Title: Forbidden Fling
Author: Skye Jordan
Series: Wildwood #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Available: 26th July
Delaney Hart has come a long way from her wild youth, dating tattooed bikers at her father’s bar, The Bad Seed. But when his death pulls her back to Wildwood, California, she must stay to renovate the dive he left her. And also face the lies and secrets that sent her running ten years before.
When Wildwood’s chief building inspector, Ethan Hayes, shows up on the property, Delaney doesn’t recognize him. The last thing he wants to do is save the bar where his cousin died in a brawl. But the good boy from her past is all too willing to remind her of the bad girl she used to be. And one night of passion leaves them both in a compromising position.
The last place Ethan should be is in Delaney’s bed. Guilt, family pressure, and plans for a brewpub of his own make shutting down The Bad Seed his top priority…until his feelings for Delaney interfere. Because her future depends on the success of the bar’s renovation and his dreams are rooted in its failure, their forbidden romance may be destined for heartbreak.
Source: ARC from the author via email
I am a huge fan of Skye Jordan’s Renegades series, so I was curious to see how she would tackle a completely different setting. Since I’m also a big fan of small town romances and second chances, this seemed like a perfect fit. And on the whole I enjoyed this. It’s an easy read with some sexy scenes and decent characters that I couldn’t help but like, even when I wanted to shake them.
Actually, with Ethan, mostly I wanted to pack his bags for him, fuel up his car and send him somewhere, anywhere, as long as it was far away from his awful family. Guilt plays a large part in this book, and the way it has shaped and transformed both Ethan and Delaney’s lives. For Ethan it kept him at home and turned him into the family whipping boy – which I never got, since his brother was actually there at Ian’s death, yet no one seems to be blaming him for not saving his cousin. He’s a man with dreams and plans, all of which have been stifled and crushed by his overbearing family.
He’s a good guy, for the most part, but he definitely need to stand up for himself more, so I loved it in the rare moments that he does. I also wish there had been less evasion – particularly when he first meets Delaney, because his behaviour then is not cool. Although I do feel Delaney was a bit harsh on him towards the end, since she wasn’t exactly up front and honest all along either.
Speaking of Delaney, I liked her too. I liked her strength and intelligence and the way she handles all the troubles thrown her way. Although, her homecoming clearly isn’t as bad as she imagined and sometimes portrays. Everyone seems happy to have her back, except for Ethan’s family. Still, I liked her when she wasn’t hiding things from Ethan and lying by omission.
There is no denying the chemistry between them either. But beyond the bedroom, I did struggle to connect to their relationship. They should have tonnes in common, yet it was hard to see quite why their feelings deepened as quickly as they did. It might have been nice to have felt that connection a bit more and not have their relationship boil down to their attraction and proximity.
While I’m on the subject of fast moving things – what was that ending? It builds up into a scrambled rush and then just stops. I hope there’s more from these two in future books, because this definitely did not feel like a proper ending.
So it’s not perfect. There’s a lot of circling around the same old issues, lots of evasion and dodging problems, and the relationship wasn’t as deep as I’d like, but it was still an enjoyable read. I’d definitely like to read more about Wildwood, especially if it means some overdue comeuppance for certain members of the Hayes family.
Forbidden Fling is out July 26th!
Visit Skye Jordan for more details.