31 January 2015

Learning to Live Again Release Day!

Tired of increasing chaos in his family life and the distance that is growing between him and his wife, Lainie, Grant Taylor decides the only way to save his marriage is to get back to the domestic discipline lifestyle he grew up with. When he finds Corbin's Bend on the Internet, he is certain it is the perfect place for them to start over.

Exhausted and tired of juggling everything herself, Lainie reluctantly agrees to her husband's suggestion. However, she is new to the lifestyle and more than a little uncertain about it. To make matters worse, their 15-year-old daughter Kathleen is convinced they had moved her into some kind of weird spanking cult. She is miserable and not at all shy about letting everybody know it.

Will moving to Corbin's Bend be their saving grace, or will it be the final straw that tears them apart?
I had a really hard time with this book, and even now I’m not really sure what it was that I wasn’t able to connect with.

I enjoyed the characters, I thought there was a good balance between Grant and Lainie.  I really liked how Ms. Staunton created characters that are brought into the domestic discipline lifestyle later in life.  Granted, they had thought about it in the past, but actually living it? That didn’t start till later.  And I thought it was great how realistic Ms. Staunton made the transformation in the relationship.  It wasn’t a completely easy switch, it was one that was rough, and we were able to follow along with the journey.

I do feel like this is a great addition to the Corbin’s Bend Series, and that Ms. Staunton has made her book stand out from the rest of them with the differences in her book. I would recommend this book to others who enjoy this genre of books.
“Mom! Dad’s trying to take my phone and my music. What am I supposed to do without
them? I don’t know anyone here. I’ll be bored out of my mind. He can’t do that! It’s not fair! Tell him!”

Lainie sighed heavily, looking around for Grant. He was headed into their shared office, taking absolutely no notice of Kathleen or her screeching. She pushed up off the couch and followed him. He could hardly have chosen anything worse. Kathleen was right; she would be bored out of her mind and consequently would be insufferable to live with.
Grant was locking Kathleen’s electronics in the safe where his service weapon was kept.

Lainie leaned against the doorway, watching him. Aside from the safe, the room contained only an old couch, a battered desk where their computer stood, and several stacks of boxes containing Grant’s law enforcement manuals and Lainie’s teaching materials. The room was mostly bare. They hadn’t had an office in their house back home and hadn’t yet had time to buy much furniture for this one.

“She has a point, you know,” she said. “We don’t know anyone here yet. She uses the phone to keep up with her friends back home. What is she supposed to do if you take that away? You’re essentially forcing her into isolation.”

Grant locked the safe and stood up, turning to face Lainie. “That’s too bad. She’s not supposed to like the consequences. That’s the point. Maybe a week of being bored will remind her to hold her tongue and not be so mean and disrespectful. Surely you are not trying to suggest that the way she behaved is in any way acceptable.”

“No, it’s not that,” Lainie replied. “I know she was rude, but I understand her point. It’s a hard transition. It’s understandable that she would be angry. We’ve taken her away from everything and everyone she knows. You can’t expect her to just accept that. She needs time and understanding, not being forced into even more misery because you took her life line away for being angry.”

“Is that what you think this is about?” Grant asked. “You think I’m punishing her for being angry?” He had moved over to lean against the wall and was watching her intently, arms crossed. Lainie opened her mouth to speak, but Grant continued before she got the chance. “No, I don’t think you do. In fact, I think you know exactly why I did what I did. You’re only in here discussing it because Kathleen came running to you.”

That was uncomfortably true, but Lainie protested nonetheless. “It’s not that,” she insisted. “I just know what this is going to be like for her. She’s going to be miserable, and then she’s going to try to make me miserable in return. You don’t know what it’s like to be stuck in the house with a moody teenager all day. It’s going to be hell. It’ll be more of a punishment for me than for her. Trust me. I speak from experience.”

“That’s even more reason why she doesn’t need to get her way,” Grant said. “She’ll find out quickly that whining and complaining will only make her lose it longer. It’ll be different this time. I’ll be here, for one.”

“No you won’t,” Lainie said stubbornly. “You have to go to Denver in the morning and then I’m sure you’ll find some other errand or something to do. It’ll be me dealing with her and you know it. It always is.”

“It won’t be this time,” Grant persisted. “I’m here now. If she gives you any trouble while I’m gone, just let me know and I will deal with it. It’s my job to set boundaries and enforce them.”

Lainie eyed him skeptically. She really wished she could believe him. She wanted to. It wasn’t that she did not believe he was sincere. She knew he meant it, but meaning it and actually doing it were two different things. Grant didn’t exactly have a good track record when it came to following through and helping her with the kids. However much she wished she could, she had a hard time believing that that was really going to change now.

Grant must have seen what she was thinking on her face because he continued, “Hey, I thought you agreed to let me be the Head of Household?”

He knew damn well she had, but she didn’t believe for a minute that was some magic wand that was going to change everything. “Is that going to be your answer for everything now?” she asked irritably.

Grant didn’t answer. Instead, he crossed over to her and took her chin in his hand.
“Didn’t you?”

Reluctantly, Lainie nodded, huffing in exasperation.

“Then trust me to handle it.”

Why did he insist on acting like everything was just so simple? It wasn’t, not at all.
Things didn’t change like that. Annoyed, she tried to twist away, but he held her fast, leveling her with a steady look, waiting and clearly expecting an answer.

“Okay, okay, fine,” Lainie said. “Just remember I warned you she was going to make everyone’s life miserable.”

Grant didn’t seem concerned in the least. “Duly noted. Oh, and Lainie, you remember you agreed to let me handle it because if you go against me with the kids again, I’ll not only discipline the child. I’ll spank you too.”
 Ruth Staunton lives in a small town in the Southeast with her two cats. She is a voracious reader, who has been writing since middle school. She originally wanted to write mainstream contemporary romance, but her penchant for alpha males soon had her taking a sharp left turn into spanking and domestic discipline fiction. When not writing, she spends her time hanging out with family and watching TV crime dramas.
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