Review – Just One Kiss by Susan Mallery

Just One KissPublisher: HQN

Publish Date: May 28th

How I got this book: NetGalley


He won’t hesitate to put his life on the line…but will he ever risk his heart?

Falling for Justice Garrett was a high point in Patience McGraw’s otherwise awkward adolescence. Even after he disappeared, Patience never forgot the boy who captured her heart. Now, he’s back in Fool’s Gold, California, and her passion for him is as strong as ever. But how can she trust that he won’t abandon her again-and her daughter, too?

When bodyguard Justice Garrett was a young man, witness protection brought him to this idyllic town and he never forgot its warmth, or the sweet beauty of his childhood friend. He’s returned to open a defense academy, and the Patience he once knew is all grown up. He can’t resist her smile, or her curves. But Justice’s past doesn’t make him husband, or father, material.

Patience and Justice think they’ll succumb to just one kiss… Then one more… Okay, just one night together. But they might learn that falling in love is beyond anyone’s control.

*Blurb from Goodreads*


I love the Fool’s Gold series, it’s one of my favorite contemporary romance series, and I absolutely adore all things Susan Mallery.

Patience loves living in Fool’s Gold, can’t imagine ever living anywhere else. She had a normal childhood, except for the time her best friend Justice suddenly disappeared without a word, or a trace. When Patience finds out Justice has returned to Fool’s Gold, and discovers his history in witness protection, they resume their friendship as if nothing had ever come between them. Except now, they are both adults and able to act on the attraction that has been simmering for years.

Justice always loved Patience. As a boy, he loved her innocence and pure outlook on life. As a man, he can appreciate her personality, her beauty and everything else he remembered about her. As much as Justice wants to be able to keep Patience as his own, his past is one that he doesn’t think he’ll ever be able to outrun. But when life catches up with them both, love might be the only thing that can save them.

I adored this story. I always worry that with long standing series like this, the books can start to get old and feel recycled. However, this book felt fresh and new and I am so excited about this new trilogy, especially since we’ve already met the heroes. After I finished this book, I wanted to forsake my TBR pile and glom onto the next two books in this series. 🙂

I really liked the idea of Justice being in the witness protection program, and how that played such a huge role in this book, and his life. I loved that he became a bodyguard, and really devoted his life to saving others, like the US Marshall’s did for him. I just wish that Justice would have been able to see that his genetics didn’t make up the man he was. He really let his father determine who he was, how he identified himself. I hated that for him, because everyone else besides him was able to see just how incredible of a man he turned out to be.

I thought Patience was wonderful. If I could choose the kind of best friend to have, it would be someone like Patience. She was so down-to-earth and fun and loyal. She loved Justice from the moment they first met, and she never really stopped. She was dedicated to her friends, standing behind them one hundred percent. Even when she wasn’t sure she wanted to make a new friend, she was able to look past the surface and see down into the individual. She is the kind of romance heroine I love reading about. Seemingly perfect in every way, and yet the kind of woman who didn’t let it go to her head, or make her any less loveable.

The romance between these two was somewhat subdued. Their sexual relationship starts off with a bang, and although they both kid themselves that it’s just physical and nothing more, it was obvious to me that the two of them fell pretty much in love the minute they laid eyes on each other as adults. They beat around the bush and tried to convince themselves it wasn’t the real deal, and yet there was never a moment I didn’t believe these two wouldn’t make it.

All in all this is another fabulous romance in the Fool’s Gold series. I love Mallery’s writing, and I think this installment is one of the better ones in the series as a whole. I am so anxious to read the next few books in the series, as I think the heroes are all going to be badasses, and the heroines sweet and fun. This book has rekindled my love for this series!

I give Just One Kiss an A-


24 thoughts on “Review – Just One Kiss by Susan Mallery”

  1. Just One Kiss was fabulous! I l LOVED IT! It is a great book to start off our summer reading! Justice and Patience match perfectly with each other and in the Fool’s Gold town. The struggles each face with their families we can find pieces we relate with allowing us closer to the characters in the book. Susan Mallery delivers again! This book is a must read on everyone’s summer reading list! Enjoy!

  2. Brenda Rumsey

    Loved this book. Susan’s characters make you wish there was a real Fool’s Gold that you could go to visit. JUST ONE KISS leaves you filling uplifted and smiling.

  3. My heart is in Fool’s Gold and my mind and body want to join it quickly. OH Susan Mallery has the most lovable characters and makes you part of the family.

  4. Loved your review and it makes another win for Susan Mallery! Loved the book and couldn’t put it down. The fact that they are both draw to each other just makes the book even better! The more time I spend in Fool’s Gold the more I wish I could move there 🙂

  5. @Patoct: I hope you enjoy the book as much as I did.

    @Jayme: RAWR! I am always down for sexy bodyguards. YIPPE!

    @Shannon: This really was a wonderful summer reading book. I hope everyone will pick it up and take it to the beach with them. 😉

    @Brenda Rumsey: If there was a real Fool’s Gold, I think I’d want to move.

    @Charlotte: I really do feel like part of the family whenever I read one of Susan’s books. 🙂

    @Amanda W.: I love 2nd chance love stories, so the fact that they were not only getting that 2nd chance, but were also each other’s first loves. *melt* <3<3

  6. I agree I think Susan really works hard to create different stories and I liked how she worked in so many new ideas to this story

  7. This was my favorite of the Fool’s Gold books so far! I agree that some series can become stale after a while, but this one does not. Loved it!

  8. Loved Just One Kiss. It makes you believe there is that someone special for everyone. It brought tears and laughter to me. The perfect summer read. Looking forward to reading the next two bodyguard books.

  9. I loved Just One Kiss! What a way to start the summer. Susan is so inventive when she comes to her characters. She draws you in and leaves you wanting more!

  10. I’ve been waiting/anticipating this summer’s Fool’s Gold trilogy and SO glad to say it was worth the wait!! I LOVE this series and can’t wait to get the next two bodyguard books this summer!!

  11. I agree I loved this book too. I thought Susan pulled out all the stops on this one because she introduced not only new characters but dug into new areas with her stories including the witness protection program! Can’t wait to read the other two books this summer!

  12. What a great review. Isn’t it amazing how Susan keeps the stories fresh? Love the book.

  13. Great review, thank you. Some series and authors I will probably never get to read, even though I want to. Just too many books already.

  14. @Beccie: Yeah, I’m excited for this new trilogy, I think it’s going to be super fun and fresh.

    @Lesley L.: YAY! It was great.

    @Shari: Um bodyguards, what’s not to love?!

    @Kerri: I definitely wanted more the minute I was done reading.

    @Maria: Agreed!

    @AngiMac: It was absolutely worth the wait. I love when that works out.

  15. @Kortney: I’m super excited about these new characters, and seeing some old favorites, like Pia. 🙂

    @Patsy: Thank you! I do love Susan’s books.

    @aurian: I hope you get the chance to pick up Mallery’s books someday. They are fabulous!

  16. Just One Kiss is another great addition to the Fool’s Gold Series!! Can’t wait for the next one, Two of a Kind!!

  17. Really loved this book!!
    I agree that this years books are gonna be great! 🙂

  18. Great review! Always love returning to Fool’s Gold. It is like returning home!! I love the relationship between Patience & Justice.

  19. Always love returning to Fool’s Gold. It is like returning home!! I love starting my summer reading a new Fool’s Gold book!! I love the relationship between Patience & Justice. I love Felicia, too. She is something, but I think she would be a great friend. Always there for you no matter what & that is the type of girlfriend we all need. I love Lillie. Patience has raised a sweet little girl & she should be proud of herself.

  20. Loved Just One Kiss!!! Introducing new characters, catching up on the old, add some mystery and its the perfect summer read! Cant wait for Two of a Kind

  21. @Dee Myers: I’m super excited for the next one as well!

    @Melissa M: I’m thinking this years might be better than all the rest!

    @Melissa: Thank you! I couldn’t get enough of these two, hope we get to see lots more!

    @Melissa: I’m super excited to see what happens with Felicia. She is a character, that’s for sure!

    @Shannon F: I liked the mystery in it too. It was subdued, but a nice change of pace for Mallery. 🙂

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