The Monroe brothers found a home in Haven, Georgia, thanks to the big-hearted couple who adopted them all. Now, grieving their late sister, these three very different men will come together to honor her memory. And with the help of some unforgettable women, each will find the chance to build a whole new future. . .
Zach Monroe has made mistakes—big ones. The worst left the girl he loved injured, and his own brother barely speaking to him. It was a night Zach won't let himself forget, even when the girl in question—perfect, polished Sophie Allen—walks back into his life. A realtor, Sophie's brought an offer for their sister's dilapidated Civil War era property. But Zach's determined to renovate the rambling old place himself—though he longs to rebuild Sophie's trust in him. . .
A business deal isn't how Sophie wanted to approach Zach after all this time, but he won't let anyone get personal. She can't deny that the accident changed her life in irreparable ways. But watching gruff, quiet Zach beat himself up year after year hurts too. The wounded boy she once adored needed love, and the man is no different. Now Sophie will need every bit of her resolve to convince Zach to let love heal them both. . .
"Captivating. . .sexy. . .emotional! Jules Bennett delivers another delicious read!" —Catherine Mann, USA Today bestselling author
More Advance Praise for Jules Bennett and Wrapped in You!
"A small town romance with great big heart. Jules Bennett writes a tender and heartwarming love story that will have you laughing, crying, and looking for her next book!" —Roxanne St. Claire, New York Times & USA Today bestselling author
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Wrapped in You
By Jules Bennett
KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP.Copyright © 2016 Jules Bennett
All rights reserved.
On any other day, Zach Monroe would avoid the very tempting, sexy Sophie Allen for several very valid reasons. First, she looked too damn good in her little skirts hugging those round hips. Second, she was dating some prick who didn't deserve her, so Zach had no business lusting.
Most of all, though, he'd ruined her life years ago. He'd been cocky when he should've been responsible.
In a move that shocked him, Sophie had called earlier in the day and asked him to come by her office. Actually she'd called his work line, which rang to his cell. Apparently she wanted to keep this impromptu meeting professional. Whatever. The sooner he figured out what she wanted, the sooner he could leave and get back to his work. A career in construction meant limited time talking to people and plenty of time hammering out frustrations.
Zach tugged on the old oak door of the little town house where Sophie's real estate office was located in Haven, Georgia. A single bell chimed, indicating his arrival.
The second he stepped over the threshold the scent of something floral hit him in the gut.
Sophie. Anytime he'd been around her she'd always smelled like flowers, like freshness and summertime.
Great, now he was sounding like a damn woman describing Sophie's signature scent. He totally lost all control of his thoughts when he was anywhere near her.
A penance for his crime much worse than the year he'd spent in jail.
The small office space with the pale yellow walls, various green plants in colorful pots adorning the waiting area, looked inviting the way he imagined Sophie would want. Sunlight flooded through the wide front window, casting a beam directly into her little space in this world.
The woman he'd once considered a good friend, and possibly something more, rounded the end of the hallway, a document in one hand, pen in the other. She had one of those damn body-hugging skirts that stopped at her knees, this one in dark purple, paired with a simple gray sleeveless sweater and little flats in some animal print. Her golden hair spiraled down around her shoulders in soft curls he'd give anything to feel over his body. She never failed to steal his breath. That instant punch to the gut happened every single time she came near.
Sophie probably just saw him as a scruffy construction worker who drove a beat-up old truck that sounded worse than it looked.
Whereas he saw her as everything his life wasn't: polished, beautiful, and pure. His childhood demons alone were enough to prove how different they truly were.
But it was her limp that got him in a stranglehold and tightened a vise around his chest. Some days her gait was more pronounced than others, but her handicap was always there, always twisting that knife a little deeper into his gut. Visual reminders of his screwups gutted him quicker than anything.
Sophie's bright green eyes came up to meet his. "Zach." Her shoulders stiffened, the grip on her papers tightened. "I'm still waiting on the others, if you want to have a seat in my office."
Attention on her physical beauty and all he'd thrown away held him speechless. Then her words penetrated through the haze. "What others?"
"Liam and Braxton." She turned and disappeared back into what he assumed was her office.
What the hell was this about?
Like the proverbial moth to a flame, Zach followed her. His mood plummeted from intrigued over the meeting to irritation with the impending get-together with his brothers.
Sophie's office was just as inviting as the lobby area. The cheery yellow curtains, the fresh, vibrant floral arrangement in a small vase on her desk, and the picture in a silver frame. Zach's eyes immediately went to the photo of Sophie standing with Zach's late sister, Chelsea.
Chelsea, who was taken from them all too soon. She'd been vibrant, full of energy and life, and always seeking the next adventure. The fact that she'd died in a freak skiing accident was enough to give him some warped sense of peace. She hadn't suffered and she'd been doing what she loved. Still ...
"Seems unreal, doesn't it?" she asked, her eyes traveling to the photo as she stood behind her desk. "I don't know how many times I've started to text her or I've turned down her street and caught myself. I miss talking to her, miss her laugh."
Zach swallowed hard. Yeah, he'd done the same. He didn't think he'd ever get used to not having his full-of-life sister around. She was the only one out of all four adopted siblings that ever "got" him.
Pausing at the two chairs in front of Sophie's desk, Zach opted to stand against the wall. No need to get cozy here when he was damn near a panic attack at being so close to Sophie in such a small space.
Zach hadn't seen Sophie since the funeral four months ago, when she'd cried in his arms, clinging to his shirt at the graveside. Zach doubted she'd specifically sought him out for comfort. He just happened to be the one in line behind her when she'd broken. He'd been hesitant to embrace her, but once he had, he'd entered into another level of hell because now he knew how perfect she felt in his arms. He realized what all he'd thrown away.
When she'd pulled herself together, though, she'd released him like she'd been burned and turned on her heels for her car. He hadn't seen her since.
He'd been so caught up in his own grief, he hadn't considered how she was coping. Zach figured her hoity-toity boyfriend with his polished cuff links had probably patted her on the back. While Zach had mascara on his dress shirt, he couldn't imagine Sophie's man letting his suits get ruined.
Seeing her walk away from that graveside had shifted something in him. Something he couldn't define and something he'd had no choice but to ignore.
The bell on the front door chimed again. Zach raked his palm over his face, his whiskers bristling against his palm. Which brother would step through the door next? The one Zach actually still talked to, or the one Zach avoided at all costs?
"We're in here," Sophie called as she crossed her office to greet the new guest.
Folding his arms over his chest, Zach kept his eyes on the floor. Focusing on his scuffed work boots against the pristine white carpeting was far better than seeing Sophie's limp as she left the room.
"Wow. This must be something major for you to show up."
Zach glanced toward the door at his younger brother, Braxton. "I have no idea what we were called in for."
Braxton sank into the chair across from Sophie's desk. "You gonna have a seat?"
On his feet, he was one step closer to the exit, right where he preferred.
Looking closer at Sophie's office area gave him an insight into her life, her personality, whether he wanted to learn more or not. She obviously loved the color yellow. She also had an eye for art, if the pencil sketches randomly displayed were any indicator. The sketches of landscapes and old homes and buildings were so detailed.
Before he could study the artwork much more, the bell chimed for a third time. Perfect. The final piece to this missing, awkward puzzle had arrived. Let the party of anger and shouting begin.
Sophie led Liam in. Liam froze as his eyes landed on Zach. "What's going on?"
Zach forced himself not to look away from the scar running down the side of Liam's face. So much pain in this room, pain that none of them would discuss.
"I need to talk to you guys about the property Chelsea left you." Sophie skirted around her desk and took a seat. Lacing her fingers over the rich wood top, she eyed all three men. "I apologize for not telling you all on the phone what was going on. I figured if I told Liam that Zach was coming, or vice versa, you all would find an excuse not to be here, and I needed all three of you in the same room."
"What's so important with the property?" Liam asked, taking the seat by Braxton.
They'd still not decided what to do with that monstrosity of a home on the edge of town. Their sister had bought it at a good price because it needed so much work, but Zach never did know what her true intentions were for the Civil War–era mansion.
Just a month ago he, Braxton, and Liam had been informed they were not only the new owners, per Chelsea's will, they also owed the back taxes Chelsea had failed to pay. Perhaps it was a good thing Sophie called this little meeting, considering the brothers needed to figure out the tax issue and decide what to do with the property.
"The city council is interested in buying the estate," Sophie went on. "They want to turn the main house and the two smaller cottages on the property into a museum and tourist attraction. With being so close to Savannah, and all the historical value of the home, they're positive it will pull in more tourists."
Zach snorted. Whatever his sister had wanted to do with the home was a mystery, but he sure as hell knew she wouldn't want a museum. An old, stuffy museum was the total opposite of his free-spirited, fun sister.
Beyond that, there was no way in hell Zach would sell to anyone associated with the mayor.
He glanced at Braxton, trying to gauge his brother's reaction to this news. Anytime the mayor's name was brought up, Zach cringed for Braxton. Betrayal ran deep in this family.
"We haven't discussed what we're doing with it yet," Braxton said through gritted teeth.
Sophie offered one of her signature sweet smiles. "I understand this is a difficult position. I really am just trying to help you guys get out from under such a burden."
Zach waited for Braxton to say something more, or even for Liam to jump to his defense. When both remained quiet, Zach chimed in. "We need to pay the taxes first."
"Actually, if you sell the home, the taxes would come out of the amount of the sale." Sophie opened a folder and slid a paper out. "This is what the city is willing to pay for the place. It's a good price. The taxes and mortgage would be paid off."
Zach didn't move from his spot against the wall. Hell, he was still grieving. How could he think about facts and figures right now? Facts and figures proposed by a man who had stabbed Braxton in the back only a few short years ago.
"Looks good to me," Liam said after looking at the paper. He settled back into his chair and crossed an ankle over his knee. "I'm fine with selling, but Braxton needs to okay this."
Silent, Braxton still studied the numbers. Whatever emotional turmoil Braxton struggled with, the man was always business first. More than likely Braxton was pushing back that slice of pain and crunching numbers in his head. Zach, on the other hand, didn't need to see the paper.
"I'm not okay with this." The words were out of Zach's mouth before he thought to keep them in. Someone needed to stand up for Braxton and for what Chelsea would've wanted. "We can't decide this second to sell. There's too much to think about and we need to sit down and discuss this privately."
Without turning, Liam snorted. "When the hell have you ever thought about a decision? You rush into everything."
The barb hit home, but Zach wasn't about to dredge up their past here. Or ever, if he could help it.
"Martin has convinced the mayor to offer a very generous amount." Sophie stared at him across the room. Apparently thinking he was crazy. "You don't want to sit on this."
Zach didn't give a shit what her boyfriend, Martin, had done or how generous the mayor's offer was. Both were assholes as far as Zach was concerned.
Even though Zach was currently working on a project for the city, the project he was near completing was all business. This deal that Sophie was proposing on their behalf was crossing into the personal territory.
Beyond Braxton's hatred for Mayor Stevens, Chelsea loved that property and it had been her dream to own it someday. How could they just sell?
The pre–Civil War home had housed slaves in the underground tunnels that led from the main house to two other homes on the estate that overlooked a lake. No boring museum would be going in there. He'd find a way to ... hell, he didn't know, but he knew he wasn't selling to the assholes in suits.
"You have to pay the taxes somehow," Sophie argued. "This is the best way to pay off the debt and not have to worry about what to do with such a large, empty estate."
Still sitting forward in his seat to look at the paper, Braxton glanced over his shoulder at Zach. He merely stared back, waiting for Braxton's thoughts. Hurt settled in Braxton's eyes, but there was an overlying mask of anger.
Braxton shifted back around and faced Sophie. "We need to discuss this. We can't decide right here."
"And we'll get the damn taxes paid," Zach muttered just as Sophie opened her mouth. "Let us worry about Chelsea's property. You can tell your boyfriend and the mayor we don't want the offer."
Sophie's shoulders stiffened, her eyes narrowing in his direction. "I'm only trying to help everyone here. You don't have to be a jerk."
Yeah, well, he felt like a jerk, so how else was he supposed to act?
"What do you want to do with the property?" Liam asked, turning in his seat just enough to see Zach.
"Pay the taxes and figure it out from there."
"I don't have time to invest in that place," Liam countered. "I understand why Braxton would hesitate, but you have to think about what a liability that property is going to be. I don't want to sink money into something that will have no benefit to me."
Zach uncrossed his arms and stood straight up. "Well, I'm not ready to get rid of that land. Chelsea loved that old house and she had a vision. She used every bit of her savings and her portion of the inheritance from Mom and Dad to buy the place, and you're ready to just give it away for some museum? Or if that's not enough, perhaps you've forgotten about —"
"Enough." Braxton glared from one brother to another. "We'll discuss this once we've all had a chance to think. Bringing up Anna won't solve the problems."
Anna. The woman Braxton had been engaged to until she'd shown her true colors and left Braxton days before the wedding. She'd run straight into Rand Stevens's waiting arms. The two were both shallow, and Zach hoped they were miserable together for many, many years.
"I've thought of Braxton, but we can't let that situation stop us from using common sense here." Liam came to his feet, hands on his hips and blue eyes blazing. "I'm getting that headache off our hands. We've already paid the mortgage on it this month and still have the taxes due. I'm done."
"Fine. Then be done with it. I'll cover your part." Good thing he had a chunk in savings, but even that would run out if he didn't come up with a plan. "Consider yourself dismissed."
Braxton rose, holding up his hands. "This is a record. You two went five whole minutes without griping at each other. We'll give Sophie a definite answer in a week. Can we all stop and think about what Chelsea would want us to do? Leave my past out of the decision making."
"Chelsea wouldn't want you guys fighting," Sophie muttered.
Zach's eyes cut to her. Her face had paled, showcasing the dark circles beneath her eyes. Damn it. Why did her silent vulnerability always make him feel like a bastard?
"I'll take a week." Zach agreed with Braxton. "But I'm not changing my mind. Selling is a bad idea right now."
He turned to go, when Sophie called his name. Glancing over his shoulder, two sets of eyes were on him. Liam kept his back turned.
Zach raised a brow, waiting for Sophie to say something. Was that moisture in her eyes? She blinked twice, as if willing unshed tears away. Pushing away from her desk, she came to her feet and straightened her shoulders.
"Don't be stubborn about this," she told him, her voice calm and controlled. "I know Chelsea wanted this house, and I know Braxton has issues with the mayor. The past can't be changed, and Chelsea would understand that you guys have no use for the property."
Zach said nothing as he turned and walked out of her office. He'd barely cleared the door before he heard Braxton say, "That went well."
Exiting the building, Zach actually agreed. He and Liam hadn't thrown punches, as they'd been known to do on the rare occasions they'd been together. And Zach had managed to avoid the giant elephant in the room.
Sliding behind the wheel of his work truck, Zach brought the engine to life. Gripping the steering wheel, he looked down at his hands. The scars crisscrossing his knuckles always reminded him how he'd fought to save those he loved and how he'd severed any bond they'd once shared.
Yeah, that went well in there, considering they were all broken people with very different views of absolutely everything.
Zach was not looking forward to more chitchats with his brothers over this, and he sure as hell wasn't wanting another encounter with Sophie. He couldn't handle being that close, not when he still wanted her despite their past.
Excerpted from Wrapped in You by Jules Bennett. Copyright © 2016 Jules Bennett. Excerpted by permission of KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP..
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Jules has knocked it out if the park with this HOT ANGSTY little series opener!!!! The whole concept of womans only spa resort to honor memory of sister dreams was music to my ears! Fall in love with zach and sophie and the other hot brothers as i did and YOU WILL BE ANTICIPATING the rest of the series like myself!!! Bravo!! Kudos to Jules for a memorable series opener!!:):) Traci w of south fl
I had a hard time putting this book down. I could relate to many of the brothers characters. Many kids grow up with baggage they had no control over. They always need someone to love them unconditionally.
Sophie had rung Zach and asked him to come to her real estate office. Zach still loved Sophie even after ten years but he had ruined her life with his stupidity causing a car accident that could have killed Sophie and his brother Liam and they both carry scars. Zach could not forgive himself even though he did a year in jail that just wasn’t enough as far as Zach was concerned.Zach always lost control of his thoughts and had problems breathing when Sophie was anywhere around him. Zach had been the last one adopted by the Monroe's and Chelsea was the only girl of the four. But now Chelsea was dead she had died in a terrible skiing accident four months earlier. Sophie and Chelsea had been best friends since grade school. Chelsea had always been there for Zach , she had been a strong force in his life as she had been the only one of his siblings who seemed to get him. Zach missed her so much. Sophie told Zach and his brothers she had an offer on the property Sophie had left to them. . Zach immediately says no. Then he found some of Chelsea’s notebooks that showed her dream of making the old house an exclusive day spa and retreat exclusively for women. Sophie pulls the brothers together to to bring Chelsea’s dream into becoming a reality. Sophie also helps. I absolutely loved this story. So much in it for a short story. The plot and writing was also great. I would have liked to know more about Zach s past as well as the accident hopefully in a future story. The characters were awesome and I loved all the ins and out of the story especially those involving Sophie and Zach. I highly recommend. I received an ARC of this story for an honest review.
Wrapped in You is Jules Bennett’s first book in The Monroes series. From the moment I started reading Wrapped in You, I was immediately taken in by both Zach and Sophie. I love books about friends to lovers and those about second chances. This book had both. Zach and Sophie had been friends while growing up. They’d both been close to Zach's sister Chelsea. After an unfortunate accident that lands Zach in jail and Sophie in the hospital, their once attraction to one another is put on hold. At the sudden death of Chelsea, Zach and Sophie are once again forced into one another’s circles. After agreeing to work on a project that was once Chelsea’s dream, can Zach and Sophie put their past to rest and move on with their lives? Can Zach learn to deal with the childhood that is holding him back on a forever? Enter two brothers and a child that reminds Zach of himself growing up, and Wrapped in You is one of those books that you can’t put down. Wrapped in You was the perfect beginning to The Monroes series. I can’t wait to read the next book in the series, Caught Up in You. I’d like to disclose that I received a copy of Wrapped in You, from the publisher, in exchange for a fair and honest review.
4 star I was pulled right into this story. The story has laughs, suspense, a second chance at love, and heartbreak. This is Sophie and Zach’s story. After a tragic accident years ago Zach pushed everyone away. He still lives in the same town but avoids the people he believes he hurt the most. When tragedy strikes he finds himself unable to avoid those people anymore. He needs to deal with the past in order to move on. Sophie loved Zach but him pushing her away hurt too much. Now she loves him from afar. When they have to work together on a project they will learn that love is still there under all the pain. What happens when one just can’t let the pain go? Will they ruin the second chance at love they were given? Can they get over the past to build a future together or is this the end of the relationship? I loved these characters and also the side characters. I felt I was able to connect with the characters and the story was a great read. I recommend this book.
On my goodness I loved this story! The reader gets pulled in right from the start and it is a wonderful ride. Emotionally tugs at your heart and it is just a thoroughly enjoyable story.
I got just a tiny bit tired of Zach complaining about the “darkness” inside him (since I’m not sure what he thinks is so bad about himself) but I can definitely understand why he’s got such troubles based on his background. He didn’t get a good start and that left him feeling unlovable & unworthy. Even though he was starting to find a good place for himself, he never quite shed the chip on his shoulder. And just when he did start to, a terrible accident (that he feels more guilt for than he should) knocks him for a loop and sends him to jail for a year. Since then he’s drawn even further in to himself and pushes away anyone who might get too close. It’s unfortunate that he can’t see how much he has to offer – he’s dedicated to his adopted family, is hardworking, tries hard not to hurt anyone, and gives to others when they need someone. Sophie may have left Zach to wallow but she’s never quite given up a little bit of hope she has buried deep that if given the opportunity she could reach his heart. And unfortunately that opportunity might come at the cost of losing her best friend, his adopted sister. It sets into motion a few things that allows Sophie back into Zach’s world … but it definitely won’t be easy if she wants to break through to him. Full of wounds, both inside and out, that go back decades and that left a lot of scars, Bennett starts a series that may break my heart while making me happy at the same time. These guys have been through a lot, most of it we don’t even know about yet, and they are in desperate need of a HEA - the chance to find some peace with themselves & their pasts, plus a hope for the future. And I can’t wait to be with them every step of the way. (Complimentary copy provided in exchange for an honest review)
Wrapped in You is the story of Zach and Sophie and how each has overcome tragedy and reestablishes a relationship with each other. This is the first book in the Monroe trilogy, and establishes a interesting setting and realistic conflict between the three brothers. I liked the story and would recommend this book to fans of contemporary and second chance romances. I was given a free copy for an honest review.
Jules Bennett Wrapped In You is the start of The Monroes series, it’s a wonderful, fun and sexy read. Zach Monroe has paid for the mistakes of his youth. Others may have forgiving him but he can’t seem to forget those that he has hurt. Sophie Allen has always been a part of Zach’s world but never has gotten a chance to be closer. When Zach’s sister dies her property is a much wanted commodity in Haven, Georgia. This leads to realtor Sophie to bring Zach and his brothers an offer. Sophie Allen has made a wonderful life for herself in Haven. She loves her job and her friends. When the brothers decide to turn the property into something their sister wanted. Sophie is willing to pitch in. This brings her and Zach into close contact almost daily. Spending so much time together has Zach and Sophie testing the boundaries of their new found friendship. Sophie is willing to take Zach anyway she can get him in the hopes to make him see how could they can be together. But when the past rears its ugly head will their romance survive? Wrapped In You is an emotional journey about forgiving oneself and taking a chance on love. Zach and Sophie have sizzling chemistry even when they are disagreeing. Their romance isn’t an easy one but well worth fighting to keep. Eager for the next book in The Monroes to get here.
Wrapped in You by Jules Bennett introduces us to Zach, Braxton, Liam and Chelsea all foster children who all had rough upbringings till they were adopted. This story is Zach's story who feels like he doesn't deserve happiness, because of past mistakes. Sophie was Zach's deceased sister's (Chelsea) best friend who has been in love with Zach forever. Zach wants Sophie to stay away from him and he feels she is better off without him. After Chelsea's death Zach and Sophie find notebooks of Chelsea's dream for a Woman's Only Spa Resort. Wanting to fulfill Chelsea's dream is a big part of this story. Have I caught your interest yet, read the book to find out if Zach and Sophie receive their HEA. This book is a wonderful beginning to a new series by Jules Bennett, it has it all angst, sadness, forgiveness, diverse characters, great character interaction, heartwarming moments and of course love. We even get to read about Zach's softer side that made me sigh! This book proves people don't have to be natural sibling to come to love another. I am looking forward to the rest of the books in this series!
Jules Bennett delivers one of my favorite lines in her book “Wrapped In You” – “You’re sweet talking and dinners and I’m rough and one night stands”. This comes from Zach Monroe to Sophie Allen as he tries to convince himself Sophie is better off without him. Zach is a man still dealing with his guilt from an accident ten years ago. He is a broken soul and you can’t help but root for him to overcome his pain and anger. Sophie has an inner strength and she doesn’t let her past affect her life. She accepts what happened to her years before and you want her to find happiness. You pull for these two to come together, for Zach to realize he’s a better man then he believes. “Wrapped In You” has surprise twists that enrich the overall feel of the story and show growth of both Zach and Sophie. Jules Bennett has written a book with characters you feel for, cheer for, and want to read more about. This reader is excited for the next installment of The Monroes, which features one of Zach’s brothers.
***ARC sent by the publisher via NetGalley*** 4.5 Stars Wrapped in You by Jules Bennett is a friends to lovers romance that also feels like a second chance romance. Zach and Sophie were not, technically, a couple 10 years ago…but only because fate intervened. At the beginning of the story, Zach and Sophie are what amounts to former friends, with Sophie valiantly moving forward from events in their past and Zach fighting just as hard to keep her at a distance, to continue to blame himself for those events. Zach blames himself, validly in a way, as those events were technically his fault. He was young, he made a mistake, and he paid for the mistake. Zach has made his life into something since the events and he is the only one who still blames him…although the way he keeps people at arm’s length convinces him that others do still hold blame. And then there was a house. And puppies. And men building a women’s only spa. And a runaway. The story is on the sweeter side, while not being completely lacking in sex, it is lacking the explicit sex that is in some books. But what it lacked in heat, it more than made up for in heart. Authors occasionally use a lot of sex to hide that there is no story; or they use the story as a way to make the point that there is no hot sex. But in Wrapped in You, neither is true. The story unfolds in a way that feels genuine and true to the characters Jules Bennett created. Zach will break your heart, and he will put it back together. The story is well written, the dialog is believable and the characters are true to character throughout. The interaction of the brothers and the way it is being set to have all characters in all 3 novels (or 4, if enough time passes, we could get Brock’s story too) reminds me of Nora Roberts and the way that, by the end of the 3rd book in the trilogy, you feel like you are leaving behind family. I am looking forward to Liam and Braxton’s stories in the rest of the series. I definitely want to see what happens next.
Between the grief of losing his sister and demons that constantly haunt him from a accident in his past Zach Monroe feels like he has the weight of the world on his shoulders. Hurting Sophie, and almost taking the life of her and his brother is something he's never been able to forgive himself for, and it has kept him from every really moving on from his past. He has let his past turn into a bitter man, one who never lets anyone in, and one who has never really been able to find true happiness. He has never been able to quite get over his feelings for Sophie, and has often thought what it would be like to see her again, but he also knows seeing her again would dredge up old memories. After his sister's passing he decides to renovate the rambling old Civil War era property she owned as a way to honor her memory, which also also puts him in the path of the women who captured his heart so long ago... Sophie Allen is looking to make amends with her past and possibly rekindle a relationship with the man who stole her heart many years ago. She knows that he is a wounded man, and carrying a lot of grief from the past, and she would love nothing more than to be the woman to help him through his pain, and possibly help him to find some happiness in his life again. Now she just has to find a way to sneak past his defenses and a way back into his heart... This was my first time reading something from this author, and I have to say that her writing totally took me by surprise, and instantly made me regret not reading something by her before now... she completely won me over with this beautifully written story, and I look forward to reading more of her books in the VERY near future! This story pulled me in from the first paragraph and had me flying right through pages to see if Sophie and Zach would find the happily ever after that they both deserved. It was a touching story full of hope, promise, and gut wrenching grief that had the tears welling a couple of times. To say that this story will take you on a roller coaster ride of emotions is an understatement...it is destined to have you reaching for the Kleenex box one minute, and leave you smiling the next! Definitely one of the best first reads I have had in a while, highly recommend it!! ARC requested through NetGalley, and kindly provided by Kensington Books in exchange for a honest and unbiased review.
I loved this one! This is my first book from Jules Bennett but she definitely gained herself a fan with this offering. I really enjoyed all the elements of the story in this one. The past the characters share, the broken bits of each character, the fact that they are coming together to honor their sister and friend regardless of the past and the undeniable chemistry between Zach and Sophie regardless of how much the struggle to fight it. It all came together as a very intriguing story that kept me glued to the book beginning to end. The only thing I would have liked to change is that I would have liked more details sooner about the incident that came between them in the past. Once that was revealed, other parts of the story made more sense. Overall though, a book I thoroughly enjoyed and I can't wait for Liam and Braxton's stories. I highly recommend this one!
This story is riddled with emotions and touches your heart many times along the way as you read it. You feel sadness for the kids they were, sadness for their losses along the way, admiration for the lives they live, and hope for a happy future for each one. I really fell in love with the Monroe's and look forward to the next book! Zach Monroe hasn't forgiven himself for being a dumb kid and causing an accident 10+ years ago that injured one of his brothers and his friend/possibly more Sophie Allen. When Sophie calls and asks him to come by her real estate office, he has to face her as well as the brother who he no longer can be in the same room with without a shouting match breaking out. Sophie was best friends with their sister who died a few months ago, and is basically family after spending so much time over at their house over the years. She's called them all in now because she has an offer on the Civil War-era house that was part of their sister's estate. The brother's will actually have to talk for a change and decide if they want to sell the property and if not, what they want to do with it. Along the way, Sophie will make an effort to get Zach to stop ignoring her and get over the accident and forgive himself.
The Monroe brothers found a home in Haven, Georgia, thanks to the big-hearted couple who adopted them all. Now, grieving their late sister, these three very different men will come together to honor her memory. And with the help of some unforgettable women, each will find the chance to build a whole new future… Zach Monroe has made mistakes--big ones. The worst left the girl he loved injured, and his own brother barely speaking to him. It was a night Zach won't let himself forget, even when the girl in question--perfect, polished Sophie Allen--walks back into his life. A realtor, Sophie's brought an offer for their sister's dilapidated Civil War era property. But Zach's determined to renovate the rambling old place himself--though he longs to rebuild Sophie's trust in him… A business deal isn't how Sophie wanted to approach Zach after all this time, but he won't let anyone get personal. She can't deny that the accident changed her life in irreparable ways. But watching gruff, quiet Zach beat himself up year after year hurts too. The wounded boy she once adored needed love, and the man is no different. Now Sophie will need every bit of her resolve to convince Zach to let love heal them both… Review: Great first story in this new series! I really like the idea behind this story, three brothers lose their sister and then decide to fulfill her dreams for turning her historic property into a spa. Just the idea of three men doing this made me intrigued and wonder at all the story possibilities. This series starts off with Zach who made some life altering mistakes years ago that not only affected him but his brothers and the girl he loved, Sophie. Since that day he really has shut himself off and his relationships have suffered. Sophie has suffered from Zach's unwillingness to let the past go, both emotionally and physically from the accident. They are thrust back together when they find Zach's sisters plan and he decides to make the plans become a reality. The characters in this story are multi-layered and interesting. Zach is very interesting, he comes off as aloof and gruff, but he really is caring and sensitive. I loved that he becomes a mother-hen not just to the dog and her puppies, but to Brock who has a similar background to Zach's. I liked Sophie, she has spunk though at times I wished she would have been stronger/tougher with Zach. There is lots of great chemistry to this couple, but this is more of a sweet heat kind of book. This Author is new-to-me and I quite enjoyed her writing style and her concept for the series. This story has lots of heart and cannot wait for more of the Monroe boys. 3.5Stars *Received this book from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.*
This was just the book I needed to read yesterday! I needed a feel good story with a happily ever after ending and that is just what I got. This book was the beginning of a new series with great brothers to be the heroes of the stories and a small town setting that sounded lovely. As with many first in series stories the groundwork had to be put in place and not everything could be revealed immediately – so, even when I wanted more information about say an accident or adoptions or family life in the Monroe home or what High School was like or…other things…I had a feeling more would appear later in future books and that was fine because I did not HAVE to know to make this book work. Zach was the last child adopted into the Monroe family. He arrives silent, moody and dealing with a miserable past. Chelsea, his sister, is the one who is always there for him and a strong force in his life. His brothers are all different and their sibling interactions not dwelt upon but rougher than perhaps they would have been if they had all had easier childhoods. Zach at points in his life has injured himself and others, he has become more introverted and driven as a result of what has happened, he has self-esteem issues and is tied up in knots though confident at work and doing well in that aspect of his life. Since this is a second chance at love sort of story there is a woman and her name is Sophie. Sophie is one of those injured by Zach in the past. She is a realtor, active in the community, able to cope with much and has a marvelous cat named Flynn. She and Zach have been aware of one another a LONG time. I enjoyed Zach and Sophie together. I liked the fact that she was strong enough to challenge Zach and to stand up for what she felt she deserved. I liked Zach’s ability to temper his anger, help his friends and see a vision of what could be in the future. I enjoyed this story and look forward to finding out more about the brothers, reading about their interactions as they work on their group project and who they will ultimately end up with. Thank you to NetGalley and Kensington Books for the copy to read and review.
4 - "I'm trying to stay away from you and you're not helping." Stars! Wrapped in You offered the perfect beginning to Jules Bennett’s new The Monroes series. Three adopted brothers, with three very different personalities trying to work together to realize their recently lost sisters dream. Nothing gives me greater pleasure than discovering an author I haven’t read before, and even better when it is the beginning of a series. Zach Monroe is your quintessential grouch. Having spent years trying to atone for one teenage mistake, he has managed to pretty much push everyone and everything he ever cared for away from him. "You’ve not exactly been easy to be around." Sophie Allen, is the woman he has never stopped caring about, although that one mistake ten years ago cost her more than Zach could ever imagine, he has tried to stay out of her way ever since, believing that she deserves more than he can ever offer or be for her. That is until the death of her best friend, his sister brings them into close proximity in the rebuilding of the plantation house she envisaged turning into a Women’s-Only Spa resort. She wanted him to look at her and not see the night of the accident, not see the mistake he made or the year he spent in prison. She wanted him to look at her and see a woman. There is a lot going on in this book, what with the building of the Monroe brother characters, Braxton and Liam are both very different men from Zach, and I am interested to see how their stories play out in the future books, and although this is the beginning of the series, the author did a great job of keeping the focus on Zach and Sophie as she built everything else around their blossoming relationship. "Next time we’re alone, if you still want this, you better be ready." "You better keep that promise, because I’ve been ready for you for years." Plenty of chemistry, a wealth of likeable secondary characters, a little intrigue, and a dash of suspense, this book had it all, and I am looking forward to seeing more of these characters as the series progresses. "You’re sweet talking and dinners. I’m rough and one-night stands." ARC generously provided via Netgalley, and it was my pleasure to provide the above honest review.