Tuesday, April 1, 2014

THE WILL by Kristen Ashley

(The Magdalene Series #1)
by Kristen Ashley
ARC Review
Published: April 8, 2014

My rating: 5 of 5 ⭐️

Back in the small town of Magdalene to say her last goodbyes to her grandmother, Josephone Malone is overwhelmed with the loss of her anchor. The one person who knew her inside and out, who saved her, protected, kept her and loved her unconditionally. All she had left now was the house, Lavender House, full of warm and safe memories. So unlike the travelling life she now lead, moving from impersonal hotelroom in one city to the next, working with those few relegated to the spotlight. She had no real personal life, only a professional one, and that suited her just fine. 

Always open to the possibilities of love, Jake Spear took three trips to the altar before realizing it would take two people completely invested to make such a commitment work. The ex-boxer didn't regret his three children though, they were the light of his life, if also the bane of his existence at times. Forced to think outside the box to make sure his family could survive and thrive, Jake not only owned and ran the local gym in Magdalene, but he also owned and ran the only Strip Club around..... or as Josephine would say "Gentlemen's Club".

Lydie, Josie's grandmother, had virtually adopted Jake and his three children, but with Josie's travelling, she had never met them in all those years. First time was at Lydie's funeral. But it appears Lydie had been well prepared for the event and put Jake and Josie square in each other's path. Even from beyond the grave she was still trying to look out for her loved ones. Jake seemed more comfortable with that idea than Josie. She is so accustomed to closing herself off from personal connections, she has done it for 23 years.

Under the guise of friendship and with a gentle - well, as gentle as a big hulking ex boxer can manage - hand, Jake slowely woos Josie and she carefully lets down some of her firmly placed defenses, allowing a more carefree Josie to come out. In return her unselfish nature and instinctive nurturing care for the children has Jake all but melting in his shoes. But honesty has always been at the forefront of their connection and when it appears that secrets are kept, will the connection be strong enough to stand.


Phenomenal..... Everything KA ....and then a whole bunch more!! 

I was 15% into this book when I sent an email to Ms. Ashley saying I was in LOVE with her characters!!

First let me tell you that this is a richer, fuller, more mature - but no less witty, or freakin' steamy hot or quirky - Kristen Ashley novel. It is the difference between let's say, a Cadbury Cream Egg - which is delicious and once the last bit of flavour leaves your tastebuds, you want another - OR, a Lindt Swiss Chocolate Cream Truffel - when you bite one of those suckers, the first crumb that hits your tongue makes shivers go down to your toes and even after the rich, dark and full flavour leaves your mouth, the memory never goes away and you are spoiled for life -....... Get it now?? 

Josie is flippin' hilarious, with her high-falutin' vocabulary and endless compound sentences of faultless grammar, leaving everyone in her wake, slightly numbed and hazy-eyed. Along with her impeccably put together appearance with the highest quality products and accessories, this forms the clearest and first protective barrier securing the frightened woman inside. Funny thing though, when you start caring about people, especially people weaker than yourself, i.e. children, your fear pales against theirs and it turns into fierce protectiveness and strength.

OMG can Jake be anymore delicious? At first glance rather an uncouth character, albeit well-dressed, but of somewhat dubious repute with the mouth of a long-haul trucker or two. Three ex-wives and a stripclub? That doesn't exactly spell reliable and responsible. Oh, but Jake has deep waters, deeeeeeep waters and underneath all of that rough exterior lives a man who simply wants to find a woman who will appreciate the world he wants to lay at her feet, however big or small. 

The contrast between the two main characters is nothing short of delightful! Add to that, a 17-year old clone of his father, a 16-year old angsty teenage girl in terrible need of some female guidance and the MOST adorable 10-year old precocious boy ever!! We had some introductions to characters we may, or may not, see again in future books. And the sum of it is absolutely phenomenal!! 

I have had the best time, reading this book, laughed out loud, full body enjoyment - It's like having an airbubble in your chest that just won't deflate........I'm still waiting. 

THE WILL immediately went on my FAVORITES list, and not just for this year.....I mean EVER.

Sharp, vibrant, animated and oh so scrumptious!!✨

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

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