Friday, February 28, 2014

{Heather #Review} Contemporary Romance: Once In A Lifetime by Jill Shalvis

ONCE IN A LIFETIME by Jill Shalvis
Series: Lucky Harbor #9
Genre: Contemporary
Format: ebook via Netgalley
Length: 307 pages
Publisher: Forever (February 18, 2014)


After a wrenching loss, Ben McDaniel tried to escape his grief by working in dangerous, war-torn places like Africa and the Middle East. Now he's back in his hometown and face-to-face with Aubrey Wellington, the hot-as-hell woman who is trouble with a capital T. Family and friends insist she's not the one to ease his pain, but Aubrey sparks an intense desire that gives Ben hope for the future.

Determined to right the wrongs of her past, Aubrey is working hard to make amends. But by far, the toughest challenge to her plan is sexy, brooding Ben - even though he has absolutely no idea what she's done . . .

Can this unlikely couple defy the odds and win over the little town of Lucky Harbor?

Get Your Copy: Amazon | B&N | iBooks | Kobo | BAM | indiebound
Other Books in Series:


Once in a Lifetime is a complex contemporary romance novel. While reading it I was caught up in the story; afterwards, it stayed with me as I tried to make some sense of how I felt about it.

The heroine, Aubrey Wellington, is trying to make a go of her aunt’s bookstore in the town she’d lived in her whole life. While I admire her tenacity, I don’t understand the way Aubrey behaves through much of this book, nor do I understand the attitude of the townsfolk towards her. She spends a large portion of the book trying to make up for past sins (most of which were either not her fault or truly minor indiscretions), but she does it to earn some positive karma – not because she feels badly. Seems like the wrong reason to make things right, if you ask me.

And Aubrey’s biggest regret is related to Ben McDaniel, our enigmatic and scarred hero. He spends much of the book trying to figure out Aubrey’s karma-earning plans and fixing up her bookstore while simultaneously trying to get into Aubrey’s pants.

I did like Ben. He’s smoking hot (and the kind that knows it without getting cocky), wounded by his past but not broken by it, and willing to listen to his friends and family while simultaneously making up his own mind. He’s not perfect, but he’s a more likeable character than Aubrey, for sure.

I also liked the give and take of this book. The relationship, although it happens fast, happens in a realistic manner. The townsfolk and family members of both characters have their say about what’s happening; sometimes it’s helpful … at other times, not so much. Both Aubrey and Ben make mistakes, but they own up to them eventually and the ending is very satisfying. The sexual tension in this book is also very satisfactorily handled. Overall, the story was able to overcome my initial dislike of Aubrey to make this an enjoyable read.

Favorite Quote:
He wondered what she’d say to a round of wild monkey sex, right here, right now… If he just stripped her out of her clothes and sat her on the stack of wood he still had to measure and cut, he could then step between her legs… or they could use her couch… yeah. That was the ticket.
She came around the corner, and he unbuckled his tool belt, letting it fall to the floor. They were going to do this, and it was going to be good –
“I’ve got company,” Aubrey said. She went to the front door of the store and opened it. And then one, two, three, eight women came in behind her, including his own aunt Dee.

Reviews for other books in series:
Lucky In Love #4
At Last #5
Under the Mistletoe #6.5
It Had To Be You #7
Always On My Mind #8

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