Saturday, August 24, 2013

Review: Unexpectedly You by Lily Santana

Unexpectedly You
by: Lily Santana
$2.99 eBook
Carina Press
Contemporary Romance
Released: August 2013

From the moment Mitch came to town trying to build his condos, Emma's made it her life's goal to see him fail.  She's spent the past six months ripping his reputation to shreds, and getting everyone in town to alienate him.  A widow at 30, she likes things just the way they are, and intends to keep them that way, even if it means constantly irritating her oh so studly temporary neighbor. 

Struggling to get her small business started, Emma's devastated to learn how badly her husband had mangled their finances.  Now, if she can't get her hands on a large sum of money and fast, her and her teenage daughter will lose the home that's been in her family for years.  Swallowing her pride, she turns to the one person who's willing to help her, but at what cost?

Emma has been a nagging thorn in his side since Mitch started his project.  Now with her latest stalling tactic, he may have to lay off his entire crew until the city approves the project.  Seething, he confronts her, both despising the woman's tenaciousness but loving their confrontations.  When she comes to him begging for help, he knows he's finally found a way out of his slump.  He tells her he'll give her the money she needs, but only if she can get everyone in town to vote on his project, and make it seem like it was her idea in the first place.  To do that, he tells her they have to spend the entire week together, since that's what new friends do.  The fire burning in her eyes at the prospect makes him wonder what the frumpy clothing and bad attitude are really hiding.  It should be fun to find out.

I'm always on the lookout for stories about two people that love to bicker with each other, yet are drawn to each other despite the animosity.  This story delivers all that and more.  Emma and Mitch start off hating each other's guts, but slowly begin to learn the reasons for that misplaced hate.  Once they come to an accord over the loan, the time spent together starts to bring down walls that have long been in place for both of them, and the healing can begin.  There were times I wouldn't have been surprised to see them try to strangle each other, but the aggravation gave it that sense of realism and depth to the characters. 

Carla gives this book a


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