Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Book Review - - Fifteen Weekends by Christy Pastore


The past, it can haunt you…It can consume you…have a hypnotic hold on your mind, body and soul. The past can keep you from moving on…holding your heart hostage. 

The past, can also bring you closure…provide answers you never knew you needed to mysteries you never thought existed…and the past, can force you to look at your current choices in an entirely different light. 

Ashleigh Preston has always maintained control of her life, especially her romantic life. To everyone else she seems to have it all— a posh independent lifestyle with nothing holding her back. As a successful Freelance Food and Travel Columnist, Ashleigh can escape whenever she likes and travel the world. She frequently visits her favorite city—London. 

Coincidentally, London is where Liam Frost, the charming Welshman lives, her no strings attached irresistible best friend with benefits. Still closed off to the idea of love because of her painful past, can Ashleigh overcome personal grief and take a leap of faith with him? Or will her emotional guilt be too much for Liam to handle, leaving him to move on with someone else?

Smart and sophisticated Marketing Executive, Emily Greene needs closure from her complicated past—she is still consumed by the disappearance of her ex-boyfriend, Craig Walker. The thought of him lingers with her even years later. A stormy night brings about a surprising confession from Emily’s arrogant, yet very attractive co-worker, Ethan Carlson. This admission gives Emily a good reason to push former romantic visions out and usher in new ones. 

The past always has a way of twisting into the present. A series of mysterious events—cryptic phone calls and creepy text messages begin to pose an irritating problem for Emily’s life, until one day the annoying situation turns far more serious than she can anticipate or realize. Emily starts to believe her past might be a threat for her new heated romance with Ethan. Is it possible for Emily to move on with her life, despite never knowing what happened to Craig? Can Ethan help Emily put the past behind her and move on with him?

Amanda Parsons, the former country club socialite whose fall from grace has landed her in the poor house. A chance meeting with Vince Everett, a handsome and wealthy businessman, rescues Amanda from her sad state of affairs returning her to the familiar decadent lifestyle she’s accustomed. The clothes, jewels, shoes and gifts are nice, but the boredom and loneliness stir emotions reminding her of the scandal that shattered her world. 

Can Amanda shake the emptiness that consumes her or is she doomed to repeat the same mistakes from her past? And why is her sister friends with her biggest mistake—Andrew Langston? Revisiting that dark part of her life sheds light on a mystery Amanda never dreamed would unravel so many possibilities for her future.

Melissa's Review...

5 Stars

Where to begin... Fifteen Weekends is a tale of three women that intertwine so perfectly.  It is the debut novel by Christy Pastore but you would never, ever be able to tell.  Her writing is so well perfected, detailed and fresh.  I was slightly obsessed with Christy Pastore before even reading this book because she is an amazing person but after reading Fifteen Weekends it is safe to say I have moved on to pure fangirl status!!

So the story begins with Ashleigh, a freelance writer, who specialized in Food and Travel and the very scrumptious Liam.  Ashleigh is very closed off as far as her heart is concerned because she is still trying to come to terms with a great loss.  It is absolutely heartbreaking hearing Ashleigh relive her past.  (Make sure you have tissues ready!!)  Liam, however, is a nice distraction.  He is a true gentleman.  Never asking for more than he knew Ashleigh was willing to give or pushing the topic, even when his own feelings may have been in question.  Together they form a very close, no strings attached relationship.  Only, that may not be exactly what Liam is looking for?  Will Ashleigh be able to fight off the darkness that has followed her for many years before Liam moves on?  Christy takes us from past to present, piecing together their story seamlessly.  There is so much more I wish I could say about their story but for fear or spoiling anything I will leave you with this... Liam is not only the perfect gentleman but he also has an accent.. Oh sweet, sweet Liam!! 

Next, Christy introduces us to Emily.  Enter the suspenseful part of the book.  Emily's live in boyfriend just up and vanished one day and she has been working hard ever since to move on.  She works as a marketing exec at a large firm and rocks at her job.  Her co-worker, Ethan, however loves to give her a hard time.  Think of it like you did as a child, when someone picked on you, grown ups would tell you it was because they liked you.  Well, for Emily, that was exactly the case.  After Ethan confessed his true feelings for Emily they begin to see each other.  And boy are they HOTT together.  That scene in the conference room just minutes before their meeting.. I don't know about you but I blushed through the entire chapter!! Everything isn't all sunshine and flowers, though.  Emily starts receiving threats but brushes them off, thinking it must just be someone trying to rattle her cage.  Was this her past coming back to haunt her or something more sinister?  Ahh, I was on the edge on my seat through Emily and Ethan's whole story line.  I tried to guess who the culprit behind the threats was but I can't lie, I was totally wrong!  Once again, Christy delivered a captivating plot that kept me wanting more!

The third story line in the book is based on Amanda and I am not going to lie, at the beginning she was my least favorite.  She was a rich girl with a charmed life who's rise to fame and luxury was shot down by a scandal that rocked not only her life but the lives of everyone she loved.  On the outside, she was just your typical snob who made a bad choice but once I got to know her she definitely had some redeeming qualities. I actually found myself feeling sorry for her.  While out shopping at a second hand store (a far cry from the life she was used to) she meets a man by the name of Vincent.  He is not only smitten with her but filthy rich and seems to want to give Amanda back exactly what she lost those years ago.  The only problem with their arraignment is Amanda may have the life she was once used to but she is lonely.  History shows that Amanda makes bad decisions when she is lonely.   But holy plot twist, come to find out Amanda may not be totally to blame for all of her bad decisions.  Is it possible that the one person who stood by Amanda during her fall from grace was the one who was responsible for the WHOLE THING?!  (Sorry for being cryptic but again I don't want to ruin anything!!)  Oh, and then there is Alex... swoon... You have to read to the book to meet Alex... (he may have been my favorite man in the whole damn book!!)

I was pleasantly surprised by Fifteen Weekends!  At first glance I thought it was going to be a pure romance novel but it is so much more than that!  There is something to offer everyone in this book.  The fact that Christy managed to make these three stories fit together so perfectly, changing the POV's just at the right second, like mini cliff hangers if you will, made this book a really enjoyable read.  She never over did anything, delivering just enough to keep me wanting more.  The sex scenes were perfect, the suspense was just dark enough.  There was never a time that any of the story outshined the rest.  My only qualm is that the second book isn't out yet!! Hurry up, would ya?? LOL!  Perfectly done! Amazing! One of my favorites!  

Story Line - Loved!
Female Characters - Strong, Interesting
Male Characters - Swoon!, Sweet, Sexy
Author's Writing Style - Addicting
Plot Twists - Amanda's story... OMG!
Laugh Factor - fair
Cry Factor - Definite
Steam Factor - Oh Ethan!!
Violence - Not really violent, Per Se

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