Tia Louise – One to Keep (Review, & Excerpt)

One to Keep by Tia Louise

Series: One to Hold #2
Source: Review by Request
Copy Provided by the Author
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

There’s a new guy in town…

“Patrick Knight, single, retired Guard-turned private investigator. I was a closer. A deal maker. I looked clients in the eye and told them I’d get their shit done. And I did…”

Patrick doesn’t do “nice.”
At least, not anymore.

After his fiancée cheats, he follows up with a one-night stand and a disastrous office hook-up. His business partner (Derek Alexander) sends him to the desert to get his head straight–and clean up the mess.

While there, Patrick meets Elaine, and blistering sparks fly, but she’s not looking for any guy. Or a long-distance relationship.

Patrick’s ready to do anything to keep her, but just when it seems he’s changed her mind, the skeletons from his past life start coming back.

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Steamy with a an angsty Alpha-Male POV

“Nothing kicks the shit out of you like love.”

There’s noting quite as satisfying as an Alpha-Male falling hard. Patrick’s journey from jaded to love-sick was emotional with just the right amount of humor and a heaping helping of HOT sex.

This book can be read as a stand alone, but I think you might appreciate it more if you read One to Hold first- and there’s really no excuse not to, it’s currently free for Kindle and most other eBook retailers…

See, One to Hold was about the whirlwind romance of Derek & Melissa – and this book is about Patrick (Derek’s Business partner) and Elaine (Melissa’s best friend). A large portion of this book overlaps the timeline of the previous book, but there was no redundancy – everything was fresh and new with this couple.

As a side note, I really enjoyed being able to see how Derek handled the aftermath of his vacation affair with Melissa.

Patrick Knight

It was a dangerous place to be; out of control in my line of work was a career killer. I was the watcher, the thinker. The closer. And here I was committing frat-boy fuckups with would-be porn stars. Something had to give.

Patrick Knight had the single POV of this novel, and I think he handled that responsibility beautifully. The man had quite a bit of baggage to begin with, and his antics early in the book only added to his list of (not entirely insurmountable) character flaws.

What he needed was a woman who could break through to him.
Someone who could make him forget his cheating ex-fiance…
Who could grab his attention for longer than casual sex…
Someone who challenged him intellectually and is close to his age…

Someone like Elaine, apparently.

Elaine Merritt

“I’ve never been like this,” she whispered. “Everything in me wants you.”

If we don’t count Patrick’s cheating ex, Elaine was the THIRD woman that Patrick hooked up with in this book. Even though we knew that they would wind up together (because the first book in the series revealed their relationship) Elaine was kind of a throwaway character for me… We didn’t even lay eyes on her character until the 30% mark.

Patrick’s baggage increased and became more complicated throughout the book (I know that’s a bit vague, but I’m trying to avoid spoilers) so Elaine really had her hands full if she wanted to pursue a relationship with a man she barely knows…

Perhaps if the POV was split, and I had a better understanding of Elaine’s thought process, I would have enjoyed her character more…

As it stands, however, I couldn’t really see the reason Elaine chose to continue seeing Patrick. He was kind of a hot mess… Emphases on the HOT… so I guess that’s something?

OK, so that’s the “Rational” Shurrn talking.. The “I love to read Fiction” Shurrn firmly believes that a Hot Mess Alpha Male makes for a fabulous story – so many little twists and turns with all the women in his life.

It was a little bit crazy and a lot entertaining!

I’m thrilled to hear that Kenny will be getting her own book later in the series. She was such an intriguing character, and I look forward to learning more about her.

If you read and enjoyed One to Hold, then I definitely think you should read this book. It appears that the third book in the series, One to Protect continues the story of both couples (with a primary focus on Derek & Melissa) so it looks like there’s lots more in store for us!

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Excerpt:

Suppressing a grin, I cupped her cheeks again and covered her mouth with mine. Her lips parted, and our tongues met. I felt her relaxing, and in that moment, the questions in my head were answered—and the answers satisfied me deeply. She was mine. No matter what came next. With a calm confidence, I knew I’d never let her go again.
My mouth moved to her cheek. “Nobody’s getting over anybody here. So why torture us both?”
Her body shook with her small laugh. “Aren’t you trained for torture?”
“Yes, but you’re not.”
She slid down and put her cheek against my chest again. My fingers threaded into her silky hair. She was so beautiful in my arms.
Her head turned, and she rested her forehead on me, exhaling deeply. “I still don’t want a long distance relationship.”
But her words didn’t knock the breath out of me like the first time. Back then, I wasn’t sure of anything. Now everything had fallen into place. Everything felt possible. I pushed against the mattress, sitting up and bringing her with me. Her green eyes glistened when they met mine, but I smiled.
“So we’ll figure it out,” I said, smoothing my thumbs over her cheeks. “We’ll get through the weeks however we can, we’ll be together on the weekends, and we’ll figure out what the future’s going to look like. This distance is not forever.”
Her head dropped, but only for a moment. When she lifted it again, she moved forward, wrapping her arms around my neck. My hands spanned her waist before sliding up her body to her beautiful breasts. The scent of cactus flower surrounded me, and I lay her back, ready to catch up on all the days we’d missed.
“Now, that first time was amazing, but it went way too fast.” I covered one tight nipple with my mouth and then the other as her little moans began, her fingers threaded in my hair. 
“You think?” she sighed.
“Yes,” I said against her body, traveling lower. I kissed her flat stomach, inhaling the warm perfume lingering on her skin. She whispered my name, and I gave her belly one more kiss before catching her thighs and spreading them open.

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About the Author:

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Tia Louise is a former journalist, world-traveler, and collector of beautiful men (who inspire all of her stories… wink)—turned wife, mommy, and novelist.

She lives in the center of the U.S.A. with her lovely family and one grumpy cat. There, she dreams up stories she hopes are engaging, hot, and sexy, and that cause readers rethink common public locations~

It’s possible she has a slight truffle addiction.

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2 thoughts on “Tia Louise – One to Keep (Review, & Excerpt)

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