Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca

Review: The One You Can’t Forget by Roni Loren

Posted June 25, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 3 Comments

Review: The One You Can’t Forget by Roni LorenReviewer: Rowena
The One You Can't Forget (The Ones Who Got Away, #2) by Roni Loren
Series: The Ones that Got Away #2
Also in this series: The Ones Who Got Away (The Ones Who Got Away, #1)
Published by Sourcebooks, Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: June 5, 2018
Point-of-View: Third Person
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 416
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads

Most days Rebecca Lindt feels like an imposter...The world admires her as a survivor. But that impression would crumble if people knew her secret. She didn't deserve to be the one who got away. But nothing can change the past, so she's thrown herself into her work. She can't dwell if she never slows down.

Wes Garrett is trying to get back on his feet after losing his dream restaurant, his money, and half his damn mind in a vicious divorce. But when he intervenes in a mugging and saves Rebecca―the attorney who helped his ex ruin him―his simple life gets complicated.

Their attraction is inconvenient and neither wants more than a fling. But when Rebecca's secret is put at risk, both discover they could lose everything, including what they never realized they needed: each other

She laughed and kissed him. This morning she'd melted down. But somehow this man had her laughing and turned on only a few hours later. Everything inside her felt buoyed.

She felt...light.

She'd forgotten what that felt like.

The One You Can’t Forget is the second book in the The Ones that Got Away series by Roni Loren and it features Rebecca Lindt, one of the Long Acre High School shootings survivors. Rebecca was the middle-man in the couple from the first books romance. The hero from book 1 and Rebecca were a couple when Finn fell in love with Olivia. During the shooting, he left Olivia’s side to rush to protect Rebecca and even with all of the heroics from Finn, Rebecca was still shot in the leg.

Rebecca has moved on from Finn and though she likes to think that she has moved on from the shooting, she never fully dealt with the demons she carries from that night so the school shooting still haunts her. She’s a divorce attorney at her father’s firm and she deals with a lot of unhappy couples. When Rebecca is robbed at gunpoint on her walk home from work, she meets Wes Garrett, a guy that just happened to walk up on her being robbed and the robbers run off before any damage is done to her. A dog, who is her true hero, was shot in the process and Wes helps Rebecca get the dog to a vet (his brother) and helps Rebecca get situated at home.

Going into this book, I wasn’t really sure how to take Rebecca’s character. I didn’t know if I was going to fall in love with her as easily as I did the others because Rebecca is a lot more reserved. She holds all of her cards close to her chest so I didn’t know if I’d connect with her character all that much. I’m super glad to report that I really enjoyed Rebecca’s character. She’s not perfect and there were times when I was frustrated with her thought processes and her choices but in the end, she really comes full circle and when she finally stands up for herself and for Wes in the end with her father? I literally cheered for joy because holy cow, that scene was a long time coming.

Wes was fantastic. He was a new character and what made his character interesting was that he was trying to put his life back together after his ex-wife took him to the cleaners and put a stop on the dreams he was so close to fulfilling for himself. That Rebecca was the lawyer that helped his ex-wife steal that dream from him wasn’t an easy pill for him to swallow but the way that he handled finding out about who Rebecca was, I thought Roni Loren did a great job of writing that out realistically.

I thought that the romance was super sweet and the way that they came together was so organic and just all around real that I had no trouble jumping in and loving the hell out of the two of them. I cannot wait for Taryn’s book and I’m super anxious for Kincaid’s book so I’ll be waiting patiently for these to come out.

Overall, this book was solid. Rebecca and Wes were likable characters with interesting backgrounds that made reading about them interesting. There were times when I wanted to throttle Rebecca and even Wes but for the most part, I loved these two and their story. I definitely recommend.

Grade: 4 out of 5

The Ones That Got Away


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Sunday Spotlight: The One You Can’t Forget by Roni Loren

Posted June 24, 2018 by Rowena in Features, Giveaways | 6 Comments

Sunday Spotlight is a feature we began in 2016. This year we’re spotlighting our favorite books, old and new. We’ll be raving about the books we love and being total fangirls. You’ve been warned. 🙂

Sunday Spotlight

I was really interested in the premise of this series when Roni Loren first announced it and I couldn’t wait to read the first book once it came out. I enjoyed that book so much that The One You Can’t Forget went straight to the top of my wishlist so I’m super thrilled to be featuring this book today. It’s just as great as the first book and I hope today’s excerpt entices you to read it.

Check it out.

Sunday Spotlight: The One You Can’t Forget by Roni LorenThe One You Can't Forget (The Ones Who Got Away, #2) by Roni Loren
Series: The Ones that Got Away #2
Also in this series: The Ones Who Got Away (The Ones Who Got Away, #1)
Published by Sourcebooks, Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: June 5, 2018
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 416
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads

Most days Rebecca Lindt feels like an imposter...The world admires her as a survivor. But that impression would crumble if people knew her secret. She didn't deserve to be the one who got away. But nothing can change the past, so she's thrown herself into her work. She can't dwell if she never slows down.

Wes Garrett is trying to get back on his feet after losing his dream restaurant, his money, and half his damn mind in a vicious divorce. But when he intervenes in a mugging and saves Rebecca―the attorney who helped his ex ruin him―his simple life gets complicated.

Their attraction is inconvenient and neither wants more than a fling. But when Rebecca's secret is put at risk, both discover they could lose everything, including what they never realized they needed: each other

She laughed and kissed him. This morning she'd melted down. But somehow this man had her laughing and turned on only a few hours later. Everything inside her felt buoyed.

She felt...light.

She'd forgotten what that felt like.

Order the Book:

AMAZON || BARNES AND NOBLE || KOBO

Excerpt

Wes Garrett peeked through the crack in the door to the apartment inside, eyeing the small group of women laughing and drinking champagne. One was wearing a party hat with a big light-up dick on it. He shut the door and leaned against the wall in the hallway. “I can’t believe I’m considering this.”

Suzie grinned wickedly at him, her lip ring glinting in the hallway light. “Don’t be such a prude, Garrett. What happened to that wild, try-anything-once guy I used to know?”

His jaw clenched. “Are you really asking me that?”

She waved a dismissive hand. “You know that’s not what I mean. I don’t want post-apocalyptic you. That sucked.”

“Ya think?”

She rolled her eyes. “I’m talking about the you before everything went to shit. You’ve swung too far in the other direction.” She shrugged. “Walking the straight and narrow doesn’t mean not having any fun or, you know, a sense of humor.”

“Suze…”

“This is a good gig.” She pinned him with her gaze. “Three hundred bucks for two hours of your time. All you’re going to be doing is teaching drunk chicks how to cook simple things. You teach cooking every day. This is no different.”

He gave her a droll look. “I teach cooking to teenagers. I get to wear my chef’s whites. I don’t have to cook naked.”
“Ugh. You’re not going to be naked. That would be a major kitchen hazard. Just…shirtless. And hey, with all your tattoos, you have some added coverage.”

Christ. This was what his life had come to? From four-star restaurants to this? He’d thought teaching at an after-school program was a giant tumble down the staircase from his chef dreams, but this was a new level. The basement. At least with the kids, he could convince himself he was training future chefs. Here he would be the special of the day. “I don’t know.”

She reached out and grabbed his hands, her face earnest beneath the fringe of bright-pink hair. “Come on, Wes. My other guy called in. Shirtless Chefs is just getting off the ground. If I have chefs no-showing for parties, I’m going to catch hell in the online reviews, and the business will tank before I really get rolling. You’ve got the skills. You’ve got the blond bad-boy thing going, which is going to rock their socks off. And once upon a time, you could charm the ladies, so I know you’re capable. Plus, you said you needed the extra money. This is easy cash. Win-win.”

Wes grimaced. He hated needing the money. Hated that he was anywhere near that place he’d been so long ago, where he’d had to scrape together every damn dime. He’d thought he was far past that, and then boom, life had exploded. But need wasn’t even the right word. He had enough to live on right now with his teaching gig. He knew how to stretch his dollars. What he wanted the money for was a stupid idea. Something he shouldn’t be messing with. His family would kick his ass if they even knew he was thinking about it.

Still, he couldn’t help closing his eyes and picturing the beat-up school bus his friend Devin had shown him last week. The old bus had looked like it’d been rolled off the side of a rocky cliff and set on fire, but Wes had been able to see the bones beneath, the potential to be converted into a food truck. He’d gotten that itch he’d tried to ignore since he’d lost everything. The what-ifs.

He’d found himself inquiring about a loan at the bank. He’d known the answer before asking, but he’d asked anyway. And he’d put out feelers with his friends, telling them to give him a call if they had any extra catering or temporary cooking gigs.

Of course, Suzie had been the one to call, and she hadn’t told him exactly how her new private chef business worked or the name she’d chosen for it until he’d arrived. She was smart enough to know he would’ve run in the other direction.

But now he was here and she needed his help. And dammit, he wanted the money. He tilted his head back against the wall and closed his eyes. “What am I teaching them to make?”

When she didn’t answer immediately, he lifted his head, finding her biting her lip.

“Suze,” he said, warning in his voice.

She held up her palms. “Don’t hate me, okay? There’s a bruschetta recipe and a bourbon nut brittle that you’re going to love. But some of the other stuff is…themed.”

His shoulders sagged in acceptance. “I’m making dick-shaped things, aren’t I?”

“Um…” Her nose wrinkled. “There may be recipes for Big, Meaty Balls and Eat My Taco Dip.”

“I fucking hate you.”

She grinned and stepped up to pat him on the cheek. “You’re the best, Garrett. If I didn’t want to put lipstick on the merchandise, I’d kiss you.”

“You say the sweetest things, Suze. I just feel showered by your sweetness and affection.”

“Right?” She pinched his hip. “Now go in there, be nice, and look pretty.”

He gave her a look. “You treat all your employees like cattle?”

She stuck out her tongue. “Only my friends who won’t sue me.”

He let out a tired breath. “I won’t sue you, but if you tell anyone about this…”

“I won’t.”

“I could lose my job.” Not to mention whatever shreds of dignity he had left.

She mimed sealing her lips and tossing the key. “Your secret’s safe. I swear.”

“Fine. I’ll go in.”

She did a little celebratory clap, but then her smile sagged a bit. “And you sure you’re cool with alcohol being at the party? I mean, I know I’m pushing you to do this, but for real, if that part’s a problem—”

“I told you it’s not an issue,” he said, cutting her off, anger trying to surface. “Tonight, that’s the least of my worries.”

She pressed her lips together and nodded. “Okay. Good.”

He ran a hand through his hair, resigned. “Let’s get this over with.”

“Right.” She swept an arm out toward the door. “Godspeed, my friend.”

With one last steeling breath, he stepped past her and pushed open the door. All eyes turned his way, and the blond woman with the penis hat grinned widely and clapped her hands together. “Ooh, y’all got me a stripper?”

Wes almost reversed his steps right there. Three. Two. One. Right back out the door. But he gritted his teeth and kept moving forward.

The Ones That Got Away

Giveaway Alert

We’re giving one lucky winner their choice of one of our Sunday Spotlight books. Use the Gleam giveaway widget below to enter for one of this month’s features.

Sunday Spotlight: June 2018

Are you as excited for this release as we are? Let us know how excited you are and what other books you’re looking forward to this year!

About the Author

Roni Loren

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | PINTEREST | YOUTUBE | GOODREADS

Roni wrote her first romance novel at age fifteen when she discovered writing about boys was way easier than actually talking to them. Since then, her flirting skills haven’t improved, but she likes to think her storytelling ability has. She holds a master’s degree in social work and spent years as a mental health counselor, but now she writes full time from her cozy office in Dallas, Texas where she puts her characters on the therapy couch instead. She is a two-time RITA Award winner and a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author.


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Guest Review: The One You Can’t Forget by Roni Loren

Posted June 8, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Review: The One You Can’t Forget by Roni LorenReviewer: Tracy
The One You Can't Forget by Roni Loren
Series: The Ones Who Got Away #2
Also in this series: The Ones Who Got Away
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: June 5, 2018
Point-of-View: Third
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 416
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
four-stars

Most days Rebecca Lindt feels like an imposter...The world admires her as a survivor. But that impression would crumble if people knew her secret. She didn't deserve to be the one who got away. But nothing can change the past, so she's thrown herself into her work. She can't dwell if she never slows down.

Wes Garrett is trying to get back on his feet after losing his dream restaurant, his money, and half his damn mind in a vicious divorce. But when he intervenes in a mugging and saves Rebecca―the attorney who helped his ex ruin him―his simple life gets complicated.

Their attraction is inconvenient and neither wants more than a fling. But when Rebecca's secret is put at risk, both discover they could lose everything, including what they never realized they needed: each other

She laughed and kissed him. This morning she'd melted down. But somehow this man had her laughing and turned on only a few hours later. Everything inside her felt buoyed.


She felt...light.


She'd forgotten what that felt like.

Rebecca is a successful divorce lawyer.  She’s also one of the survivors of a mass high school shooting – one she blames herself for.  She keeps her guilt and secret to herself, however.  The only person who knows is her father.  When Rebecca is mugged one night on her way home from work she freezes when the attacker puts a gun to her head.  Luckily she’s saved by a stray dog and a man who happened to be passing by.

The man, Wes Garrett, is someone that she’s incredibly attracted to, until she finds out his name and realizes that she fought against him in court when she represented his ex-wife in their divorce.  She knows his story and wants nothing to do with him. Except…when she gets to know him and his story, and the truth about his ex-wife and the lies she told, Rebecca can’t help but admire him.

Wes is just getting by in life.  He teaches cooking at an after-school program but that wasn’t always his life. He was opening a restaurant and the world was in the palm of his hand – until his ex-wife took it all away from him. Yes, he’s bitter but he manages to hide that bitterness from Rebecca.  He sees in her someone that is kind, giving and someone he wants to emulate.  The more time he spends with her the harder he starts to fall, but Rebecca doesn’t plan on ever getting into a serious relationship and Wes is no different, or is he?

I’ve loved every Roni Loren book that I’ve read, and this was no different.  She has a way with characters that makes me want to get to know them better.  They’re three dimensional and very real – I love that.  In this story Wes and Rebecca lived imperfect lives and each had some serious issues.  Working through those issues together changed both of them for the better and made this romance that much more intense.

I loved both Wes and Rebecca even though they were flawed.  I felt so badly for Rebecca that she’d carried the guilt of the shooting with her all those years.  She didn’t do anything worse than be a teenager – the shooting wasn’t her fault at all.  Wes had to deal with his anger toward the world and see that while his life might not look how he wanted it to look, it still looked good.

Overall I really enjoyed this book and can’t wait to read the next story in the series.

Rating: 4 out of 5

four-stars


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Guest Review: The Last Wolf by Maria Vale

Posted February 13, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 1 Comment

Guest Review: The Last Wolf by Maria ValeReviewer: Tracy
The Last Wolf (The Legend of All Wolves #1) by Maria Vale
Series: The Legend of All Wolves #1
Published by Sourcebooks, Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: February 6th 2018
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 320
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
three-stars

For three days out of thirty, when the moon is full and her law is iron, the Great North Pack must be wild.

If she returns to her Pack, the stranger will die. But if she stays…

Silver Nilsdottir is at the bottom of her Pack’s social order, with little chance for a decent mate and a better life. Until the day a stranger stumbles into their territory, wounded and beaten, and Silver decides to risk everything on Tiberius Leveraux. But Tiberius isn’t all he seems, and in the fragile balance of the Pack and wild, he may tip the destiny of all wolves…

Silver is on the cusp of becoming a slave when a wounded stranger stumbles into her pack’s territory.  She decides to help him and as time goes on they become closer.  Ti (short for Tiberius) is half Pack and half Shifter.  Pack and Shifters don’t mix but Silver is optimistic about Ti.  She tries to help him but he’s a really horrible wolf – not really even knowing how to walk in wolf form.  When outsiders try to hurt the pack some truths come out about Ti and Silver’s not sure she can stay with Ti.

There were many things I liked about this book.  I liked the pack characters for the most part – especially the head Alpha, John (there were other Alpha’s as well).  I liked how the author set up the pack with different levels or echelons.  The sense of family in the book was good and I liked reading about that as well.

The romance in this story, as well as the “suspense” portion of the book is what didn’t do it for me.  Because the story is told in first person POV I think that the lack of Ti’s side of things and his insight into the relationship really impacted the overall story for me.  There just felt like there was something missing.  The suspense or intrigue part of the story where the outsiders were trying to get in to the pack didn’t do anything for me either.  I ended the book wondering if the reason they were attacked was all about greed or was there a bigger issue.

Despite my issues with the book I am interested to see where the series goes next.  I’m not giving up on it yet. 🙂

Rating: 3 out of 5

three-stars


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Guest Review: The Ones Who Got Away by Roni Loren

Posted January 11, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Guest Review: The Ones Who Got Away by Roni LorenReviewer: Tracy
The Ones Who Got Away by Roni Loren
Series: The Ones Who Got Away #1
Also in this series: The One You Can't Forget
Published by Sourcebooks Casablanca
Publication Date: January 2nd 2018
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 384
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
Goodreads
five-stars

Liv's words cut off as Finn got closer. The man approaching was nothing like the boy she'd known. The bulky football muscles had streamlined into a harder, leaner package and the look in his deep green eyes held no trace of boyish innocence.

It's been twelve years since tragedy struck the senior class of Long Acre High School. Only a few students survived that fateful night—a group the media dubbed The Ones Who Got Away.

Liv Arias thought she'd never return to Long Acre—until a documentary brings her and the other survivors back home. Suddenly her old flame, Finn Dorsey, is closer than ever, and their attraction is still white-hot. When a searing kiss reignites their passion, Liv realizes this rough-around-the-edges cop might be exactly what she needs...

Liv has been living her life day by day since she survived a mass murder at her high school – the night of the prom.  She thought she was happy with her life but when the survivors of the shooting get together at the HS to give interviews 12 years after it happened, she finds that maybe she’s not as happy as she thought.  She gets together with the friends that got her through the year following the shooting and they dig up the time capsule that they planted.  In it are letters that say what they will do with their lives.  When Liv reads her letter she realizes she’s done nothing she planned and that makes her stop and think about how she’s been living her life.  The other thing that makes her stop and take notice is Finn Dorsey.  She hasn’t seen him since the night of the shooting.  They had secretly dated in HS but since his family was rich and her family wasn’t he tried to hide it from his father.  Their teenage love didn’t survive the massacre but now that they’re adults, things have definitely changed.

Finn is an FBI agent who has been undercover for the past 2 years.  He agreed to the interview (off camera) but he’s not thrilled about being back in his hometown.  When he sees Liv, all of the feelings that he thought were gone come crashing to the surface.  He can’t seem to stop thinking about her and events manage to push the two together.  Instead of spending the summer isolated in a lake house trying to readjust to society, Finn spends the summer with Liv and they both figure out what real living is all about.

This book was awesome.  It was so very sad because of the whole premise of the story but I love the way Loren handled the transitioning from HS to the present.  The hero and heroine in this book were facing their fears in so many different ways and they ended up finding love while doing it.  The book was incredibly relatable (even though I’ve never been involved in a tragedy like this) because the plans we made when we were in HS didn’t necessarily come to fruition.  It even made me take a look at life and see how things have changed from HS to now.

I loved Finn and Liv together and how they worked out their issues.  They hadn’t talked since the night of the shooting and needed to clear the air.  On top of that the sexual tension between them was explosive and Loren wrote some extremely hot scenes, let me tell ya!

The secondary characters in this story play a huge role and the book wouldn’t have been the same without them.  I’m very much looking forward to reading their stories as well.

Roni Loren has written a wonderful book that I highly recommend.  It’s definitely highly emotional but so worth reading – even if that’s not normally your type of romance.

Rating: 5 out of 5

five-stars


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