Tuesday, March 11, 2014


(Second Chances Standalone)
by L.P. Dover
ARC Review
Published: March 7th, 2014

My rating: 3 of 5 ⭐️

Ten years ago Shelby though she was making the right decision in setting free the man she loved so he could pursue his dreams. Slight miscalculation on her part was that she never bothered asking him what he wanted. Over the years she had much cause to regret that decision, and even after all this time had not been able to completely let go. Of course, just as Shelby is getting ready to take that first step, who else but the source of her years of pining would make a sudden appearance in her life. But now in the form of subject matter for an article she has just been assigned to write on the MMA Heavyweight Champion, "The Destroyer".

Years of hard work and dedicated training have paid of for Matt Reynolds, and now that he has reigned in his 'wilder' side, he hopes he can settle into a steadier groove after winning the championship. He had come from very little, but had managed to make something of himself, it was time to treasure that. When his manager suggested an article for a renowned fitness publication would help boost his image, Matt didn't hesitate a moment. That is, until he was introduced to the writer of said article..... a woman he had tried hard to forget for years, the same woman who he had never been able to completely remove from his heart.

To say their unexpected reunion was a surprise is an understatement. Both Matt and Shelby are shaken by the encounter, and although Shelby runs, this time Matt is not going to let her get away easily. Even though it's been years, he still wants some answers and if possible a look to see if there is anything left between them. When cornered, Shelby tries to explain her reasons for leaving back then, although she still doesn't share everything with him. A decision she may come to regret.

When a long-time nemesis gets a lead on some damaging information, he does not hesitate to try and use it to drive a wedge between Matt and Shelby and threatens to break apart what has only just been rediscovered....


The story is not unfamiliar...... rejected years ago only to find each other again with an opportunity to clear up any remaining misunderstandings, leaving out one crucial detail that threatens to end the blissful reunion yet a second time around!
This particular version made a bit more interesting with the addition of a competitive nemesis of our hero, who is known to stoop low to shake up his opponents. Low enough to dig up dirt as old as ten years down memory lane....

Shelby thought she did good by letting Matt go to pursue his dream, and for the life of me, I have never met an 18-year old who has not thought of herself long enough to come to that conclusion...... Call me a cynic.... OR..... call me a mother of four (now adult) children, feet solidly planted on terra firma, knowing that unless the girl is a veritable saint, there isn't an 18-year old female in love, in her particular situation, who could bring herself to be that self-sacrificing. If she had had any hardships in her life before that....... any hard knocks to overcome....any indication at all that she had needed to grow up at a young age due to trauma of some sort, I might have bought into the extreme maturity at a naturally selfish age. As it is......nah.

Matt's reaction back then is far more character and age appropriate: Pissed off, heated, proud, all of those things and more. Flipping the bird at her and the rest of the world, by working  his ass off to get to where he wanted to go and living it up as if he isn't hurting every step of the way. Now that makes much more sense to me. But then, Matt baffles me as well! He takes one look at her after ten years and basically decides that whatever it was is forgiven, and hey.....let's try this again. For a guy who says 'he has though about her at times over the years', he sure says "I never stopped loving you" awful quick!!

Needless to say, I have a bit of an issue with the credibility of the crux of the story, BUT that is not to say I don't like it..... because I do. I actually enjoyed reading this book. In part it was the MMA scene, which is always interesting, and also the interaction between Shelby and Matt. Despite the way they came together, their effect on each other is very tangible. And I don't just mean the scalding chemistry. They have an actual connection that can be sensed in the way Shelby can hold back the instinctive violence in Matt that wants to come out, and Matt is able to ground Shelby with a simple touch or word. 

That right there, is the result of a piece of fine intuitive writing on the part of L.P. Dover. She must have had a strong sense of who she needed her characters to be, to be able to tie them together so well. Not only that, but she was able to translate that into words and onto the reader. Well done!

✨A charged and steamy fight for a seductive second chance!✨

**ARC provided in return for an honest review.**

 Amazon.com  Amazon.ca  Smashwords Barnes&Noble


No comments:

Post a Comment