Released on: August 4, 2014
Dates Read: April 22 to April 26
Brooke Willis had everything she ever wanted: a happy marriage, volunteer placement at the art gallery, and the promise of starting a family with the man of her dreams.
Saxon Reed had everything he ever thought he needed: a successful career, nice cars, expensive apartment, and more money than he knew what to do with.
After losing her husband Brooke insists on taking over his company to keep his dreams alive. Struggling in an industry she knows nothing about, Brooke turns to Saxon, her husband’s best friend and business partner, for guidance and support. Their mutual grief, and Saxon’s need to look after his best friend’s wife, creates a connection beyond just business.
Can Brooke take over the company and find a new life without saying goodbye to the past? Can Saxon protect and care for Brooke without scaring her away?
What happens when your heart doesn’t listen to your head? When lines are crossed and boundaries are pushed?
“Life goes on, whether you choose to move forward and take a chance in the unknown or stay behind, locked in the past, thinking of what could’ve been. I don’t want to live in the past anymore. I’m so lonely; there’s nothing for me here.”
Nate and Brooke had been together for 10 years and were ready to start the next chapter of their lives…starting a family…then tragedy struck. Nate was in a car accident on the way to work and killed instantly….Brooke’s life has changed in the worst way possible. It just makes you think how quickly everything can changed.
Nate wouldn’t recognize me sitting here today: eyes dry of tears, face blank, and body numb. I don’t know why I’m having this reaction. Part of me thinks it’s because deep down I don’t want everyone to watch me fall apart, the other part of me thinks it’s because during the last week I have cried myself out of tears, but most of me thinks it’s because I’m broken.
No longer the Brooke I once was. The happy Brooke, the vibrant Brooke, easy-going, laid-back, and positive Brooke. I’m missing something, and I know exactly what that is: my partner, my conscience, my brainstormer, my handyman, my therapist, my negotiator, my cheer squad, my best friend, my other half … my soul mate.
It’s been a little over 2 months since Nate died and Brooke is still a depressed mess…enter Saxton, Nate’s best friend! Nate and Saxton have been friends for years, he had a bad childhood so Nate’s family were like his family. He considered him his brother more than his friend.
What the fuck was I thinking? Not visiting, not calling, not texting or even sending a fucking email in three months. My best friend’s wife. No, my brother’s wife, because that’s what he was to me. A fucking brother, and I completely bailed on the most important person in his life. I bailed because I’m a weak prick and can’t handle my own emotions, let alone anyone else’s.
It’s been 3 months since Nate was killed. She’s pretty much ignoring everyone, so Saxton comes over and makes her shower and takes her to coffee. He asks her about coming to Argo, Nate’s company. She doesn’t wanna sell it because it was his dream, so she wants to learn the business so she can take it over. Saxton put his career on hold to help Nate build the company, but Brooke thinks he’s ready to get on with his own career now. She feels she’s holding everyone back so she’s feels it’s finally time to take the next step!
Brooke has now been working at Argo for 3 months. Saxton and her have been spending a lot of time together while he teaches her the business. Saxton has been kinda seeing this girl Amber(more like a sex buddy than a real real), but ever since he started spending time with Brooke he’s been avoiding her. Well apparently she thought that Brooke was ruining her relationship with Saxton even though there was never a relationship to ruin…
“As a matter of fact, tell him he is done working here and you no longer need him. It’s the least you can do for trying to destroy us. How would Nate feel knowing you are fucking his best friend? Hmmmm? Chasing him and using him. What kind of wife are you? I’m sure Nate would be disgusted.”
That’s it! My body shakes as adrenalin courses through it and my hand automatically forms into a fist. I’m cocking it back before I even comprehend what the bitch said to me and just as I’m about to punch her…
“Get. The. Fuck. Out.”
Brooke and Saxton have been spending a lot of time together. She’s started to feel things for him even though she’s confused and feels guilty because of Nate. I think it’s good because she shouldn’t feel guilty, Nate would want her to be happy and move on. Saxton is the one night stand kinda guy, no real relationship, so every time they do something she makes it like its no big thing. This makes him mad because I’m pretty sure he has strong feelings for her. I really love Saxton, he’s so sweet and protective of her! It helps they have been friends for years so she feels comfortable around him and can be herself.
“Is this okay?” he asks sternly. I nod shyly, still too embarrassed to admit how I really feel and how I do want this. Saxon cups my face in his palm as he rubs his thumb over my cheek. “There’s no need to be shy, Brooke.” His lust stirs beneath me as his eyes wander over my face. “You’re so beautiful.”
This is where Brooke realizes that she’s totally safe with Saxton…Paul (creepy guy from Argo) attacked her and of course Saxton showed up and saved her. She knew she was safe as soon as she heard his voice. I love their relationship even though I’m not sure she wants to admit to herself what he really means to her. I also don’t think she knows how Saxton really feels…it’s not about looking after his best friends wife anymore.
He places his hands on my knees over the blanket, and I can tell he’s trying to gather himself. “Are you okay?” he whispers.
Without control or intent, I break down. My chest falls over my knees and great wracking sobs leave my body. Saxon swears under his breath as he stands and swiftly picks me up, sitting down in the passenger seat with me on his lap. I lay against his chest while letting it all out. His hold around my shoulders tighten as he rocks me, resting his mouth on my head.
“You’re safe, Brooke. I’m here. I’ve got you, baby, you’re safe.” He repeats the soothing mantra over and over until the world falls away and all I focus on is those words. I’m safe, Saxon is here, he’s got me.
Saxton and Brooke went to Nate’s moms house for dinner…lets just say it didn’t go very well. She was rude and made her feel guilty about something she definitely shouldn’t. I understand she is grieving as well since she lost her son, but it’s not fair to make Brooke feel bad because she is moving on. Now she’s telling Saxton she can’t see him anymore. They are great together and Nate would be happy to see them together since he’s gone…he loved them both. Stupid crazy mother in law!! Now Saxton is saying that he’s done with helping her, protecting her, or caring about her…no no no!!! Grr!!
I pull in a large breath before lifting my head. He stands, defeated, his hands resting on his hips. “We’ve spent nearly every night together for three months, Brooke.”
“Having sex, Saxon, that’s all it was.”
“Is that what you honestly believe? After all I’ve shared with you, all I’ve done for you and with you, is that what you really think?”
“Yes.” I stand taller and lift my chin.
After the fallout with Saxton Brooke takes 2 months to get things done she needs too. One of those being, going to Nate’s grave and finally coming to acceptance of Nate’s passing and it being okay for her to move on and be happy. She then sets her sights on getting Saxton back because he realized she loves him just as much as he loves her!!
I can move on with life and take Nate with me. Saxon and I can remember him together, miss him together, and share his memories together. I can keep him in my heart and carry him wherever I will go.
I’m really glad I took a chance on this book! Thanks so much to the author for giving me the chance to read and review it! This is a great story of love, friendship, grief and how to deal with it along with moving on.