If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. - Oscar Wilde
We shouldn't teach great books; we should teach a love of reading. - B. F. Skinner
No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. - Mary Wortley Montagu

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Review: Starting Over by Stacy Finz / @pumpupyourbook @sfinz

Title: Starting Over
Series: A Nugget Romance, Book 4
Author: Stacy Finz
Publisher: Lyrical Shine
Release Date: August 18, 2015
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
ARC Received From & Reviewed For: Pump Up Your Book

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The mountain town of Nugget, California, may be tiny, but with its breathtaking scenery, fresh air, and lovable locals, it has everything. Not to mention it’s the perfect setting for firsts—and seconds—of all kinds…

On the day of her glitzy New York City wedding, society girl Samantha Dunsbury ditches her Wall Street groom, and hops in her convertible. Her only plan is to head west. But when a pit stop lands her at a lovely Victorian inn in Nugget, she doesn’t want to leave. And when the innkeeper needs someone to fill in, Sam is thrilled to take the job—her first! For once, she’s going to do what makes her happy. She just has to figure out what happy looks like. She never expects it to look like her surly new boss…

The last thing Nate Breyer needs is a debutante dilettante mucking up his business. How his sister—and co-owner—could’ve hired Sam is beyond him. Nate’s known women like Sam before—he was engaged to one once. With no options, he’ll just have to keep his eye on her while also keeping his distance. But to his surprise it turns out Sam’s got a knack for the job, and for putting folks at ease—including Nate. As business—and pleasure—heat up their relationship, Nate finds himself ready to do anything to persuade the runaway-bride to stay permanently gone…

Other books in this series

Sam was too painful of a reminder of a woman Nate had once been engaged to. Beautiful, wealthy, flighty, and inconsiderate of others and their feelings. She abandoned her fiance at the altar, like Nate's did to him years ago. The difference was Sam's no-good would-be-husband was an unfaithful bastard who had no plans on keeping it in his pants even after they said "I do", while Nate's ex decided marriage wasn't for her. The reasons for abandonment are as different as light and dark, but Nate didn't know that because he was determined beyond all reason to see Sam as his ex.
You know, as a parent I tell my kids (especially my oldest 'cause she's in school) not to judge people by what she sees, that there is more to a person than what's on the outside. I wanted to hammer this lesson into Nate's head.

The man's stubbornness frustrated the hell out of me. Sam was a complete doll. She might physicially be a replica of his ex, but her personality and her character really made her worth liking and getting to know. I wanted to Nate see that from the beginning, to give her a chance without being hostile toward her. Stubborn ass man decided the harder route was better instead.

And I loved that Sam proved him wrong, showed him she was nothing like his ex and that they could have the happy ever after they wanted, the kind that included lifelong faithfulness and commitment.

While this is the fourth book in this series with characters from the others making appearances, it reads well as a standalone. Nate and Sam are wonderful characters. Sam's easy to like and fall in love with. Nate's... Well, he's Nate. He's a little stiff around the edges and has a heart that needs some TLC to soften but he's a good guy under all that.
This is a great addition to Ms. Finz Nugget series. If the town were real, I'd visit. If the people were real, I'd love to sit and listen to the stories they could tell. This is a series that has grown on me, and I look forward to reading the books that continue it.

Stacy Finz is an award-winning journalist. After more than seventeen years covering notorious serial killers, naked-tractor-driving farmers, fanatical foodies, aging rock stars and weird Western towns for the San Francisco Chronicle, she figured she finally had enough material to launch a career writingfiction. In 2012 she won the Daphne du Maurier Award for unpublished single-title mystery/suspense. She lives in Berkeley, California with her husband.

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