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Thursday, August 15, 2013

Review: In Flames by Jessica Jayne

Title: In Flames
Series; No
Author: Jessica Jayne
Published: April 2013, Evernight Publishing
Format: ebook provided for review

Gracelyn Riley married a firefighter and she knew that came with some risks. But she never imagined herself widowed in her early thirties with two children to care for on her own. Even though she had asked her husband, Chad, for a trial separation the week before his death because she found out about an affair he was having, dealing with the last year without him has not been easy. Her brother-in-law, Matt, has been the rock that has kept her from collapsing.

As a fireman, Matt Riley had been at the scene when his brother was killed. Several other firefighters had to hold him back to keep him from going after his brother in the collapsing building. The last year has been difficult for Matt. He suffered greatly from survivor’s guilt and drank himself into oblivion on several occasions. His one saving grace has come in the form of his sister-in-law, Gracelyn. Her friendship has pulled him through time and time again.

With the year anniversary of Chad’s death upon them, Gracelyn and Matt turn to each for support and comfort. What they didn’t expect was to realize that their feelings for each other may go well beyond the solid friendship they share. Can they overcome the guilt and the scrutiny of their family and friends to find love together?

In Flames set me on fire. If you are looking for a romance that is bound to take the hard road, that will move you in so many ways, that will light you up with sexual tension and heat, then I definitely recommend this book.

Gracelyn is a widowed mother of two kids. She’s still close to her in laws, especially her brother in law, Matt. Even aside from the romance that comes up, I found this to be remarkable and very attractive. So often you hear about families falling apart, and this family stuck together, even after losing a member. But then you have Matt, who goes above and beyond. He helps Gracelyn constantly. Is it survivor’s guilt? Is it romantic attraction? Is he just a nice guy? Yep. All of it. Yep.

I really loved the dynamic between Gracey and Matt. Sure, the attraction they share is a bit taboo – but it feels real and sincere. It feels like it should be there. The two of them secretly harboring feelings for each other, and then acknowledging them to each other – it brought them each back to life. For that alone, I loved it. There were some times that I wanted to yell at Matt, as he was the one who drug his feet more than Gracie. However, it’s not because he didn’t care – he just cared too much.

Jessica Jayne wrote this story with a lot of heart. It’s not just an erotic romance. She has a smooth flow to the story, and its very easy to find yourself caring for the people in it. Dealing with the death of Chad has been unbearably hard on everyone. When Gracey and Matt start to heat things up it is emotional and dramatic. I just kept thinking that the guilt must be overwhelming, but at the same time – what about your own heart? If you have a chance to be happy in your life, you have to grab it. The heart just wants what it wants, ya know?

The rest of the characters in the story are a trip. I mean, you have Cheryl, who is Matt’s ex-wife. The woman is a she-dog bitch from Hell. Yeah – there is no way I liked her at all. But then to balance out that evil rotten side, you have his sister, Sarah, who is sweet and intuitive, and generous. She really was a ray of sunshine and she brought a great shot of joy into the story. The kids all play minimal parts, but then you have Matt’s parents. One of them has a difficult time with some things that come up in regard to Matt and Gracey, and you don’t know if your heart is breaking or healing. Or can it do both at the same time?

Her lips parted and his tongue swept into her mouth. She didn’t even attempt to stifle the groan that bubbled up her chest. Her legs separated, and Matt took this as an invitation. He moved his knee between her legs and pressed his erection against her hop.

“I can’t seem to get enough of you, “ he said breathless. He kissed over her jaw and down the side of her neck. “and running around in nothing but one of my undershirts is a sure-fire way to get yourself fucked, Gracey. You. Are. So. Damn. Sexy.” He gripped both her wrists in one of his hands and held her hands above her head, while his other hand snaked up her thigh and under her shirt until it found her slick pussy. 

But hey, this is also an erotic romance. And that means sex. And I’m just going to say it. It’s fucking hot. These two get it on, and when they do it is ON. I loved it. 'Nuff said.

This story is going to really appeal to a wide audience. It’s dramatic and heated. The romance is to die for. It’s got a firefighter in it – and I know some of you just love that. It’s a five star read for me. I loved it to pieces. 

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I am a born and raised small town Ohio girl, who moved to the Sunshine State after graduating from college. I graduated with a bachelor's degree in English because I could not imagine doing anything else but reading and writing. It is such a pleasure to be able to share all the stories in my head!

In the journey of life, I also became a wife and a mother of three children. So, life is always an adventure. But the love of writing has never died.

My favorites: I love to read and write... obviously! But I also enjoy all sports, especially college football and the Ohio State Buckeyes! Go Steelers! Go Rays! I LOVE to travel... LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to travel. And I love sharing my love to travel with my children. I love to drink Teavana teas! I love a good glass of wine, especially if it comes from a bottle made by the FOOLS wine club… yep, I’m a member of that! J I love hanging out with my family and my friends! Big fan of music, but love nothing better than putting on my jean shorts, tank top, cowboy boots and hat and watching Tim McGraw belt it out! I’m a sucker for a cowboy hat! J

Favorite quote: “If nothing ever changed, there would be no butterflies.”