“Last Sweet Surrender,” by Holly Cortelyou
Westcott Springs, Book 2
Publisher: Liquid Silver Books; July 25, 2016
“Last Sweet Surrender” is an upcoming novel by Holly Cortelyou and the second in the Wescott Springs series, and is just as good, if not better, than the first in the series. This novel focuses on Lena and Jax, and Lena’s daughter Katelyn. We met Lena briefly in “Last Resort Love,” and learned that she is Brett’s half-sister. Somewhat of a gypsy, Lena and Katelyn have lived all over the world, but she’s considering settling down so they can be near her brother Brett and his family. Jax is a world-famous skier and Brett’s best friend who is in town for Nick and Krissa’s wedding, and hoping that the paparazzi doesn’t find him. Jax and Lena meet after a bunch of kids throw a snowball at her, and after that, it seems that everywhere she goes, Jax seems to pop up. Although instantly attracted to each other, Jax and Lena bicker constantly and seem to bring out the anger in each other. Lena’s young daughter instantly loves Jax, and slowly Jax and Lena start to realize they have feelings for each other. The problem, however, is Lena is struggling to move past her upbringing and first marriage and is afraid to love anyone again.
Once again, I have fallen in love with Holly Cortelyou’s writing and characters. The second Jax and Lena meet in this novel, you instantly feel the tension (both good and bad) between them and are pulled into their story. I loved Jax instantly! His character starts out somewhat gruff and stand-offish, but quickly reveals his incredibly sweet and sensitive side, especially with children. Lena took longer to grow on me because there were so many times I felt she was overreacting or just being rude, but then she would suddenly be kind and lovable. As the novel progressed and I learned more about their lives, I was completely engrossed in their story and crossing my fingers for a happy ending for this couple!
Something that I love about Cortelyou’s stories and characters is that nothing seems too far-fetched. Lena is a real person, works part-time, and has been raising her daughter on her own. When Lena and Jax are watching all 5 or 6 of the kids for a few days, things get real. One throws up on the carpet, Jax and Lena distribute chores to the kids to pick up toys after themselves, they have family dinners at the table, and so on. These are believable characters that you can relate to, and scenarios that we have all experienced. The characters laugh, cry, argue, and love – just like real friends and family.
For the second time, I have set down to read one of Cortelyou’s books and was unable to get up until I had finished it. As soon as I read the first page, I was completely lost in this novel. I cannot think of one negative thing to say about “Last Sweet Surrender” except that eventually it ends, making you wish there was already another installment in this series to dive into next. Let’s hope there will be more from this fantastic author very soon!
Visit Holly Coretelyou’s web page to learn more about her and her books!
*Disclaimer: I received an ARC of this novel from the author in exchange for an honest review.