18 July 2014

Designed Release Day!

Designed Release Day
Blake Snyder is an expert at bringing visions to life. Owner of a successful interior design business, she prides herself on creating things that are picture perfect. If only her talent extended to her personal life.

Chris Taylor is her brother’s best friend, but more importantly, her ex. After a messy breakup years ago, they’ve been careful to avoid each other.

But out of sight isn’t necessarily out of mind. Chris holds a special place for her in his heart - and a never presented engagement ring. Blake can’t stop thinking about him - despite her frequent attempts to replace him.

When events in the present lead Blake to confront the truth in her past, she knows that it’s time to come clean about what really drove them apart. What she reveals is something that brings him to his knees yet again.

Can Chris forgive her for a decade of secrets and omissions? Will their love for one another be strong enough to withstand the repercussions of a decision made long before? Or will the bombshell spell their ultimate demise?
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I had not read a book by this author before and I have to say, coming into it with no expectations, I really liked the plot and the characters in this book.
Blake has her own successful design business.  She’s a perfectionist, and she seems to have a magic touch in creating beauty and energy in a space and transforming it into something new.  If only all aspects of her life were so easy to revamp.  Her brother’s best friend Chris was the love of her life, whether she wants to admit it or not.  And she was definitely the love of his life.  He even still has an engagement ring that he bought her that he never gave her.  That’s deep.  When they come together again and realize that the old feelings never truly went away, it’s time to Blake to put on her big girl panties and not only come to terms with her past with Chris for herself, but for him too.  Will he still want something between them when he finds out the truth of drove them apart so long ago?
Stories like this seem to be a dime a dozen, and the storylines can get all too familiar.  However, this book separates itself from the pack because it’s well written and well characterized.  Blake, I wasn’t so sure about her in the beginning.  She seemed kind of self-absorbed to me and it made me feel sorry for Chris, who seemed so sweet and devoted.  However, when you delve further into the story and secrets are revealed, it all makes sense.  Blake, though I’m not sure I would have made her same choices, did what she felt she had to do at the time and I couldn’t fault her for that.  She was a very real and visceral character.  Whether you love or hate her, I don’t think by the time you finish this that you will blame her.
Overall, I thought this was a great story.  It’s not a super original plot, but as I said the writing and characters make the story more digestible and original than I would have thought starting out.  I would definitely recommend this book. 4 stars.

It would feel good to get washed up, I reasoned as I set to work plucking the bobby pins out of my hair.  I dropped them into a pile on the sink and turned on the shower, letting the water heat up as I stripped off my bridesmaid’s gown.  I had the hanger with me in my bag, so I carefully placed the dress on it and hung it up on the doorknob.  Most of the flowing skirt pooled on the floor, but it was better than just throwing it into a heap.
I was also at his mercy as far as toiletries.  I’d fully expected to be sleeping in my own bed tonight, so I’d have to use what was there.  I did a mental check and found what I needed:  a towel folded over the rack, his shampoo and soap in the tiny shower stall.  I’d been in worse situations, definitely.
The water pressure left much to be desired, which I realized as soon as I attempted to rinse said shampoo out of my mass of hair.  I was working through the strands with my fingers, coaxing the soap out, when I heard the knock at the door.
“Blake?” he called from the other side.
“Yeah?” I said, my voice cracking.
I heard the door push open.  Instinctively, I covered my breasts with my arms, pressing my legs together as tightly as they could go.  Even with the opaque shower curtain between us, I still had this irrational fear of him walking in on me and seeing everything.  Stupid, because he’d seen everything before anyway.  Idiotic, because I’d completely bared my soul to him earlier tonight.  If there was anyone I shouldn’t be afraid of seeing me in this position, it was this man.  But yet I huddled in his shower, naked and self-conscious.
profile photo Alicia Renee Kline has been writing for as long as she can remember. Her work has evolved from scrawling story ideas in spiral notebooks in loopy, middle school handwriting (complete with scribbles) to more professional looking fare via her laptop. She is eternally grateful for the "delete" key, so that no one can tell that she doesn't get everything right the first time. She resides in Northeastern Indiana with her husband, two daughters, two cats and two hamsters. When she isn't being an author, she works full time in the insurance industry.

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