Joint Review – Baby, Be Mine (Thompson & Sons Bonus Story) by Vivian Arend

Baby, Be Mine cover image
Publisher: Samhain
Publish Date: Feb 25th
How we got this book: ARC from the publisher

What the mind forgets, the heart remembers.

Since the moment Katy Thompson transformed from annoying tagalong to desirable woman, Gage Jenick has awaited his chance. When she kicks her boyfriend to the curb, he doesn’t hold back—in spite of the next day work assignment that will take him completely off the grid for two long months.

After a head injury sustained on a storm-swept road, Katy can’t remember her own email password, much less how the little pink “positive” on the pregnancy stick got there. Barring an influx of midichlorians, she’s at a loss to explain what happened, or when…or with whom.

Suddenly Gage is back in her life as if he has a right to be there. While she vividly remembers the crush she had on him, she’s no one’s charity case. But another thing she’d forgotten was just how stubborn Gage can be—especially when her domineering ex tries to stake a claim…

Warning: An unforgettable night that gets forgotten. A crazy redneck ex, and a hero who’s ready to take on the world, and his past, for his heroine.
This blurb came from the author’s website.

E: A few weeks ago I reviewed Marked which contained the first installment of Arend’s Thompson & Sons series. Katy is in a few scenes but I didn’t really get a chance to know her so I was very curious to see what Katy’s story was. When I read the introduction, I realized that Baby, Be Mine was one of the stories using favorite tropes that came from a lovely twitter discussion. Now I really couldn’t wait to read this. I have to say Arend threw in some favorite tropes and then a lot more. I loved how she set up the combination of pregnancy and amnesia so Katy didn’t know who the father of her unborn baby was.

Meka: Oh, this book! Pregnancy! Amnesia! Who could ask for anything more? I read and reviewed Marked where we get to see Mitchell, Katy’s brother, get his HEA. All of this made me very interested in learning more about his family and the people important to them. While we got just a few snippets about Katy and learned that she was important to Mitchell, we didn’t really glean much. And so here is this book with its amazing tropes that are some of my absolute favorites, and how could I say no? Loved the beginning where we see Gage finally ready to make his move and Katy taking him up on said challenge. That particular opening was one of the absolute sweetest that I’ve ever read in a romance.

E: Katy about broke my heart. She had gone from a strong woman finally getting what she wanted for years to a woman recovering from a serious head injury whose memory and brain aren’t working they way they did. Pregnant, not sure of who the father was, more attracted to Gage but unable to believe she couldn’t remember their time together Katy was struggling. Her ex kept trying to get her back and claim they had reconciled during the time she could no longer remember. Gage kept trying to remind Katy of their past as he knew it but she wasn’t sure who to believe. I enjoyed how she wasn’t sure of what happened but she knew, she felt more for Gage. Her strength as she got through all of the wickets thrown in her way by her ex’s plots was absolutely amazing.

Meka: There were so many things that I enjoyed about Katy. She had such a strength about her and I loved to see it shine through. She didn’t want to be coddled, she wanted people to understand her. Her skepticism of Gage was completely natural, and her confusion about who was the baby’s father really made her struggles to find normalcy in the crazy more poignant. Learning to trust Gage and her own heart just brought out the sweetness in this story and I enjoyed watching their journey.

I loved that she had the most incredible friends. Too often, romancelandia heroines live in an island unto themselves. I *loved* that she had friends that she could BS with and talk smack. It made for some real laugh-out-loud moments in the book.

E: Gage was a rough, angry man who didn’t shy away from using physical force to defend what he cared about. Finally giving into Katy after she broke up with her boyfriend he planned to return from his contract job and pick up where they left off. But she never responded to any of his emails and then he discovered she was pregnant, amnesiac, and as a result didn’t know who to believe. While he never lost his temper with Katy, his actions towards her ex resulted in even more stress until after the results of a paternity test were reported. His steadfast determination to care for Katy and do to everything he could to show her he cared was very moving. I loved how he carefully skirted the rules yet made sure he was around when she needed him.

Meka: Gage is going down as one of my favorite romance heroes. He was sweet, attentive, and aware of his temper but afraid of it as well. I loved the way that he supported Katy and was there for her during the changes in her life. His concern over not receiving those emails was palpable, and it was interesting to watch him have to rethink his strategy of approaching Katy after the changes. He dealt with both her ex and Katy’s protective family in stride. A scene close to the end of the book that involved Gage made me tear up, as did the last part because we got to see him in his element. We got to see all that gruff package show all of himself instead of just parts and pieces and it made me happy *sigh*.

E: Baby, Be Mine was a lot of fun to read. Arend took a few tropes, spun them on their heads and not only provided an entertaining story but also made me think about how very precious my memory is. The tension between Gabe, Katy, and her ex along with the many obstacles kept me wondering how things were going to work out. Katy’s story was a great follow-up to the glimpses I had of her in “Rocky Ride”.
I give Baby, Be Mine an A-

Meka: Baby, Be Mine took tropes that I love and wove them intricately in to a story that made me both laugh and cry. I was reading this while traveling, and there was a part that made me stop reading, go to twitter, and flail, but the payoff was so worth it. if I had a quibble, it would be that I might be too much of a vengeful reader and wanted a little more commupence for someone, but that’s just me. It was a fun book with a sigh-worthy couple who got the HEA that they most definitely deserved. It’s also putting Vivian Arend on my auto-buy list. I give Baby, Be Mine an A.

Links to purchase:

Baby Be Mine _ Quotes _ Rocked to core

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