Review – Mixing Temptation (Second Shot #3) by Sara Jane Stone

September 14, 2016 Review 0

Review – Mixing Temptation (Second Shot #3) by Sara Jane Stone

After a year spent living in hiding—with no end in sight—Caroline Andrews wants to reclaim her life. But the lingering trauma from her days serving with the marines leaves her afraid to trust the tempting logger who delivers friendship and the promise of something more.

Following an accident that nearly robbed him of his hopes for the future, Josh Summers believes life has given him a second chance. He wants to settle down with the woman who stole his attention and his heart. And he’s willing to wait until she’s ready to be more than “just friends.” When fear of discovery leaves Caroline pretending to be his date, Josh tempts her to try the real thing—a relationship built on trust, not lies.

But then the past threatens and Caroline must risk everything—including her freedom—to bury her demons before she can take a chance on happy-ever-after.

Title: Mixing Temptation
Author: Sara Jane Stone
Other books by this author that we've reviewed: To Tempt a Seal, To Dare A SEAL, Running Wild, Serving Trouble
Series: Second Shot #3
Other books in this series that we've reviewed: Running Wild, Serving Trouble, Running Wild, Serving Trouble
Published by Avon
Source: Publisher
Published: September 13th 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Romance
Pages: 192
See the title at Goodreads
Purchase your copy: Amazon
Visit the Author's Website
Visit the Goodreads Series Page

Stars: three-half-stars
Flames: three-half-flames
I received this book for free from the Publisher or Author in exchange for an honest review, or I purchased it with my own funds. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
300 Review

I’m a bit of a masochist when it comes to books with themes I’ve lived.  It can be hard to read them if they’re not well written.  I picked this book because I am a Marine as is the heroine, Caroline.  While I found some of the inaccuracies cringe-worthy, the average reader will not notice.

I’m glad Caroline wasn’t portrayed as so tough that she would somehow be unaffected by being attacked.  Going through the fires used to forge Marines make us harder, more capable in many ways but it doesn’t make a woman somehow immune to being assaulted or to the emotions that go with such a crime.  In fact, the difficulties the military has between their culture and their ability to deal with sexual trauma make the woman’s situation much worse in ways.

Josh is so patient.  He’s gotten his second chance in life and he’s going to go for what he wants.  To him Caroline is worth waiting for.  I loved that he didn’t judge her for being raped or for walking away from her unit.  His sweet, persistent wooing of Caroline is just what she needs.  I was a bit torn on Josh though.  The idea of that kind of patience is so nice but made him seem too passive for my taste.  I’d have also thought that after a brush with death he’d be more of a carpe diem kind of guy rather than invest a year plus in a woman with no indication that she’d ever enter a relationship with him.

I felt a little lost because I hadn’t read the first two books in the series.  The large cast of minor supporting characters where a lot to take in with the snippets of detail about their lives.  Stone tried to give us enough about the other story lines to catch up but I still felt I would have been better off had I read the other books.

I also struggled with some other parts of the story.  I thought Noah would have a bigger part since he’s the reason Caroline came to this small town and the bar.  It was also odd that after Josh and Caroline’s initial meeting we jump forward almost a year.  I’m not sure if that’s because that year was covered in other books or Stone just wanted to use the drawn out time frame to prove Josh’s patience and give Caroline time to heal.  Has Caroline healed? How and why?  Also, why was Caroline so quick to step in to rescue a stranger when she’d chosen to run from her own situation?  Because Josh had helped her heal? Because time had?  Because she hadn’t dealt with her problems?

Stone writes well and the book was enjoyable.  I’m glad she addressed the issue of Military Sexual Trauma.  However, parts of the story just didn’t come together for me.

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