Author: CM Foss
Genre: New Adult / Contemporary Romance
Release Date: 22nd November, 2014.
This is a love story.
This is a romantic story.
Except bananas. Bananas are never romantic.
Lissa was a twenty-year-old girl trying to make it in the equestrian world. She was sassy and smart, strong and a little weird. And she had no idea what she was doing.
Ethan was twenty-seven, tattooed, tall, dark, and hot. And lugging some baggage. He’d already made it in the business and brought Lissa on to help get her on her feet. And it turned out, he liked a little weird.
Ethan made it clear that he wasn’t in the market for a relationship. Lissa was happy to learn the ropes and push her attraction aside.
But how do you draw the line when every touch makes you…shiver?
Complimentary copy provided by the author in exchange for an honest review
Besides “Shiver” being a really heart-warming, funny, and sweet love story, it is also a very eye-opening one. I will get back to this a little later in my review, but I might as well tell you right now that I ADORE this book! (Yes, an exclamation point is warranted, dear readers.) The story of Lissa and Ethan had me frustrated, sad, happy, and hopeful, and that is why I love it so much: because this story made me feel everything that these characters go through – both the highs and the lows.
Now, this book revolves around the equestrian world, and I have to admit, being a horse lover myself, that is part of why I really enjoyed reading it. However, I can see that people who do not know much about this particular environment may feel the opposite. I would like to say, though, that I feel that the love story is what is important, and I believe that you will become engrossed in it just as much as I did.
When we first meet Lissa, she is a 20-year-old woman trying to make a name for herself in the horse racing business. An accident takes place, though, that forces her to reevaluate her career options, and this is where Ethan comes in. He has a different kind of establishment and, having known Lissa, as well as being aware of her capabilities, he offers her a job at his place in order for her to keep working with the animals she loves.
It is no secret that Lissa has been harboring a bit of a crush on Ethan for some years now, but she chooses to accept his job offer, to put aside these feelings, and to be professional about her being his employee. But what happens when Ethan suddenly begins to behave as if he feels the same? Well, life gets complicated, which is not really surprising, but you will have to read the book and find out what happens next…*wink*
I have to say that Lissa is one of the most interesting heroines I have come across in a while. Despite her young age, she is very mature, hard-working and very professional in her line of work; but she does not seem to be too old for her age. Like other young women, she is a bit unsure about what to do with her life, other than knowing that horses will be involved, and that is why I fell for her. She is quirky – maybe even a bit “weird” – but also a very down-to-earth kind of girl. I really liked how she eventually makes Ethan come clean about why he does not think he can make a relationship work – instead of simply waiting him out, she confronts him. And that is very refreshing: it shows a strong character to me.
As for Ethan…Who, in their right mind, would not find him gorgeous? Tall, tattooed, loving the animals he works with, and this certain air of mystery about him: he is, plain and simple, difficult to resist. His troubles are real, genuine, and you can understand why he holds himself back. Being a typical man, he is under the illusion that he has to fix everything on his own, but, unbeknownst to him, he happens to stumble upon a woman who is not afraid to face them with him. The way he opens himself up to Lissa was very moving to read, and I must admit that he is now on top of my favorite book boyfriends.
Without giving you any spoilers, I want to say that one of the reasons why this book gets my highest rating is because it does not merely ends after Lissa and Ethan work out their issues; no, their story continues, and as they get to know each other completely, thereby allowing the readers the time to connect fully with them, you cannot help but fall head over heels in love with the both of them. That is my honest opinion, anyway. No, all is not well in Paradise, but that is due to the hardships they have to go through together. It shows the difficulty of being parents as well as remaining lovers and friends because the obstacles standing in your way seem too much to bear. (And this part of the book made me shed a couple of tears…not an easy feat, so thank you for that, Miss Foss!)
This may be the first book of Miss Foss, but you really cannot tell that is the case. I love her storytelling skills: they are different, but so engaging, honest, and believable. Lissa’s best friend, Steph, and the southern horse breeder, Lawrence, had me laughing a great deal whenever they were part of a scene, and I really cannot wait to get their story next year.
Like the synopsis of the book says: “This is a love story. This is a romantic story. Except bananas. Bananas are never romantic.” you are in for a truly feel-good romance novel; there are some twists and turns you will not see coming; and there are plenty of swoon, sass, and steam as well. Like I mentioned above, “Shiver” made me cry, but it also made me giggle and laugh out loud on several occasions. All of these are factors contributing to me rating this book 5 stars, thus putting it on My Favorite Books list. Yes, I really cannot recommend this book highly enough, and I am so looking forward to following Miss Foss and her work in the future.
“Dance with me?” Lawrence’s voice behind me pulled me from my musings.
I turned with a smile. “Why thank you, sir.”
I followed him onto the dance floor, the orchestra playing a Frank Sinatra ballad. He swept me into his arms like, well, like the perfect gay best friend.
“Don’t you say it.”
“Say what?” I asked innocently.
“I am not your gay best friend. I have sisters. They took dance lessons. My mom made me partner them.”
I couldn’t help laughing loudly, drawing some disapproving glances. He quickly spun me and dipped me in playful retaliation. As he drew me back up, I stood staring straight into Ethan’s heated gaze.
“Can I cut in?” he asked without breaking our eye contact.
From the corner of my eye, I caught Lawrence nodding and stepping away before I was pulled flush to Ethan and we glided across the floor.
“You look absolutely stunning.” He breathed softly into my ear, his right hand settling low, really low, on my bare back, and I shivered.
“Cold?” I felt him smile.
“No, I’m not cold,” I stated quietly, enjoying the feel of being in his arms, the texture of him beneath his tuxedo, and the touch of our hands.
“Are you having fun tonight?”
“I am.” I nodded slowly. “I didn’t know you would be here.”
“I came as a trophy.”
I pulled back to look in his eyes. “Whose trophy? And why?” I was a little irrationally angry and felt stupid that I thought we were having a kind of moment, only to find out he was here with someone else.
“Why are you angry? You do realize you’re here with a date too, right?”
I waved him off. “Lawrence and I are just friends. He’s my arm candy for the night. And maybe a kiss at midnight if I get tipsy enough.”
He glared at me, jaw flexing back and forth. “You’re just friends who sleep together?”
“No. Just friends. As in… actual friends. Nothing more.”
“Why have you both been blatantly flaunting your relationship in front of me then?”
I shrugged. “It tickled me.”
“It tickled you,” he repeated slowly, dangerously.
“Yes. It did. It tickled me to see your mood swings every day, and I was making bets on when you were going to start your period.”
Despite his irritation, he laughed out loud. “God, you’re weird.” He pulled me closer, wrapping my arms up around his neck and sliding his hands down my bare arms and then down my back, settling them there. “I don’t know what I’m doing with you,” he muttered softly.
I Don’t Dance – Lee Brice
Hard to Love – Lee Brice
A Woman Like You – Lee Brice
Power Of A Woman – Lee Brice
Beautiful Every Time – Lee Brice
She Ain’t Right – Lee Brice
Falling Apart Together – Lee Brice
No Better Than This – Lee Brice
I live in beautiful Northern Virginia with my incredible husband, two awesome kids, three dogs, and two budgies. My husband and I both grew up riding and competing horses and have our own equestrian operation that we run together. In my spare time, I read through the hundreds of stories awaiting me on my e-reader.
My love of books started early, and my mom used to ration my reading time so I didn’t go through them too quickly. I love all things romantic, whether it’s dark or light or silly or dirty, but I really love a happy ending!
In my small moments of quiet time, you’ll find me sipping on wine and reading while any movie where people randomly burst into song or dance plays in the background.