Guest Reviewed by Ami
Title: Sweet Surprise
Author: Candis Terry
Series: Sweet, Texas #4
Heroine/Hero: Fiona Wilder/Mike Halsey
Genre: MF Contemporary Romance
Length: 384 Pages
Release Date: January 27, 2015
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Playing naughty or nice…
Fiona Wilder knows all about falling in lust. Love? That’s another story. Determined not to repeat past mistakes, the single mom and cupcake shop owner is focused on walking the straight and narrow. But trouble has a way of finding her. And this time it comes in the form of a smoking hot firefighter who knows all the delicious ways to ignite her bad-girl fuse.
Can lead to heartbreak…
Firefighter Mike Halsey learned long ago that playing with fire just gets you burned. He’s put his demons behind him, and if there’s one line he won’t cross, it’s getting involved with his best friend’s ex. But when fate throws him in the path of the beautiful, strong, and off-limits Fiona, will he be able to fight their attraction? Or will he willingly go down in flames?
Or a sweet surprise!
Review: When I started this book, I was giddy with excitement! The story opened in quite an alluring way as Fiona Wilder (Jackson’s ex-wife) and Mike Halsey (Jackson’s great friend) were dancing at Reno and Charli’s wedding. I felt the chemistry between them, and I was desperately eager to read how these two find their happy ending. I loved Fiona – it’s so refreshing to have a woman who still stays friends with her ex-husband – and Mike surely caught my eyes. Sexy fireman, people!
I will say this – when Mike and Fiona are in the same vicinity, I enjoyed their moments. Both are highly likeable characters, and the progress of them finally acting on their sizzling attraction is slow and steady but rewarding. I smiled frequently when I read Mike helps Fiona preparing for her cupcake shop or when he was bonding with Fiona’s daughter, Izzy.
However, as I continued reading, the story lost its early appeal somewhat…
The thing is, I had a hard time believing Fiona’s reasoning for not following the attraction that she is feeling towards Mike. Fiona keeps saying that she has a naughty side, a sinful alter ego, which has driven her to wrong choices in her life before. But I didn’t buy it. Not when Fiona also states how that past leads her to her daughter and an extended family (by way of her ex-husband’s) that welcomes her with open arms. So how was that a strong enough of a reason?
Not to mention that I didn’t even get a glimpse of what sinful Fiona is like. She clearly is a good and responsible mother to Izzy and a very good friend for her ex-husband’s fiancé. It’s a weak base of a reason and it irked me after a while. What Fiona sees as a mistake for me became an issue that did not make sense – or what her friend, Sabrina, said as “monster-sized ridiculously lame-ass comment”. This reluctance by Fiona dragged down the story for me in the middle and I was frustrated by it.
I also had problem with Mike’s baggage. Similar to Fiona, Mike keeps saying that he has locked his heart away from romance because of his troubled family and disastrous marriage. However, Mike’s family members are pretty much non-existent throughout the story. We never meet them. Heck, even when Mike visits them, it happens off-page. So how can I be convinced about that part of his life? I was only being told, not shown of his internal conflict. It would have probably been better for me if Mike’s conflict only focuses on the fact that Fiona is his best friend’s ex-wife. That situation is already complicated and intriguing enough.
… and I admit that I missed the Wilder boys, a LOT!
Overall, I did like this story – it’s a good addition the whole series. It’s a sweet and heartwarming romance with two people that I think are perfect for each other. Unfortunately, it’s my least favorite of the whole series. Here’s hoping that the last book, Jake’s story, will be better.
Overall Impression: I liked it
*I purchased my own, personal copy of this book for review.*