Title: I Wish You Were Mine
Series: Oxford, Book 2
Author: Lauren Layne
Release Date: February 2, 2016
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
ARC Received From: NetGalley
Reviewed For: Tasty Book Tours
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Perfect for fans of Alice Clayton and Emma Chase, Lauren Layne’s Oxford series heats up in this story of forbidden desire as a brooding jock hoping for a comeback falls for a woman who’s strictly off-limits.
A year ago, Jackson Burke was married to the love of his life and playing quarterback for the Texas Redhawks. Now he’s retired, courtesy of the car accident that ruined his career—and single, after a nasty scandal torpedoed his marriage. Just as he’s starting to get used to his new life as a health and fitness columnist for Oxford magazine, his unpredictable ex shows up on his doorstep in Manhattan. Jackson should be thrilled. But he can’t stop thinking about the one person who’s always been there for him, the one girl he could never have: her younger sister.
Mollie Carrington can’t say no to Madison. After all, her older sister practically raised her. So when Madison begs for help in winning her ex-husband back, Mollie’s just glad she got over her own crush on Jackson ages ago—or so she thought. Because as Mollie reconnects with Jackson, she quickly forgets all her reasons to stay loyal to her sister. Tempted by Jackson’s mellow drawl and cowboy good looks, Mollie is sick and tired of coming in second place. But she can’t win if she doesn’t play the game.
Other books in this series
Letting go doesn't mean giving up but rather accepting that there are things that cannot be. - Unknown
Easier said than done, maybe, but progress in life doesn't happen until one fully acknowledges and accepts this. Such was the case with Jackson. Once a famous quarterback who had the perfect life, he's now a shadow of that man. An injury to his throwing arm lost him his career, his wife, his life. Accepting a position as a fitness writer for Oxford in New York gave him the chance to escape the mess created by his ex's vicious lies in Texas. Except he made no move to better himself after arriving. He clung to past so hard his knuckles turned white and he growled anytime dared urge him to let it go.
It kept him a prisoner and blinded him to what was right in front of him: Mollie.
Mollie loved Jackson for years. A schoolgirl crush exploded into grownup love. But her sister is Jackson's ex-wife. The chances of anything happening between them is hindered from the get go because of that, at least in Mollie's mind. Her loyalty to her sister stems from the care Madison gave her after their mom died. For a time, I agree, Mollie's desire to side with Madison was well-placed. But after Mollie grew up and made a life for herself, I would have thought she realized she no longer owed Madison anything. Seems I was wrong because Mollie refused to acknowledge the bad in Madison and stand by her instead.
That little decision almost wrecked Mollie's relationship with Jackson.
It's one thing, I think, to have "other" people listen to and agree with rumors being told about you. It's another thing when your best friend, your confidant, does. That was a major bridge Jackson and Mollie had to cross. Not just Mollie admitting she did but Jackson forgiving her.
But this isn't just about Mollie and Jackson experiencing real love together. It's about Jackson realizing the life he had can't be his anymore. The life he has can be everything he wants and needs but only if he would let go of the past before it's too late.
They almost missed their chance too. It took a flight back to Texas, an airport conversation with his conniving little ex-wife, and a one-way ticket to New York for that chance to actually happen. And they deserved their chance together.
If you haven't read the first book in this series, don't worry. This is a solid standalone in this series. Definitely worth read, worth experiencing the laughter, heartache, the longing for more, and the happiness that came with finally getting what Jackson and Mollie deserved.
Lauren Layne is the USA Today Bestselling author of more than a dozen contemporary romance novels.
Prior to becoming an author, Lauren worked in e-commerce and web-marketing. A year after moving from Seattle to NYC to pursue a writing career, she had a fabulous agent and multiple New York publishing deals.
Lauren currently lives in Manhattan with her husband and plus-sized Pomeranian. When not writing, you'll likely find her running (rarely), reading (sometimes), or at happy hour (often).