Monday, July 04, 2016

BOOK REVIEW: SWEET LITTLE LIES by JILL SHALVIS


Sweet Little Lies by Jill Shalvis 
Series: Heartbreaker Bay #1 
Published by Avon on 28 June 2016 
Genres: Romance 
Pages: 384 
Format: eARC 
Source: Edelweiss 



Choose the one guy you can’t have . . .

As captain of a San Francisco Bay tour boat, Pru can handle rough seas—the hard part is life on dry land. Pru loves her new apartment and her neighbors; problem is, she’s in danger of stumbling into love with Mr. Right for Anybody But Her.

Fall for him—hard . . .

Pub owner Finn O’Riley is six-foot-plus of hard-working hottie who always makes time for his friends. When Pru becomes one of them, she discovers how amazing it feels to be on the receiving end of that deep green gaze. But when a freak accident involving darts (don’t ask) leads to shirtless first aid, things rush way past the friend zone. Fast.

And then tell him the truth.

Pru only wants Finn to be happy; it’s what she wishes for at the historic fountain that’s supposed to grant her heart’s desire. But wanting him for herself is a different story—because Pru’s been keeping a secret that could change everything. . . .

"Without the lure of cable to make her evening, she needed chicken wings. And nobody made chicken wings like O’Riley’s. It’s not the chicken wings you’re wanting, a small voice inside her head said. And that was fact. Nope, what drew her into O’Riley’s like a bee to honey was the six-foot, broad-shouldered, dark eyes, dark smile of Finn O’Riley himself."


"Ignoring her wobbly knees, she left the lock in place, shaking her head at herself. Apparently it’d been too long since her last social orgasm and while she handled her own business just fine, her business was clearly getting bored with herself."


“Stop feeling guilty about something that isn’t your fault and isn’t hurting anyone. Let it go and enjoy the success you’ve made of the place, in spite of your father.”



First of all, I must confess, I have never read anything written by Jill Shalvis prior to this. I heard about her but was never inclined to read her work. But then I was offered an ARC of her latest release, Sweet Little Lies, and I thought why not give it a try. This is book one in the Heartbreaker Bay series.  In my opinion, it is a great start to the series.

Sweet Little Lies is a story about selflessness, sacrifices, and love. Although this was fiction, reading this story reminded me that there are people like Pru living in the real world. I have had the privilege to meet a few persons with similar characteristics. My initial reaction was that her actions were solely motivated by guilt. However, as I got deeper into the story I realise that by nature, she is a selfless person. She had no reason to be guilty, but she felt responsible for the lives were destroyed because of her parents’ carelessness. Her actions were genuine, and she helped expecting nothing in return.  Currently, she works as a boat captain for a San Francisco tour boat company. It so happened that it was in this same area that one of the victims of her parents’ mistake, Finn O’Riley, resided. Pru was on a mission to help him find happiness, what she never expected was her growing feelings for him.

Finn O’Riley is the co-owner of O’Riley’s pub.  He did not have loving memories of his childhood. He was abandoned by his mother and abused by his father.  When his father died in a motor vehicle accident, he was left with the responsibility of caring for his younger brother. This meant giving up his dreams of a career in baseball and forcing him to grow up real fast. He poured himself into fending for his brother and himself, leaving no time for him to have fun. For Finn, life was about work and nothing else. However, all this would change, the day Pru walked into his life.  From that moment he would come to realise that there was more to life than work. 

Jill Shalvis’ characters were authentic. I had no problem relating to them. I felt all that they went through, especially Pru. She has been shouldering the guilt of her parents’ actions for eight years. That is indeed a heavy burden for anyone to bear. In spite of this, she was strong and compassionate. She is the kind of person that will give up her happiness if it means that someone else will be happy. As such I wanted her to experience her own happiness and to find someone who would treat her as she deserved. The secondary characters were a riot. They were a close circle of friends who did not have a problem telling you like it is. They were funny and they helped to make the story that more enjoyable.  I can’t wait to read their stories.  

The story, although predictable, was well written. From the moment I started, I knew I was going to enjoy this book.  The secret that Pru was keeping was evident from early.  I knew based on how the story was progressing that this secret would come out, but not in the way that she would have wanted.  I knew that when it was revealed the effects would have been devastating, therefore I was not surprised when it happened. What I did not expect was the effect it would have on me. My heart instantly went out to Pru when Finn reacted so negatively.

The story had all the feels. It was funny, warm and tender. There were certain aspects that left me feeling warm and tingly inside.

Verdict: 
This was a beautiful and heartwarming story, and I would recommend it to fans of contemporary romance. I have found another author that I will be adding to my must read list.


I received a complimentary copy of Sweet Little Lies from Avon via Edelweiss in exchange for a honest and unbiased review*


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