Templeton Cove #7
By: Rachel Brimble
Releasing August 8, 2017
There's safety in solitude isn't there?
Single dad and best-selling thriller writer Ethan James has no problem being Templeton Cove's most famous recluse until a surprise visit from the past plunges him into a real-life crime drama just as feisty nurse Leah Dixon barges her way into his world.
Ethan's first priority is to protect his daughter. His second priority is to keep Leah out of this dark web and that means out of his bed. Except Leah isn't going anywhere; she's afraid little Daisy is in danger.
Ethan couldn't live with himself if anything happened to Leah but pushing her away may be even harder!
Drama, mystery, and romance wrapped in an entertaining tale located in the small-town United Kingdom.
Ethan James is a dedicated father and best selling thriller author who has done his best to raise his daughter alone after his ex-wife left them behind in search of more exciting life. Now Anna is back, unstable, abused, and asking for money. She also brought real and present danger with her, threats that could be deadly, or harm everyone Ethan cares about. Including Leah Dixon.
Leah, the nurse who has no boundaries, is willing to go to extreme lengths to protect people she is fond of. She is stubborn, pushy, determined, caring, and capable. Yet she does cross some lines as she is trying to make Ethan take action against the mother of his child, his ex-wife in trouble.
The danger Anna brings with her plays a major part in the story, everything else wraps around it and the threats delivered. There is a lot back and forth with Leah and Ethan, they obviously care and desire each other, yet the circumstances they are in could not be worse, thus the constant in and out with their status as a couple. I liked Ethan and Leah together, they seemed to balance each other out, they were the perfect match for each other, a fitting pair. I do wish the relationship would have had a little more depth to it, little fewer doubts about their future and more building of their feelings and knowledge of each other.
What I wish from the romance I read is that the couple, after their meet and the feelings of attraction are ignited, is that they do not date others. This is not the case in the story of Ethan and Leah, and while the situation is a little more complicated than that, it was still there.
I don't usually mention this - and it definitely didn't affect my scoring of the book, even though it did affect my enjoyment when it came to reading it - is the format I received the eARC in. When I had to search for the story in a mix of dates, numbers, names, and titles on each page, sometimes parts of the words completely embedded into 'code' I missed the natural flow of the tale that most likely was there. I think that was just an unfortunate incident.
A close and caring community at the Templeton Cove, little miss Daisy who completely won my heart, Ethan doing his best to fight to keep his loved ones safe while helplessly falling in love with Leah, makes an intriguing and charming story that kept my interest and entertained my mind.
~ Three Spoons with a teaspoon on the side
On the other side of the front door, the kitchen/dining room stretched from the front to the back of the house. Even though it was in semi-darkness, Leah could see straight through to some French doors at the back, the only illumination coming from the overhead light of the stove as it glinted on steel toward the center of the room.
Snapping her gaze to Daisy, Leah’s opinions on personal tastes flew to the wayside. The little girl’s eyes were wide as she chewed her bottom lip. Leah frowned. “Are you all right, sweetheart? Do you want me to knock?”
Daisy nodded and raised her arms toward Leah as though asking to be picked up. “Yes, please. Daddy might be mad.”
“Oh, Daddy won’t be mad.” Leah bent down and picked her up, hitching her onto her hip as Daisy’s arms wound around her shoulders. “If Daddy’s mad, I’ll show him how to calm himself down real quick. Don’t you worry about that.” Leah lifted the brass knocker and let it fall a little harder than necessary.
Narrowing her eyes, she knocked again.
She was readying to knock a third time when the door swung open.
“I told you to get the hell out of here and not come back.” The man’s dark hair sprouted from every angle, his raging eyes bulging and his right hand swathed in a blue and white¬¬––and bloodied––dishtowel. His gaze held Leah’s for a split-second before he snapped his attention to Daisy. “My God, Daisy. What are you…” He cupped Daisy under her armpits, wincing slightly as he pulled her from Leah’s arms to hold her close. He pressed a lingering kiss to her temple, his raging eyes hidden behind his closed lids.
Leah stared, completely stunned by this flannel-shirted, blue jeaned, incredibly good-looking man…despite the bulging eyes. She coughed in a bid to find her voice. “Mr. James?” She planted her hands on her hips. “You’re Daisy’s father, I presume?”
He opened his eyes and Leah stepped back.
Apparently when his eyes had softened and were filled with regret rather than rage, they looked good. Really good.
She stilled. Oh, good Lord. Be damned if those weren’t the eyes of Templeton’s reclusive novelist, Ethan James.
Rachel Brimble lives with her husband and two teenage daughters in a small town near Bath in the UK. After having several novels published by small US presses, she secured agent representation in 2011. Since 2013, she has had seven books published by Harlequin Superromance (Templeton Cove Stories) and an eight coming in Feb 2018. She also has four Victorian romances with eKensington/Lyrical Press.
Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and Romance Writers of America, and was selected to mentor the Superromance finalist of So You Think You Can Write 2014 contest. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find Rachel with her head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with her family. Her dream place to live is Bourton-on-the-Water in South West England.
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