Release Date: September 20, 2016
I read this well-written, contemporary romance in one sitting. In a genre that most times buries us up to our necks in May/December romances where the male is old enough to be a parent to the female, it was good to see the role reversal…and she wasn’t even old enough to be his mother!
Age difference isn’t the problem in this story, ‘acting your age’ is.
Madison Buchanan is a forty-two-year-old executive vice-president for an investment firm for startups, who acts more like someone half that age who’s been locked in a bell tower all of her life.
Her husband dumped her, her mother’s a shrew, her father could use a spine, and her boss is the lost King of the Douches. These are not the people who guide or even influence Madison…they are the people who manipulate her. And, she allows it. Did I mention she’s FORTY-TWO?
Enter twenty-nine-year-old Sean Taylor. After a few brief encounters, Sean asked Madison out. Of course, the first response is, “I’m too old for you”, and that’s fine. Had that been her final answer, then it would have been solely up to Sean to change her mind. But nope! She hemmed and hawed, and listened to her BFF, Margot, who did what? Manipulated her into going out with Sean, then several chapters later, manipulated her into going out with someone else because Sean was just a “rebound fling.” The people both Madison and Sean considered “friends” seemed anything but at times. *Exhales* But I loved Madison’s brother, Liam, because he loved his sister and only wanted her to be happy. No mind games, no manipulations.
I also loved, loved, loved Sean! He was open, honest and genuine. Madison…wasn’t. To be fair, maybe she didn’t know how to be, considering the type of mother she had (oh my god, her mother!), and the type of man (THIS guy!) she married. There are flashes of confidence and individuality in Madison, but they’re either 1) when she lets her guard down with Sean, or 2) when she’s angry…and drinking. An angry, drinking Madison is a force of nature and blows down everything in her path. Only problem is the regret she feels when she sobers up.
Sean has his demons and past issues too, and some he’ll have to deal with during the story, but he’s focused on Madison and determined to not let anything deter him. At some point, I wanted the same for him from Madison. Every time they took one step forward together, she would take three steps back…running, drinking and crying. It was maddening. Sean gave one hundred percent. Madison changed like the breeze…just depended on who the last person was she talked to. Everyone is entitled to their opinions, and man…in this story, they did not mind sharing them. Only problem is their opinions quickly became Madison’s guidelines to “what should I do?’.
For all the heartache and confusion Madison caused Sean, the ‘ending’ was anti-climactic FOR ME. While the last family dinner scene is fantastic – it’s a scene Madison has starred in before. While the apology to Sean is more than well-deserved by him – it’s an apology Madison has given before, and it made the ending feel rushed. Personally, I needed more accountability from Madison. I needed a personal epiphany with the heavens opening and a choir of angels singing as Madison looked up and the knowledge of self was revealed to her.
Okay, I didn’t get that. And while it may sound as though I didn’t like this book…nope, I loved it! Because it DID reel me in and made me read it in one sitting; because it DID anger me and had me yelling at my Kindle (insert raised eyebrow look from husband across the room); because I was totally invested IN the story and cheering Sean on the entire way. The whole plot line with Bryan? Never saw it coming! Kudos to the author! One click this one today!