Sunday, May 4, 2014

ARC Review: Laugh by Mary Ann Rivers

Mary Ann Rivers continues her Burnside family series—perfect for readers of Kristan Higgins, Jill Shalvis, and Ruthie Knox—as two people try to share their hearts without losing their cool.

Dr. Sam Burnside is convinced that volunteering at an urban green-space farm in Lakefield, Ohio, is a waste of time—especially with his new health clinic about to open. He only goes to mollify his partner, suspecting she wants him to lighten up. Then Sam catches sight of Nina Paz, a woman who gives off more heat than a scorcher in July. Her easy smile and flirty, sizzling wit has him forgetting his infamous need for control.

Widowed when her husband was killed in Afghanistan, Nina has learned that life exists to take chances. As the daughter of migrant workers turned organic farmers, she’s built an exciting and successful business by valuing new opportunities and working hard to take care of her own. But when Sam pushes for a relationship that goes beyond their hotter-than-fire escapades, Nina ignores her own hard-won wisdom. She isn’t ready for a man who needs saving—even if her heart compels her to take the greatest risk of all: love.

What I thought about Laugh

What I liked most about Laugh was Sam. He’s a guy that pulls you in while pushing you away. He was such an ass in the previous book in this series, and Laugh made me see him in a completely different light.

When Sam meets Nina, all sorts of sparks fly between them. There is some serious heat between them from the start. Their connection is not just sexual, and Nina understand the heart of Sam in a way no one else does--it's the sort of connection that soul-mades are made of. Although she resists him for a while, it isn't long before these two are steaming up the sheets.

Sam is still Sam though, and before long he messes things up, and not just with Nina. He’s not on such good terms with his brother or sister either. I love the Burnside family dynamic in this series -- it's messy and real.

Laugh is very much Sam’s story, about his journey of understanding himself with the help of a good woman. If you’ve read Mary Ann Rivers, you know you get very close to the characters thoughts and feelings, and I loved the way that Sam worked through what he wanted in life. I could relate to his tendency to beat himself up, to be impulsive, to love his family so much that it just comes out wrong. Where he ends up at that end of this book is pure joy.

I like this series. I can’t wait for Paul’s book!

ARC courtesy of publisher and Netgalley

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