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Love Story

Love Story

4.0 40
by Lauren Layne
USA TODAY BESTSELLER • Over the course of one wild road trip, feuding childhood sweethearts get a second chance at love in this charming rom-com—a standalone novel from the author of Blurred Lines and Good Girl.

When Lucy Hawkins receives a job offer in San Francisco, she can’t wait to spread her wings and leave her


USA TODAY BESTSELLER • Over the course of one wild road trip, feuding childhood sweethearts get a second chance at love in this charming rom-com—a standalone novel from the author of Blurred Lines and Good Girl.

When Lucy Hawkins receives a job offer in San Francisco, she can’t wait to spread her wings and leave her small Virginia hometown behind. Her close-knit family supports her as best they can, by handing over the keys to a station wagon that’s seen better days. The catch? The cross-country trip comes with a traveling companion: her older brother’s best friend, aka the guy who took Lucy’s virginity hours before breaking her heart.

After spending the past four years and every last dime caring for his sick father, Reece Sullivan will do just about anything to break free of the painful memories—even if it means a two-week road trip with the one girl who’s ever made it past his carefully guarded exterior. But after long days of bickering in the car turn into steamy nights in secluded motel rooms, Reece learns that, when it comes to Lucy, their story is far from over. And this time, they just might have a shot at a happy ending.

Lauren Layne’s USA Today bestselling Love Unexpectedly series can be read in any order:

Don’t miss any of Lauren Layne’s hot reads:



The Redemption Series: ISN’T SHE LOVELY | BROKEN | CRUSHED

Praise for Love Story 

“WARNING: This book will cause unexpected outbursts of laughter and massive amounts of swooning. Prepare your family and friends—you’re about to become obsessed with Reece and Lucy!”—Cassie Mae, author of Pillowtalk

“A sweet and satisfying second-chance romance. Reece Sullivan is destined to be your next book boyfriend!”—Delancey Stewart, author of Mr. Big

Love Story is a road trip gone wrong in all the right ways. I fell in love with Lucy and Reece during their journey, and Lauren Layne had me feeling all the right things throughout. Great read!”—A.M. Madden, USA Today bestselling author of Dark Corners

“A trip where the journey becomes the destination. Another smash hit!”New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Melanie Moreland

“Two star-crossed lovers trapped in a car with sparks flying all over the place. Love Story is another fantastic read by Lauren Layne. What a treat! From the sexy banter to the sweet, heart-tugging moments, Lauren steams up the pages with characters that you fall in love with.”—Jamie K. Schmidt, USA Today bestselling author of the Club Inferno Series

“Definitely a must-read! Looking forward to the next book in the series.”—The Romance Reviews (five stars)

Love Story is far more than the relationship between Reece and Lucy; it is also the journey of the individual characters into a place in their lives where they are able to trust themselves in order to open themselves up to a fulfilling relationship.”—Book Angel Booktopia

“As with all of Layne’s books, no matter what series I’m reading, she creates a romance with heart.”—Devilishly Delicious Book Reviews

Includes an excerpt from another Loveswept title.

Product Details

Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
Love Unexpectedly
Sold by:
Random House
Sales rank:
File size:
980 KB

Meet the Author

Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen novels. A former e-commerce and Web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated in 2011 to New York City, where she left the corporate world to pursue a full-time writing career.

Her hobbies include maintaining a designer purse addiction and observing cocktail hour. Lauren lives with her high school sweetheart in midtown Manhattan, where she writes romantic comedies with just enough sexy-times to make your mother blush.

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Love Story 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 40 reviews.
gaele 6 months ago
The story is engaging and quick to read. Perfect for readers who have yet to sample a book from Lauren Layne, Lucy has finished university, and is getting ready to move to California Wine country to start her new life as a marketing guru for a vineyard. Planning a 2 week journey across the country from Virginia to California, she’s working to her endgame. But then, her ancient Craig’s list car purchase dies a horrible death, and her parents, always thinking and helpful, offer her the old family station wagon as transport to her new life. Only one issue, it comes with Reece, her brother’s best friend, her lifelong crush, the man who broke her teenaged heart. Reece never had things easy: from his mother’s unexpected death when he was 9 to his father’s depression and alcoholism, his older sister’s withdrawal and absence: the Hawkins family has been his safe space, his shelter, and his retreat. Not going off to university, he’s watched as Lucy plans the next move, the next step, her next big thing: all while leaving him behind. Everyone leaves him behind. But with his own skill with the grapes, he’s worked himself into a position as a winemaker: earning praise and an offer in Napa as well. The station wagon was to be his – for fixing it up it would get him across the country, and to and from his job. He didn’t expect, nor want, to be GPS’d by Lucy and her ‘road trip’ plans, and he certainly doesn’t want to be cooped up with a woman he can’t stand. Well, except for the glances, and the wishes, and the memories. A cute and clever story that replayed in alternate POV with flashbacks from Lucy and Reece as they were growing up, and their relationship was playing out. From the lashing out from fear and hurt through the friction of the undeniable chemistry, the two bicker, laugh, and struggle through the rather indirect route to their new lives. With a crisis point that brings them both to realize that “have a nice life” is not how their story was meant to end, the story is engaging and quick to read. Perfect for readers who have yet to sample a book from Lauren Layne, this brings the emotion, the humor and the underlying heart that is common to all her books, with a few moments of steam that keep things interesting. I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
AmyBosica 6 months ago
No one writes second chance romances quite like Lauren Layne, so when I heard about Love Story, I of course gobbled it up. Not only was this a second chance romance, but it was also a friends to lovers with an enemies to lovers twist. From the moment I encountered Reece and Lucy, I was sucked into their story. You could tell that these two cared deeply for one another at one time, but something went terribly wrong along the way. And if you’re like me, you couldn’t read the pages fast enough, trying to discover what happened. Reece and Lucy’s story took me on one heck of a roller-coaster ride. There were a lot of ups and downs, as well as hair pulling, frustrating moments. But, as you got deeper into the story, you saw that there was a lot more than meets the eyes. There was a strong love between Lucy and Reece, but they were both afraid to make the leap and go after what they both wanted and needed. Overall, I found this to be an enjoyable read. It was quick and easy read. This story, while frustrating at times, had just the right mix of romance, drama and sexy good times. And in the end, I was left with a happy heart and a smile on my face. I look forward to seeing what adventure this author has in store for us next.
abailey410 6 months ago
This was a great quick, fun, swoony read. A couple that are broken up forced on a cross-country road trip by meddling family sounds like it would be full of clichés, but not Lauren Layne. I loved these two. Their banter, fighting over the radio station and even though Reece was a bit of a jerk at times you can't help but fall hard for him. Even though these two fight and bicker through most of the first half of the book you can't help but see how perfect they are for each other and you want to root for them. As you are reading you get to follow their friendship, previous relationship and their new budding relationship. I loved seeing all of the pieces come together the way that this story was told. I highly recommend picking this one up, it brought a huge smile to my face the entire time I was reading.
JenPH 6 months ago
Oh, Lauren Layne, how I love thee. When I want a guarantee that what I’m about to read will be worth the time I put into it, Layne is an author that has become a no-brainer. I see her name on the cover and I know that I’ll end up with a satisfied smile on my face, but that wasn’t the case with Love Story. You see, rather than having a smile by the end, I found myself smiling at various points in the story, along with lots of commentary as Reece and Lucy stumbled their way back into each other’s hearts, though I doubt that they ever really left. The anger and hurt that remains six years on is a testament to how palpable the connection is between these two. Their feelings were deep enough for them to still be experiencing the aftereffects of the fallout while secretly reminiscing everything they miss about one another, and readers have a front-row seat to the milestones of their friendship turned something more through some poignant flashbacks. As is the case with quite a few second chance romances, there was quite a bit of miscommunication and lack of actual speaking and listening that was going on with Reece and Lucy. They both made assumptions (and you know what they say about people who assume), leading them to holding on to their negative feelings far longer than necessary. There were a couple of surprises along the way, though nothing major. Still, I appreciated those little nuggets of unexpectedness because then Lauren Layne truly made this story her own, a feat in and of itself considering the vast number of tales of love lost and found once again. There’s resistance and hesitation coming from both ends and there’s nothing token about it. Reece and Lucy’s story had the love, but it also had a fair amount of hate and lust and everything in between, which I liked. Even with the heartache and arguments, their Love Story deserved its restart. Five stars. ♥
BananaTricky 6 months ago
Lucy Hawkins has just landed the job of her dreams working as a hospitality manager at a winery in Napa Valley. She has also planned a two week road-trip from home in Charlottesville, Virginia to Napa, detouring to see her boyfriend in Miami. But when her car breaks down it looks like her dreams have gone up in smoke. Until her parents offer her their old beaten up station wagon. But there's a catch, her brother's best friend Reece Sullivan has fixed up the station wagon because he was going to use it to drive to California to start his dream job as winemaker. Now Reece is stuck sharing his car with stuck Princess bratty Lucy for two weeks, instead of a few days. And Lucy is facing the joy of spending two weeks in a car with the boy who married her when she was nine, gave her her first kiss and stole her virginity then immediately cheated on her with another girl. Reece thinks Lucy is a snob, Lucy thinks Reece is a manwhore. Told in a series of flashbacks interspersed with the present day road-trip, we see that Lucy and Reece have always been opposites. She's a woman with a five year plan, he's a seat of his pants kind of guy. He travels light with only a rucksack, she's got suitcases and bags galore. She's got a close, loving family, Reece's family life is a mess. He makes wine, she sells wine. He likes rock, she likes country. What can I say? From the very get-go Lucy and Reece and their love-turned-to-hate relationship grabs you and doesn't let go as they spend two weeks in each other's company trying to make sense of what happened between them. I love Lauren Layne and everything she writes and this is no exception. Her characters are vibrant and sassy. The dialogue bristles with zippy one-liners and the emotions grip your chest tightly. Loved it. I received a free copy of this novel from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Anonymous 3 months ago
Padded in. Deathfang, what do you think you are doing? He asked quietly.
Anonymous 3 months ago
Whats going on?" Dhe walked in confused
Anonymous 3 months ago
She paded in. Her kits followed. She sent them to play. And lay down. And cried more....
Anlenhart1 4 months ago
Lauren Layne has done it again! She has written another New Adult romance that pairs interesting characters with realistic problems. I don't know how she can keep creating these awesome romances.... This book features Lucy and Reece as a star crossed couple that grew up together. They have a very complex history and when Lucy's parents throw them together for a cross country road trip, neither is thrilled. Will they be able to work out the problems to find their happily ever after? If you didn't notice, I am a huge fan of this author and would recommend this book to anyone that like new adult or contemporary romance. I was given a free copy for an honest review.
Anonymous 4 months ago
BFF_K_BFF_Book_Blog 5 months ago
Lucy fell in love with Reece at a very young age. One day, she learned the love and affection wasn’t one-sided, but mutual. She and Reece began a brief but consuming love affair that ended badly. They went their separate ways but fate and family meddling have brought them together again for a cross country road trip to start the next chapter of their lives. There is so much tension involved in this story. I wouldn't say it rises to the level of angst but there are some heartbreaking bits where the characters go back and forth about their feelings for one another. In the end, their desire for one another and wish to be together is stronger than the personal issues that have kept them apart. Love Story is the tale of two people searching for their place in the world and with one another. It is full of both tension and light-hearted-moments in equal measure and it’s an enjoyable read. I am a big fan of Lauren Layne's writing and this is another solid story added to her catalog of great romances. An advance copy of this book was received from the author. Receipt of this copy did not impact the content or independence of this review. BFF Book Blog also uses a set of icon ratings. This book received additional icons for: romance, steamy, sweet and tension.
Anonymous 5 months ago
Loved this book!!! Sweet and lots of hotness! Didn't want it to end.
Lost-N-Love-N-Hopeless 6 months ago
What would you do with a second chance at the love you dreamed of for a lifetime? Would you jump back in full steam ahead knowing that he cheated? Would you jump back in knowing it could destroy you even more the second time around? Lucy and Reese had to answer these questions and make some tough decisions on their two-week road trip, they now had to share to get to where they are going. Lucy was finally leaving behind all that had held her back. She was heading off to start a new life with a new career. All she had to do was get there. The problem was cars have a mind of their own and do what they want. So thus comes an alternative offer of transportation. Lucy never would have guessed in a million years that her alternative would require her to be confined with the one man that turned her world upside down. Reese has now gotten his life back on track. He was leaving the town, the bad memories, the stifled existence. He was getting out. One catch. He way out comes with extra baggage. This journey to Californian came with fun times, witty banter, and some extra compensation during those long nights. This road trip was long and time consuming allowing for Lucy and Reese to work through some issues and find that together they had the chemistry. Communication for this couple was the key to opening doors and breaking down walls. This was something they both had to learn Lucy more so.
Anonymous 6 months ago
I wish i c could get this (sign)
pwall55 6 months ago
A Valentine Day released with parents maybe playing cupid or were they not thinking at all to encourage these two to go on a road trip cross country. Lucy and Reece definitely have as much emotional baggage as their due physical baggage in Love Story by Lauren Layne. It is true that this needs to be resolved before either can move forward in their love lives like they are doing in their professional lives. Ms. Layne’s fast pace keeps this trip traveling swiftly. Through Lucy’s and Reece’s POV the past together is revealed. Their conversations are sometimes harsh but it does move the story long to where they can find resolution. At times I wasn’t sure if I wanted them to wind up together. Basically that is because I liked Lucy more than Reece. However, what I can always count on is for Ms. Layne to always deliver a captivating story where I have strong feelings about the characters. Love Story was no different. An ARC of the book was given to me by the publisher through Net Galley.
2kasmom 6 months ago
This is book # 3, in the Love Unexpectedly series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. All the books in this series are great, I recommend reading them in order. Lucy and Reece have a history she would rather not repeat. Thanks to her parents, she has to spend time with him going across country. Even visit her boyfriend. Reece is not sure how to approach Lucy other than to just take it day to day. He has loved her forever, but being her brothers best friend seemed to set them apart. Now they have separate lives heading in the same direction. Could this be a sign? Such a thrilling series and this book is no exception! I love how the characters really are like magnets. This story makes you feel all sorts of things and makes a great bookclub read. I really enjoyed every page as I devoured it. ***This ARC copy was given by Netgalley and its publisher in return for an honest review.
aprilrenee1976 6 months ago
Sweet 2nd chance "Love Story" w/ one of kind Road Trip This is a sweet romance story written by Lauren Layne which is the 3rd novel in the Love Unexpectedly series. This is a story about two childhood friends who end up going from friends, to lovers, to enemies before they left each other’s lives due to all the angst and pain. Suddenly they ended back in each other’s obits years later and each one blamed the other for the pain of the breakup. And neither of them has ever moved on from their relationship, short as it was. What seemed to be meddling family members, is truly fate when the hero and heroine aka the MC- Reece and Lucy, end up stuck together on a forced two-week road trip, destined to either kill one another or fall in love all over again. It started off a little slow yet with a strong flow yet seemed to waiver in the middle of the book. Its like neither MC wanted to own up to their miscommunication and the fact that they still loved the other one. It took majority of the book to finally get to the bottom of what went wrong which basically took us to almost the end of the book. So about 90-94 % of the book was done before we saw the MC make headway. Not to say their make up wasn’t awesome. There was a lot of angst, anger but there was a lot of heat, passion and in the end, we finally get to see that love- and they say, the flip side of hate IS LOVE which is what lead me to believe is why Reece treated Lucy so bad a lot of times in this story. Lucy doesn’t come away looking angelic. She needed to have worked on her communication skills. Two people who have a lot of pain and anger built up needed to have worked on a way to get out why they felt the way they did and finally by the end, it came out but my gosh, it took so long. I would have liked to see more put in place than the miscommunication. The characters do make this story- they are interesting and some of the pet names are outrageously awesome. My rating: 4.0 stars **** "I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book in exchange for an honest review***
Anonymous 6 months ago
I'm a bit of a Lauren Layne fan girl. I picked up one of her books in a previous series and have stuck with her ever since. She gives you that happy build up of emotions that you love in books. All the good, bad, happy, sad, in one. Lucy and Reece are traveling cross country together, neither wants to, but it has to be done. I enjoyed the banter in this one. Sassy is a word I would describe on Lucy. Reece is very shielded. Their previous attempt at a 'relationship' went up in smoke. Each blames the other. No one really knows the truth. Stuck in a car for hours, stopping god knows where and meeting the new boyfriend are all forks in the road. The road trip has to end, but their relationship as it stands will change forever.
whatsbetterthanbooks 6 months ago
Passionate, emotional and fun! This is a second-chance romance about loss, friendship, heartbreak, miscommunication, forgiveness, trust, family, good wine and love. The characters are young, hard-working, stubborn and dependable, The writing is clear. And the plot is a literal road trip that starts with friction and hostility in Virginia and ends with commitment and romance in San Francisco. Overall, I found this story to be an easy, charming, sweet read that is perfect for Valentine’s Day and for all those who love happy-ever-after endings!
IreneC 6 months ago
4 stars I really enjoyed reading Love Story. The storyline was entertaining, the plot and characters captured my interest from the very first page and held it until the last. Watching Reece and Lucy's relationship unfold was like riding an emotional roller coaster. They made me smile, they made me laugh, they frustrated me with some of the things that came out of their mouths (especially Reece, I wanted to slap him a few times for the hurtful way he spoke to Lucy) and they made me swoon. I loved the way author Lauren Layne switches from the past to the present, we get to see how their friendship started, how their loved developed and then how it imploded leaving them both hurting and lashing out in the present. From the beginning I could feel the attraction/chemistry between Reece and Lucy. Even when they were arguing over the smallest things I felt the sexual tension slowly sizzle and I loved it when they finally gave into it. The road to their HEA wasn't easy, but with time, a few tears, open and honest communication Reece and Lucy finally get there and I was thrilled for them. Overall, Love Story by Lauren Layne was a beautifully written second chance romance that will bring out all the feels and leave you with a smile on your face.
thesecretworldofbooklover 6 months ago
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book, given by Netgalley and it was as good as I was hoping for. thesecretworldofbooklovers.blogspot Lucy has loved Reece for as long as she can remember and he broke her heart in such a harsh way that she can't find a way to forgive him and move on. Even though she has a new life and a new guy, when she sees him again she still feels this incredible rage. The pain he inflicted has turned into this huge wall she has built around her and she is not letting him in again. Reece was a mystery for me at first, he didn't seem like this guy Lucy described. He still had feeling for her so it didn't make any sense why he would have pushed her away all those years ago. And the weirdest part was that he was mad at her too, and the reasons where unknown for her. They loved each other for so long and they have been putting roadblocks every time they got close because they are scared. They though that by pushing the other away they could prevent the heartbreak. Because love is hard and scary, most of the time you feel like your heart will be torn out of your chest. But when it's good and you find your person you realise that everything was worth it. Even if you had to go through painful times, being with that person, even if it was for a second, was better than not having them at all. Fighting for love is the best kind of fight there is because you can get the gold or you can learn from the pain and grow as a person too. Time might take to back to this person if you're meant to be. Or you will eventually find your way to the person that was made for you all along. It was a beautiful book and a sweet love story that will make you believe in love again.
astroyic 6 months ago
Another Fantastic, Beautiful and Adorable Romance by Lauren Layne. This had it all and I couldn’t and didn’t want to stop reading. Ms. Lanes writing manages to bring you right into the scene with the characters. Her descriptive use of language makes each scene very realistic and the emotions the characters are feeling, believable. 
Written in dual POV that I love. The reader is also gifted with the history of Reece and Lucy’s entire past together in flash backs, getting to experience their first conversation, first kiss, and other firsts, some very special as well as horrific times making their story truly unforgettable and deepening their real connection. 
They say there is a thin line between love and hate. So when Reese and Lucy are thrown together on a two week road trip across the country it is only fair to expect lots of twists and turns as well as ups and downs. Especially with a chemistry that is still off the charts. 
But could their hate, they have been holding onto due to young love insecurities and a lack of communication, give way to possibly a never ending love with redemption and a deeper connection? You need to read this Fantastic, Adorable, Charming, and Completely Enthralling Romance! 
I highly recommend that you read this story! After receiving an ARC through NetGalley I voluntarily wrote a honest review.
Rhondaz 6 months ago
Love Story by Lauren Layne.....Love and Hate is the perfect ingredients for an amazing romance story. Lucy and Reece have known each since childhood, Reece is Lucy's older brothers best friend. They are attracted to each other and know they should never cross that line. Now crossing the line and keeping it a secret, can they make it work. This is my first book by Lauren Layne and she is an amazing storyteller I can't wait to read more. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book from publisher via NetGalley.
Anonymous 6 months ago
Just bought this... I think I'm the first! Totally romantic. Enjoyed it! I recommend!