Review: Chasing Bliss
Chasing Bliss by Sophie Oak
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Death by Strawberries! That's a new one. But seriously, I have two friends who are allergic to strawberries and they carry their EPI pen with them. At any functions, we are super careful about strawberries in our salads or desserts. Last thing we want is someone to go into shock. It's not a pretty sight. In Chasing Bliss, Gemma is the disgraced big city lawyer who went postal. Personally, I think she was justified. Patrick was an asshole and "big tits" whatever her name was a be-yotch.
For the most part, I felt sorry for Gemma. She's this super hard worker. She possess ambition and her plan was sound. Her execution was even great. Unfortunately, her focus was off. Patrick was a big mistake. She sacrificed and compromised when she should not have. For a supposed "ice princess bitch", she sure was softhearted.
Jesse and Cade are a bit confusing for me. I thought I understood Jesse's background, but near the quarter end of the story, suddenly his history changed. Either than or he didn't tell the full truth to Gemma when he said he did. I try not to think about this disjointed information because it doesn't really matter to me. It still makes Jesse's history depressingly sad. It doesn't change how I feel for him. He's still a decent guy who rose out of a difficult childhood.
Cade on the other hand was a bit odd. I don't fully understand how it was his fault for his family's demise. I think I put it all together, but it felt as though I was missing some key pieces of information. A bit distracting from the story as my brain tries to fit the pieces together, but still, it doesn't change how I feel about Cade either. He's a boy scared to love due to loss. So many stories are based on characters who have this issue. Sometimes it's a tired and used up device. Why is it so prevalent? Then I think about it some more and realize, it's a pretty accurate reflection of real life. So many people are this way. It's rather sad. So when it comes through a story like this and the fear turns around to acceptance, it gives me a warm fuzzy.
This is what Ms. Oak does for me. She gives me warm fuzzies and hope. This story is once again about hope and family. People who have hit rock bottom with nowhere to turn, they still have hope and it isn't some kind of entitlement welfare. Instead, it's real help in the form of friends and family. This type of bonding and small town support is quintessential to a Bliss series book. It's something I expect and every time, Ms. Oak delivers. I particularly enjoyed the "brotherhood" code of when a woman is "owned". It's rather old school yet makes my heart melt. I also like the women killer support group. That was pretty funny. "Hello, my name is xxx. I killed a man, but he deserved it! I feel guilty for taking a human life, but in my defense, he was a son of a bitch and the world is better off without him! I've been kill free for xxx months, xx days and xx hours." Well, the story didn't really go to that detail, but that is how I saw it in my head.
The romantic suspense in this story was actually quite believable. It's less far fetched than some of the other ones - like the Russian mobster hit. It could be due to movies such as Erin Brockovich which lends credibility to this plot. The way the town pulled together and used everyone's talents was amazing. Every one worked together to solve this mystery and catch the villain. All my favourite cast of characters came to play. One day, maybe Ms. Oak will provide us with a little spin off novella about Henry. I'd love to learn about Henry's past. What would be fun for me too, is if Nell knew all along and he realizes he never had to hide that part of himself. She loves him, for who his is, not who he thinks she wants. This contemporary romance story is for menage lovers who enjoy small towns that pull together in times of need.
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