Thursday, January 29, 2015

Bringing Home the Bad Boy by Jessica Lemmon

The Basics:

Bringing the Bad Boy Home by Jessica Lemmon

Book One in the Second Chance series
Contemporary Romance
Published January 27, 2015
Source: Received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Amazon Kobo Goodreads

Why I picked up this book:

There have been quite a few tattooed/tattoo artist bad boy contemporary romances showing up on my feeds lately and I have a hard time resisting them. Plus, the guy on the cover? Man oh man... I had to 'bring him home.' 

The Bad Boy Is Back

Evan Downey needs a new beginning. Since the death of his wife five years ago, the brilliant tattoo artist has shut himself away in a prison of grief that not even his work can break him out of-and what's worse, Evan knows his son Lyon is bearing the brunt of his seclusion. Moving back to the lake town of Evergreen Cove where he spent his childhood summers is his last chance for a fresh start.

Charlotte Harris knows she owes it to her best friend's memory to help Evan and his son find their way again, but she can't stop her traitorous heart from skipping a beat every time she looks into Evan's mesmerizing eyes. Charlotte is determined to stay strictly in the Friend Zone-until a mind-blowing night knocks that plan by the wayside. Now, if they're brave enough to let it, Charlotte and Evan might just find a love capable of healing their broken hearts . . .
My thoughts:

I loved Bringing Home the Bad Boy! This contemporary romance surprised me with its emotional depth and had me swooning for bad boy Evan.

The book could easily have been simply sad - Evan's wife Rae passed away four years before the story starts, but she's clearly a significant presence in his life, his son's life and in Charlie's life as well. Instead, Evan's wonderfully self-aware about his grief and the progress he's made towards living with Rae's passing. He's focused on creating a new life for himself and his son, which allows the story to acknowledge all the pain of losing such an important loved one, but also that life does go on and it's possible to find pleasure and joy and new paths in the wake of tragedy. 

Evan's definitely book boyfriend material. He's very attractive, he's creative, he's aware of his own limitations (such as zoning out while he's working), and most importantly, he's determined when it comes to Charlie. This last point was the one that made me grin the most. I've read books before in which the male love interest declared his determination to stick with the heroine, only to let her down at some critical moment. Evan's not perfect, and he gets angry (particularly when he *should* be angry), but he still stuck around no matter how hard things became - and that had me swooning over him. 

Charlie, for her part, contributes to the conflict of the book not only by feeling like she's infringing Rae's territory but also because of how easily she sets her own feelings aside. She's so concerned about everyone else - including how everyone else thinks of her - that she struggles to really reach for what she wants (such as, say, Evan, naked, with paint. Yes, this book has some hot sex scenes). It was easy to sympathize with her struggle to honour her friend's memory and I really respected the journey that Lemmon takes us on with Charlie and Evan. 

At about the halfway point, I was worried that the romance would have a very predictable ending, but I was happily mistaken.  I was completely satisfied by how Bringing Home the Bad Boy turned out!

Bottom line:

Bringing Home the Bad Boy was a delightful read. It's a quick, contemporary romance with a very memorable couple. I loved Evan and Charlie and I will absolutely come back to this series for more of the bad boys of Evergreen Cove.

5 stars
For fans of contemporary romance, artists, tattooed men 

But don't just take my word for it! I grabbed a few links to other blog reviews of Bringing Home the Bad Boy:

Harlequin Junkie

The Autumn Review

Always YA at Heart

Live, Read, Breathe

1 comment:

  1. 2nd person who has this book and it is now on my TBR. Next time I am in the contemporary romance mood going to pick it up :)