One summer, one secret, one last chance . . .
Nicole Chandler was seventeen the summer she fell in love with Jake Evans, the sexy, rough-around-the-edges mechanic who came to work in her father's marine repair shop. At twenty, Jake had seen more of the dark side of life than any kid ever should, yet underneath the hard exterior was a man who protected and cared for what was his.
For Jake, Nicole was a sunshine he'd never known-sweetness and innocence, feisty, brave, funny. And definitely sexy. He knew he shouldn't love her, yet she believed in him as no one ever had and made him laugh as though life might turn out okay. When the summer ended, Niki held his heart.
Then she broke it.
His secret, her misunderstanding-the mistakes they both made-sent their lives on different paths, their story unfinished. Yet twenty-three years later, they still remember.
Nicole, now a successful artist, is starting over. When Jake finds her again, she's ready to believe in what they once had. Yet after years of being alone, driven by nothing more than success, he may learn to forgive; but he can't seem to forget. And he's damn sure never again going to feel the pain of having someone he loves and trusts walk away from him.
Young love is fragile, but with histories and exes and families, grown-up love is messy. And while building trust is hard, rebuilding what was once shattered may be impossible.
Does first love ever really get a second chance?
A standalone novel
Just sayin' . . . In Texas, the nights are steamy, the food is spicy, and the lovin' is both. If this isn't your kind of read, best give this one a pass.
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.97(d)|
About the Author
I didn't start out to write this book. I was halfway through another story and stuck. So I decided to set that story aside and write something short, intending to get back to the first one in just a bit. But what to write? It was summer and thoughts of high school dates at the lake kept coming to mind-including a coconut cream pie fight we won't speak of.
What if? Not my lake and not even close to my own story, but within a week, Nicole and Jake were in my head, insisting their story be told.
I love romance in books, movies, and songs. And in real life. Second chance stories are a particular favorite. About two weeks after I started writing Unfinished, we made contact with a friend we'd lost track of and discovered that the year before, he'd married his first love. After fifty years apart! First love did, indeed, get a second chance.
It's time for me to get back to the story that's been waiting. Logan and Steve, my imaginary friends, are ready to talk.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Honest review for free copy Jake and Nichole met when they were 20 and 18. Jake grew up in a trailer with an abusive father and a passive mother. Nichole grew up in a house of love and financial comfort. The summer they met, Jake was working for Nichole's father at the marina and staying in the family boathouse/apartment. Although they fell in love, Jake would never admit it. The time they spent together was filled with laughter, conversation and some heavy-duty kisses, but, much to Nichole's chagrin, Nichole remained a virgin. Jake left at the end of the summer with both of the them promising to meet up again at the boathouse in 21 months. There was no explanation as to the timeline, Nichole just accepted it. Jake and Nichole both ended up in Austin for college. They never saw each other, but one day shortly before their time apart was up, Nichole saw an insert for the local college graduation. Jake was listed as a double honors student. Nichole went to watch the ceremony and to congratulate Jake when she saw him celebrating with another woman. Nichole decided not to meet Jake on Memorial Day at the boathouse and went on with her life. Over 20 years passed when they met again. During that time, Nichole had married her dear friend, but not the love of her passion, Michael and they had twins. The twins grew up and went to college and Michael asked for a divorce. He had always known he took 2nd place in Nichole's heart and wanted a chance to find a lover who would love him back, fully. Because of Jake's upbringing, he had a very difficult time trusting people and this included Nichole. Their 2nd chance was filled with misunderstandings and lack of trust. Would they be able to work things out and get their 2nd chance at happiness? This was a "new-to-me" author, and although I found the book to be a little "angsty" and a tad long, I would certainly read her again.
I will be honest, I wasn't sure i like this book.. But it blew me away. Nicole and Jake's story is heartbreakingly, beautiful.. We meet Nicole, she comes from a loving home.. Her mother died, but she had her father and brother to help her through.. The summer she turns 17, she meets the gorgeous Jake and instantly feels an instant connection to him.. But Jake has had a different kind of upbringing, he has been through what no child should ever go through.. He tries to keep her at arms length, to protect them both from his secrets, but he finds himself falling for this beautiful girl.. Life, secrets and a misunderstanding keep them apart.. But they're never away from each other's thoughts... I cried so hard for Nicole and Jake (ok it was full on, ugly crying, like sobbing my heart out), I prayed they would find each other again... There story is such and amazing journey, that has you laughing, crying, frustrated, smiling, heartbroken and so extremely happy... I can't believe this is Susan Hammond first novel and I can't recommend this book highly enough!! ** I was given enough this ARC, for an honest review **
Unfinished: A First Love, Second Chance Romance, is the first novel published by Susan Hammond. I was approached by her assistant to review Susan’s book, and I must say, I am incredibly grateful that I was asked. I might not have picked the book up on my own, but now that I have read it, I can’t wait for the next book by this amazing author. The back of the book gives you a wonderful insight into what you will be reading, so I am not going to repeat what you can read there, but what I will say is you will not want to put the book down once you start it. It is beautifully written with amazing understanding of the characters lives as they go through this journey, not always physically together but emotionally tied to one another. The story begins with Nicole, visiting the childhood home that she and her brother are selling. She thinks back twenty three years to the beginning of her relationship with Jake, her first love and the man she thought was her world, but things didn’t work out how she thought they would and they were torn apart. Then fast forward to now and the story when their lives intersect again. You will experience every emotion as you read about their love, loss and finding their way back to each other, their second chance. I laughed, cried and was enthralled with the rich story Susan wrote. Susan’s writing is enchanting to read and hard to put down. Her descriptions of Nicole and her art and Jake and his struggles and successes, are so well written that you will feel as if you have known the characters throughout their lives and were there with them as they went through everything you read. You will root for them as they go through difficult times and smile when they are experiencing what they should have experienced when they were younger. If you want to do something nice for yourself, pick up a copy of this book. You will not be disappointed and you will be greatly enriched by the reading this book.