Book Review: Jack & Gill by Cheryl Phipps

RATING: 4 out of 5 Stars

JACK & GILL (Sycamore Springs #1) by Cheryl Phipps

Jack and Gill live side by side at the bottom of the hill. Best friends forever, but one has always wanted more. A contemporary story that is well written in the first person with alternating points of view between Jack and Gill. Ms. Phipps gives a you a fun, fast and easy to read HEA.

Gill has always lived in her parent’s home next door to Jack. They went to school together, although Jack was a grade ahead and since the first grade Gill has secretly loved Jack. She is a successful business owner of her own landscaping firm now, but during high school and college she never felt she fit in. At 28, she doesn’t see Jack ever loving her as more than a friend, so she starts seriously dating Adam.

Jack looks out for Gill, like a little sister. Life and relationships are easy for him as the star high school quarterback and later a career as a successful developer in Sycamore Springs. He moved back home after a short, bad marriage and now lives for his little girl, Katie. Together Jack and Gill provide Katie with a loving home environment and Jack doesn’t want that to change, but Gill has announced her engagement to Adam and Jack needs to decide what he really feels about his best friend.

I finished this story in one sitting. I felt Gill’s frustration and pain at hiding her feelings for so long. There were times I wanted to slap Jack upside his clueless head. The characters felt very real to me and the story flowed from their points of view. Just one warning, if you are a traditional romance reader and don’t want your H/h having sex with someone else in the story, this is not the book for you.

Written for and posted first on The Romance Reviews.com.

Book Review: Hidden In Laguna by Cheryl Phipps

hidden in laguna

RATING: 3 out 0f 5 Stars

LAGUNA BEACH: HIDDEN IN LAGUNA by Cheryl Phipps is an extremely short novella that is easily read in one sitting. It is part of the Laguna Kindle World.

Tania Patterson has settled in Laguna Beach to build a career as a wedding planner after an injury that destroyed her future as a professional ballerina. The injury was not an accident. She was betrayed and feels she will never be able to fully trust another man again. She has built a wall around her emotions, but she starts to feel again when she listens to Braden play the piano.

Braden Dorn is an extremely talented piano player, who gave up his career and shattered when he could no longer take his step-father’s abuse and exploitation. He is a serial dater and never believes he will find a woman to tell his secrets and love like his two older brothers. Something is different when Tania is around and he isn’t sure how to handle these new feelings.

This novella is only 98 pages long and is packed with Tania and Braden’s romance, both characters back stories, some emotional growth on both their parts, sex scenes and the emotional reconciliation between all of the brothers. I just feel it was way too short for all the subplot threads. Braden is more fully formed in my opinion than Tania, but the lack of a substantial emotional feeling for either left the story two dimensional for me.  I felt the sex scenes were well written, but overall, I was not emotionally invested in their romance.

Written for and posted first on The Romance Reviews.com.