Review – Until We Touch by Susan Mallery

Until We TouchPublisher: HQN
Publish Date: June 24th
How I got this book: NetGalley

After a family tragedy, former football hero Jack McGarry keeps the world at arm’s length—a challenge now that his PR firm has moved to neighborly Fool’s Gold, California.

Larissa Owens knows where she stands—Jack sees her as just another one of the guys. No matter what her heart wishes, Jack’s her boss, not her boyfriend. But then Larissa’s big secret is revealed…by her mother!

When Jack discovers the truth about Larissa’s feelings, her touch suddenly becomes tantalizing, and he’s not sure he wants to resist. But if he gives in to desire, heartache is sure to follow. Friendship or true love—will Jack go for the ultimate play?
*Blurb from Goodreads*

I’m such a fangirl when it comes to Mallery and the Fool’s Gold series, I can’t even begin to tell you how much I adore this long running series!

Larissa has worked for Jack for awhile. He helps support her causes, and doesn’t ask when she needs someplace to stage wild animals or five rowdy puppies. When Larissa’s mom spills the beans about Larissa’s love for Jack, the dynamic of their relationship changes. Larissa thinks a few sweaty naked nights together will help cure her childish dreams, but finds that her heart is a lot more fragile than she thought.

Jack refuses to get involved – with people, causes, or anything other than his business. But now that he’s sleeping with Larissa, he can’t seem to get her off his mind. He wants to spend time with her, find out all her secrets, and support her causes in any and every way he can. But Jack is scared, and when he lets that fear rule, he might find himself without an assistant, and a woman to love.

I love the way this book started, with Larissa’s mom matching into Jack’s office and spilling the beans about Larissa being in love with him. I thought it was hilarious and fun and such a neat way to set up their relationship. Of course, the fact that they both denied it for awhile made it all the more fun. One of the things I loved the most about Larissa, was once she acknowledged the fact that she really was in love with Jack, she dealt with it right away. She didn’t try and pretend her feelings would go away, or that she would be able to change the way Jack felt about relationships. Instead, she accepted her feelings and moved on. It was refreshing to see.

There were times when Larissa drove me a bit crazy. She was out of the world insane when it came to her causes, and the things she committed to were so out there! And the fact that Jack sat back and let her bring all sorts of crazy animals and situations into his house had me shaking my head. He was crazy to allow her to do the things she did, and she was crazy for thinking she could do so much in the first place. The whole situation surrounding her causes was a little out of this world and over the top.

While I did enjoy Larissa and Jack as individual characters (despite their flaws), their romance didn’t feel as exciting for me. I thought it was funny the way Larissa thought she would be able to work through the attraction by having no-strings sex with Jack, and how hard she had to fight for it. But when it came to Jack putting more than just naked time into their romance, he kinda sucked. Sure, he could do the friend thing perfectly, but once they became romantically involved, he even started sucking some at that. I wanted more of a commitment to Jack, even if it was just toward their friendship, and I felt like I was left hanging a bit in that regard.

It was so great to see all the secondary characters I’ve come to love in this town. I can’t wait to see what Kenny and Bailey get up to in the next book, and love the idea of the search and rescue group being the (hopefully) next set of characters to find their HEA in Fool’s Gold.

All in all, I’m still loving this trilogy of books based on the previous athlete heroes. I love the bond of friendship between the guys, as well as the girls they have in their lives as well. Although the Fool’s Gold series is already 15 books deep, Mallery continues to keep the town and characters fresh and exciting and a favorite series of mine to go back to.
I give Until We Touch a B-

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