Saturday, August 30, 2014

Blog Tour Review: Hidden Barriers by Sara Shirley

Hidden Barriers is book two in the Barriers Series and is considered a stand-alone and doesn't contain a cliffhanger. Some scenes do overlap with Frozen Barriers. It's suggested to read Frozen Barriers first, simply to understand the characters history more.
Josh & Sam's Story

Love has been hiding for too long. What happens when it reveals itself?

Josh Page, a Massachusetts State Trooper, wants nothing more than to put his first love behind him. His career is all he’s ever known for the last ten years. Seeing her is a constant reminder of what he could have had if he had not put his career first years ago.

Relationships and dating women have never been part of his lifestyle. He continues to have meaningless sex with women as an attempt to distance himself from his past. That is until he opens the door and a sassy roller derby girl stares back up at him.


Samantha Daley’s past haunts her. After college, she spends years building a new life with new friends, roller derby, and a bustling business under her feet. Her past suddenly comes rushing back after just one phone call.
Afraid to love, she never imagines a life where one man can turn her world inside out and make her reevaluate what she wants in her future. Almost instantly, she’s attracted to the man in front of her. He pushes her trust to a new level and is willing to take a chance with her.

Will Sam be able to handle the reminders of her troubled past enough for her to be with Josh, or will it be Josh’s secrets that threaten to tear them apart in the end?

**For mature audiences. 18+. This book contains sexual and abusive situations, and strong language.**

4 Star Review by Jen Skewes Barriers is the second book in this series but can be read as a stand alone.  I really enjoyed this book.  We first met Josh in Frozen Barriers and honestly I felt bad for him and wanted to see him get his HEA.

Josh is a State Trooper who has been trying to move on from his first love, but it’s not easy when she is his sister’s best friend and the guy she is having a baby with is his brother’s best friend.  So yes she is basically always around.  About 10 years ago Josh chose his career over love and in ways has regretted that choice.  For so long it was always about his career.  Having nothing more than meaningless sex with various women.  But one night he runs into the very spunky Samantha Daley and his idea of love and relationships starts to change.  There is something about Sam that has drawn him to her.  Desite the attraction he still has these walls up around his heart. He stills needs to let go of his past and move on.  And Sam seems to be the perfect person to help him with that.

Sam has her own past that she is running from.  Her ex boyfriend is an abusive jerk.  Actually he is a bit of a scary monster to be honest.   She has moved away from her hometown to escape the past.  She has met new friends, became a roller derby girl an owns a wine bar.   Everything seems right in her world.  She has her own walls up.  She is afraid to trust any man again and therefore has walls up herself.    When she meets Josh things slowly begin to change.  She likes him, is certainly attracted to him but she is still afraid of getting close to him.  She has been through so much and trust is something that does not come easy to her.  Josh and Sam are very patient with each other and slowly build a wonderful relationship.  Sam helps him to forget his past and open up his heart again.  And in return Josh helps Sam to trust again.  But along the way there are many obstacles that they will have to fight through.   Their pasts and secrets come back to haunt them.  Are they both strong enough to fight it or will they run?

I really loved Josh and Sam together.  I will admit that it took a little while for me to warm up to Josh.  He made a few mistakes and some poor decisions that I had a hard time with in the beginning.  Honestly I didn’t really understand one of his stupid decisions.  But as time went on and we see how much he cares for and loves Sam I really started to like him.  He really was and great guy who was very loving, sweet, caring and protective of Sam.  He would do anything for her. 

Sam was a great heroine.  She had her own issues ad at times may have been a little frustrating and jumped to conclusions.  But understanding her trust issues and what she went through made it easier to love her.  Josh an Same were perfect together.  I loved watching their relationship grow and loved watching them open themselves up to each other and to love.

Hidden Barriers was a great love story.  It was funny, heart warming, sweet and had it's swoon worthy moments.  There are moments towards the end that you will be on the edge of your seat biting your nails.  And then there is the epilogue which was just perfect. This story is about moving on from your past and learning to love and trust again.  The supporting cast of characters were a wonderful addition to this story.  They were an amazing support system, especially Josh’s sister and Sam’s brother.  I am hoping that they get their own story.  Loved this one and looking forward to more from this author. 

The feeling of sleeping in your own bed is comforting in and of itself. When you fall asleep in the arms of a beautiful woman, that’s peace. The moment you wake up next to the woman who’s quickly taking your heart in her hands, comfort and peace cease to exist. This is absolute euphoria.
        I’ve been lying here watching her sleep for a while now. The sun has been slowly creeping its way into the room through her windows, illuminating the glass chandelier over her bed. Rainbow prisms dance against her walls as I gently push aside a stray hair, so I can just watch her sleep.
        I already knew I was quickly falling for her, but after last night, I knew she was it for me. Yeah, true, we’ve only known each other for a short time, but when you know, you know. There is still so much about her that’s a mystery, but I could spend the rest of my days willing to find out.
        Lying here, facing her, I push that pesky stray hair from her face again and wonder how it was that any man, let alone her ex-boyfriend, could ever want to hurt her. The heinous things he did sickens me. What could have run through his head to want to take her life? She’s the most angelic creature, and I have to wonder what could have been.
        Where would I be now if Stone actually succeeded in killing her that night? My body tenses immediately at the idea of her not being here with me. Even now, I don’t have any power to help keep that asshole behind bars, but I’m definitely going to find out everything I can about the fucker, and I will protect Sam the best I can. If that means giving my life for her, then I’ll do it. If I already took an oath to serve and protect strangers, I will gladly put my life on the line for her.

I move away from Josh who continues to talk on his phone with my brother. I scuffle my heavy legs through the room over to the kitchen cabinet I need. Josh watches me with concern written all over his face, but I know there isn’t anything I can say to make him leave. If I thought not having space before this was bad, unless by some miracle they find Stone soon, there won’t be any way I can handle Josh’s overprotective nature for another week.
        I pull open the cabinet and grab the bottle of Jack, foregoing the shot glass. I shut the cabinet door and twist the top off the squared bottle. As I bring the bottle to my mouth, the stinging smell hits me first before I tilt my head back and chug until I can’t take the burn anymore. I straighten my head, coughing as the burn wears off in my throat until I feel the warmth coat its way into my system. Only this isn’t what I need right now.
        I stare at the bottle in my hand and start laughing hysterically before screaming at the top of my lungs. As I continue to scream and laugh, tears well in my eyes, but not before I catch sight of the girls rounding the corner to see what’s going on. Josh stands there, silently watching me mentally break down. Nick storms through the front door, most likely thinking the worst has happened, considering his hand is already on his holster ready to draw his gun. All of them think I’m losing my shit and quite possibly I am.
        For three years I was safe and happy with my new life and friends. I had just found love and a future with a man who was willing to deal with all my bullshit, and in less than a few weeks, I’m back to where I was three years ago. Everything I worked so hard to overcome is disappearing in a flash.

"Live your Dreams, Follow your Heart"

Emily Cameron is America's newest figure skating star looking for her own personal identity. Her high profile life was never her dream, it was her parents.

Jeremy Page is a minor league hockey player who always imagined himself playing for the NHL.

A chance encounter has them crossing paths after several years apart. Which way will his heart lead him? Will Emily embrace his charm?

Just when things finally fall into place, an unexpected event occurs leaving Emily reevaluating everything in her life.

Can Emily escape from under her parent's intrusive ways and take a chance on love? Will Jeremy be able to break down the barriers that have held her back for so long?

Book 1 of the Barriers Series. This story does not have a cliffhanger. **Mature Subject matter. 18+ due to strong language and sexual situations**

A romance novel addict finds herself staying up well past her bedtime to see how the next story is going to end. Sara spends her days living on a vineyard in wine country with her husband and cat. Her family hailed from Italy where her ancestors lived in the mountains of Rocca di Cambio. A former Broadway star and champion skier whose career was cut short because of her passion for being a wine sommelier. It was on her way west where she met her husband, the President of a very influential MC in California. You can find her riding off through the vineyards on the back of a Harley almost every night.

Her passion for books has been viewed as borderline obsessive. But, when all you have is time and a bottle of wine awaiting you as the sun sets off the veranda writing became second nature.

In Vino Veritas  

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