The Lemon Sisters by Jill Shalvis
Release Date: June 18, 2019
The Lemon Sisters, an all-new standalone contemporary romance by Jill Shalvis.
When Brooke’s older sister, Mindy, shows up at her door with her three kids in tow, she barely recognizes her sibling who looks like she’s on the verge of a total breakdown. While adventurous, wanderlust Brooke was always the problem child, eager to slip free of Wildstone and its small-town constraints, Mindy was the golden child, who never had a hair out of place or a GPA below 4.0. The Mindy that arrives at Brooke’s apartment however, is a far cry from the ever-perfect doctor’s wife.
Brooke’s further stunned when Mindy asks to trade places with her for a few days so she can pick up her pieces and put herself back together. What Mindy doesn’t realize is that Brooke is just as broken. Her sister needs her though, so Brooke takes the kids and returns to Wildstone.
But how does one go home after seven years away and what feels like a lifetime of secrets? It doesn’t take long for Brooke to come face-to-face with her past, in the form of one tall, dark, sexy mistake. But Garrett’s no longer interested, or so he says. Only his words don’t match his actions, leaving Brooke feeling things she long ago shoved deep.
The sisters begin to wonder if the childhood taunts were true, are they lemons in life? In love? True or not, they know one thing—you can’t run far enough to outpace your demons. And when long-dead secrets surface, they’ll have to overcome their differences and learn that sometimes the one person who can help you the most is the one you never thought to ask.
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“Okay,” she said. “Time for me to go to bed.”
“Or you’re running,” he said. “Again.”
She closed her eyes and told herself to ignore the soft taunt. No matter what they’d been – or hadn’t been – to each other, she wasn’t looking for love with anyone, and certainly not a wash and repeat with the one man who could destroy her. It wasn’t as if she’d been a monk. She’d dated, but she hadn’t let anyone in. Not ever. Even Cole had complained about the brick walls she’d encased her emotions in.
And he was right. She could get involved to a point, but she always pulled back.
“You don’t have to run from me, you know,” Garrett said. “There’s no reason for there to be anything but honesty between us.”
Yes, there was… “Maybe I’m just not feeling it.”
Another soft laugh. “Okay.”
“Hey,” she said and poked a finger in his pec. His hard, ungiving, sexy pec. “If I was feeling it, you’d know.”
“Yeah? How?” he challenged.
“I’d be …flirty. I certainly wouldn’t be thinking of all of your faults.”
He grinned. How like a man to not be worried about his faults.
“So what are these so-called faults?” he asked, curious. Still not concerned.
“Well, for starters, you’re wearing black knit boxers with bananas on them.”
This made him laugh outright. “Someone sent me a subscription box. They come once a month. Last month’s pair had cocks all over them.”
“Like … chickens, or…?”
He was still smiling. “If you’re curious, I’ll be happy to wear them tomorrow and give you a peek.”
“Whatever,” she said. “And the fact that some woman sent you a subscription to undies is another reason I’m not feeling it. You’ve stayed friends with every single person you’ve ever met.”
“And that’s a fault?”
She shrugged. Of course it wasn’t a fault. It was the opposite of a fault. “Well, except for me, of course.”
“Because you don’t answer phone calls, texts, emails…” He tilted his head. “Tell me something.”
Oh boy. “What?”
“Why did you and your last boyfriend break up? That Cole guy.”
“I told you, he’s my boss.”
“But you’re sleeping together,” he said, his eyes holding hers prisoner. “Or you were.”
“How do you know that?”
He smiled grimly. “You just told me.”
Dammit. She crossed her arms over her chest. “We’re not together if that’s what you’re asking.”
“Why what?” she asked.
“Why aren’t you together?” he pressed.
“Because I don’t like him like that.”
Did his eyes warm very slightly, or was that her imagination? “Because you’re just not feeling it?” he asked mockily, using her words.
She rolled her eyes. “You think you’re funny. How about we talk about you. Tell me about the girlfriend you said you don’t have. The one who called you the other day for a hookup.”
“It wasn’t a hookup. She dumped me.”
She snorted. “Right. You expected me to believe a guy who looks like you do, and is funny and smart like you are, got dumped?”
“Actually, I expect you to believe whatever I tell you.” He shifted close until they were knee to knee. “Because I’ve never lied to you, Brooke. Never will.”
Our earliest relationships, the ones with our families, are often the ones that define us, prepare us for all of the others that will come after. Sisters Mindy and Brooke Lemon were, once, closer than close, the best of friends, but time and circumstance have brought distance. When Mindy, always the perfectly in control sister, shows up in Brooke’s life after seven years, she’s a version of herself that Brooke doesn’t recognize. Brooke shook off the dust of Wildstone years ago, but agrees to go back to take care of Mindy’s life back home. Brooke has ghosts of her own in Wildstone, and going back may be the hardest thing she’s ever done…
Goodness gracious, how I loved this book. I mean, it’s Jill Shalvis, so that was a given, but THE LEMON SISTERS is just the book that I needed to read right now. I love all of Jill’s books, every single one of them, no matter the series, but there’s really something special about the Wildstone books, and this one delivered in every way. The place, the characters, their stories, these books are more than the average romance, and ones that immediately end up on my favorites list.
I adored every one of the main characters in THE LEMON SISTERS. “Carefree, but not really” Brooke, “Wife/woman on the verge” Mindy, “Checked out but ready to change” Linc, and Garrett, the “broody, moody, still in love but can’t open up” man that Brooke left behind all those years ago. Communication, forgiveness, and the willingness to change are themes that each of them have to deal with, and Jill has written a story that gave them, and me, the closure that they are looking for. And I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that I fell in love with Mindy’s kids and Garrett’s menagerie. They really just made this story even more special.
THE LEMON SISTERS, and the other two books in the Wildstone series, are not Jill’s standard style, but they are a breath of fresh air, and a welcome addition to my TBR. Fans of not only romance, but women’s fiction, will enjoy them, and I highly recommend them.
New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jill Shalvis lives in a small town in the Sierras full of quirky characters. Any resemblance to the quirky characters in her books is, um, mostly coincidental. Look for Jill’s sexy contemporary and award-winning books wherever romances are sold and click on the blog button above for a complete book list and daily blog detailing her city-girl-living-in-the-mountains adventures.
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