Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Hot Shot by Kelly Jamieson

A former Navy SEAL and current bad boy bar owner learns to trust a free spirit in this steamy novel of unexpected romance from the bestselling author of Body Shot and the Heller Brothers series.

Marco Solis knows that if he gets too close to people they disappear. His parents were deported back to Mexico when he was fourteen, his fiancée married someone else while he was in the military, and now his business partner’s spending more time with his girl than with Marco. For better or worse, that’s how Marco meets Carrie Garner. She’s legitimately model-hot. She’s also a nut—a wild, artsy, unapproachable nut. So why is Marco so interested in cracking her shell?

Although Carrie Garner is a natural in front of the camera, her dream is to make it as a photographer. Soon she’ll be heading to Spain for design school, and she’ll miss her best friend, Hayden, like crazy. She’ll even miss Hayden’s boyfriend, Beck—but she won’t miss Beck’s partner, Marco. Bossy, brooding, and annoyingly sexy, Marco really pushes her buttons, though he obviously wouldn’t mind pushing her buttons in an up-against-the-wall, hard-and-fast kind of way. The craziest part is, if Carrie lets him do that, well... she may never want to leave.

Add to Goodreads –

Book 2
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Though a little corny at times, this is a pretty good read. I love a good “hate each other turned lovers” story and this definitely qualifies as such!

Marco is part-owner of Conquistadors, a bar, with Cade and Beck. In book one we meet Beck and Hayden, who are soon to be married, and Hayden’s best friend, Carrie, is spending a ton of time at the bar helping her prepare. Marco and Carrie “hate” one another from day one, both having insecurities that cause them to turn what is actually attraction into never ending arguments. Marco decides to throw a surprise engagement party and who better to help him plan it but Carrie? Carrie is a successful model but doesn’t see that as much of an accomplishment in her family filled with people who’ve “saved the world.” To prove herself to her family, she’s accepted a scholarship to study photography in Spain… when her and Marco’s relationship flips from hate to love, it makes her impending journey bittersweet.

My favorite part of this book was definitely the ending… without giving out any spoilers I will say the way that Marco wins Carrie’s heart was too cute. Both Carrie and Marco battle their insecurities throughout the book and I love the way the author sucked me into the story, I felt like I was battling with them. I’m excited to see where the author takes the next book in this series as I found this book even better than book one!

Mary Jo☆☆☆☆
3 1/2 stars rounded up to 4 stars

Carrie and Marco both have issues with feeling less than everyone around them. Carrie was the girl who grew too quickly, all arms and legs, and didn't quite fit in with the IT crowd. Marco's fears were being left behind. His parents were deported when he was fourteen and he was not only separated from his parents, but his sister was taken from him as well as they progressed through the foster system.

Their insecurities limit the way they see themselves, each believing that they are not worthy of the things that their friends have – love and family.

When their attraction to each other becomes undeniable, they give in, but try to hold their hearts in reserve. Each believes the other is just in it for a good time, because neither believes they are worthy of love or long term.

This definitely isn’t my favourite Kelly Jamieson romance. As always, this is a sweet, feel good, fluffy story, but it is incredibly formulaic and I didn’t connect very well with either of the main characters.

I struggled to relate to Carrie in any way. She is a gorgeous and successful model with artistic talent, good friends, and a close, supportive family. Sadly, beautiful Carrie didn’t always feel attractive as a child and she hasn’t always felt valued by her business-minded family. Hmm. Yeah. I couldn’t relate, couldn’t connect, and I really couldn’t summon any empathy.

Marco is a bit more interesting. His years in foster care were genuinely difficult and I like the life he has worked hard to build for himself. His relationships with his Marine buddies are strong and supportive. He is kind to children and good with Carrie’s family. My only gripe is that he’s kinda blandly perfect.

Marco and Carrie bring a whole lot of emotional angst to a pretty straightforward relationship. Insecurities, misunderstandings, and secret emotions add drama – but for me it was a little over-the-top and unnecessary. I enjoyed some of the scenes with Carrie’s family. Her niece and her grandmother add colour and warmth to the story.

Something I’ve commented on before when reviewing other series by this author is my aversion to the cozy girly moments that build as each series progresses. In this book, the girly wedding planning and girly cocktail evenings made Carrie feel even more superficial. Carrie is another of Kelly Jamieson’s stock female characters and I’m a little tired of their supercool jobs and their blandly cool, super girly lifestyles.

This isn’t a bad book, but there is nothing remarkable about it and not much is different from so many of this author’s other books. Like the characters and the storyline, this book is fluffy, predictable, and fairly superficial.

This is the second in the series, and if you read book one, Body Shots, then you will not be surprised at the two leads in this story. And whilst I think you could enjoy this as a standalone, there will be elements that continue from Body Shots.

Marco is a man who is used to being abandoned, and so sets his sights low and relies on himself. He has chosen to be in business with two SEAL buddies. Now one of them has got engaged and is already less involved. When he enlists Carrie to help him throw a surprise engagement party, he knows that they have a less than friendly attitude towards each other, but it is worth it. Any romance reader will immediately recognise the 'methinks they protest too much' vibes, but they never get old!

Watching these two allow themselves to 'like' each other and then more, is hugely enjoyable and at times amusing. They are both good people who have strong creative talents and a desire to please the people they care about, without recognising they deserve nurture too.

Very happy that it would seem that Cade is also going to get his story told and looking forward to it being in my reading list.

Also Available in the Last Shot Series

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo

For reviews & more info, check out our Body Shot post.

Kelly Jamieson is the author of more than thirty contemporary romance novels. She’s a married mother of two who lives a very ordinary life outside of her imagination. She likes coffee (black), wine (mostly white), and shoes (high!). She also loves watching hockey.

Connect with Kelly

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Google+  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Hot Shot (Last Shot #2) by Kelly Jamieson to read and review.

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