Series: Star Harbor #3
Published by Random House Publishing on 13 May 2013
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Spring comes to Star Harbor, bringing unexpected passion for a sexy sheriff, as the next Grayson brother finds love with the town’s beautiful doctor.
Julie Kensington grew up in the same small town as the Grayson brothers and remembers when the boys were nothing but trouble. As teenagers, Cole’s rugged sex appeal set Julie’s heart ablaze, but she did her best to ignore it. Now a grown woman with a medical degree, Julie still can’t resist her searing attraction to the roughest, toughest Grayson. He’s ex-military, tormented, and sexier than ever, but are his wounds too deep to be healed by her loving, gentle touch?
Even back in high school, straight-arrow Julie had a way of making Cole think twice about his bad-boy lifestyle. When Julie decides she’s finally ready to embrace her wild side, Cole knows he is just the man to show her the way, unleashing years of pent-up desire. Neither of them counted on falling in love, but when Cole’s demons threaten to derail their relationship, it’s up to Julie to show him that together, they can overcome the past . . . and build a future
*I received a free ARC of Long Simmering Spring from Random House Publishing / Loveswept via Netgalley in exchange of an honest review*
Long Simmering Spring has a very slow pace, which works perfect for the story within. Both Jule and Cole are afraid to start something new, they are content with working hard and playing little. Until they meet up in the park by chance, and that incredible chemistry between them flares up again.
As always, Star Harbor is a great place for a visit, and the characters are so well done and multi-layered. For the first part of Long Simmering Spring, I really loved Cole and how he was slowly seducing Julie, but then, he did a complete turn-around and then another. I don’t now anything at all about PTSD, and it may well be that people suffering from that act the way Cole acted, but I didn’t really enjoy reading about that part very much. And as you know, my reading really is mostly about my enjoyment, right?
Julie is a well fleshed out character as well, she’s a doctor who excels in her work, but she has no social life to speak of, and very few friends, even if she has been back to Star Harbor for over a year. Cole quickly comes beneath her defenses though, but he kept guarding his own heart, and that is another thing I would have liked to be a little different. Of course, it made for angst and never knowing where the story would go next, so even the romance has some suspense in Long Simmering Spring, and I know many readers who love that.
Both the story and the plot are expertly done, though, and the mystery of the drug cartel in Star Harbor continues, and when Julie is in danger, Cole gets very close to losing grasp on reality – he has more nightmares about his time in Afghanistan, and instead of letting Julie help him, he pushes her away because he’s afraid of loving her. Long Simmering Spring also features all the Grayson brothers – and they are all vying for attention! – and for three quarters of the book, Cole was becoming my new favorite brother. There were a couple of things that made me a little ticked off with him though. He is pretty macho and a little controlling, and it didn’t seem right that Julie would put up with that so easily. She has been independent for years, never relying on anyone but herself. Julie isn’t happy with Cole all of the time, but she isn’t very forceful in her rebuttals either.
There was especially one of the sexy scenes that got to me – and I don’t enjoy it when that happens! I want to only be all hot and bothered when I read about what happens in the bedroom, but in this one scene, I was jarred out of the mood. Nothing bad happened – so don’t worry about that – it was just the wording and the way Cole again kind of took charge that didn’t appeal to me all that much.
All in all, Long Simmering Spring is a very enjoyable read, though, and if you have enjoyed the other Star Harbor stories, you should read this as well. The mystery part was very well done, even if I kind of suspected who was behind some of the happenings, I actually changed my mind again before it was revealed. I look forward to seeing Val find his soul-mate, too. Star Harbor is still a great place to visit, with characters that really grow on you.
Oh, no, no, no. Cole walking her home was not a good idea. She was a busy woman. Too busy to mess around with a guy like Cole Grayson, with his sexy-as-sin smile.
Julie stole a sideways glance at him, then slid her eyes quickly back. Her heart was beating too rapidly in her chest. She was breathless, dizzy – like seasickness, but without the sick. Whatever it was, it was bad news.
It seemed that regardless of what she was doing, her mind would always drift back to their few brief, heated encounters. And his body – his beautiful, flawed body, with all its scars and ink and life.