Now or Never

Now or Never

by Victoria Denault

Paperback(Print on Demand ed.)

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Get ready for all the feels in this sexy, "emotionally charged" (Library Journal) romance about a bad boy hockey player who wants a second chance to win the heart of his high school crush.

All Winnie Braddock wants is a quiet place to be alone and time to heal her battered heart. But the refuge she'd hoped for in her family's summer cottage is destroyed when she gets there to find Holden Hendricks literally camped out in the driveway. He made her life hell when they were kids, and despite what he says, it doesn't look like much has changed. She doesn't care if her brother hired Holden to renovate the house this winter; she wants him gone.

You miss 100 percent of the shots you never take. Holden knows that hockey saying all too well. After all, he could have gone pro if he hadn't messed up so much as a kid. But now he's desperate to prove he's changed for the better, especially to Winnie Braddock. As the two work together to fix up the cottage piece by piece, they realize that perhaps they can give each other the new beginning they've both been waiting for — if they're just willing to take the shot.

"A sexy and entertaining enemies-to-lovers romance with real emotional depth...truly moving and deeply romantic." —Frolic

"The characters are so genuine, their relationship so realistic, that I felt like I was living it along with them...It's the type of story that will get you hooked on the genre and begging for more...I loved this couple so much!"
—Lady with a Quill, "A Favorite Book of 2019"

"Victoria Denault has a real talent in writing romance that will touch your heart, as well as make you laugh out loud...Now or Never is a total 5-star read that will have you completely hooked from start to finish!"
—Steph and Chris Book Review

"The character-driven premise is engaging and spirited; the characters are broken, flirty and real; the romance is moving and emotional."
—The Reading Café

What readers are saying about Now or Never...

"A beautiful story of healing, redemption, and the power of believing in each other."

"Fantastic and enjoyable."

"This book will give you all the feels."

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781538763155
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 01/15/2019
Series: San Francisco Thunder Series , #4
Edition description: Print on Demand ed.
Pages: 288
Sales rank: 325,424
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Victoria Denault loves long walks on the beach, cinnamon dolce lattes and writing angst-filled romance. She lives in LA but grew up in Montreal, which is why she is fluent in English, French and hockey.

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Now or Never 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 13 reviews.
RomanticReadsandSuch More than 1 year ago
I've read a few of Denault's books but this is my first in this series ... and I'm SO upset at what I've been missing!  (This one can stand on its own, btw.)  These characters are complicated and such a joy to read.   Winnie has recently lost her dad and is reeling.  She's hiding at her family's cottage and doing her best to ignore everything & everyone.  Unfortunately she's not able to ignore Holden.  She gives it a good try though, and is quite abrasive with him for a long time, but Denault does a wonderful job of gradually bringing things around - with Winnie warming to the changes in Holden as well as working her way through her grief with his help.   Holden has a terrible history in the town and Winnie isn't very receptive to the idea that he's changed.  Realizing why he was so difficult as a child makes you just want to give him a huge hug and not let go for like a week.  He was never a bad person but he worked hard to push buttons and even though he's outgrown that it's going to take a while to live down his reputation.  He's a truly good guy though and that shines through, especially with his treatment of Winnie. Things are difficult between the two but it was (happily) low on the melodrama.  These are people with real issues they are working through and they handle it in a manner that resonated with me.  There's quite a few 2 steps forward & 1 step back moments but it never got old (while it easily could have) and I found myself rooting for them to figure things out.  But I finished Now or Never wishing for more pages because I didn't want their story to end.   **Review given honestly and freely after receipt of a reader copy. This opinion is completely my own and was not influenced in any way.**
voraciousreaderKB More than 1 year ago
This is the fourth book in Victoria Denault’s San Francisco Thunder series. I have enjoyed reading all the books in this series and I was happy to catch up with the entertaining, close knit Braddock family. This story is about second chances, grieving and making amends. It is an enchanting story about two people helping each other as they go through a difficult time. When Winnie Braddock’s father dies, she decides to go to her family’s cottage to grieve and reevaluate her life. Unfortunately, Winnie has no idea her brother has asked Holden to renovate the cottage. Holden, is Winnie’s brothers friend and they have known each other all their lives. Winnie and Holden each had hopes of spending time by themselves and are not happy when they discover they have to share the cottage. They are both angry and going through a difficult time and take it out on each other. Holden has returned to the small town in Maine to make amends to everyone he hurt in the past. I admired Holden’s honesty about his past mistakes. Unfortunately, Winnie is going through a rough time and she takes it out on Holden. She finds it difficult to believe Holden has changed from the bully he used to be and she has a hard time forgiving him. It is fun watching these two dance around each other and slowly fall in love. I enjoyed the story and the characters.
LynnB888 More than 1 year ago
A heartfelt story! With the next book in the San Francisco Thunder series, we get the final Braddock sibling's story. We met Winnie in her hockey playing brother Jude's story, then saw more of her in both of her sister's books as they hooked up with the men of the Thunder. This was a very emotion filled read, and flowed well, but there were a couple of aspects missing for me. Number one, it's really no longer a hockey romance ... and number two, considering the main plot of the story, I felt the family should have been brought in more so we could have shared the journey of healing with everyone that we got to know in the series instead of just Winnie. Overall a solid read, but it will resonate with the reader more if they have read the entire series and know the background. Winnie Braddock just wants to be left alone to nurse her battered heart, but she doesn't seem to have that luxury. She has an overbearing family who insinuate themselves into everything, and just when she thinks she's pulled one over on them to have some alone time, she's stuck dealing with the guy who tormented her as a teen! Holden Hendricks is grateful for the job Jude gave him renovating the Braddock's vacation home in Maine. He's done plenty of growing up over the years and wishes he could find a way to prove to people that he's no longer that snot nosed kid who wreaked havoc on everyone he encountered. Discovering he's going to be in close proximity to Winnie for a few weeks just might be a step in the right direction considering she holds a huge grudge ... but time and proximity seem to be heating up more than anger between the two of them!
nelriv More than 1 year ago
We are at the end of the Braddock family and I am going to miss them. I feel like I have been apart of them from the very beginning with Zoe and Jude's book (Score) we have gone thru sadness together, laughter together and love together. It is finally Winnie's time to have something good happen to her, we have known that her and Ty's relationship was not going to last but I personally wanted to jump thru the book and knock him out. In this one we read about her grief and felt for her but was happy that she got to get reacquainted with Holden, he sounded hot and he had changed his life so he also deserved goodness happen to him..By Braddock's can't wait to see who we will get to read next. Enjoy!
Ireadergosum More than 1 year ago
I read this book in one sitting. The prologue pulled me right in when it showcased Winnie as a teenager I would have loved to be friends with. She encounters Holden Hendrix, who seems like a complete jerk, but what Winnie's father says to her after the "incident" is this: “But the thing is, which I only know now because I’m older, kids your age are usually mean or aggressive for a reason. It’s rarely because they want to be that way. It’s usually a reaction, a defense mechanism or coping skill, for something they can’t handle themselves.” This is the line that told me I was going to love this story. When people judge adults strictly on their teenage years, they are discounting a person's ability to grow, change, and be resilient. Also, this is the fiction rendering of a trauma-informed care lens. I love when fictional stories expose readers to such relevant topics! This is a story of redemption and understanding the motivations behind one's actions. Winnie is experiencing so much loss, and Holden is battling his own demons, but they go through a journey together that you just know is going to take them to a better place. This book will give you all the feels, and also make you think about how you perceive the actions of others. Not to mention Winnie's family are just people you want to know--which means I will need to read books 1-3!  Special thank you to Forever Yours and NetGalley for the free ARC in exchange for an honest review!
cordee More than 1 year ago
Ah! Bliss! Sports romance is one of my top favorite genres. There's just something about these self confident, determined, cocky athletes that makes my knees weak. Add an enemies-to-lovers trope with great banter and you have my book catnip. I loved these characters. Winnie's grief was written in such a real manner, it was palpable how much she was hurting and trying to come to grips with the death of her dad. Reading how she struggled, cried, drank her sorrow away and lashed out at Holden, I felt her mourning to my bones. Holden is the one person she didn't expect to get her through this but it's him who helps her focusing on her grief and doesn't let her drown in it. Victoria Denault shows us how abrasive and aggressive Winnie is in the beginning but transforms her gradually and realistically into a sweet, strong young woman who fights for the people she loves. And while it takes Winona a while to trust the change in Holden, once she does she's 100% in. Holden Hendricks is persona non grata in his little hometown in Maine. His frustration about the people's distrust in his transformation is understandable but so is the people's skepticism all the awful things he did. He is determined, though, and really works hard to fix the trouble he caused. I loved Holden so much. He is a good, hard-working man with a mischievous streak who, yes, falls into old habits sometimes but never causes other people harm. Once he knows why Winona is so grief-stricken he can totally relate and it's almost a little bit ironic that she is now lashing out at him for the same reasons he did when he was young. From the start there was an undeniable chemistry between Winona and Holden that built up to sexual tension really fast. It seems that they often fall back to square one after an argument but they actually make progress with each fight. Usually when characters fight a lot there is also a great deal of angst which has the potential to become frustrating. I didn't feel that in NOW OR NEVER. The snark absorbed a lot of that. It also helped that after a fight they thought about it hard and apologized when they realized their mistake. When they became close the sweetness and sexiness of their relationship became my favorite thing. The way Holden treated Winnie and showed her how special she was to him was swoon-worthy as all get out. Winnie and Holden were extremely relatable characters and I loved their connection so much. NOW OR NEVER is my first book by Victoria Denault and it definitely won't be my last. Her writing style is very fluid and captivating which made this story a really fast read. I marked so many quotes because of the beautiful, meaningful things Winona and Holden said to each other. This book can be read as a standalone. The author gives you enough information about the previous books in the series so that you don't feel lost, but she teases you so much that you are desperate to read them. I can't wait to go back and read all stories by Ms. Denault. She has an undeniable talent to pull you into the story from the beginning and doesn't let go until you're done. The whole Braddock family snuck up on me and I really, REALLY want to read their HEAs.
BeckyRendon More than 1 year ago
Now or Never. If you are a San Francisco Thunder fan, you knew it was going to happen. If you are a newcomer to the series, Now or Never starts with a loss. The biggest loss this family has ever faced. Dealing with loss and grief makes us do some uncharacteristic things. Spiraling out of control, lashing out, or drowning our sorrows... Sometimes uncharacteristic isn't actually a bad thing. Winnie finally gets around to dealing with the biggest baggage ever. Her 6 Ft. tall designer looking boyfriend. Learning about herself and finding a way through, Winnie flourishes with the help of a childhood nemesis. Enemies to lovers and happily ever afters.
2kasmom More than 1 year ago
This is book #4, in the San Francisco Thunder series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. For reader understanding, and to avoid spoilers, I recommend reading this series in order. Winnie has known Holden most of her life. He made her feel bad in her youth. Now he is more of a white knight. Can she forgive him about the past? Holden is trying to gain the trust of those he has wronged in his youth. He has grown up and past the angst that plagued him back then. Now, he is hoping most for the trust of one specific woman. The one he has always wanted. I really enjoyed reading this story. I had wondered and waited for this book about Winnie. It had more of punch than I expected, but it also felt very real. The feelings were strong, the heat was sizzling, and the couple is just right. These characters are so fun to read. ***This early copy was given in exchange for an honest review, by Netgalley and its publishers.
SherriBabb More than 1 year ago
Victoria Denault has done it again. This was such an amazing book. For me it dealt with some really tough issues. I lost my mom last year and I know how that can really turn your world upside down so I really could relate to what Winnie was going through. She was a lost soul that really did not know where her life was going the only thing she was really sure of was that she was not going to keep going down the path her life was taking. So Winnie takes her dad last words to her to heart and she starts making drastic changes to her life. She breaks up with her boyfriend and decides to stay at her summer home instead of going back to Toronto. Holden was a really great guy. He lost his mom when he was young and that led him to do things that he most likely would not have. Now he is back in Maine trying really hard to make up for past mistakes and to show people that he has changed for the better. Some people are just not that forgiving. Holden has been hired by Judd (Winnie's brother) to renovate there summer home in Maine. This brings Holden and Winnie face to face again. Winnie really does not like Holden at all but Holden has a thing for Winnie. Will they be able to help each other and be able to become more? I really suggest you pick up this book and find out the answer to this question because this book was about a 10 star read and you will not be disappointed. Thanks Net Galley. I voluntarily reviewed this book in exchange for an honest review.
Sandy-thereadingcafe More than 1 year ago
3.5 stars--NOW OR NEVER is the fourth instalment in Victoria Denault’s contemporary, adult SAN FRANCISCO THUNDER romance series. This is thirty year old, home renovator Holden Hendricks, and twenty-nine year old, primary school teacher Winnie Braddock’s story line. NOW OR NEVER can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Any important information from the previous story lines is revealed where necessary. Told from dual first person perspectives (Winnie and Holden) NOW OR NEVER follows the enemies to lovers, acrimonious relationship between thirty year old, home renovator Holden Hendricks, and twenty-nine year old, primary school teacher Winnie Braddock. Years earlier Winnie’s brother Jude’s best friend Holden Hendrick’s made Winnie’s life a living h*ll. Teasing and bullying escalated until the day Winnie punched Holden and broke his nose. Fast forward to present day wherein Holden Hendrick’s has returned to his home town, unwelcome and without forgiveness for sins of the past. When given the opportunity to renovate and repair the Braddock’s family cottage in Maine Holden will come face to face with his past, a past that is unwilling to forgive and forget. Enter Winnifred Braddock, and the woman with whom Holden will fall in love. What ensues is the tempestuous relationship between Holden and Winnie, and the potential fall-out as secrets and the inability to trust continue to push Holden at every turn. Holden Handricks’ life was destroyed when at the age of ten, his mother died in a freak accident. Angry and grieving, for the next several years, Holden lashed out at everyone and everything, including our story line heroine. Holden’s earlier self-destruction destroyed any chance of turning professional in the game he loved, a game he sacrificed for someone else. Hoping to make amends to everyone back home, the constant rejection was difficult and painful. Winnie Braddock just buried her beloved father and is unable to let go of the grief and pain. Breaking up with her boyfriend of eleven years meant Winnie wanted time alone never thinking she would spend weeks with a man she decreed her mortal enemy. Living side by side Winnie would soon discover that the man with whom she is falling in love is not the same, angry boy whose actions turned her life upside down. The relationship between Winnie and Holden is acrimonious at best. Their bitter and caustic back and forth is fuelled by Winnie’s inability to trust, and the reminder of a time long ago when Holden did everything to push Winnie’s buttons. Secrets from the past, and Winnie’s issues of trust continue to dog our couple throughout the story. The $ex scenes are passionate without the use of over the top, sexually graphic language and text. NOW OR NEVER is a story of family and friendship, death and loss, forgiveness and moving forward. The character driven premise is engaging and spirited; the characters are broken, flirty and real; the romance is moving and emotional. NOW OR NEVER reveals the pain of childhood trauma; the regret of sins and bullying; and the second chances for two people hurt by words and loss. On the flip side, I struggled with the heroine’s immature attitude throughout most of the story, sometimes too much childish behaviour is difficult to accept.
mamalovestoread22 More than 1 year ago
Winnie Braddock just wants a place to hide and heal her broken heart, so she heads for family's summer cottage in hope of finding the remedy she needs. But upon her arrival she learns she isn't the only one in search of a little quiet time, her brother has hired her childhood nemesis Holden Hendricks to work on the cottage throughout the winter. Which means she either has to figure out a way to get rid of him or learn to live with him... she chooses the later, and winds up finding the perfect treatment for her battered heart! Now or Never is wonderfully crafted tale of healing, personal growth and love. I thought these characters were perfectly suited for one another, they had sparks for days, and were the perfect support system for one another. Winnie was depressed after losing her father, and Holden was quite determined to find the once feisty girl he loved to tease way back when. He just had to dig deep to find her and bring her out of her shell. She certainly gave him a run for his money, constantly pushing his buttons and bucking at every turn, but you could tell that he thoroughly enjoyed every minute of it. I have to say that I am sad to see this series coming to end, but I think these two made the perfect couple for the last chapter, it was so great to see Winnie finally get her happily ever after. Her story was quite uplifting, and filled with many moments that tugged on the heartstrings, and put a blush on my face. Highly recommend this one, it has all the feels, and then some!! I requested an advanced copy of this title from the publisher, via NetGalley, and I am leaving my honest opinion.
Caroles_Random_Life More than 1 year ago
I thought that this book was really well done. This is the fourth book in the San Francisco Thunder series but it would work as a stand-alone story. I jumped into this series on the second book and have enjoyed the books that I have read so I was really looking forward to starting this book. Once I started reading, I didn't want to stop. These characters made me feel things and I really couldn't wait to see how everything would work out for them. I had a great time reading this book. Winnie is at a low point when this book starts. Her father has just passed away from a long term illness and she is having a very hard time moving on like the rest of her family. She decides that it is past time to break things off with her long term boyfriend and she just wants to be left alone to try to recover. She does not expect Holden and his camper to invade her space and peace while he renovates the family cabin. I loved these two characters. Winnie's pain was so raw and it felt really authentic to me. I understood her need to grieve in her own way even if it didn't always seem to be the healthiest choice. Holden just wanted to get a fresh start. He did a lot of things as a teenager that he isn't proud of but he is working hard to be a good man. I felt so bad for him as the entire town seemed to only want to judge him for who he was in the past. As Holden's past was revealed, his story broke my heart and I wanted to see him get his second chance. I thought that Winnie and Holden were perfect together. They seemed to just know what each other needed and their chemistry was off the charts. They both had a few doubts at times but as they grew to know each other and started ignoring others, their relationship blossomed. There were quite a few heart-melting scenes that I found really well written. I would recommend this book to others. I found this to be a really solid romance between two characters working to put the pieces of their lives back together. I thought that Winnie's grief over the loss of her father was quite powerful and very well written. I can't wait to read more from Victoria Denault soon! I received a digital review copy of this book from Forever Yours (Grand Central Publishing) via NetGalley.
bookbruin More than 1 year ago
What an emotional and moving story! I have loved the Braddock family from the start and watching them struggle and then rise to each challenge or setback that they face has been amazing. Winnie's story was the most poignant and heartfelt of the series for me. There were times when I felt like I was right there grieving the loss of her father alongside her. Now or Never can be read as a stand alone, but I think it would be most appreciated if read after enjoying the previous 3 books in the series. This enemies to lovers romance had me rooting for Holden and Winnie from the start. Both are trying to make peace with their pasts and move forward. When life brings them back together unexpectedly, they surprisingly find comfort and understanding in the other. I loved that Holden could really "see" Winnie and helped her by sometimes pushing her to face scary feelings that others would shy away from. From the moment they come back into each other's lives, Holden is all in and I really appreciated that. Sure he made some mistakes, but at the end of the day, he was trying to make amends and become a better man. It did take me a little to warm up to Winnie, but her behavior and actions made a lot more sense as her walls came down and you could see what she was facing and going through. I think all readers can understand how devastating the loss of a parent can be whether they have experienced it or not. Checking in with the Braddock siblings was awesome, especially Dixie and Eli. I think those two will always be my favorite Braddock couple. I'm definitely going to miss this family! *I voluntarily read an advance reader copy of this book*