Source- Review copy
Publication date- August 2012
Synopsis- He’s the last man on earth she should want…
For a guy she’s fantasized about throttling, Jake Bradshaw sure is easy on the eyes. In fact, he seriously tempts inn manager Jenny Salazar to put her hands to better use. Except this is the guy who left Razor Bay—and his young son, Austin, who Jenny adores like her own—to become a globetrotting photojournalist. He can’t just waltz back and claim Austin now.
Jake was little more than a kid himself when he became a dad. Sure, he’d dreamed of escaping the resort town, but he’d also truly believed that Austin was better off with his grandparents. Now he wants—no, needs—to make up for his mistake. He intends to stay in Razor Bay only until he can convince Austin to return with him to New York. Trouble is, with sexy, protective, utterly irresistible Jenny in his life, and his bed, he may never want to leave…
Review- That Thing Called Love is the latest romance novel by Susan Andersen set in the small coastal town of Razor Bay.
Jenny Salawazar is the manager of the Razor Bay Inn, she’s sweet and loyal but not someone to be messed with. She’s also become the full-time guardian of 13 year old Austin, who was raised by his maternal grandparents after his father abandoned him shortly after the death of his mother. Jenny too was taken in by Austin’s grandparents and raised like a daughter; she has a close bond to Austin and vows to provide him with a good life in Razor Bay.
But her maternal plans are thrown to the wind when Jake Bradshaw- Austin’s estranged father- returns to town and claiming guardianship. He charms Jenny into helping him to strengthen his relationship with Austin and inevitably she agrees to do whatever is best for Austin. Jake is confident, candid and very, very attractive. The usually sensible Jenny finds herself taking big risks with her heart where Jake is concerned and is surprised by her newfound sexuality.
Jake was a fairly well-developed hero, he has a lot of unresolved issues from his childhood pertaining to his unreliable father. He fears he will not live up to the expectation of being a real father to Austin. Jenny has some of her own childhood issues but seems to have overcome these and is in a better place emotionally. She is attracted to Jake’s candidness and the way he makes her feel as a woman, while Jake is attracted to the Jenny’s caring and grounded nature. The conflict that kept them apart was realistic as Jake inevitably intends to return to the city, taking Austin with him. However, I didn’t really believe the emotional connection between Jenny and Jake.
I particularly found the dialogue in this novel difficult at times. It felt as though it was used to info dump at times and it created an unnatural vibe between characters, especially with Jake and his half-brother Max. Though the sex scenes were very descriptive and ripe with tension, again there was a little too much talking for my liking!
Despite these little nuances, I did enjoy this story; its small-town feel and the sexual chemistry between Jenny and Jake. I also enjoyed the little sub-plots that incorporated Austin’s friendship and first kiss. It’s worth picking up a copy of That Thing Called Love for a light, easy read with some steamy scenes.
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