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Review – Hold Me by Susan Mallery

Hold MePublisher: HQN
Publish Date: Out Now
How I got this book: NetGalley
Reviewer: MinnChica

Destiny Mills believes passion has its place—like in the lyrics of the country songs that made her parents famous. After a childhood full of drama and heartache, she wants a life that’s calm. Safe. Everything that Kipling Gilmore isn’t. Her temporary assignment with the Fool’s Gold search and rescue team puts her in delicious proximity to the former world-class skier every day. Part of her aches to let go for once…the rest is terrified what’ll happen if she does.

Though an accident ended his career, Kipling still lives for thrills—and a hot fling with a gorgeous redhead like Destiny would be a welcome diversion. Yet beneath his new coworker’s cool facade is a woman who needs more than he’s ever given. With her, he’s ready to take the risk. But love, like skiing, is all about trust—and before you soar, you have to be willing to fall.
*Blurb from Goodreads*

I wanted to love this story, after all, I’ve been pretty loyal to this series, and I hate when books start not working for me as well.

Destiny is in town to set up her software package for the new search and rescue team in town. Her nomadic lifestyle is one she loves, but with a new sister she didn’t know about and a potential love interest in town, Destiny is thinking about staying in one place for the first time in her life. She just never expected life would turn upside down so drastically once she came to that conclusion.

Kipling came to Fool’s Gold at the request of Mayor Marsha, and is so far loving the change. Not being able to ski is hard, but a new job and new life mission is really keeping his outlook positive. Meeting and falling for Destiny makes it all better, especially as he starts to whittle away at her defenses. But things with Destiny are not what they seem, and this time around, Kip is going to have to make sure he talks about his feelings instead of relying on his actions to say what he means.

I really hate writing this review, because it’s not going to be pretty. To be honest, I couldn’t connect with Kip, Destiny, the new secondary characters in town, or Fool’s Gold the town itself. The town has become such an integral part of the series, and I feel like as Mallery grows the books and series, the town is becoming more of a city, and yet it’s somehow retaining it’s small town charms, which I’m finding a bit ridiculous. For example, on page 8 it’s noted the population of FG’s is now up to 125,000+. However, on page 15 Kip comes across one of the “few traffic lights” in town. *scratches head* Cities with 125k people in them need more than a handful of stoplights…. It’s little details like this that are pulling me out of the story and making me question a lot of aspects of the series. Also, where the eff does Mayor Marsha keep coming up with all this mysterious grant money? Last I checked California is practically bankrupt. Unless she has a sugar daddy somewhere, this never-ending funding is starting to seem as mystical as Mayor Marsha herself!

I wanted to like Kip, especially the way Mallery built him up in the last few books. I love my sports heroes, so I was excited to read about a former skier. Instead, I found Kip to be super agreeable, kinda boring, and a little dull. He loved his sister and he was big on showing people he cared with his actions. Those were about the only two things I liked about him. =(

Likewise, Destiny also fell super flat for me. She was supposed to have lived this sheltered life, and it didn’t really come across that way to me, so when one of her big secrets is revealed, it really came out of left field and felt ridiculous to me. Again, her relationship with her half-sister (once she made an effort) was about the only thing I liked about her.

All in all, this book just didn’t work for me on so many levels. I found the romance to be flat and dry and not very interesting. The main characters were boring and again failed to grab at me and get me excited about reading their story. The quaint town of Fool’s Gold that I fell in love with early in the series has become a place that I recognize, but can’t really reconcile in my mind anymore. As much as it pains me to say this, I might have to finally break up with this series. *sob*
I give Hold Me a D

By MinnChica

MinnChica can usually be found with her nose in a book (or nook), and can ALWAYS find a few minutes to read: stuck at a red light, sitting in the doctors office, on her lunch break. She's so addicted to reading that her family frequently threatens to host an intervention. Currently MinnChica is devouring every romance book she can get her hands on, especially ones that feature 'friends to lovers' stories. Some of her favorite authors currently are Ilona Andrews, Jill Myles, Meljean Brook, Nalini Singh and Susan Mallery.

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