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Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Review: More Than You Know by Jennifer Gracen

Sometimes a debut novel just doesn't cut it but that doesn't mean I won't try this author again sometime.

Format: .mobi (A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for the purpose of an honest review. )
Publisher: Kensington
Release Date: December 29, 2015

Hotel owner Dane Harrison, middle brother of a wealthy Long Island family, needs a lounge singer for his new luxury property. With her stunning voice and amazing curves, Julia Shay is perfect. She also seems to be the only woman in New York City who isn’t falling at Dane’s feet. And despite her feisty attitude and his rule against workplace affairs, he wants her—in his arms, in his bed, anywhere and everywhere.

Julia loves her new job, and she knows better than to think she can keep it and Dane. Even if he wasn’t her boss, Julia’s painful history has given her ample reason to steer clear of rich, powerful charmers. Still, their chemistry is unlike anything she’s known, and when it becomes too much to resist, they agree to one no-strings night together. But instead of quenching the fire, the intense encounter only proves how much they have to lose—or win…

I really wanted to like this book. I tried really hard to like it but nope, I just couldn’t get into it. Let me be clear, the potential is totally there, the basic plot sounded interesting and so did the characters but the execution was less than appealing and the characters felt only half way developed.

So the story goes that middle brother Dane Harrison is looking for a lounge singer for his hotel and Julia Shay is perfect plus she doesn’t fall at his feet like other women. But Dane wants her even though he has a rule against workplace affairs. Their chemistry leads them to agree on a one night stand and then it will be back to business as usual but of course, one night isn’t enough for them. Julia has had a bad experience with men like Dane in the past so she’s under no illusions that their affair could be anything more than a fling but Dane has other ideas.

Quick and to the point: Julia didn’t work for me. I understood her reservations about Dane in the beginning, she would have been stupid to jump into any kind of relationship with a man like him after what she went through BUT…

Dane was different in personality than her ex and while it wasn’t obvious to Julia at first, he DID show that he wasn’t what she expected and yet she couldn’t cut him some slack for the longest time. Her whiny, pity party inner monologue was bad enough but when that mentality manifested into her sometimes harsh treatment of Dane that was when I said “Nope. Don’t like her. At. All.”

Dane was a little more interesting and likable but I still felt like he fell a little short of the “Wow” mark. He was a considerate and intelligent character that just loved the ladies. At times he was a bit too Alpha for my tastes but overall he had good intentions.

It still wasn’t enough though.

More Than You Know bounced around in some places and left me a bit befuddled and disoriented. I could have dealt with this but the overall story was lacking something that even now I can’t quite pinpoint. It was like the story was climbing a mountain and moving along at a clunky pace but right as it was about to reach the top and accomplish an awesome plot point only to stall and come tumbling down the mountain. The same happened with Dane and Julia’s chemistry, it started off strong but sort fizzled right before it could accomplish something great.

Final Verdict: I just couldn’t get lost in this book, it managed to get me interested with the first few chapter but it couldn’t keep my interest after a certain point. The series has the potential to be witty, daring and fun if there’s a clear focus and less whining from the characters.

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