Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Contemporary eARC Review: Close Enough to Touch by Victoria Dahl

Series: Jackson Hole #1
Format: eBook via Netgalley
Genre: Contemporary
Length: 384 pages
Publisher: HQN (August 28, 2012)

For makeup artist Grace Barrett, Hollywood isn't the land of golden opportunity. It's the land of difficult divas, cheating boyfriends and unemployment. So when her great-aunt offers her a free place to stay in Jackson Hole, Grace thinks she'll spend a little time in the sticks to figure out her life, and then move somewhere exciting to live out her dreams. But it turns out that there are a few more thrills in this small town than Grace was expecting….

Cole Rawlins is a rugged Wyoming cowboy born and bred. Yet he can't help but be drawn to the fascinating big-city girl who moves in across from him. He wants to get close enough to Grace to see past her tough facade, but if he does, she might see the real Cole. The one with a Hollywood history gone bad. As they discover a sizzling attraction, it becomes harder for him to keep his demons at bay—and those fires from long ago may burn them both.
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Book Extras: Read an Excerpt


Cole Rawlins is a sexy cowboy working on recovering from an injury. He lives at what the town calls The Stud Farm because it’s full of good-looking men. That is until a purple haired, feisty woman shows up kicking her duffle bag. Grace Barrett is in a bit of trouble. When she loses her job as a Hollywood makeup artist, her boyfriend and her money she leaves LA and for Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Grace is shocked by the friendliness of the people in the small town and doesn’t quite trust it. She also doesn’t trust the sexy cowboy across the hall who keeps trying to help her.

Cole is restless. All he wants is to get back to the ranch and get to work. After a debilitating injury he’s working his way back when Grace shows up. He’s intrigued by his new neighbor and knows that she’s not the type of girl he should be attracted too but he is. When a movie crew shows up on Cole’s ranch he is reminded of his past and what he left behind. He’s also reminded on why he should avoid Grace since she is now working with the people he despises.

There are so many things I like about this story that I don’t understand why it didn’t work for me. I really liked Grace. She is dark, damaged and cynical. She keeps herself guarded from everyone because of her past. But despite her strong girl exterior she is also sensitive. I enjoyed watching her try to open herself up and let people in. Then there is Cole and his charming, sexy self. I loved him. I loved his struggle with his injury but I couldn’t get behind them together. I also enjoyed getting to meet some of the secondary characters.

I felt a little rushed reading Close Enough To Touch, especially in the last half of the book. But then there were times that I thought it was slow. I loved that Grace was so complex but her development seemed rushed that when it ended I wasn’t left with satisfied. I wish we got to see more of Cole and Grace’s relationship develop. It felt that a lot was skipped to get to the happily ever after.

Favorite Quote
That girl was going to be trouble. If the purple layers in her dark choppy hair didn’t make that clear, the hard glint in her eyes certainly did. He knew that look. He’d seen it before. And despite his image as the wholesome and friendly good ol’ cowboy, that look stirred something in him. It was a dare. A challenge.
And he did love a challenge.
Close Enough To Touch is the first in Victoria Dahl’s new series and while I love her books I just wasn’t a fan of this one. I wanted to love this so much but I don’t. For me, it just didn’t work. I didn’t get Grace and Cole being together. Yes they were great together in bed, and on the couch, but I didn’t see that passion and chemistry extending beyond sex. They had some great moments and Cole is definitely a sexy cowboy but I’m not in love with the story. Hopefully the next book will get me back on track.

***review copy provided by publisher via Netgalley***

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