Monday, November 21, 2016

Review: Consolation Prize by Linda Kage

Don't you just hate it when someone destroys all your carefully made plans?
I mean, I had goals: college to graduate in one semester, a future I was working hard to reach, and an image of myself I wanted the world to see. My life was stacked into these precisely placed blocks. But then Colton Gamble came along and knocked them all askew.
I hated how he messed everything up, how he could hog all my attention whenever he was around, how he made my pulse quicken--but only because he ticked me off...not because I was attracted to him. Oh! And I hated how he knew how attractive he was too, the shallow, full of himself, doesn't take no for an answer, too-flirty, too cocky, extremely irritating jerk.
The boy had all the qualities that turned me off. Or so I thought.
One night he wasn't quite the brainless, over-confident jerk I usually took him for.
One night, he took care of me when I was at my lowest. He opened up to me and made me open up to him.
Now I'm learning maybe he's not what I first thought he was. And maybe I'M not what I first thought I was. Maybe it’s okay to rearrange a couple of my perfectly set blocks. Maybe, just maybe, I’ll stop worrying about what I’m afraid everyone else will think and finally reach for something I really want. It’s possible some of my plans need to be destroyed, and Colton Gamble is exactly the kind of mess I need in my life.
What do you think? Should I give him a try?
Desperately seeking your advice,
Julianna Radcliffe

4 Stars
Review by Jen Skewes

The Forbidden Men series is by far one of my favorite series.  The first book in this series was the first book that I read by Linda Kage and I quickly became a hug fan of hers. I have read and loved every book in this series, each one just getting better and better.  After reading Brandt's tory I could not wait to get my hands on Colton's book.  He remained me of Ten, who is one of my faves, in some ways.  I loved the cockiness and his ability to just say it like it was.  I think that is what reminded me of Ten the most.  When it came to Colton and his character, Ms. Kage did not disappoint.

Julianna is the girl that had a huge crush on Colton's older brother Brandt.  If you read his story then you know that they had gone on one date that did not last long at all and went completely nowhere.  Because Brandt had been in love with Sarah, who was his soul mate.  Well this book starts with Sarah ad Brandt's wedding which Juli is a guest at.  When looking at her one would think that she was still pining away for the groom, the way would just stare at him all night.   So to distract her, and try not to ruin Brandt's wedding in any way, it became Colton's job to distract her.  That is all that was supposed to happen.   But when Colton first met her about nine months ago there was something about her that he liked.  He loved to make inappropriate comments and piss her off, she was the most beautiful girl that he had ever seen, but she was also in love with his brother.  Or was she?

The night of the wedding things may have taken a completely wrong turn where Juli and Colton were concerned but it was a turn that the both of them wanted with no regrets.  Until Juli accidentally said something so stupid that made Colton get up and walk away.  Leaving Juli feeling completely guilty for hurting him and at the same time she knew that what she had said was so far from the truth.  They end up having a class together and when they clear the air, things start to heat up again between them.  But it seems that there are too many obstacles in their way.  I don't want to say what those are but this series is called Forbidden Men for a reason.  Rhere are people who will have issues with the two of them being together, but will they be able to stick together and make this work?

I really loved Colton and as I mentioned earlier, Ms Kage did not disappoint.  He was everything I hoped he would be.  Yes he was cocky and arrogant at times, he said things that  would make people cringe but that is what I loved.  He said what he wanted and did not care what people thought.  But it was the sweet loving side that I love the most.  He is after all a Gamble and those Gamble men know how to take care of the people they love.  And when they do love someone they are all in and love very deeply.  And Colton was no different.  

Julianna was one of those characters that I had a hard time liking at first.  And honestly I am not really sure why.  I think part of me just didn't feel her connection with Colton in the beginning and maybe I had the same reservations that Brandt did, and yes you will have to read to find out what I mean.  But over time she grew on me and I think it's because she matured in a way and became herself.  I think Colton brought something out in her, made her see who she was and to just be herself and not worry what everyone around them thinks.  

I really enjoyed this book but for me the first half of the book was missing something.  Again I do not know what it is.  But once the second half came it started to pick up and at that point I did not want to put this book down.  There was a bit of drama and a twist that Ms. Kage managed to surprise me with.  It was also that twist that really made you see how deeply these two loved each other and how connected they really were.  I think the second half of this book really showcased their relationship and how much these two loved each other and how much they were meant to be together.  I saw Juli in a different way and I loved it.  And My God, Colton just melted my heart over and over again.  I truly loved that boy.  

Ms. Kage has always managed to create these amazing heroes that you just completely fall for.  And I always love and can relate to the heroine's.  So yes I was a bit disappointed that I did not connect with Juli in a way that I had hoped.  But overall I really did enjoy this book and loved the ending.  I am so sad to see this series come to an end.  I loved seeing the relationships Colton had with his two brothers and Ten in this book.  It is always great to see these characters make an appearance.  After reading nine books about them all you feel like you are a part of their world.  so it will be sad to say goodbye.  Unless we get maybe one more wrapping up everyone's story.  Maybe seeing them all together in about 10 years, hint hint!!  If you have not read any of this series yet I definitely recommend that you do, you will not be disappointed.  

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