Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Review: Chasing Serenity by Eden Butler

Graduate student Autumn McShane has had her share of heartbreak. She's been abandoned and betrayed and she lost her beloved mother in a tragic car accident five months ago. That loss damaged her body and fractured her spirit but she's learning to recover, until her ex-boyfriend returns to town, intent on making her life miserable. 

Declan Fraser hates her ex as much as Autumn does, but the last thing she needs is to put her trust in the hands of another man, especially one like Declan: his hard body and lulling Irish accent makes more than a few girls weak-kneed. The talented rugby player is rude and sarcastic, with tattooed, muscular arms and a cocky attitude, but he's the only one who can help Autumn win an ill-advised bet that, if lost, could cost her more than she's willing to pay. The reluctant alliance between Declan and Autumn stirs up cravings she doesn't want to admit, but Declan is a hard man to resist. 

Just when Autumn starts letting down her carefully constructed walls to the sexy bad boy, he betrays her when she needs him most. Autumn suspects Declan has secrets, and she is determined to uncover what drove him away from her, even if that means fraternizing with the enemy. But will the truth return Declan to her arms or add to the scars on her heart?

4.5 star review by Jen Skewes

Five months ago Autumn's world was completely shattered.  It was five months ago that she lost her mother in a tragic car accident that also left her damaged physically.  Her father left her and her mother when she was a child Except for her Aunt and her best friends she has no family left.  She is currently a grad student who is trying to focus on school and her career and move on from her past.  Until her past comes back in the from of her ex-boyfriend Tucker.  The two men that Autumn loved and trusted in her life completely let her down.  Her father abandoned her when she was little and to this day she still cannot understand why.  And her boyfriend left her to go play rugby.  Now he is back and he realizes what a mistake he make by leaving and is hoping to win her back.  But Autumn is not the same person she was when she dated him.  She is a stronger person who isn't falling for his BS any more.  Autumn wants nothing to do with Tucker, and at this point she isn't even sure that she wants to be friends with him.  Autumn and her ex make a bet, one that she needs to win in more ways than one.  

Enter Declan Fraser; cocky, sarcastic, sexy, Irish, tattooed, rugby playing Declan Fraser.  You know how some people say a first impression is everything.  Well Declan and Autumn's first encounter was certainly not a good one.  Declan kisses Autumn out of nowhere, most likely because he was completely drunk.  But suffice it to say, Autumn was not impressed at all.  As much as Autumn would like to ignore Declan completely, that isn't possible.  Especially in the small town that they live in.  Autumn slowly starts to warm up to Declan but they remain friends.  Declan hates Tucker probably more than Autumn does and offers to help her and her friends win the bet.  As they continue to work closely together towards winning the bet, Autumn finds her feelings for Declan starting to change. But given her past she is afraid of opening up her heart to someone.   She is not sure she is willing to trust her heart with Declan Fraser.  But just as things between the two of them seem to cross that line of friendship, Declan pushes her away for reasons that he can't and will not explain.  Autumn is determined to find out the truth.  When the truth finally comes out will it bring them closer together or completely tear them apart? 

Autumn was a great heroine.  She was strong and independent and has dealt with alot of pain in her life.  But she is standing tall and determined to get through it all.  And she has 3 amazing friend who stand by her every step of the way.  I loved how she stood her ground with Tucker, that no matter how hard he tried to make up for hurting her she never let gave into him.  

What can I say about Declan.  He was sexy and sarcastic and cocky but he was also so sweet and caring.  He loved Autumn, that part was clear.  But Declan, just like Autumn had a past as well.  He too suffered some pain and loss in his life.  He was an amazing hero who I fell in love with and at times felt so bad for him.  He never wanted to stay away from Autumn and never wanted to hurt her but circumstances beyond his control forced him to stay away.  

This was a fantastic read.  I could not put it down.  There were a few twists and turns in there that I did not see coming.   Chasing Serenity is set in a little town called Cavanaugh.  It is a big rugby town and you felt like you lived in this wonderful world with these characters.  I loved the mix of the characters.  Tucker is the ex boyfriend that you can't help but dislike.  Autumn's friends, Sayo, Mollie and Layla are the friends that every woman wants by her side in life.  They had fun together and were there for each other when they needed them the most.  Then there was Autumn's father who does come back in her life and as much as you wanted to not like him for leaving Autumn, you just couldn't.  I loved this book and felt like I was really a part of these characters lives.  I cannot wait for Declan's story.  

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