A Beautiful Distraction: A Hard Feelings Novel [NOOK Book]

Overview

A brand-new novel in the New York Times bestselling Hard Feelings series—where nothing’s more dangerous than a bad boy with a broken heart…



First Sergeant Rafe Murano did everything to the extreme. He trained harder, he fought harder, ...
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A Beautiful Distraction: A Hard Feelings Novel

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Overview

A brand-new novel in the New York Times bestselling Hard Feelings series—where nothing’s more dangerous than a bad boy with a broken heart…



First Sergeant Rafe Murano did everything to the extreme. He trained harder, he fought harder, and, unfortunately, he loved harder. And falling for the wrong woman nearly destroyed him.



Home from a deployment and without his missions to consume him, Murano is ravaged by memories of his heartbreak. So he drinks until he’s numb and drowns himself in meaningless one-night stands. But they only take the edge off….



Until he meets Fallon.



Haunted by her past, Fallon Kelly knows all too well about the desperate desire for an escape. So when she sees the tatted-up bad boy who’s one punch away from a ride in the back of a squad car, she offers him a distraction—one that quickly becomes an addiction.



Little does she know, this bad boy can love so hard, it can break her.…





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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
★ 03/24/2014
Leverich’s third Hard Feelings contemporary (after Feel the Rush) introduces two damaged souls trying valiantly for wholeness and love. Burlesque-club owner Fallon Kelly was tossed out by her well-to-do family as a teenager and has fought to succeed ever since—on her own terms. Sgt. Rafe Murano, back from his fourth tour of Afghanistan, is looking to drown the bitter memories in women and alcohol. After Rafe defends one of Fallon’s dancers from an aggressive patron, Fallon takes off with him, determined to get to know the scarred soldier. Soon, the chemistry explodes, but unless they can put aside their painful pasts, they have no shot at a real future together. Deeply emotionally painful in some places, humorous in others, this is a tale that will remain in readers’ minds long after the last page is turned. (May)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781101639184
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 5/6/2014
  • Series: A Hard Feelings Novel , #3
  • Sold by: Penguin Group
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 27,968
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Kelsie Leverich is the New York Times bestselling author of The Valentine’s Arrangement and Feel the Rush. She lives in Indiana with her husband, two children, and their three pets. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her out on the lake with friends and family or snuggling on the couch with her kids and a good book. She loves stories that can sweep you off your feet, make you fall in love, break your heart, and heal your soul.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 15 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(9)

4 Star

(5)

3 Star

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1 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 15 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 10, 2014

    4.5 stars I know this is the third in a series - a series in wh

    4.5 stars

    I know this is the third in a series - a series in which I've not read any other books in. Normally, that would automatically make me say no, at least until I've had a chance to catch up in the series. But, I've heard good things about Kelsie Leverich's Hard Feelings series, and I really do love a good war hero story. They are one of my favorite kinds of bad boys. So, I bent my rules for A Beautiful Distraction. And, I'm so glad I did.

    Fallon is a confident businesswoman - the owner of Velour, a burlesque club, she has learned that relying on herself and herself alone is the safest and surest way to go. Rafe has spent years burying the pain caused by his disastrous relationship in the war overseas. But, now that he's back, he's got too much time on his hands to think. Alcohol has been his best distraction until he sees Fallon dance in her club. Events put these two in each others' path, and they find better ways to distract one another.

    Rafe is a bit of a contradiction. The dichotomy of a hardened war hero and a man who loves too much was too much for me to resist. Usually these grizzled war guys are so closed off from themselves and the rest of the world that they're brought into a relationship kicking and screaming. In Rafe's case, he was the easiest to convince that he and Fallon were better together than apart. It was Fallon that was the most resistant.

    While Rafe has a supportive family, Fallon has no one. She has learned to rely on herself after her wealthy family kicked her to the curb when she didn't meet their expectations for the perfect daughter. So, when Rafe comes barreling into her life - an unknown, but exciting variable - she has a hard time dealing with the uncertainty and unpredictability it brings to her orderly life.

    I loved that Rafe took Fallon's life and turned it upside down. I loved that she thought she had even a chance of stopping him.

    And, I loved when Fallon had to come to terms with her feelings for him after his past comes back to try and reconnect.. Actually, the moment when Rafe makes his decision between his past and his future with Fallon, that was one of my favorite parts of the book.

    Rafe positions himself in Fallon's life fairly quickly, and what's even more surprising is that she lets him. At first it may have been just the sexy hot times they seemed to share whenever they touched. But, eventually, as Rafe brings Fallon into his life - introduces her to his dad and his brothers, tells her about his past and the war - she sees there's so much depth to this guy that she can't help but fall in love with him.

    A Beautiful Distraction is told in dual POV (love it!). The writing is really great and the pacing and plotting was perfect. I made it through this book in just over 24 hours - it was so hard to put down!

    Now that I've broken myself in with the Hard Feelings books, I plan to go back and read books 1 and 2 in the series to catch up. I'm definitely sold on Kelsie Leverich and her Hard Feelings boys.

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  • Posted May 19, 2014

    great series and i was very pleased with the book i would recome

    great series and i was very pleased with the book i would recomend it and if you liked her other books you will love this one

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  • Posted May 14, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Fallon and Rafe just about slayed my heart. These two can pack a

    Fallon and Rafe just about slayed my heart. These two can pack a wallop with their emotions, that I was not prepared for. You take a hot-headed, yet deliciously seductive, bad boy Sergeant and throw in a wounded, distrusting, burlesque club owner and you have a chemistry off the charts, and a story that had to be told. They are the most unlikely couple. He's possessive and she's not in the business of trusting anyone. Together they somehow, make a perfect couple. I say somehow, but really it's in the brillance of the writing. Ms. Leverich will time after time blow my mind with her characters. They're complex, but not overly dramatic, seductive and erotic, yet not over the top. It's one of those books that you pick up and then before you know it, it's over and you're left feeling bereft.

    Rafe is suffering from a broken heart, although I have to hand it to him he kind of walked right into it. Nevertheless, pain and suffering still sucks no matter if it's self inflicted or not. During one of his nights out he locks eyes with the perfect distraction. It's physical, at first. Fast forward 20 minutes later when Fallon witnesses Rafe's heroic act to save one of her burlesque dancers and the pair are soon off to evade the cops. From the minute Fallon saw the look in his eyes she was drawn to him. Neither she nor Rafe were looking for long term. They don't think they're cut out for it. However, over time and a simple clicking of the minds,
    Rafe and Fallon come to mean more to one another than they were ever expecting. They've both got pasts that haunt them. They see kindred spirits in one another. When the truths come out can they make peace with each other's, as well as their own demons? I would say time would tell, but these two are in the moment, quick reactors. So, it's going to take an act of perseverance.

    I LOVE Fallon and Rafe! They truly bring out the best in one another. He learns to control his hot headed-ness and she learns to trust. It seems like the perfect match up. They are both quick-witted, and simply, captivating. And so amazingly real. I could imagine this happening in real life. Their pain was intense and believable. While, their pain did morph who they became they learned together not to let it dictate their everyday lives. This book is truly beautiful. As in, I need more Fallon and Rafe. With the ending the way it was, Kelsie can definitely fit some more in, right?! I devoured this book in a day and my mind is still stuck in Fallon and Rafe land. Also, along with more Rafe and Fallon and need more Murano brothers!! I'm about to go all author stalker and bug Kelsie to tell me if we're getting a prequel with Luca and Tilly, Marco and Leo have some pretty interesting stories too, I think! Hands down, a fantastic read that will tug on your heart and enrapture you.

    Happy Reading!
    *ARC provided by the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review*

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  • Posted May 13, 2014

    A Beautiful Distraction (Hard Feelings #3) is Rafe and Fallon¿s

    A Beautiful Distraction (Hard Feelings #3) is Rafe and Fallon’s story. And what a story! It’s the first book I’ve read from author Kelsie Leverich. I’m absolutely certain it won’t be the last.

    Army First Sergeant Rafe Murano is a man trying to forget – not just the painful memories on the battlefield, but the ones he’s experienced stateside as well. Nothing he does can help him forget the pain in his heart, but at least the whiskey and women help to dull the ache. The night Rafe lays eyes on Fallon Kelly, everything changes.

    Burlesque owner Fallon Kelly has her own painful past. Disowned by her parents, and living with a hardened heart, the result of the painful choices of her youth, the only time Fallon doesn’t feel guilt and regret is when she’s on stage dancing. The night her eyes cannot break contact with the piercing sables of one of her patrons, Fallon fears all of her carefully constructed walls could crumble.

    Beautiful Distraction is a story of accepting the pains of life, but learning how to move on, to forgive yourself, to learn to trust, and, ultimately to love. But the story was not the only compelling part. This book is beautifully written. It is a true delight when an author challenges me not only emotionally, but intellectually as well. Kelsie Leverich did that. She’s a master at using intelligent vocabulary to paint a scene. From beautifully choreographed dance performances, to shocking flashbacks in Afghanistan, to the provocative erotic scenes between Fallon and Rafe, the author’s vivid storytelling tapped all aspects of my senses, and put me in the middle of every scene. I could not only see it, but I could smell it and taste it as well.

    It has been a long time since two characters had the ability to draw me in the way Rafe and Fallon did. They are flawed and damaged, but something about both of them, regardless of their hardened exteriors, absolutely intrigued me, and I couldn’t help hoping and praying that they would discover what I could so readily see – that they belonged to each other. Author Kelsie Leverich created two broken, yet beguiling characters in Rafe and Fallon that, pardon the pun, were indeed a beautiful distraction.

    Five wonderfully written stars.

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  • Posted May 12, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    Kelsie Leverich's third book in the Hard Feelings series, A Beau

    Kelsie Leverich's third book in the Hard Feelings series, A Beautiful Distraction pits a ballet dancer in a gentleman's club against a bad boy military hero. The combination is combustible. Readers are treated to a very intense and passionate love story that explores what it means to be loved unconditionally and what it means to be totally satisfied in the bedroom. Leverich writes a character centered novel with a focus on the crazy chemistry that can develop between a man and a woman from totally different backgrounds. A fantastic addition to the series!

    What I liked:

    I find myself in a bit of a quandary with this book that's kind of amusing in some ways. The first book in the series featured a hard nosed female character who had a bit of a dirty mouth and that didn't sit to well with me. But in the third book, we have a alpha male hero with a potty mouth who hits all the right buttons for me. Apparently, I have a double standard where language and romance are concerned LOL. Kelsie Leverich however seems to have it all under control. Rafe was an amazing character.

    Like I said Rafe is totally alpha. He is a bad boy in every sense of the word. He cusses, he drinks, he fights, he has tattoos, but he also has honesty, integrity and honor. He is a military hero who is used to focusing his aggression on missions and has a bit of a hard time turning that off when he isn't in combat. I loved everything about him as a male lead. He was strong, attractive and a bit jaded when it came to romance. Bad experiences in the past had changed him, but once he meets Fallon all of that starts to fade away as the distraction becomes a serious attraction. Loved him.

    Fallon was also a very interesting character. It's not often you find a ballet dancer in a stripe club. It also not often the owner of the club is also a dancer. She was an enigma in a lot of ways, but I still felt like I understood her and her need to dance to feel the feelings you have for something you love. She was by no means a push over type of character. She knew exactly who she was and what she wanted out of life and Rafe wasn't it.... or so she thought. I love it when a character is really surprised by who they end up falling for. It gives the love story a very realistic feel. Leverich did it with style in this one.

    The combination of these two characters was so charged with emotion and intensity that the reader will probably have to slow down and a take a breather now and then. Rafe plays hard and loves harder and his passion for Fallon is all consuming. When the reader thinks about hot and fierce love, this is probably it. Combustion was inevitable. These two really had good chemistry and Leverich uses every bit of it. The sex is steamy, the romance is intense and it's not an easy road for either of them. Very well done!

    What I didn't like:

    There truly wasn't a whole lot I didn't like. Leverich seems to have gotten better as the series progressed. Her writing is realistic, it's current and it's full of surprises that even I didn't see coming. What's not to like?

    Bottom Line:

    As usual Kelsie Leverich provides all the heat and the love I need in a good romance. Her stories have a contemporary edge to them. Her characters are flawed but believable. Her writing is descriptive, but not overdone. It's just the right combination and gets it all right. I loved it.

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  • Posted May 11, 2014

    The way that Fallon and Rafe's story unfolded was interesting.  

    The way that Fallon and Rafe's story unfolded was interesting.  Fallon owns a burlesque club and Rafe sees her dance.  Fallon has overcome a lot in her 25 years of life and harbors very deep secrets and she believes she is unable to love.  Rafe is trying to get over heartbreak and needs a distraction.  Fallon and Rafe start out using each other as distractions and find they got more than they bargained for in each other.  Their secrets are revealed throughout the story of why they are the way they are and it was well told.  It was a great way to spend an afternoon reading. 

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  • Posted May 9, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    An emotional, intense, and enjoyable read, A Beautiful Distracti

    An emotional, intense, and enjoyable read, A Beautiful Distraction was a wonderful romance. I really liked this book. From the sweet and hot romance, to the deep emotions, this book was great. 

    Fallon was a lovely heroine. She was strong, independent, and definitely a survivor. I got a little annoyed that her tendency to run away from emotional entanglements almost cost her the love of her life, but, otherwise, I really liked her. 

    Rafe was absolutely amazing. Very sweet and very devoted to the woman he loved. When he felt, he felt deep and wasn't afraid to show it. He was wonderful and I totally adored him.

    The romance was great. The heat level between Fallon and Rafe was off the carts hot. Tons of sexy steaminess with these two. But, they were also very sweet together, with how they both fully accepted each other. I thought they were a lovely couple.

    The plot was well paced and, though I wasn't totally hooked, I was kept interested the entire way through. I really enjoyed the story and I thought the ending was perfect.

    A Beautiful Distraction was a wonderful romance. I really enjoyed reading this lovely book. With the hot romance and intense emotions, this book was fantastic. Romance lovers, this is a book you'll want to check out.

    *I received a complimentary copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

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  • Posted May 7, 2014

    There is so much I want to say on this book, but I was literally

    There is so much I want to say on this book, but I was literally left speechless. It was just pure perfection, utterly amazing. I love Kelsie, I love her writing style and the way she takes me on a journey and sucks me into a book. But on this book, she really outdid herself. This may be one of my favorite books of the year, and my favorite book of hers yet. Every single thing about Fallon and Rafe was perfect. The push and pull, the back and forth, the fighting the feelings, the not-a-relationship-relationship, fighting for the other person, standing up for love. Every single thing was simple perfection. I love Fallon's spitfire attitude, the way she doesn't let other people get to her. I also love Rafe's alpha male dirty mouth. I love the way he loves her. It's all consuming, it's every where, it's everything he does. Though, I will admit, I totally wish Bridget got more of a brush off than what she got. There were so many other characters that I loved too. I didn't just love the main two, Carter, Jade, Graham, oh god.. His family, his friends. Everyone. And believe me you find yourself asking for more of a fight for Craig and Claire. I wanted them to all be put in their places. I wanted all the wrongs to be righted, but then again, I also need not worry because this is Rafe we are talking about. And you just know he is going to do anything to right the wrongs in her life, because her loves her that hardly.  I don't know who serves as a muse for Kelsie's men in her books, but she needs to swing them my way because they just get better and better. The flow of the book, the way she uses her words to get you addicted to the story, and she does it exceptionally well. 

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  • Posted May 6, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I really love this series by Kelsie Leverich. She writes about


    I really love this series by Kelsie Leverich. She writes about some HOT men. Rafe is an hot army man trying to get over a woman who he loved and then found out some devastating news about her that turned his world upside down. He is home on a break from tour and thinks drinking and having meaningless sex is the best way to deal with things. He ends meeting some friends at a local club where he see the most beautiful girl who is about to rock his world.




    Fallon is a very work driven girl who left home at a young age. She was tired of being her parents puppet. She is now a club owner at one of the most elite clubs around. She has never been loved and doesn't do relationships. One night a fight a breaks out in her club and she is very intrigued by one of the men involved in the fight. She leaves the club with him because she knows the cops will be called and she doesn't want the man involved to get in trouble. Things get hot and heavy in the car and Fallon has a hard time figuring out what it is about this man but he makes her feel things she isn't used to feeling.




    Fallon tries to push Rafe away but he just won't give up. They both have issues from their past that they need to deal with. They go through many ups and downs throughout the book. Rafe is a man who loves with everything he has and Fallon is afraid that she doesn't know how to love. Will Rafe be able to show Fallon that she is worthy of being loved?




    The sex scenes were Hot. I loved the connection between Rafe and Fallon. I loved the supporting characters in this book especially Rafe's family. I look forward to seeing what Kelsie comes out with next!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 6, 2014

    Great story line with great characters and somw goodn Great characters...great story line..great sex

    This book is the right amount of sex with a great story..
    You meet Rafe and find out his struggles and then you meet Fallon and her story is great. Both characters are relatable and fun to watch unfold. This book is so good you cant put it down. One of the best in the hard feelings series. Read all the books bc they will leave you wanting more from this author.

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  • Posted May 6, 2014

    I first fell in love with Kelsie¿s writing in the Valentine Arra

    I first fell in love with Kelsie’s writing in the Valentine Arrangement and she did not disappoint in A Beautiful Distraction. She has a way of having a strong female and alpha male that is imperfectly perfect. The mix is always the right amount of angst, heartbreak, sprinkle in some hotness and you have an amazing novel that leaves you wanting more. That leaves you turning the pages of your kindle devouring every word. That is exactly what you get in A Beautiful Distraction. It’s not your typical love story and that’s what I loved about it!

    Fallon has depended on no one in life. She has one passion… dance. She is the owner of an upscale burlesque club and is able to use the stage as an outlet. Her family life is nonexistent. She was a just a puppet in their high class show and when she gets pregnant at 17, they turn their backs on her and is forced to live on her own. She learns real fast that the only one she can depend on is herself. She doesn’t do boyfriends, she has a few men that she is able to contact on her terms when she needs them. But she is the one in charge of her life. I loved Fallon’s take charge of every situation demeanor. She oozed confidence and knew how to work it.

    Rafe is home on deployment. He has been scorned by love so he drowns his sorrows in liquor and any women that he can find. He is has that hard exterior, the dirty mouth, and the tattoos to go with the whole bad boy vibe he gives off. He is extremely loyal to his friends and family and would bend over backwards to help them. Even though he has an amazing family life with his brother and father, he refuses to let anyone in to his guarded heart. He did that once and it left him in pieces so he vowed never again to go down that path. Until a chance meeting with Fallon at her club. He is mesmerized with her dancing on stage. He is captivated by her.

    Likewise Fallon can feel someone watching her dance, even though the room is packed, all she sees is him. Something about him is different. After she is finished with her show, she goes back to her owner duties. Rafe is involved in an altercation and Fallon has no choice but to remove him from the club before he is thrown in jail. Normally, she would allow this to happen but with him, something is different. They both feel the charge that is between them and they both know they have never felt this with anyone.

    “She is the only person who’d given him full relief from the agony still residing in his chest. She was a remedy that didn’t numb him.”

    “He was a confusing, compelling contraction. He absorbed her hidden emotions yet at the same time her made her feel. He was dangerous, yet his nearness alone gave her a sense of security she’d never experienced. He was a stranger, a beautiful distraction”

    When they get together, sparks fly! Its smoking hot and magnetic. They both are used to having a relationship on their own terms… they don’t do them. Period. But they cannot ignore the need to be with each other. You want to root for them to find their happiness. They both feel like they don’t need each other but deep down they do. When a person from Rafe’s past makes an appearance, it threats to ruin what they have worked to build together. Can they work past their own demons and find happiness? Or will this person from the past threaten it all?? You’ll need to read to find out!

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  • Posted May 6, 2014

    I've been so anxious to read A Beautiful Distraction since the



    I've been so anxious to read A Beautiful Distraction since the moment Rafe Murano came on the page, in Feel the Rush, as one of Reed's fellow soldiers. Rafe was an intense guy, and it was clear that something heavy was eating away at him. When I found out what that was, I was initially put off. But gosh, when you see how torn up he is by the situation, it was quickly easy easy to cut the guy some slack. In A Beautiful Distraction, we've moved forward a few years with Rafe stationed in Colorado, home from his fourth deployment. Now that he no longer has the distractions that come with being

    deployed, Rafe is still trying to move on from the woman who destroyed his heart, and in the way of many dumb guys, he does this by booze and women. It's a solid plan that never fails, right? No. But don't worry, Rafe Murano's world is completely flipped when he lays eyes on Fallon Kelly.

    Fallon is a real departure from the other women in the series. And you know, I appreciate that each of Leverich's leading ladies are dynamic and engaging. She's not an open, friendly person like Megan (Feel the Rush) or covered in hard edges like Roni (The Valentine's Arrangement), but she does have her own heavy issues. Fallon is a closed book, for sure, and it's not exactly clear what's put here there, besides the fact her parents were image-obsessed jerks who threw her out when she was seventeen. It is implied, though, that something much heavier weighs on Fallon, and helped contribute to the controlled woman she's become. The past has left Fallon with no desire to become close to anyone, but Rafe is not just anyone. He's the man who crumbles her walls with dark eyes and a crooked smile.

    A Beautiful Distraction. The title of this book is absolutely perfect. Rafe and Fallon tentatively become involved because they are desperately attracted to each other, but also because they are each desperate for a distraction. From the past, the emptiness of the present. Rafe and Fallon simply fit, and I love how they acknowledge that, and don't fight the attraction, even if they fear the future. I love the honesty between them, the acceptance, and the strength. Especially when old, awful faces show back up. It was dramatic and draining and it was awesome. I loved every moment of this story, the ways in which Rafe and Fallon changed one another for the better, by simply loving each other. The story left me smiling, wiping away tears, and completely fulfilled.

    And can I just say, the Murano family is just begging for a spin-off!

    I have to say, Kelsie Leverich is such a talented writer. I enjoyed The Valentine's Arrangement very much, Feel the Rush even more, and in this book, her talent is stronger than ever. The prose is very well-written, focused, but also has a beauty that caused me to sometimes pause, then re-read a paragraph multiple times because it's just that good. Leverich has a secured me as a devoted reader.

    The Hard Feelings series is one of intense, fast-moving relationships. Relationships between characters who aren't necessarily searching for more, or who may be searching for an ideal that they just haven't found yet. The relationships don't start our destined for forever, simply right now, but it's
    inevitable. Leverich also gives respect and tribute to those in the Armed Services, and their family. I've really come to love this series. It's passionate, sexy, heartfelt, and delicious. I highly recommend
    it.


    .

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  • Posted April 30, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    A BEAUTIFUL DISTRACTION by Kelsie Leverich is an interesting con

    A BEAUTIFUL DISTRACTION by Kelsie Leverich is an interesting contemporary romance. #3 in the "Hard Feelings" series, but can be read as a stand alone. See, "The Valentine’s Arrangement", "Pretending She's His (A Hard Feelings Novella)",and Feel The Rush". This was my first time reading anything by this author and I have to say, I enjoyed "A BEAUTIFUL DISTRACTION". I didn't feel you had to read the others in the series, to keep up with the storyline.

    Meet, First Sergeant Rafe Murano and Fallon Kelly. Follow them on a journey to romance, passion, broken hearts, ravaged by war memories, and finding something other than just sex,possibly, love.

    Fallon, learned not to give her heart away, for it could be broken again, easily. Murano plays hard, drinks hard, fights harder, and loved harder, which nearly destroyed him. Enter, Fallon....

    What a lovely distraction each finds in the other. A tattered bad boy meets a Ballet dancer, Fallon. Sparks fly.....Murano, is used to one night stands, drinking to distraction and meaningless sex. Fallon, is part owner and dancer of Velour, a gentleman's club, but she has her own secrets and memories.

    This is an emotional, powerful tale of a military man and a dancer. Looking for love in all the wrong places. But can they finally find the love of their lives? A great read, with lots of hot sensual encounters. If you enjoy emotional characters, with baggage,sensual encounters, and so much more than you are in for a treat with A BEAUTIFUL DISTRACTION. Received for an honest review from the publisher.

    RATING: 4

    HEAT RATING: HOT

    REVIEWED BY: AprilR, courtesy of My Book Addiction and More

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2014

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 11, 2014

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