Sometimes falling in love is the easy part…
A Rancho del Cielo Romance.
Locke Jackman is single, childless…and he has a bad case of empty nest syndrome. For years, as he fought tooth and nail to keep his brothers and sisters together after his parents died, his entire life was focused on his responsibilities.
Now his siblings have all moved on with their lives, and there’s no one around to distract him from his overpowering attraction to his sister’s best friend. Their mutual desire is stunning…but then again, so are the secrets keeping them apart.
Susie Packard’s nightmarish marriage taught her what happens when she gives in to her weakness for powerful men. Too bad the big, stoic frowner across the street—the one who sets her bells jangling just by breathing—has her in his sights.
Try as she might to keep her emotional distance, Locke is determinedly knocking down all her walls. But as much as she wants to be the woman he needs, she knows better than most— passion may have its rewards, but every secret has its price.
Warning: This book contains a hot, modern-day Viking seducing his way to the heart of his woman, a stubborn lingerie designer with a world of secrets and a very deep bathtub… Enjoy!
This blurb came from the author’s website.
My introduction to Locke came in The Virgin’s Revenge which I reviewed and enjoyed. I fell for him during that book because I have a huge soft spot for the big brother who sacrifices his dreams to care for his family. He chose to grow up much faster and to deal with a large amount of responsibility at a relatively young age. Because of that choice, I couldn’t wait for his turn. When I found out that Tenorio was working on his story I did a little happy dance and periodically encouraged her along in the writing process. I am sure you can imagine how happy I was when we received the review and tour request. I am glad to say that Locke was well worth the wait.
Poor guy, he had a long distance crush on Susie ever since she arrived in town but because she was friends with his younger sister, Amanda, **melt** he resisted. But when his younger siblings all left the house Locke was left without any distractions so he gave in and started trying to get to know Susie a bit better. However, since he put his life on hold for so long his dating and relationship skills needed a lot of work. His missteps were the source of much amusement on my part and frustration to his siblings and Susie. Locke had to learn that he could not deal with Susie the same way he dealt with his siblings if he ever wanted to have a relationship with her. As the story progressed I increasingly liked him because he really did mean well, he was just like a blundering bear. Watching him grow and learn was a treat.
Susie was also an intriguing character. She escaped from a horrific life and was determined to never lose herself again. In her mind, this meant avoiding large bossy powerful men but she never expected Locke’s quiet determination. I thought it was hilarious when she would stand up to him and to see both his shock and her internal glee. As Amanda’s best friend, Susie was already familiar with the Jackson family but watching the dynamics of their interaction change as her relationship with Locke changed was a great example of how Tenorio paid attention to the extended connections throughout the book. She also made some crucial choices when she decided she was going to fight for what she wanted. Like Locke, Susie made her fair share of mistakes in her dealings with him, but she also learned from her errors.
Tenorio provided a very entertaining and touching story with Locke and Susie. Both had to deal with their past and how it altered their emotional maturity. They had to learn to trust each other and that a disagreement or argument did not mean the end of the world. The Jackson siblings also did their best to assist the progress of the growing relationship with mixed results, again a source of amusement for me. The last thing I really enjoyed is how Tenorio increased the suspense and tension towards the end just when I thought events were calming down and provided a very satisfying ending. She took two of my favorite tropes, the responsible big brother and sister’s best friend, and created a great combination.
I give Trust in Me an A-
**BP Note: Do not forget to look at our earlier post today for some great insight into both Susie and Locke**