Justified (Includes a bonus novella)

Justified (Includes a bonus novella)

by Jay Crownover

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The New York Times bestselling author of the Marked Men series delivers an "emotional, unforgettable" (Lori Wilde) romance about a rugged Texas sheriff who must protect the woman who was once his sworn enemy...

Case Lawton comes from a family of criminals. So as the sheriff of Loveless, Texas, he's determined to do everything by the book--until he's called to Aspen Barlow's office after a so-called break-in. The last thing he wants to do is help the woman who cost him custody of his son. But Aspen isn't the heartless lawyer Case remembers, and he starts to question his long-held grudge...

Aspen is scared for her life, and Case is her last hope for protection. But to get him on her side, she'll have to reveal the painful truth from all those years ago. Now, as they work together to track down a dangerous criminal, Case and Aspen learn to trust each other. And as the threats escalate, it becomes clear there's a thin line between love and hate... because there's nothing Case wouldn't do to keep her safe.

"Off the charts attraction, dramatic suspense, heartbreaking betrayal, deep emotion, and unforgettable romance will keep you turning the pages to the climactic end." -Jennifer Ryan, New York Times bestselling author

"Crownover writes cowboys that make you want to pack your bags in search of a small-town ranch!" -Melissa Foster, New York Times bestselling author

"Five big huge stars for Justified! Don't miss this page turner!" -Harper Sloan, New York Times bestselling author

Includes It's All About That Cowboy, a bonus novella by Carly Bloom!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781538746332
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 06/25/2019
Series: Loveless, Texas Series , #1
Pages: 432
Sales rank: 63,631
Product dimensions: 4.20(w) x 6.60(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Jay Crownover is the international and multiple New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men Series, the Saints of Denver Series, the Point Series, Breaking Point Series, and the Getaway Series. Her books have been translated in many different languages all around the world. She is a tattooed, crazy haired Colorado native who lives at the base of the Rockies with her awesome dogs. This is where she can frequently be found enjoying a cold beer and Taco Tuesdays. Jay is a self-declared music snob and outspoken book lover who is always looking for her next adventure, between the pages and on the road.

Learn more:
Twitter @JayCrownover

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Justified 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 31 reviews.
Madm007 21 days ago
Way more than a romance Completely hooked me from the start. Hate is a kin to love, so true for Case. Aspen has always known she loved Case, but just knew she never stood a chance. As present day life threatening events bring them together, so much gets sorted out between the two and I went thru a ton of emotions at all the injustices that had been heaped on both of them. So yeah, I was immersed while reading, always in anticipation of what's coming next. There was so much intrigue, twisty plot, nerve shredding action happening that I couldn't get it out of my head even when real life intruded. The angsty times made the lovin all the sweeter when it finally came. Each of the characters were fantastic and so realistic, making ME feel a part of the Loveless community, right in the thick of things. So well written with dual POVs, and no overlaps. This was a super fast exciting read. I received an advance reader's copy thru Netgalley and am giving my honest thoughts voluntarily.
wendm_ccbh 22 days ago
We're back in Loveless, Texas and this time we have the pleasure of reading Case Lawton's book. When I first met him in Unbroken I knew he would be trouble, and trouble he was! Justified is a full length novel in Jay Crownover's brand-new Loveless, Texas series. The Lawton siblings bring so much angst to their small little town that I cannot get enough of them! Aspen Barlow has crushed on Case Lawton since her formidable teen years. He was the only one to show her any kindness and offer her friendship. As adults, Aspen is a pitbull in the courtroom and she is assigned to be Becca Lawton's lawyer in a custody battle for Hayes, Case's nine-year old son. When Case loses Hayes, his entire world implodes and he could never forgive Aspen. Eight years later, there is still bad blood between Case and Aspen. The animosity and tension between the pair is so strong you could cut it with a knife. "It seemed like with everything else we did, it was all or nothing. We either loved or hated. We were either in or out. There was no middle ground." Case is now the new sheriff after overruling his father's corruptive reign. With someone in the little town of Loveless wanting Aspen dead, Case must work with her to figure out who is behind it all. Justified had everything you love about a small town. Bonus was the plethora of secondary characters which I need books from ASAP, especially Hill Gamble and a feisty someone I will not name... Also, let's not forget about a certain MC president #drama. Suspenseful and action-packed, Justified is the perfect mix of enemies-to-lovers with a second chance feel. Beyond intriguing and completely captivating, I started and finished this novel in one day. Hands down, it's a must read!
bookreader1TP 1 days ago
I have enjoyed every book I read by Ms. Crownover, and this was no exception. Case and Aspen go way back to high school when she was the new student and he was the only one who tried to be nice to her and accept her. Years later, when she came back to town as a lawyer, she was integral to the worst day of his life-losing custody of his son. Because of that, they now have a hate-hate relationship. At least that is what they both want the other to think. When her life implodes and her life consistently is threatened, he takes her to the only place she can be safe. His house. No one will think to look for her there. After all, they hate each other. Once she is there, he starts realizing that maybe his hate isn't hate after all and he doesn't know what to do with that. She has always had a crush on him, so she tries to lock her feelings down. The twists, turns, and bumps they have to overcome are many, but they can be stronger if they come out the other side. The person who is behind all fo the bad things coming her way is spiteful, calculating, and self-important, and also the last person Aspen thought would go this far. When Case's son becomes a target and he has to choose between his son and Aspen, is there any way he can save both of them? Will they admit their true feelings before it is too late? I can't wait to read the rest of this series. There are things Case doesn't know and reasons why she did what she did during the custody battle. When Case finds out, what will his reaction be? Will they change things between Case and Aspen? I received an ARC in exchange for an honest, voluntary review.
Anonymous 2 days ago
Good storyline with unexpected twists and turns
mamalovestoread22 3 days ago
In high school Aspen Barlow fell hard for fellow classmate and town sports hero Case Lawton, he on the other hand had no idea she really existed... she was just the weird girl from the city. He was cordial to her, but seemed oblivious to the fact that she had caught feelings for him. Not to mention the fact that he had caught the eye of someone else... her worst enemy someone else! Now years later she finds herself once again in his life, but this time he isn't so cordial and she has unknowingly found herself a new enemy. One that has it out for her and would rather see her dead than living, so the one time sports hero, now town sheriff, has made it his mission to keep her safe. Being thrown into close quarters with one another is more than a little uncomfortable, especially with their tense past, but it's also helping them both see things a little more vividly this time around. They have some serious sparks... that are shining quite brightly! Within a matter of minutes the characters in this book will pull you in and have you immediately captivated... nothing is more hypnotizing than a sexy cowboy on a mission to keep a damsel in distress safe from the clutches of danger! I loved every word of this enemies-to-lovers story it was action packed (of the steamy and dangerous variety), had loads of heart-string tugging emotion, and came with lovable characters that stole my heart!! I cannot wait to get my hands on the next installment and revisit these characters, and meet a few new ones too. Definitely the perfect start to a new series, came with everything you want in a story and so much more. Highly recommend!
Anonymous 13 days ago
blonde_betty 13 days ago
Justified by Jay Crownover is the first in her new series; though there are ties back to her previous novels longtime fans will eat up. While we got a glimpse of the deliciousness to come in Unbroken, this is Loveless in all its glory…or at least the Lawton family. Case is the perfect blend of gruff cowboy sheriff and overprotective teddy bear. Aspen is more than his perfect match. There is a twist I didn’t see coming. I stayed up way too late reading and have no regrets…at least not about the book. I am all in with this series and can’t wait to see what Crownover has in store for Kody. I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this novel.
Anonymous 14 days ago
I love Jay’s books. Can’t wait for Kody’s story!❤️
Natalie_The_Biblioholic 14 days ago
A small quiet town, devastated by gunshots, vandalism, high speed chases, and fire. Aspen is the target and the killer doesn't care about collateral damage. Who's out to get her? Why do they so desperately want her dead? And why is it the only person she can turn to, the only one she can trust, is the man who hates her guts? At one point, Aspen was the new girl in town. She was from the city and she was different and ended up being an outcase. Case was the only person who saw her and went out of his way to include her. It was easy for her to fall a bit in love with him and treat him with hero worship. But life goes on and they grew apart. Nine years ago, Case's marriage disintegrated and he lost the one person who meant the most to him - his son. Unfortunately for Aspen, she was his ex-wife's attorney, robbing Case of time with his son. Right then, right there, she became his nemesis and he treated her to his anger from that day forth. When Aspen's office is vandalized, she calls the Sheriff, who happens to be Case. Forced circumstances and close quarters lead these two to unravelling the tension between them, discovering what they could mean to each other, and finding love in the most unlikely of places. It's been awhile since I've read a Crownover novel and it was like slipping into comfy clothes. The plot was intense, fast-moving, and entertaining. The characters were endearing and even the side characters were a delight. How can I resist loving a story with a whodunit plot and charming people? If you like your romance suspenseful, your characters to work hard for their happy ending, and brilliant writing that will have you enchanted right to the end, you won't want to miss out on this one!
Kptrsn19 16 days ago
Several years ago I went to a book event for one author and Jay Crownover won me over so fast I walked away with three of her books. I have no regrets. Justified is a bit different from her other books, but it's still the same Crownover writing I've come to love. Case and Aspen hate each other for things said/done in the past. I loved watching them work through all those feelings and start to come together, while other atrocities were unfolding around them. It's hard to come to terms with your past beliefs, when someone is out to kill you. There is a lot going on in Justified. Case is the sheriff, but he's still trying to rectify all the mess his dad created as sheriff. Someone is trying to kill Aspen. Case's ex wife is being super demanding over their son. And a tad more. Crownover did a great job of weaving all these things together without the reader feeling overwhelmed by all the things. At no point did I feel like there was just too much happening to keep track of. Case was easy to like from the get go, he had a crap life and made some bad choices, but you could tell that he was trying to fix things. He was also an amazing dad. I don't want to spoil things, but there were some tears shed over how things went down with this in the past. Aspen is getting divorced and desperate to separate herself from her jerk husband. But then things start to get scary when her life is threatened. All things considered she handled this well, I would have been a crying mess. I highly recommend Justified. It's fast paced and lots of feels!
12020351 16 days ago
Holy wow! I was in a slight book funk and I think I started about. 5 books before I opened this one. Thank goodness I did because holy crap was I sucked in from the top! So much action, I almost felt like I was in an action-packed movie and yet I could feel the sizzle between these two characters! I hadn't read the first one yet but boy do I feel the need to scoop that up immediately and start it NOW! Amazing chemistry with all the characters, whether it was good or bad and it was a story that I adored!
Ireadergosum 17 days ago
While I figured I would like this book, I was pleasantly surprised at just was a great romantic suspense this really was. It also made me mad that I hadn’t read the prequel novella, Unbroken–which is now on my TBR! This story really showcased the why behind the character’s actions that often go unseen. As human beings, I believe that many of us assume the reasoning behind others’ actions, and often time incorrectly. Justified showed the real and lasting impact of problematic assumptions, which I deeply appreciated. I also found all of the characters to be very enjoyable. Aspen is just so sweet and strong. I just felt that when she did stand up for what she wanted, she came across as not only powerful, but so caring. She was dealt a crap hand, and yet she perseveres. Case is a stubborn man with a heart of gold. He is so blinded by his own hardships he fails to see the bigger picture. You may think that would make him less endearing, but you’d be wrong! He is fighting his demons, caring for his town, and finding the truth–which makes for a great growth arc. Not to mention his relationship with his son Hayes pulls at all the heart strings. I loved Hayes so much, and I hope we eventually get his story (possibly with a girl that doesn’t really fit in in Loveless, Texas). Lastly, let’s not forget that Case has some awesome siblings! His brother Crew’s story is the novella I mentioned earlier, and I’m really hoping we get Kody’s story in the next book. I’m assuming there will be lots of Hill (the hot lawman) and Shot (the hot motorcycle gang leader), which should make for one hell of a story! Thank you so much to Forever Publishing for the eARC in exchange for an honest review!
Gin 18 days ago
Fabulous! This story about the Sheriff and the Counselor in the terrific Loveless, Texas series is a must read. I love this author's spectacular writing that takes us on a journey with intrigue, danger, romance and wonderful characters. There's nothing sexier than a hot-as-hell cowboy sheriff with a hero complex that he always delivers on. Case Lawton is just that man. He overcomes his past to become the man that takes care of his family and his county. His troubled past includes a like/hate relationship with lawyer, Aspen, that goes back to high school when he befriends the new "weird girl" from Chicago. And Aspen has no chance when it comes to the local hero. She carries her teen crush into adulthood and manages to protect Case in the only way she can even if he doesn't know. He thinks she's out to destroy him. There are tons of emotion and heartbreak and raw feelings in this one with the sheriff, his young son, the evil ex and the lawyer on the wrong side. When Aspen becomes a target, suddenly the lines blurred as the Sheriff does his job and protects her from further harm while looking for the culprits. As Case and Aspen are forced together their contentious relationship takes a turn and old hurts are let go. What develops is a sweet and sexy romance between two strong, capable adults with long time ties. There's a few twists and a killer epilogue with all the awesome family members. I love all the Lawton siblings especially the badass Kody. I can't wait for her story and I hope it includes a sexy Texas Ranger! Plus (I'm so excited) a new MC, Sons of Sorrow, is an irresistible presence in this story. I'm all in with this author and her masterful storytelling with swoon-worthy characters. I voluntarily reviewed an ARC.
Anonymous 18 days ago
FromTheSouth 19 days ago
So far I am absolutely loving Loveless, Texas. Since I am a sucker for a sheriff hero and feisty lawyer romance, this book really hit the spot with me. As usual, this author can take an alpha protective, rough around the edges good guy and bring him to his knees and senses by matching him up with a feisty, leading lady love interest. Throw in the enemies to lovers element and we are given one hot, complicated relationship. Though a damsel in distress, I loved how Aspen tried to always stay true to herself. When she realized she had let her guard down and allowed others to derail her from her life’s purpose, she took action and matters into her own hands. She was tough and fragile all at the same time, and also very forgiving when it was called for. She seemed to be living proof you can’t keep a good woman down, folks. Case had a serious case of family issues and baggage he’s been carrying around his whole life. You’ll have to shrug off his at first hateful, mean demeanor towards Aspen. This author did a good job of laying all the cards on the table, so we ultimately do get a clear picture of what he’s been dealing with. Oh, I so want another shot at seeing Shot Caldwell, a good guy/bad boy biker sub-character that popped up in this story line. Add Hill Gamble, a hot, handsome Texas Ranger to the list while you’re at it. My, oh, my! Those two alone are reasons I can’t wait for a return trip to this relationship angst riddled town where true love seems to keep finding a home! Here’s to hoping Kody, the hero’s bar owner baby sis, is next in line to square off with her obvious love interest. That guy had better be careful though. This girl’s proved she’s got game, packs a gun, and knows how to use it. Overall, just know I really enjoyed this book and did not want to put it down. Here’s to hoping you’ll feel the same. Title: Justified, Series: Loveless, Texas (Book 1), Author: Jay Crownover, Pages: 384, stand-alone but part of series, divorced sheriff hero, damsel in distress feisty lawyer heroine, enemies to lovers, great sub-characters, perilous situations, relationship angst. Book .5 - Unbroken (Crew & Della), 5/14/19, Pages: 160 Book 1 - Justified (Case & Aspen), 6/25/19, Pages: 384 (I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book via NetGalley. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I was not given any payment or compensation for this review. There is no affiliation or relationship between this reviewer and the author/publisher/NetGalley)
BookAngel_Emma 20 days ago
I have no clue where to start with Justified, Jay has completely thrown me by jamming so much into one story-line there is just no way on earth to do the plot justice. Case and Aspen have a long and tumultuous history which has maintained he distance between them and clouded their perceptions. However, when Aspen’s life is placed in danger, they are given the opportunity to bridge the gap between them and lay the skeletons in their closet to rest. Case and Aspen are very similar in their desire to help others and make a difference in their community. Unfortunately, the ghosts of the past keep them shackled to their regrets for far too long. Although the situation between them is precarious at best, the opportunity to become the people they dreamed of being is a silver lining among the black clouds rolling over them. It is almost as if Case and Aspen had to travel the rough path in order to reach their destination – each other Being together fills all the missing spaces they have inside, they are definitely stronger together and provide a respite from the storm around them. Case’s son, Hayes, absolutely stole my heart. Wise beyond his years and one of lives pure souls, I want to adopt him. There are a number of shocking plot twists within the narrative, adding to the tension and drama of the story as a whole. Justified enables us to catch up with all of the Lawton siblings but it also adds to the desire to uncover all of their secrets. A few more tasty titbits are laid down where the lone Lawton female, Kody, is concerned. With a HUGE cliffhanger at the end of Justified promising, there is a lot left to be uncovered where Loveless, Texas is concerned.
ADonovan 20 days ago
Aspen and Case have years of history, and it's well known in the small town of Loveless, Texas, that he absolutely despises her. He has his reasons, mostly based on interactions they had through the years, but he doesn't know all of her reasoning for how things played out. Then someone tries to kill her, and as sheriff, it's up to him to capture the suspect. Spending more time with Aspen and seeing her vulnerable side starts to crack Case. Takes up until the very end to know the entirety of why someone is out to get Aspen. Suspenseful and hot enemies to lovers book. Really looking forward to more of the series!
bookbruin 21 days ago
3.5-4 stars This was a great weekend read! I was sucked in right from the start and didn't want to put it down. I was hesitant to pick it up because I don't often read cowboy romances, but this one felt more small town romance more than anything and I just appreciated the cover for the eye candy it was ;) Justified is an enemies to lovers, forced proximity, suspense, and single parent romance rolled into one. I loved the sparks and sexual tension between Case and Aspen and how the gruff and grumpy sheriff slowly opened his heart. Case is exactly the loyal, protective, alpha hero that I love. I wouldn't have minded a little more groveling on his part though and I did feel that Aspen forgave him very quickly. Also, her strong feelings toward him made sense considering their time together in HS, but Case's feelings seemed to go from hate to love in the blink of an eye. The suspense kept things interesting, but did feel a little over the top at times. I'm really intrigued by Case's little sister, Kody, and a certain Texas Ranger and loved the mysterious vibe. I'm hoping their story will be next! This was my first book by Jay Crownover, and I'm excited to see where this series goes. *I voluntarily read an advance review copy of this book*
ScrapNSign 21 days ago
A thrilling ride that'll leave you breathless! Justified is filled with heated action, and will keep you on the edge of your seat with the plot twists. A suspenseful romance that you'll want to erase from your memory, just so you can read it again for the very first time! I love how fiercely protective Case is of his family, but his obsession with righting the wrong-doings of his corrupt father, make him blind to some truths. When the one person he blames for the loss of custodial rights is a target in a series of threats, he must put his hateful feelings aside in order to close the case and push her back out of his life.
Rainn2978 21 days ago
This is book 1 in the Loveless, Texas series. It introduces us to the Lawton family. This one is about Case Lawton and Aspen Barlow. Case and Aspen have known each other since they were in school together, but since Aspen helped his ex-wife get custody of his son, he hates her with a passion. However, when her office is broken into, he refuses to act like his father and actually steps up to try to figure out what is going on. And being forced to be around Aspen shows him that he might have been wrong about her and what truly happened. Aspen knows that Case is the only person who can protect her. But that just brings up what happened all those years ago and why she did what she did. And being forced to spend time together just reinforces her thoughts about the type of man Case is while showing him that she is the one woman who may always have his back, even when he doesn't know it. I really liked this book! Case comes across as this bitter but good man. But he also has a heart of gold that he works to hide and protect from outsiders. Aspen may be a lawyer but she isn't one of those typical money hungry, out to get you types that you usually associate with lawyers. She has the biggest heart and she is trying to do what she thinks is right. I truly liked this story, but parts of it felt a little slow to me. That is the only reason I gave it 4 stars instead of 5! The story and writing are excellent. The characters? I absolutely loved them! I just felt a little slow but on a whole I thoroughly enjoyed it! And this was the first book I read by this author, but after reading this one I know it won't be my last! I really need Case's sister's story though! I absolutely loved her in this!
Michele-G 21 days ago
4 1/2 Stars!! I feel perfectly JUSTIFIED in saying this book was Ah-mazing! I know I'm being corny but I couldn't resist. Seriously though, Justified was a fabulous continuation to the story of the Lawton family in Loveless, Texas. This one gives us the story of Case, the town sheriff and Aspen, a local attorney and Case's nemesis. They have a history stretching back to high school when they were friends (sort of). In present day, it is common knowledge in Loveless that Case strongly dislikes Aspen because she was the attorney representing his ex-wife in the custody case for his son. When events start happening that endanger Aspen's life, Case steps up to do his job and soon discovers that his need to protect Aspen feels like more than work.. Quite simply, Justified possesses many of the necessary ingredients for a quality contemporary romance: enemies to lovers trope, romantic suspense/mystery, alpha strong male lead who is in law enforcement (double win), strong female lead, enjoyable supporting characters, unrequited love, and so on. I like that the reader realizes there are some elements to the story that Case doesn't know which would impact his view of Aspen. Let me just say that Ms. Crownover knows exactly when to deliver those informational nuggets into the storyline. In many other books I've read in the past, that type of information is withheld for too long and it drags on. This book had great timing in that events seemed to happen at the appropriate time without a feeling of lagging. Also, there was a twist I didn't see coming - - that always makes me happy! I felt like Justified was so much more than just a romance. Don't get me wrong, Case and Aspen have a beautiful story, but there is more to it. Case is a committed father to his son, Hayes. That is by far his most important relationship and he consistently priorities his son. In addition, there is an obvious love between the three Lawton siblings and they are protective of each other. Lastly, Case loves his community. He was determined to be a better and more ethical sheriff that his father. He felt a calling to serve Loveless. Of course, after all is said and done, there is Case and Aspen and seeing Case realize he is falling for the woman he's spent so much of his life angry at was entertaining to say the least. I can't wait for the next book in the Loveless, Texas series when we get Kody's story! It has potential to be the best one yet. Thank you to NetGalley and Forever (Grand Central Publishing) for providing me with this ARC.
lenorewastaken 21 days ago
4 stars — I was really sucked in to the beginning of this story and didn’t want to put it down, which of course made for a very late night of “one more chapter” before I finally couldn’t keep my eyes open. Still haven’t learned the “don’t start a book at bedtime” lesson. Holy cow did this book ever fit the enemies to lovers trope. There was so much tension between Case and Aspen because of their past, it was PALPABLE. And while I cerebrally understood Case’s feelings, it was hard not to want to shake my head at his stubborn hold on his grudge. It did make it a bit hard to fall in love with him at times. Like, he could be super mean sometimes, and I felt like he got let off the hook a bit too easily. But I did truly believe in his remorse when he finally figured shiznit out. It was interesting to watch his feelings change for Aspen before he was actually willing to accept his feelings changing. It really threw him for a loop, and that was hella fun to watch. Aspen was kind of a complex heroine. She had moments where she could have been a doormat, or where she displayed doormat tendancies, but in general I thought she was pretty strong and feisty, just in a quieter way I guess. I think that part where I was annoyed that Case got let off the hook too easily is kind of a strike against Aspen for me. Not that I didn’t understand, but I guess I wanted a tiny bit more for her. But I did feel for what she was going through, and I really *felt* her fear and anxiety over her situation. Basically she was a heroine that I might not have liked, but for some reason I did anyways. Case and Aspen had great chemistry with one another, there was lots of push and pull. But honestly? For some reason I got bored during the steamy scenes. I don’t know if that was my mood, but EVERY SINGLE scene I found myself looking at Facebook on my phone. I can’t quantify it more than that, but I thought it was a bit too coincidental that it was always the steamy scenes. Take from that what you will. I thought the mystery/suspense/action parts were bar none my favourite part. I really felt that sense of urgency, and while I never quite figured it all out, the bad guys were definitely on my suspicions list from the start, so it wasn’t out of left field. I really enjoyed the secondary characters in this one too, the glimpses of Crew, the ever feisty Kody, the steady Hill, and the adorably wise Hayes. I found it interesting in the author’s note that a few characters show up in her other series, and it makes me more interested in seeking them out (since this is my first series of hers). All in all, a solid romantic suspense. I really did enjoy watching Case and Aspen find their way to one another, and the mystery kept me on my toes.
KindleKat64 21 days ago
Well, let me just say that for a town called Loveless, Texas, there are certainly many lovable people there! (and some definitely unlovable people too) And Jay Crownover certainly gives us another amazing book and start to her brand new series! Case and Aspen went from sort of/kind of almost friends in high school, to bitter enemies for a decade after that, to lovers. Lovers definitely suits them best! They have great chemistry and are really good for each other's hearts and souls. They had so much murky past to work through but they do it and it is wonderful to witness. The fact that they are able to do it amidst all the chaos surrounding Aspen is even better. Because Case is sheriff, he assigns himself to watchover Aspen when things start going south, and this allows them time to talk and heal and other things. I loved everything about this book from start to finish and can't wait for more!
Stephanie NicuNurse 21 days ago
Justified is the first book in Jay’s Loveless, Texas series. And it’s quite the angsty read! No one does angst better than Jay Crownover, in my humble opinion. And it’s exactly why I still love this author’s writing. The prologue ripped my heart to pieces, and she didn’t put it back together until the very end of the book. The characters are complicated (but if you’ve read any of Jay’s books, you know that all of her characters are complicated!), real, and flawed. The story is complicated, real, and raw. If you love angsty books, this is absolutely the author you will want to read ALL her books. So let’s talk characters for a minute. Aspen was that kid in high school. New. From the big city. And marched to the beat of her own drum. She was bullied and misunderstood by everyone. Except by Case Lawton. Case was this tiny Texas town’s golden boy. High school football star turned war hero, he’s now the Sherriff. Both characters have complicated relationships with their last living parent. And they only get more complicated throughout the story. There were times I wanted to hate Case. But at the same time, I could understand where his anger and rage came from. And overwhelming emotions like that tend to leave us single-minded and focused on all the wrong things. Thankfully, he eventually gets his head out of his ass. And Aspen...sometimes I just wanted to yell at her to open her eyes. She tries so hard to see the good in people, she’s blinded by her desire to be a people pleaser in a lot of ways. Like I said...these characters are complicated, real, and flawed. But in the end, you fall in love with who these two are as individuals, and who they become as a couple. NICUnurse’s Rating: I’ve been a fan of Jay Crownover’s books since her Marked Men series. I’ve yet to read one of her books that didn’t pull out some complicated and dark emotions out of me while reading them, so sometimes I have to take them in small doses. But I always come back! In a world that wants to see things in black and white, Jay Crownover delivers romance in the gray areas like no one else. I give Justified by Jay Crownover 4.75 stars!
CarissaR 21 days ago
Ahhhh! Even though I think this story is considered a slow burn, the story is extremely interesting enough to keep me page turning. I also loved how it kept me guessing. I loved the authors note at the end about the characters that have crossed over from her other series. Even though I haven't read all of them but it was still cool to see. Needless to say I need to move more if Jay's books up my tbr. She has a way with words. I also hope Kady gets her story bc that one sounds seriously interesting! I received this book at my request and have voluntarily left this unbiased review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.