Forbidden Kisses: A Blushing Bay Novel

Forbidden Kisses: A Blushing Bay Novel

by Annie Rains

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The USA Today bestselling author of the Hero’s Welcome series introduces a trio of swoon-worthy North Carolina brothers fighting for love in this novel of sand, sea, and seduction.

For years, Jack Sawyer’s family has been running their upscale seafood business like a finely tuned machine. But every machine breaks down eventually, and suddenly Jack needs a new office manager, a new kayak launch, and a new lease on life. Then Grace Donner shows up again. She’s smart, motivated, and perfect for the manager position, but if she’s anything like her mom, she can’t be trusted. And Jack has never been able to trust himself around Grace.

Grace hasn’t seen her former stepbrothers since their parents’ messy divorce, but she never forgot them—especially Jack. She misses being part of the big rambunctious Sawyer clan, and if there’s an opportunity to set things right, she means to do it. But she can’t ignore Jack’s irresistibly kissable lips, or the searing way he looks at her when he thinks she’s not looking. Their chemistry is more explosive than ever. And if the Sawyers can forgive and forget, anything is possible.

Look for the Hero’s Welcome series by Annie Rains

Praise for Forbidden Kisses

“Annie Rains writes books that don’t just pull on your heartstrings, they yank out all the feels in the best way possible! A fantastic, fresh voice in contemporary romance!”—Codi Gary, author of Things Good Girls Don’t Do 

“A passionate, heartfelt tale with a hint of the forbidden and a lot of chemistry. Forbidden Kisses is a delicious novel that you’ll read in one sitting.”—Jamie K. Schmidt, USA Today bestselling author of the Club Inferno Series

“Rains writes a wonderfully sweet romance every time!”—Obsessive Book Nerd

“The chemistry between these two is palpable . . . as in hot! There is no doubt about the feelings Grace and Jack have for each other and they fit well as a couple. The story was fun with a bit of angst and a heap of forgiveness.”—Aurora B’s Book Blog

“The constant push and pull, mixed with the sky-high chemistry make for an unputdownable book that will kidnap your heart from the very first page and won’t let go until the end.”—Roberta’s Dream World

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399181122
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/11/2017
Series: Blushing Bay , #1
Sold by: Random House
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 237
Sales rank: 137,425
File size: 2 MB

About the Author

Annie Rains is a USA Today bestselling author who writes small-town love stories set in fictional towns on the coast of North Carolina. Raised in one of America’s largest military communities, Annie often features heroes who fight for their countries, while also fighting for a place to call home and a good woman to love. When Annie isn’t writing, she’s spending time with her husband and three children, or reading a book by one of her favorite authors.

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Forbidden Kisses: A Blushing Bay Novel 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 24 reviews.
gaele More than 1 year ago
Annie Rains returns with the first in a new series, and the angst and drama are perfect for readers who can deal with the ups and downs of a messy family situation. See, Grace was once part of a large blended family, until her mother made several bad choices and broke the family apart. Her divorce not only effected Grace, but removed her from the large and boisterous Sawyer family, and a budding crush on her step-brother Jack. Still in the same town, Jack has been running the family business and he and his brothers, Noah and Sam, have never really recovered or lost the anger they feel when thinking about Grace and her mother. Unfortunately for Grace, she’s never forgotten the Sawyers, or her attraction to Jack. But, the situation is sticky. Like flypaper sticky. And it will only get more complicated when Grace has to find a new job that will allow her to support her now ill, mother. Jack has hit a crossroad in the business, while things were running well, they were really good, but now little things are starting to fall apart, and he needs an office manager. So much so that as he’s interviewing a potential candidate in the local coffee shop, Grace overhears the interview and decides to throw her hat into the ring. Imagine her surprise when she sees that it is Jack, her former step-brother, from the family her mother betrayed, doing the hiring. From here, you can almost guess the plot: hidden / forbidden attraction still strong, revisited anger over events long passed and plenty of tension as Jack and Grace work toward a ‘new normal’ and allow the relationship to grow. And that would be simple if only Grace hadn’t insisted on ‘secrets and lies”. Lies to those she claims to care for, lies to hide their relationship, lies to herself about just how much Jack means to her. It was a TON of lies. And still, Jack is there – a bit too patient, a bit too unwilling to allow her to guide the path of the relationship and not taking charge and just discussing all of the resentment, betrayals, anger and oh so much baggage that comes with years apart. Secondary characters bring plenty of the small-town feel, while adding their own special sauce to the mix of drama and unacknowledged emotions, angers and hurts. Oh there is drama, enough to fill wheelbarrows with old unresolved issues but the thing is – you can actually see it as possible and probable. We’ve all known people who take forever to deal with hurts and snubs, hiding that hurt behind anger, strong statements and brash acts until the actual ‘forgiving’ moments have them so tied in knots that things never proceed smoothly. There are bumps, holes and a few steps backward along the road forward, but the connection between Grace and Jack is so palpable, and they both were more victims in the family rift than actual participants, that the desire for the relationship and a second chance with a new outlook is strong. Different from the first books I’ve read from Annie Rains, the characters bring you to this story and reveal their secrets carefully, first to readers and then to one another as the story progresses. 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.
TobiForgetHousework More than 1 year ago
Jack, oh Jack. Fisherman and carpenter. Could there be a more manly hero for a romance story? His loyalty and care swept me off my feet. Grace has a strength that captivates both Jack and the reader. She's her mother's caretaker and that's the one thing that can be her weakness in not living her life for her. All the secondary characters are just as fascinating as Grace and Jack. Annie Rains has once again created an amazing world perfect for romance readers to escape into. Her ability to weave a story that will have you enthralled and emotionally invested in the characters is uncanny. I'm am ready and waiting for the next book in the Blushing Bay Series!
Marichus-Real More than 1 year ago
Jack is a fisherman who along with his two brothers and their father take care of their business to provide fresh fish to their clients. However, after losing his best friend Chris when he fell overboard, he thinks it is time to open the construction business they have been talking about for a while. Grace has been part of the Sawyer family for a while until her mother messed up and everything ended up in a painful divorce for everybody. She missed them all a lot, especially Jack. She has always loved him since the first time she saw him when she was ten years old. Now life put then on the same path again. It is a well-written and well-developed book. The characters are lovely and not just Jack and Grace but all of them. I like how Jack takes care of people in need and even when he thinks he hates someone, he still helps that person. I like Grace’s strength and how she sticks to her mother no matter how bad she messed up things. The story makes me smile, laugh, and cry. It is always a pleasure to read Annie Rains books. I’m looking forward to getting the next book in this series. I was given a gifted copy by NetGalley.
RomanticReadsandSuch More than 1 year ago
I loved, loved, loved Rains' Hero's Welcome series and I was very happy that many of the things that made those books great translated well to a new series. I enjoyed the relationship that develops between Jack and Grace. The whole former step-sibling thing isn't icky at all and I think their friendship from years ago helps to give them a good basis for something new. The bond among the Sawyers is great and Grace befriends a couple of women that are definitely getting their own story soon. Characters and connections are a couple of things that Rains does so well - they feel real and work together in a natural way - and I was thrilled that they show so strongly here. I did have a couple of issues that were specific to this story (and have nothing at all to what a fantastic storyteller Rains is) - the death of Jack's friend and the dealings with Grace's mother. We know that Chris and Jack were out on a boat fishing together and that he ... disappeared, I guess? Did they actually find a body? As I understand it Jack doesn't know when or how he went overboard, that he never heard him cry out or any kind of impact. Everything is so vague about what happened to Chris that I never really figured it out. I don't know if it is intentional and will come into play more later on or if we're just supposed to make assumptions. But I really wanted some kind of closure to it :) The other is all tied up with Grace's mom and how she treated the Sawyer's all those years ago. Grace has had years living with her mom and can see that she's not the woman she was then but the two families have been avoiding each other all this time. To expect that the guys will just forgive and forget in about two minutes isn't realistic. They've been nursing their wounds for a while and it is going to take them a bit to get over them, even if Jack is sleeping with Grace. I see her side of it but I also understand his and it's not a good situation for either of them so a little patience on everyone's part is needed. It adds some extra drama to what is already a pretty troublesome situation. Like with her other series, there are a lot of secondary characters that help drag you in and keep you turning pages. I'm definitely looking forward to what comes next for Jack's brothers. I'm pretty sure those two are going to have some more hardship to deal with before they can find their own happy ending. *** I voluntarily read a Review Copy of this book. All opinions stated are solely my own and no one else’s. ***
Jennann3 More than 1 year ago
Jack and Grace have a history. At one time, they were brother and sister through the marriage of their parents. During the marriage, Grace had a HUGE crush on Jack. They even kissed when she was fifteen, before Jack's family accused her mom of stealing from his dad. While it ended up being true, Grace stood by and defended her mom. The marriage ended in an ugly divorce with Grace "losing" her stepbrothers and stepdad she truly loved. Skip ahead several years.....Grace is now jobless and struggling to care for her mom. Her mom is ill and needs medication and care. Grace gave up her dreams so that she could work to care for her mom. Grace realizes her mom has made many mistakes in her life, but she loves her and won't abandon her. Blushing Bay is a small coastal, fishing town. Jack and his family run a very successful fishing business that supplies seafood to restaurants and stores in surrounding towns. Their secretary/Aunt has retired and they are looking for a new secretary. Grace happens to hear a gentleman interviewing applicants while at a cafe. When the last interview is over, she decides to take a chance and offer her services--not knowing it was Jack. Jack and his family still hate Grace's mom, but Jack is willing to give Grace a chance. He doesn't necessarily trust her though, but feels like she'll do a good job. Now he has to convince his family to accept Grace back into the fold. During this time, Grace's mom discloses whom she sold the Sawyer's boat to. "The Beverly" was named after Jack's deceased mom. It was one of the many items Grace's mom sold off while married to Jack's dad. In order to right past wrongs, Grace's mom asks her to buy the boat back and give it to the Sawyer family. The only way Grace can come up with that kind of money is to enter a fishing contest.... Jack has not been on a boat since his best friend died in a boating accident. Jack never wanted to be a full-time fisherman like the rest of his brothers. He and Chris had dreams of owning their own construction business. They were going to build docks, ramps, piers, etc. Jack still wants to do that, but is not sure he can do it without his best friend. Grace convinces Jack to enter the race with her, but doesn't tell him why she wants the prize money. When Jack finds out, he feels betrayed and lashes out at Grace and wonders if she's like her mom. Jack and his brother withdraw from the fishing contest leaving Grace without a boat or crew. Grace's friends volunteer to help her out. While out practicing/learning how to catch the "big one", there's an accident... This is the first novel in the Blushing Bay series. This is a stepbrother, stepsister and second chance love story. I loved it! I loved that Jack could find the strength to continue with his dreams even after losing his best friend. I loved Grace's loyalty to her mom. I also loved that forgiveness wasn't easily given, but eventually earned. I read a gifted copy and all opinions stated are my own.
Rhondaz More than 1 year ago
Forbidden Kisses by Annie Rains......This was a sweet loving book. I love books that take place in small towns. I really enjoyed seeing the story play out for Grace and Jack. I can't wait to read more in this series. I voluntarily reviewed an advance reader copy of this book from publisher via NetGalley.
Suze-Lavender More than 1 year ago
Grace used to be part of the Sawyer family, until her mother messed things up. She had to miss her stepfather and three stepbrothers because of the nasty divorce that was the result of her mother's actions. The Sawyer brothers have avoided Grace ever since. They all work at the family seafood business and when Grace by accident applies for a job there Jack decides to hire her. Of the three Sawyer brothers he's the one Grace liked the most. Jack doesn't know if Grace is anything like her mother and if she can be trusted, but he gives her a chance anyway and Grace can't say no, because she desperately needs the money. Grace wants to make things right again with the Sawyers and she knows how to proceed. Will her plan actually work or will it backfire completely? She has the opportunity to spend a lot of time with Jack and they start to like one another more and more. While Jack would love to date Grace she isn't sure they should tell the world they like each other, because she doesn't know if Jack's brothers will be as forgiving as Jack. Will Jack and Grace have a chance or has Grace's mother made such a huge mistake that the damage is irreparable? Forbidden Kisses is a fabulous romantic story. I immediately loved Grace. She's kindhearted, sweet and giving. She always thinks about others first and does everything she can to make the people she loves as happy as possible, even when they've hurt her. She and Jack have amazing chemistry. Jack is a nice guy with plenty of talents. He's generous and attentive. I loved his friendly open-minded personality and his willingness to give people second chances is admirable. Jack and Grace are a wonderful couple. There are sparks and there's plenty of love and I hoped they could make the animosity between their families go away, so they could experience true love. I couldn't wait to find out what would happen between them and this made me fly through the pages. Annie Rains writes about a beautiful coastal town and I immediately fell in love with Blushing Bay, it's a fantastic setting. Her vivid and detailed descriptions of the town and its inhabitants make her story come to life very well. I loved the warm friendships, the welcoming people and the amicable atmosphere. Forbidden Kisses is a great first part of the Blushing Bay series. I really enjoyed reading this charming and endearing story.
Aurora-Bs-Book-Blog More than 1 year ago
If you like small town, second chance romances this is the book for you! It’s sweet with characters you can’t help but root for. This is the first book in the Blushing Bay Series by Annie Rains told from alternate POVs and the first book I’ve read by this author. It follows the Sawyer family consisting of three fabulous brothers that you can’t help but love. Their interactions and boisterous personalities are hilarious. Jack Sawyer in particular is a sweet and forgiving soul. He’s about to take a chance on a girl, Grace, who was his step-sister until he lost her 15 years prior due to divorce when her mother did something horrible to the Sawyer family. Years later Grace is saddled with an ill mother and no job. Her prospects are grim until she’s sitting in a café and overhears someone giving an interview. Desperate for a job Grace decides to take the initiative to present her qualifications in hopes she might be considered. To her horror, after avoiding the Sawyer family for years, she’s faced with Jack, the potential employer. Furthermore, not only is he one of the Sawyer brothers but her first crush. She’s mortified because she believes she’s hated by the entire family and ashamed of what her mother did to them. Unfortunately she has to swallow her pride as she’s desperate for a job that’ll keep a roof over he and her ill mothers head. Jack is shocked but can’t seem to resist the girl he once knew so well. So he ultimately gives her the job. The chemistry between these two is palpable…as in HOT! There is no doubt about the feelings Grace and Jack have for each other and they fit well as a couple. The story was fun with a bit of angst and a heap of forgiveness. I only had minor issues with Grace’s character. It felt almost like she was being too pushy in her treatment and judgements of Jack. Jack went through a horrible experience and I didn’t feel like Grace showed enough empathy. It felt like she was almost disregarding how much Jake was impacted, especially given who she is and the havoc her mother wreaked on the Sawyer family. Either way it wasn’t enough to mar the story. It was well written, entertaining and sweetly romantic. I’d recommend it to anyone. I for one will definitely be reading more from this author in the future! I can’t wait to see more of the other two Sawyer brothers, Noah and Sam. I voluntarily read and gave honest review of an advanced copy of this book.
BananaTricky More than 1 year ago
Yet another three and a half stars. Grace Donner is unemployed, after leaving her job as a bartender, in a small town and desperate. Her mother has Parkinson's and unless she can get a job quickly they won't have enough money for her medication. The trouble is, Grace doesn't have any qualifications. When Grace overhears a job interview taking place behind her in a coffee shop for a role she knows she could do she plucks up the courage to turn around and express interest in the job only to find out that the interviewer is her former stepbrother Jack Sawyer. Grace's mother Tammy was briefly married to Jack's father Pete about 15 years ago when Grace and Jack were teenagers. Tammy behaved atrociously and since that time the Sawyers and the Donners have done their best to avoid each other in a small town. This is a sweet novel about letting go of the past and making amends. Of rediscovering lost love and lost friendships and of coming to terms with loss. As Grace and Jack have a growing attraction to each other can they come out into the open with all the bad blood between their families? There are also hints of other romances between Jack's older brother Sam and his estranged wife Abbby and his younger brother Noah and Grace's other friend Krista who both vehemently claim that they are friends and nothing more! I like Annie Rains' novels. Although this doesn't have some of the humour of Welcoming the Bad Boy, it was an enjoyable read. Both Grace and Jack were engaging characters with good hearts. I just read a review of Welcoming the Bad Boy which referred it as plain good and I think that is a very apt description of this book too. Although Tammy has behaved badly she is somewhat changed and wants Grace to help her to make amends. Grace is hard-working and looks after her mother. Jack is trying to get over the loss of his best friend and please his family and still help out a troubled teen. In a week where I have started four or five books and given each up at between 30% and 50% I read this straight through because the book was easy to read with engaging characters a fun plot and a believable storyline. I look forward to reading more from Blushing Bay. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
BooksAndSpoons More than 1 year ago
When I read Annie Rains' books my mind and heart get so involved in the story I end up inhaling them, every word and moment held dear in my heart, and at the end, I wish I had had the sense to savor the story because I don't want to leave the characters behind. I absolutely love her style of writing and the way it captures my mind. Forbidden Kisses is a sweet yet passionate romance story, just the way I like them. There's lots of fun, adoration, love, and desire mixed with the perfect amount of challenges, difficulties, and confusion without drowning in angst and despair. Jack Sawyer was a delightful character with strong convictions, dedication to his loved ones, and kindness to strangers. Despite the losses in his life, he was willing and able to open his heart to love and possibilities of a new direction for the future. I admired Grace Donner and her survival instincts, her spunk, and her determination. She is stubborn to the bone, but she has no ill will towards anyone, her intentions are pure. She is used to managing her life alone, and the new friends, the new family of heart, the new feelings inside her and around her amazes her constantly. As a daughter of parents who both have been diagnosed with Parkinson's, I felt her worry, pain, and concern for her mother, and could easily imagine the challenges they were facing. Grace and Jack has an uphill road ahead of them, not only because of the family feud and the resistance from his brothers but also their own hesitation to be vulnerable, to trust, to have faith in them. Together Jack and Grace were combustible, the passion and admiration are palpable. I loved how they encouraged each other, how they light up in each other's presence, you could feel the devotion and excitement they had for each other. When I started the book I was a fool to think I would just read an hour and continue later on. The story pulled me in, the characters charmed my mind, and I felt their indecisions and the turmoils in their hearts. Forbidden Kisses is a fantastic, emotional, and addictive read! ~ Five Spoons
belllla More than 1 year ago
3,5 Forbidden Kissesis in a way second chance love story between former step-siblings. After 14years the path between Jack and Grace cross again. And Grace has no other option but to beg in a way Jack for a job. The attraction that was strong when they were teenagers comes back 100x stronger and it doesn’t take long that secret affair begins. Grace is the one who is scared to ruin new establish relationship between other Sawyers men’s. But of course nothing good ever comes out of hiding secrets and Grace is left alone. At first I thought that story was a little predictable but toward the end it changes course in to unpredictable story. I volunteered to review an ARC of this book for Netgelly
Sirius14 More than 1 year ago
I absolutely loved this book with an intriguing plot, lovely characters and an amazing story. The book hooked me up from the beginning till the last page and wasa solid 4.3 stars book. This ws my first book by the author and I really look forward to reading more. A perfect read for every romance lover
Mgrabeel More than 1 year ago
Grace Donner is desperate to find a job to help take care of her mom. The small town she lives in has very few options . She is both eager and reluctant to accept a job offer that has landed in her lap. The biggest problem is the person who is doing the hiring. Jack Sawyer needs to fill the position his aunt vacated with her retirement. He finds himself being approached by the one person he never expected and probably the one person he should keep at a distance. The problem is now that he's got her back in his life, he can't seem to stay away from her. I loved this book. It's a little bit of a second chance romance and little bit taboo. The dynamics of the characters had me intrigued and the writing of the book had me hooked right away. I loved how the characters were built and the insight given into their respective roles. I have read other books by this author and loved every one. I look forward to reading more of her works.
JensReadingObsession More than 1 year ago
Sweet second chance romance between ex-step siblings that is not as taboo as it may sound. They were family for a short while when they were teens but have avoided each other for the last 15 years after her mother's action caused ended in divorce. There is no denying the chemistry between the two, but years of resentment from Jack's family takes it toll on their relationship. I understand both sides, but I think Grace could have been more patient and understanding with Jack. Overall an enjoyable read and I fell in love with Jack's family. I have been sucked into the world of Blushing Bay and am looking forward to Sam Sawyer's story. I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book. I was not compensated for this review, all conclusions are my own.
Momscookingthebooks More than 1 year ago
I am a fan of this author and enjoyed her Hero’s Welcome series, so I was excited she is starting the Blushing Bay series. This is going to be a series about the 3 Sawyer brothers, Jack, Noah and Sam. This story is about Jack and Grace. Now I was a little hesitant about the whole stepbrother – stepsister love, but this is such a sweet and sad story about forbidden love, lost chances, second chances and a whole lot of forgiveness. When Grace’s mother married Jack’s father, life was good. Grace had a readymade family with 3 brothers and great father until her mother made a terrible life altering choice that causes the family to break apart. The Sawyer family is bitter and wants nothing to do with Grace and her mother. Fast forward and Grace needs a job. Grace is taking care of her mother, as she now is ill and Grace is the sole provider. She just was fired from a lousy waitressing job at a bar because the boss was looking for more from Grace than just an employee, if you know what I mean. She is having coffee at the local coffee house and overhears a man interviewing for an office secretary/manager. Once he concludes the interview she turns around and tells the gentleman that she has the qualifications that she’s looking for. She couldn’t believe her eyes, it was Jack, the stepbrother that she had a crush on years before. You guessed it Grace got the job and so much more! Now I am not going to give anymore away. There is so much that goes on in this story. The chemistry is palpable! No adult language content or overt sex scenes, but just enough heat to keep you sated, sweet heat. Good character development. I enjoyed the secondary characters and the buildup of the possible characters in the next book in the series. There are secrets, there is some angst between the characters and there are some funny scenes that made me enjoy this story that much more. This is a good start to a new series! I highly recommend this second chance romance and I look forward to more in this series!
SarahBethL More than 1 year ago
I loved this story of Jack & Grace. From the first page I knew I would enjoy reading about these characters. They used to be step siblings-when his dad was married to her Mom-years ago. Jack is still running the family seafood business and needs a new office manager. Grace is back, looking for a job & taking care of her mother who is sick. The divorce between Jack's Dad & Grace's Mom was messy & Grace hadn't seen Jack or his 2 brothers since. It was such a nice read, flowed well & makes me want to go back to Blushing Bay & see what's going on with the other characters. During this book we see Grace reconnect with Jack, his brother, his Dad & her friends from Blushing Bay.
Laura_F More than 1 year ago
This was a great start to The Blushing Bay series. Grace and Jack were once step-siblings but after their parents' marriage imploded, they had no contact with each other and there was bad blood between the families. Fast forward 15 years and Grace is in need of a job and Jack is in need of a new office manager. There was an attraction between them as teenagers but with all that has transpired between their families it seems like any kind of relationship would never work. There were definitely parts of this story that the two main characters were so frustrating but once they got it together, I loved them as a couple. Both Jack and Grace have been through a tremendous amount of grief but they have so many amazing people in their lives and are great together. I really liked all of the characters introduced in this story and am looking forward to where this series goes. *This is my voluntary review of an advanced reader copy*
ljtljtljt More than 1 year ago
Wow, what a totally awesome book from author Annie Rains. Forbidden Kisses grabs you right from the beginning and the engaging plot never loses its spark. The two primary characters, out of work bartender Grace Donner, and family business owner Jack Sawyer, have undeniable chemistry and their romantic journey is replete with desire, forgiveness and love. This is the first book from Ms. Rain's brand new series, Blushing Bay, and it can be enjoyed as a standalone. Grace and Jack developed feelings for each other way back in high school. At the time, Grace's mother was married to Jack's father and both families seemed to mesh quite well. Grace loved having step siblings and Jack's father treated her very well. Then Grace's mother ruined everything with her unthinkable actions, and once again the Donner women were on their own. The Donners and the Sawyers have not spoken in fifteen years. Jack and his family are in the seafood business. They are fishermen and own a restaurant. Jack also likes to build piers, boats and docks. Now the family business needs a new office manager, and Grace desperately needs a job to meet her rent and pay for her mother's medication. She asks Jack for the job, knowing that the situation is beyond dicey. Against his better judgement, Jack hires Grace, and hopes that his family will accept her back into their lives. Grace and Jack fall in lust and love, as they simultaneously repair the damage to both their families. This is a satisfying love story with an interesting plot and well-defined characters. Ms. Rains is an excellent storyteller, and her words kept me entertained from beginning to end. If you enjoy a novel with a determined heroine and a hero that won't give up, then check out this book. Overall, this is an exciting and slightly emotional read that twists and turns in all the right places. Complimentary copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley.
micharch More than 1 year ago
Jack and Grace were once step-siblings who felt something more for each other. They acted on their attraction and kissed at 15 before Grace's mother committed the ultimate betrayal and their two families were split up. Grace is now taking care of her mother who suffers from Parkinson's Disease and requires constant care. Jack and his family have never forgiven her mother for stealing and selling off their mother's possessions and spending the money on herself. Her selfishness knew no bounds and Grace felt abandoned by the Sawyer family when they left her alone for years after the marriage dissolution. Grace is now looking for a job and Jack and his family are looking for an office assistant. Even though Jack thinks it is a bad idea, he gives Grace the job and so their journey begins again. Grace seemed to understand the way the Sawyer family felt about her mother, but would turn around and get upset that they couldn't get past it and forgive her mother since she has changed. The Sawyer family didn't owe her mother anything, especially in light of all that she stole. Grace was able to forgive and forget but they didn't have to do that. She seemed to lose sight of that several times during this book. Setting up Jack to have dinner with her mother unbeknownst to him was just plain low. She then acted like a toddler when he didn't apologize to her about it. She owed him some respect and showed little in that instance. Yes, he could have been a little less cold to her mother, but he didn't have to do that. Her mother did some horrible things and Grace could not sugarcoat that. When Grace's mother asks her to try and mend the rift between the families, she comes up with a hair-brained scheme to get a boat back named after their mother, Beatrice, that her mother stole and sold. Her mother claimed not to know who she sold it to but, lo and behold, she knew who it was and gave Grace the name. How Grace thought that would be okay was just plain dumb at times. She needed to stop giving her mother an out and quit giving excuses that the Sawyer family did not have to accept. When she gets an idea to enter a fishing tournament and get Jack and her former step-brother, Noah, to be her crew she was trying to get the funds to buy back the boat. Instead of owning up to this, she decides to hide it from everyone. jack and Grace decide to have try a relationship but she wants it to be kept a secret from everyone until after the fishing tournament. This does not go well since secrets have a way of coming out at the worst times. When their relationship and Grace's secret are revealed at almost the same time, the end result was not a good one. Her friends taking the initiative and stepping up was admirable but led to another disaster. I did like how Jack stepped up and made some changes without trying to take any credit for it. Grace didn't need to know what he was doing or his motives since she was unwilling to put anyone before her mother, which was admirable but not necessary. She played a martyr throughout this book and it got old by the end. I was glad her mother called her out on it and had hoped Jack would do it sooner. You will have to read the book to see if this couple was able to overcome all of their obstacles. The ending was nice and it seemed to fit these two. I received an ARC from NetGalley for an honest review.
Honolulubelle More than 1 year ago
My Rating: 4.5 Favorite Quotes: You’re my daughter. I have stretch marks to prove it. That means you owe me. Life’s a chain of things you wish you could forget. My Review: I’ve never read a book quite like this before. The main characters had been step-siblings for a time, over fifteen years ago, until her mother’s heinous behaviors resulted in them being kicked out and forever tainted in their small town. It could have been icky, but it wasn’t. However, that not the end of mother’s selfish and atrocious antics, yet Grace stood by her, paid the bills, and cared for her mother when her Parkinson’s Disease became more debilitating. I honestly don’t see myself ever being that charitable. The premise was rather unique, the characters were endearing and appealing, and the storyline was entertaining, well-paced and comfortably balanced with alternating hits of angst, levity, steam, and heart-squeezes. This was my first Anne Rains experience and I look forward to many return trips to Blushing Bay.
BookPlusHeart More than 1 year ago
Annie Rains, finished her series A Hero’s Welcome and is now debuting Blushing Bay. Still taking place in North Carolina, on the coast. The series will surround a family of three brothers. Sam, Jack and Noah. They each have their positive and negatives, but they are fishermen to the core. Book one, Forbidden Kisses is about Jack and Grace. Grace’s mom, Tammy, used to be married to Pete Sawyer, the father of Sam, Jack, and Noah. For a few years they were a family. Stepsiblings and all; but, Tammy ruined that by selling off Pete Sawyer’s deceased wife’s items. Such as her wedding ring and a boat named after her. The father and sons could never forgive what Tammy did. Divorced and no longer a Brady Bunch family, with bitterness between them. Grace loved living with the Sawyers. Pete became the dad she never had. Noah and Sam were the best brothers. Jack on the other hand, she never had brotherly affection for. It was more a physical attraction that lead to one forbidden kiss at when she was 15. They were still step-siblings at the time. That kiss began the long drawn out yearning for each other that they knew would never be. After Jack and Grace’s parents divorced, they never spoke again. They avoid each other at all cost. Now Grace is desperate for a job, and she heard that the Sawyers are looking for a new office manager at the companies building. She knows it would be perfect, but can be an employee of the Sawyer family work? Can they look at her and not think of Tammy’s deception? Jack knows hiring Grace will ruffle feathers between himself and the rest of his family, but his long-time attraction to Grace has been one of the most difficult things for him to forget. Now that she has dived back into his life, he is not planning on letting her go. As long as he doesn’t have to be around Tammy, Grace and he can have a beautiful relationship together. Grace wants her mother and the Sawyers to get along and forgive. The only way Jack and her could ever work would be if he forgives Tammy. Grace comes to realize that Jack may never forgive Tammy. The more she hears what Jack says about her mom, and witnesses his negative demeanor towards Tammy, her heart aches for having everyone get along. Choices must be made. Choose love for her mother or affection for her long-time yearning crush? Factors play into Grace’s choice. Jack and Tammy both don’t know if they agree with her finale decision. Grace’s heart is in the right place, but sometimes we need to allow people to find their own way back. Jack and Grace’s story is bitter-sweet. There are some parts you just want to hit Jack over the head with two-by-four. I say that because Jack has his own obstacles he is facing. He lost his best friend to the sea. That loss has crept into his life and left him unable to continue aiding the family business within the water. His goal is to open a construction company as a branch of the family business. But with guilt over the loss of his friend, the complications with Grace, his father’s and brothers counting on him; Jack isn’t sure at times what he should do, and who he should do it for. These two are fighting themselves through most of the book. It is when th
Bette313 More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this one and I can't wait to read more in this series. This is a good small town romance centered around a fishing family. Jack Sawyer has been working in the office of his family's fishing business even though that's not really what he wants to be doing. Now he needs a new office manager and he can't believe it when Grace Donner applies for the job. Grace and Jack were step siblings for about a minute many years ago. Even then he was attracted to Grace, now even more. The history between the two families isn't good and Jack's not sure if Grace will be accepted by the rest of his family. Grace has always felt bad about the way things ended between her Mom and the Sawyers. Normally she'd never want this job but she's desperate. Will they be able to put the past behind them and move forward? She hopes so and she'll do whatever she can to set things right. An excellent read that I recommend to everyone.
sharonrCA More than 1 year ago
**I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.** I have only read one or two books by this author and they have been romances about military heroes. This is a NEW series about a family business of fisherman. Its kind of a cool series because I have never read a series before about fisherman. The author does a greta job of making the fisherman business appear sexy. The story centers around the Sawyer family. The family consists of: Pete - the dad who has been married twice. To the love of his life and then to a woman with a teen daughter who then with a shopping addiction sold off all the first wives possessions to fund her habit. Son - Jack who has a thing for his ex step sister, Grace but a hate on for her mother. He is convinced by a desperate Grace to hire her as office manager for teh Sawyer fishing business. Son - Noah who is the youngest and viewed Grace as his sister. Son - Sam who is divorced and the oldest. Grace, the former step sister loved the whole family but lost everyone when her mother did the terrible thing of selling thr boys' mothers things, most importantly, the boat named after her, The Beatrice. In this story Grace desperate for a job gets a job at the Sawyers, her and Jack start a relationship and because of the bad blood and because Grace wants to be considered family, she and Jack hide their relationship. While Grace decides to enter a fishing tourny and will 20K to get back the boat for the Sawyers. She asks Noah and Jack to help until everyone ends up mad at her and then its Girfriend Power and I loved when all the ladies decide to still do the tourny after Jack and Noah bails. I totally loved this story and I cannot wait for more books in this series.
Lashea677 More than 1 year ago
Jack and Grace have a complicated, tempestuous, forbidden relationship. Family brought them together, but lies and betrayal tore them apart. Wrecking more than family ties, breaking hearts along the way. What seems black and white, has many shades of gray. A long ago marriage between their parents ended badly, leaving Grace caught in the middle. Now older and wiser Grace seeks to make amends. Will Jack be receptive to her olive branch? Full of heart-aching curve balls, Ms. Rains mixed taboo with a story that is heartwarming and true. Forbidden Kisses is a hard road to forgiveness but it's a journey that is well written and worthy of the travel.