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I Belong

Early Review: Just One Kiss by Susan Mallery

Title: Just One Kiss

Author: Susan Mallery

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Series: Fool’s Gold (Book 11)

Publication Date: May 28, 2013

Format: Paperback, 384 Pages

ISBN-10: 0373777604 (Harlequin)

ISBN-13: 978-0373777600 (Harlequin)

Reviewed by: Michelle


He won’t hesitate to put his life on the line…but will he ever risk his heart?

Falling for Justice Garrett was a high point in Patience McGraw’s otherwise awkward adolescence. Even after he disappeared, Patience never forgot the boy who captured her heart. Now, he’s back in Fool’s Gold, California, and her passion for him is as strong as ever. But how can she trust that he won’t abandon her again-and her daughter, too?

When bodyguard Justice Garrett was a young man, witness protection brought him to this idyllic town and he never forgot its warmth, or the sweet beauty of his childhood friend. He’s returned to open a defense academy, and the Patience he once knew is all grown up. He can’t resist her smile, or her curves. But Justice’s past doesn’t make him husband, or father, material.

Patience and Justice think they’ll succumb to just one kiss… Then one more… Okay, just one night together. But they might learn that falling in love is beyond anyone’s control.

Quick & Dirty: Another captivating addition to the Fool’s Gold series that will warm your heart.

Opening Sentence: Patience McGraw couldn’t breathe.

Excerpt: No

The Review:

Susan Mallery is one of my go-to authors when I need something light and romantic. Just One Kiss is the next title in the Fool’s Gold series. As the eleventh book, I sometimes worry how Mallery would have introduced a new set of characters to me while keeping me interested and engaged. I should never have doubted her because she executed the story nicely, all while managing to give me that romantic read I was looking for.

Patience McGraw has never had a proper relationship with a man. Her father left her mother and her when she was young, and her ex-husband and father of her child left her when when her daughter was only a baby. Even one of Patience’s closest friends from high school disappeared on her, never to be heard from, until many years later. Justice Garrett has returned to Fool’s Gold. After being away for so long, he came back to where it felt like home. He has returned to open a defense academy and to get in touch with Patience. What he doesn’t expect is what happens when they have just one kiss.

Patience is a fun character. She’s strong in many ways that mothers are. She’s a single mother and a daughter of someone who has MS. Patience overcame having two men leave her, her father and her ex-husband and the father of her child. Patience feelings for Justice come back to the surface, and it helps her understand that her heart has healed. I loved her quirky voice. It was full of humor and spark, and deep down she was a hopeless romantic.

Justice is swoony. He has a dark past, but what he’s made out of himself is something to admire. Justice doesn’t see himself as a hero. It doesn’t matter that he served his country, or that he survived being in witness protection and the clutches of his father. Justice feels that the evil genes of his father, is resonating within himself. It’s interesting how Mallery created Justice and evolved him. I felt that Justice’s voice was sincere and honest, and that’s not something that I can always say for a male main character.

Fool’s Gold is always a fun place to visit. Just One Kiss showcases familiar parts of the small town, but Mallery also manages to reveal new corners of the town that I haven’t been before. I am always worried that I’ll be bored, or that I’ll feel like I’ve read about it before. But that just isn’t the case with Mallery, especially not in Fool’s Gold. Mallery always manages to add new characters while managing to make her past characters relevant. I appreciate that trait more than anything.

Just One Kiss is a quick weekend read. If you’re like me, and we have similar tastes, you will probably devour this cute story in a day. It’s a great story, and the pacing of the story allows you to full escape. The romance is believable, and knowing Mallery’s formula, you’ll know there is a happy ending in the end.  When a series gets past 3, 4, even 5 books, I always wonder about the integrity of the story line and if it will stand the test of time.  With the Fool’s Gold series, she reinvents scenarios, and I don’t think I’ve ever been bored with any of the books. I find them to be refreshing, quick reads, with a perfect mix of romance and angst.

Ready for a fun romance with great characters? Come visit Fool’s Gold in Just One Kiss.

Notable Scene:

Patience was a big part of the pull, he admitted, if only to himself. He’d never forgotten about her and had often wondered where she was and what she was doing. With his resources, it would have been easy to find out. He could have had a complete dossier on her in less than six hours. Only he never had.

Now he knew she was in town and single, which made her a temptation. Their kiss the previous morning had only fueled the fantasy. He wanted more. He wanted her in his bed, pulling him close, taking him with as much passion as he wanted to take her.

Which meant the best solution for both of them was for him to walk away.

Fool’s Gold Series:

1. Chasing Perfect

2. Almost Perfect

2.5 Sister of the Bride

3. Finding Perfect

4. Only Mine

5. Only Yours

6. Only His

6.1 Only Us

6.2 Almost Summer

7. Summer Days

8. Summer Nights

9. All Summer Long

10. A Fool’s Gold Christmas

11. Just One Kiss

12. Two of a Kind (July 2013)

13. Three Little Words (September 2013)

FTC Advisory: Harlequin HQN provided me with a copy of Just One Kiss.  No goody bags, sponsorships, “material connections,” or bribes were exchanged for my review.

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Rating: 10.0/10 (2 votes cast)
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Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)
Early Review: Just One Kiss by Susan Mallery, 10.0 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
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