I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Once and Again by Elisabeth Barrett
Series: Return to Briarwood #1
Published by Loveswept on July 14, 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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Growing up in Eastbridge, Connecticut, Carolyn Rivington was a young debutante who did whatever her parents asked. So when her father demanded that she break things off with the boy from the wrong side of the tracks or else, she did. Now Carolyn’s family is deep in debt. She’s no longer a member of the Briarwood Golf and Yacht Club, she’s an employee. And the tanned, tattooed, dangerously handsome stranger who saunters into her lobby isn’t just her new boss . . . he’s also her first love.
The last time he saw Carolyn, Jake Gaffney was in the back of a police cruiser, handcuffed and humiliated. But seeing her again stirs other memories: a blanket on the beach, the moon above their heads, and the most expensive bottle of wine he could afford. Now the tables have turned. As a real-estate magnate and Briarwood’s new owner, Jake doesn’t have to answer to anyone. But now that he’s back home, he’s finding it hard to live down his old reputation.
Before they can move forward, Jake and Carolyn must face their pasts. But it’ll take more than sizzling chemistry for them to heal old wounds and return to the love they once shared.
Carolyn Rivington, the once privileged and wealthy debutante, is now working for the country club where her family were once members. Crippled with debt and a financial scandal, Carolyn is making the best of the circumstances without the aid of long gone friends or family. Things get turned upside down, though, when the new owner of the Briarwood Golf and Yacht Club turns out to be Jake Gaffney, the boy (now man) who was her first and only love who her family (and she) ended up rejecting.
This was more than a second chance romance as Carolyn was a symbol of strength and perseverance as she pulled herself up by her bootstraps to craft a new identity and create a new life. Jake had done the same and returned full of anger and vengeance but transformed in the midst of Carolyn’s example.
I like everything about this story, including the strong supporting cast of characters that complete the circle of friends and makeshift family for both Jake and Carolyn. Instead of a rehash of their teen romance, they embraced the people each had become and developed a memorable relationship. Life is far from perfect in Briarwood and it made for a richer reading experience. I’m excited about this new series and what comes next.
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