"
Part of a conversation between Jenny and Paige :) Paige first
"'Yeah, but there's a battle going on inside me, complete with swords and Roman headgear, shouting about shame and stupidity, while my heart and my body are more like Julie Andrews spinning on top of a mountain.'
'I'd go with Julie Andrews. I mean look at their faces.' Jenny tapped on the open textbook. 'Those people do not look happy. No singing songs and eating jam and bread going on there.'"
If you're interested... and you really should be by now ;) I have all the links you need right here ;)
About the author:
New York Times bestselling author Claudia Connor attended Auburn University, where she received her undergraduate and masters degrees in early childhood education, and completed her studies in Sawbridgeworth, England. Always a lover of happy endings, she enjoys movies, reading, and spending her days putting on paper the stories in her head. She lives near Memphis, Tennessee, with her husband and three daughters.
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