Tuesday, October 6, 2015

~*★Review★*~ Falling Hard (Falling Fast #2) by Tina Wainscott

Title: Falling Hard (Falling Fast Series #2)
Author: Tina Wainscott
Release Date: December 8, 2015
Publisher: Loveswept 
In bestselling author Tina Wainscott’s gritty, emotional small-town romance—perfect for fans of Jasinda Wilder and Colleen Hoover—passions run high as a reformed bad boy reconnects with an old enemy . . . and gets her engine revving.

There’s no one Pax Sullivan wants to run into less than Gemma Thornton. Back in high school, she revved his heart more than street racing. But she picked his clean-cut brother over him—only to accuse Blake of an unforgivable crime. Eventually the charges were dropped and Gemma left town, but the hard feelings lingered . . . along with Pax’s gnawing “what-ifs.” Seven years later, just as he quits the police force to open a racetrack, Gemma’s back—and their chemistry is more combustible than ever.

If it were up to her, Gemma would never lay eyes on another Sullivan. She hates them, and they hate her—even Pax, who just so happens to be fixing up her father’s B&B. But the more time she spends with the lean, hard-bodied ex-cop at the inn and on the track, the more Gemma sees that Pax is nothing like his brother. Despite their anguished history, she’s tempted to take their relationship into high gear . . . if she can face the past and risk her heart.
Title: Falling Hard
Author: Tina Wainscott
Release Date: December 8, 2015
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Humor, New Adult
Series or Standalone: Standalone Series (Falling Fast #2)
Rating: ★★★★ 1/2 Stars
Reviewer: Melyssa
This is the second book in the Falling Fast series (the first one being Raleigh and Mia’s story) and features Paxton and the girl that back in high school picked his brother over him in Gemma.

Now I know, this sounds bad right? Oh she was involved with his brother? But I assure you, it’s not like that at all.

Never having read anything by this author before and coming into this series not really knowing any of the players, not even in the most basic of ways could have made this book hard to read for me, but it didn’t. What you need to know in terms of Raleigh’s story, you get in small doses in this one so that never once do you feel as though you’re missing anything not reading his story.

Though for the record, I’m intrigued enough by what I was shown that I want to go back and see how it all came to end up where it is in this one so I’ll be doing that in the near future. The secondary characters were just as engaging at times in this one as the main characters were so I can’t help wanting to know more.

Now on to my thoughts on the story.

Paxton is the “bad seed” brother in his family. The one that you see shades of being a “bad boy” in the first meeting with Gemma, but who at the end of the day was labeled wrong. By his family, friends, the damn town they live in. It was all just labeled wrong because he was not a bad boy at all. He was not a bad seed, even if years have passed since him and Gemma’s first meeting and time may have changed him.

Even as teens, he didn’t come across that way to me and I liked him, and even the chemistry with him and Gemma from the start. Both then and now. It just clicked. They were two people that were labeled wrong and of course gravitation towards someone who feels the same is the most natural thing in the world.

Only that’s not at all how things play out. Gemma, needing to do right by her father, be less trouble then she had been before her mom shipped her off to live with him, decides the night she meets Pax as a senior in high school that she’s not going to gravitate toward the one most like her, but instead be with someone much more “respectable” in terms of parent approval.

A mistake that ends up costing her in one of the most horrible ways with what takes place between her and the brother and what ultimately drives her out of town for years.

Fast forward to the future and Paxton and Gemma coming across each other again. Right off the jump the passion is there between them. They want to hate each other for the loyalties that had been exhibited after what went down years before but can’t. Despite the passage of them, they’re still connected in the same way they always were and it was a pleasure to see that build and grow as the story went on.

I enjoyed the fact that the author didn’t just throw these two together and then drop a bunch of drama in their way. No, she did a slow burn here and it was enjoyable. I already believed that Gemma’s choice as a young girl was the wrong one with the way everything with her was always Paxton and not the brother, so watching all those feeling come back up and then take hold was tremendous and gave me the payoff I was after here.

I hurt for her with the way she was treated in the town when she came back though. It pained me, but this is where the author hit the realism button because when you go through something, especially in a smaller town where your family basically runs the place, and it’s them against you, it’s expected that things will play out this way. Everything about Gemma’s experience, what everyone turned their backs on her for, it was real to me. I felt it with every fiber of my being.

Harley the dog stole the show for me though. The way Pax was with him, the way he immediately latched on to Gemma (seeing what even Pax couldn’t see in the beginning) was fantastic. There is something just so fun about animals in fiction and Harley was no exception. And it appears as though Gemma felt the same with the way she did a total 180 from the way she was about dogs before.

This book was about more than just a second chance for Pax and Gemma to get it right romantically though. It was about coming to terms with the person you were before and the one you are now. It was about not running when the going gets tough, but instead digging in your heels and fighting for what you want and the person you love.

Both Pax and Gemma both did this and by the time I turned the last page, I was more than happy with the way their story turned out. (I may have also enjoyed what happened to Pax’s brother a little too much though lol).

There were a few issues I had in terms of pacing a flow, that slowed the book down for me at times, but they were so sparing that it didn’t make too much of an impact in terms of my overall enjoyment of the story.

This is definitely an author I will be checking out more from in the future. She kept me thoroughly engaged throughout and made me believe in the love, growth and change of these two characters.

My thanks to NetGalley, the publisher and the author for allowing me the chance to read this before release.

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