Title: Just One Kiss by Susan Mallery
Fool’s Gold Series Book Ten
Publisher: Harlequin HQN
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
Length: 384 pages
Book Rating: B
Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley
He won’t hesitate to put his life on the line…but will he ever risk his heart?
Falling for Justice Garrett was a high point in Patience McGraw’s otherwise awkward adolescence. Even after he disappeared, Patience never forgot the boy who captured her heart. Now he’s back in Fool’s Gold, California, and her passion for him is as strong as ever. But how can she trust that he won’t abandon her again—and her daughter, too?
When bodyguard Justice Garrett was a young man, witness protection brought him to this idyllic town and he never forgot its warmth, or the sweet beauty of his childhood friend. He’s returned to open a defense academy, and the Patience he once knew is all grown up. He can’t resist her smile, or her curves. But Justice’s past doesn’t make him husband, or father, material.
Patience and Justice think they’ll succumb to just one kiss… Then one more… Okay, just one night together. But they might learn that falling in love is beyond anyone’s control.
Just One Kiss is another heartwarming and charming installment in Susan Mallery’s fabulous Fool’s Gold series. In this outing, Patience McGraw and Justice Garrett take center stage but as with other books in the series, readers get the opportunity to catch up with favorite characters from previous novels.
Fifteen years after he disappeared without a trace from Fool’s Gold, Justice Garrett is back in town to open a new business. He immediately looks up his old friend Patience McGraw and they pick up their easygoing friendship without missing a beat.
Patience was on the verge of confessing her feelings for Justice when he vanished from Fool’s Gold. While she always wondered what happened to him, Patience married young and gave birth to daughter, Lillie. After her marriage fell apart, she moved back in with her mom, Ava, went to beauty school and settled into life in her beloved hometown. Thrilled with Justice’s return, Patience is a little wary of giving her heart to a man whose future in Fool’s Gold is uncertain.
As with the other characters in this series, Patience and Justice are well-developed with realistic imperfections. Patience is sweet and infinitely upbeat and cheery. She is a little bit quirky, but that is what makes her so likable.
Justice has a complicated past and he has serious doubts about not only staying in Fool’s Gold but whether he is husband and father material. His conflict is believable and I like that he did not jump into a relationship with Patience without putting a lot of thought into his decision beforehand.
Ms. Mallery does a wonderful job keeping the series fresh with the addition of new characters. Newcomers Felicia and Isabel are quite intriguing and they blend right in with Patience and her friends. Their books are the next two in the series and I am very excited to read their stories.
An interesting plot with just a hint of suspense along with some very steamy love scenes keep Just One Kiss moving at a brisk pace. Susan Mallery has created a wonderful, tight-knit community for her colorful cast of eclectic characters. All in all, another light-hearted and appealing romance that I highly recommend to old and new fans of the delightful Fool’s Gold series.
Read my reviews of the other novels in the Fool’s Gold series HERE.