Friday, October 23, 2015

REVIEW: Trusting Jake by Lauren Giordano

Title: Trusting Jake

Author: Lauren Giordano

Release Date: September 26, 2015

Publisher: Harvest Moon Press


Broken down at the side of the road, Jenna Stone's life is like her car. In need of a jumpstart. Tired of playing by other people's rules, the widowed single mom guards her new freedom by keeping her deadbeat husband alive . . . in name only. But meeting Jake Traynor makes her question the merits of lying. Will he break down the fortress around her heart?

Falling for a married woman was never in the blueprint. The definition of responsible son, workaholic executive Jackson Traynor is driven to prove his father right in promoting Jake to run the family construction company. He's all business. No pleasure. Until assisting a beautiful redhead with her broken down car reminds Jake what he wants.

What if the only person you want is the one you can never have? Battling their deepening attraction, Jake must question everything he's ever believed-- because Jen and her kids are the family he's always dreamed of. Jenna must choose between a safe life and the one of her dreams. When Jake's company is threatened, she will risk everything to protect him-- even if it means exposing old secrets.

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I’m always fascinated by the stories that include children as some of the main characters. Whether we’re talking a single mom trying to make it in the world, or a single dad just trying to keep it all together while life goes on, I can’t help but be interested in how these little people will change the basic dynamic of a romance novel. Trusting Jake by Lauren Giordano caught my attention for just this reason.
Jenna Stone is finally free of a bad marriage, one from which the only good things to come of it are her children – Alex and Megan. Forced to move and start over after being fired from her job, Jenna looks forward to a new beginning and is determined not to allow the past to repeat itself. To protect herself she maintains the illusion (er, lie) of being married, not truly realizing the very limiting conditions she’s placing herself and her children’s lives in. That is, she didn’t realize until after she meets Jake and remembers that not all men are like her ex-husband, and realizes that by lying she may have made an even bigger mistake than ever before.
Jake Traynor had very specific goals and expectations for himself. Desiring his married assistant was nowhere on the list. Falling in love with that very same, married assistant never even occurred to him as possible. And yet, it’s not long before he finds himself consumed with thoughts or her and, surprisingly of her children. But while he accepts that he can’t help but think of her, it would go against every moral and good intention he ever had if he were to act on those thoughts...
I really liked this story. It was sweet and romantic but held just enough edge – with deceptions, jackasses and angst, to keep it from being too sweet and romantic. Jenna lies through her teeth and yearns with all her heart, and Jake is confused and absolutely miserable.
Alex and Megan, these two little kids who seem to fall for Jake just as quickly as he falls for them, and who want him in their lives just as much as their mom wants Jake too, they are quite simply adorable. These kids could have been used as a road block for the relationship between Jenna and Jake, many an author take that route with kids, but instead the kids were a bridge between them. A common ground that even while holding themselves away from each other, Jenna and Jake couldn’t hold away from themselves.
I enjoyed watching as they struggled – as Jenna sought a way out from under the lies she’d been telling, as Jake fought with his own conscience and morals. I liked seeing the process their minds took, enjoyed how they finally came together and the aftermath of those moments. And you know, I liked that they both bent; that both of them adjusted what they thought they could accept, and readjusted it before really, really becoming ‘Jake and Jenna’.
All in all, Trusting Jake is a story that I thoroughly enjoyed and as it’s the first in a new series (Blueprint for Love) from the author, I’m happy that I’ll have the chance to revisit the characters from time-to-time, even if only peripherally. So if you’re looking for a short and sweet romantic tale – look no further than Trusting Jake by Lauren Giordano.

About the Author:

Lauren Giordano writes contemporary romance and romantic suspense. Her next series, Blueprint to Love, will start in September, 2015 with the first book, Trusting Jake. When not writing, she is usually burning something in the kitchen. A book lover of all genres, Lauren is always searching for her next great read. She lives in the mid-Atlantic with her husband, daughters and two vacationing cats who never seem to leave.

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