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I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Parker Cruse despises cheaters. It might have something to do with her boyfriend sleeping with her twin sister.
After a wedding day prank involving a strong laxative, that ends the already severed relationship between the twins, Parker decides to grow up and act twenty-six.
Step One: Move out of her parents’ house.
Step Two: Find a job.
Opportunity strikes when she meets her new neighbor, Gus Westman. He’s an electrician with Iowa farm-boy values and a gift for saying her name like it’s a dirty word.
He also has a wife.
Sabrina Westman, head of a successful engineering firm, hires Parker as her personal assistant. Driven to be the best assistant ever, Parker vows to stay focused, walk the dog, go to the dry cleaners, and not kiss Gus—again.
Step Three: Don’t judge.
Step Four: Remember— when life happens, it does it in a heartbeat.
I look forward to a JEA book like a kid on Christmas morning. To say her books absolutely enthrall me, would not be an exaggeration. I have loved every single one I have read. When Life Happened is another masterpiece of fiction from this absolutely talented author. She is the MASTER of the bait and switch. Leave all your preconceived notions at the door, because she will rip them to shreds and then make something totally amazing out of the wreckage.
Whatever you do, don’t read any spoilers and go in blind! This book has a large impact when taken as is; let the story lead you there on its own. Trust me, it will be worth it! You will want to savor every word and action as they come.
Parker is such a quirky, awesome heroine, infused with sassiness and tormented over where her life has taken her. I fell in love with her at first word, and adored seeing her grow and gain understanding. Her banter and humor were fantastic. Gah! Now I want to read it all over again. This story will suck you in, and have you devouring the pages until the last page.
Brimming with wit and romance, and conflict…this book was EVERYTHING! I laughed so hard I cried, and then my heart broke and, you guessed it, I cried again! I loved all the emotions this story put me through. Jewel’s words are flawless while her characters are inherently flawed; I love the beautiful dichotomy between the two that she pulls off so effortlessly. You will be rooting for these people like they are your best friends, and even those you start out hating are redeemed in the end. This is definitely a top read of mine this year. I highly recommend you do yourself a favor and read this one now!
“Yeah. Life never checks the forecast before it just decides to…happen'”
“You … you tried to seduce me.” Anger fueled her fight, overriding how terrified she felt being feet from naked Gus.
He laughed. That fed her anger even more.
“I wasn’t seducing you. I was making a point.” He slipped on a white T-shirt.
“Bullshit. I was there.”
“Precisely. Then you should know that I wasn’t seducing you.” He grabbed her shoulders and steered her away from the entrance to his closet.
She turned, relieved to find him dressed. “I felt you.” Her eyes narrowed.
He smirked. “You did, did you?”
Heat spread up her neck and burned her cheeks. Discussing Gus’s erection in his bedroom with Sabrina out of town qualified as the most inappropriate conversation she had ever had. “You’re such an ass. Just tell me why?”
Twisting his lips to the side, he narrowed his eyes. “You’re young. You think the world is so black and white. In your fairy-tale world, love is a magic wand spreading trails of glitter and granting happily ever afters.”
Parker stepped closer, knowing the lion could pull her into his den. “I don’t believe in fairytales.”
“No?” He shrugged. “Then I guess I made my point.”
“I don’t get your stupid point!” Her fingernails dug into her hands as she clenched them.
Gus leaned forward, putting them at eye level. She held her ground, even though his proximity made her body tremble.
“Someone cheated on you. And you’re so fucking mad about it because you can’t understand it. But love is an emotion that resides in your head and your proverbial heart. It has to be nurtured to grow or it dies. But … desire … it’s instinctual. Physical. Carnal. And when it wants its way, your brain shuts down and the only heart you hear is that blood-pumping organ in your chest. A slave to your desire, readying your body to do one thing and one thing only …” He leaned into her ear and whispered, “Get. Off.”
August Westman proved he was the devil. Parker became the worst possible version of herself in his presence. He drugged her with his words, pulled her under with his confidence, and stole her innocence with a whisper.