TURN ON THE CHARM
Eternal good girl Casey Tanner moved to White Pine for a fresh start. Her mission: to finally have fun. And a fling with a reckless bad boy is the very first item on the to-do list she pretended not to make. After one long, lingering look at a sexy firefighter, Casey has found her man.
. . . AND TURN UP THE HEAT
Getting women into his bed has never been a problem for Abe Cameron. Letting one into his heart is an entirely different matter. But just one kiss, just one touch, just one smile from beautiful Casey has this lifelong bachelor flirting with the idea of forever. And Casey's refusal to settle down only makes Abe more determined than ever to win her heart. Now the one woman who can't be caught is the only one Abe can't live without . . .
In the satisfying third title (after And Then He Kissed Me) of Amos's White Pine contemporary series, the Christmas season gets off to a good start. Casey Tanner nearly sabotaged the dream-come-true romance between her sister, Audrey, and a handsome biker. Now that everything has been sorted out, Casey uproots herself from a staid and predictable city life and embraces Audrey's recommendation to move to the tiny town of White Pine, Minn. She finds a new job as an accountant at a small, welcoming youth reading center, and decides that her goal for Christmas is to have an exhilarating fling with no strings attached. Having raised Audrey nearly on her own after their parents' death, Casey isn't interested in kids or marriage. When she meets Abe Cameron, the town's most eligible firefighter, sparks fly and Abe resolves to win Casey over. As in the series' earlier installments, the women in the Knots and Bolts cooking group provide loads of advice and laughs, while an unknown arsonist adds some mystery. The pair have plenty of passion as they engage in enough sexual escapades to fulfill Casey's dream and keep readers glued to the pages.
Every Little Kiss is the 4th book in the White Pine series, but it absolutely stands alone. That's not to say that it didn't make me want to read the first three books - because it did. I met Casey at the beginning of this book, but readers of the series to date would recognize her from her sister's Audrey's book And Then He Kissed Me. But it's OK if you haven't met her yet, because you get to know her quickly. From what I understand from the previous book, Casey feels the need to redeem herself in her sister's eyes. Casey has been raising her sister basically alone since their parents died and that has forced her to take a rigid approach to life. She has an almost desperate need to control what's happening in her life in the hopes of controlling the outcome. As we all know, we can try as much as we can but sometimes things just happen. It's really fun to watch as Casey even tries to control her "breaking out of her shell" with a list. The list. The infamous list. The list that becomes the lynch pin in her budding relationship with Abe.
Enter Abe. I love Abe. He's almost like a schizophrenic personality, switching from all gruff and commanding, to gentle and sweet like the flip of a switch. We come to find that he chooses to live life "skin deep", never digging down into some of the relationships that could possibly be good. I think his personality is just so different than the rest of his family that his struggles are because he's trying to find a way to fit in. But, gosh, I love him. He's incredibly sensitive to Casey when he first meets her (until he isn't) and his commitment to the literacy center is wonderful. He's got some good relationships with the guys and gals he works with at the fire station, and despite himself, even with his family.
The variety of characters in this book is wonderful. There is a ladies group that Casey has joined with her sister, because she knows that's what you do. But she struggles to fit in and I could so identify with her in that. But they embrace her anyway. And then there are the other firemen. I look forward to Quinn's story coming up - HER story looks to be interesting. The town setting provides a wonderful winter backdrop for the story and Casey's love of Christmas, another thing I can relate to.
Overall, a wonderful holiday read in a lovely small town in Minnesota.