Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Secret Kiss (Hope Falls, Book #10)

Adam Dorsey was used to living a life of deceit and falsehood both professionally and personally. The former CIA operative—with an extremely high IQ—was ready for a quieter, more authentic life. Enter Jane, a gorgeous and adorable hazel eyed beauty that complicated his plan. No matter what she made him feel, he knew that he had to stay away from her for fear of damaging more than just her innocence… 

Jane Marshall always believed in the power of positive thinking and all that could create. She felt accomplished in her career, and was blessed with great friends and family. And yet, she questioned whether or not there existed a man that would be able to unleash and explore her inexperienced heart…until she laid eyes on Adam. 

Will Adam be able to let go of his past and accept Jane for the genuine soul she truly is? Will Jane be able to navigate through never before had feelings? Are there some things that are even beyond the control of two highly intelligent people? Discover the truth in …Secret Kiss 

A few things: 
  • Any book with Vanilla Ice references is a book I can dig! Her motto came from the immortal words of Vanilla Ice: if there was a problem, yo, she'd solve it. 
  • Same goes for a funny Twilight reference! Why you ask? Maybe it allows me to really feel into the book. I worked at Borders during the CRAZINESS that was Twilight in real time. He'd never had vampire urges before, but apparently, Jane brought out the Twilight in him. 
  • Crazy family members are THE BEST! 
  • And then there is Jane. I love Jane. Jane is awkward in social situation, uncomfortable being the center of attention and clumsy. So, to say to simply - she is me in book form. Therefore, I love her. 
Back to the book. Secret Kiss stars Jane, who we all know and love from working for Mike Gowan, a former congressman who moved to Hope Falls after falling in love with Nikki. Jane caught the interest of one Adam Dorsey. Adam, cousin to Levi (who owns JT's Roadhouse and is newly married to Shelby! LOVED their road to HEA too!) Adam is not interested in taking that road again with any woman, let alone the one who seems to captivate every thought whether he  be working...working out or sleeping. When fate, and Lauren (Hope Falls resident celebrity realtor) places Adam in the only other house near Jane's cottage in the woods things become REAL. She was already concerned with her ability to share her office space with such a distracting specimen... but now she would have to see him in his sweat-drenched workout clothes that clung to  every contour of his carved from stone body. Jane put it best when she thought:

Things between these are comical. Everything from split pants, to robes caught in doors to looking for the contact on the floor that YOU DON'T need - this coupling is made for Rom-Com success. 
"Has anyone ever told you that you are adorable?"
The small wrinkle appeared, once again, above her nose as she shook her head, "Uhh...what? No."
"Well, you are," Adam said matter-of-factly. 

One misunderstood conversation with Jane's well-meaning, but meddling grandparents leave her explaining to Adam why they think he is her beau. Mind you, he meets them after being involved in an intense lip-lock with their bunny, Jane. To Jane's surprise, Adam just rolled with the flow taking every chance this opportunity gave him to touch Jane - which he has been thinking about since he first saw her at JT's. 

I friggin LOVE Jane's grandparents, Wally & Delores. They cement the awkwardness that is the epitome of Jane. 
"Oh, yeah. She's very big on text slang. Half the time I have to Google what she puts because I have no idea. The first time she wrote SMH, I thought it was a new medication that she was taking. My grandparents have always been much cooler than I am." She smiled and ducked her head.
This book was so well written, that it left me feeling like I had just experienced the turmoil of a divorce that was dragged out too long, of a crush that left me breathless with every thought of those dimples, and of friendships that left me giggling with how blessed I was to have girls who had my back like those in Hope Falls. 
"Oh yeah. That boy's a smitten kitten fo'sheezy breezy," Karina stated in her perfect slang, as if this were a fact. She was the only one of them would could pull that off. 
Finally, a few more things: 
  • The love is real. The authors love for the characters they pen. REAL. The love between friendships. REAL. The love that everyone has for this little town. REAL. The love that Adam felt when he first laid eyes on Jane. REAL. I think this is what I love most about the books written by Melanie Shawn. The emotions are real. Not adjective filled ideas of emotions, but straight-up Paula Abdul lyric filled emotions. (Maybe with a little Vanilla Ice on the hook!) 
  • The humor that fills these novels is a perfect amount, not too much that it overwhelms the storyline, but the perfect dose that makes it feel like a real relationship developing. Those innocent quirks that you sweetly pick at. Adam teasing Jane about her snoring is one that makes me think about the first time my now-hubby heard me snore! Of course, I denied it too.
    "Looks like you and your nana are sharing a canoe on your river trip down Denial." 
  • Friendship. I think this is the key element throughout the last 10 books. Yes, I will admit - the sex is HOT! The love is swoon-worthy, but the friendships take the cake. Adam with Declan. (Which, by the way is a damn swoon-worthy name!) The Fabulous Four, and those added along the way. These are the relationships that keep the author's loyal fan base coming back for more! (In my opinion) As Jane started clicking away, Nikki called out for the kitchen, "Side note: ummm, hello? How hawt was Tow Truck Driver Lance?!" "I heard that!" Mike shouted from his office." "Yeah, babe," Nikki yelled back playfully. "I wasn't trying to be subtle." 
  • I need Eli to have his own story. I feel like he is ready to get down to business, and he is like the man who tries to pick up the woman RIGHT BEFORE she finds the one. :) I think he deserves a woman who is a damn handful. Like the Fab Four wrapped up into one kind of handful. 
Lastly, I will leave you with this: Yes, my reviews are random. And OMG, there is SOOOO much more to this story that I didn't touch. That is the magic of Melanie Shawn. The books have so many layers, you feel like you just keep peeling. In a GREAT WAY! Another FIVE STAR READ from these lovely ladies! 


  1. Amazing and well written review! I could NOT have said it better myself. I'm a fan and I'm proud to admit that I've read all 10 books and can't wait for the next (fingers crossed that there is a next!) All Hail Melanie Shawn and Hope Falls.

    1. Right? Geez... I love everything they write!