Sunday, September 21, 2014

Review: "Unstoppable" by Melody Grace

A secret scar… Tegan Callahan has sworn off bad boys for good. Growing up on tour with her rock star brother, she knows first-hand the damage they can do. She’s looking for a nice, safe, stable guy – until a chance encounter with a devastatingly sexy stranger makes her question everything she thought she wanted. A troubled soul… Ryland James arrives in Beachwood Bay on the run from his mistakes. He knows he’s the last thing Tegan needs, but somehow, he can’t stay away. There’s something about her fierce beauty that draws him in – and makes him vow to protect her, whatever the cost. A passionate destiny… Their bond is undeniable; the stakes, higher than ever. But the past won’t stay gone forever, and soon, Ryland must make the ultimate choice: will he risk everything he treasures in the world, or keep Tegan safe – and sacrifice her love forever? *This book contains adult situations and explicit content. 17+*

My thanks to Netgalley and Mark My Words Book Publicity for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book.

This was the first book I've read in author Melody Grace's Beachwood Bay Series, and although it is the fifth in the series, rest assured that you can read it as a standalone novel.  Be forewarned, though, that reading it first will only motivate you to read the rest of the series as soon as possible to learn more about these wonderful characters!

"Unstoppable" starts off with a chance meeting between Tegan and Ryland in Las Vegas, and right away their chemistry is obvious. After this rather implausible encounter, neither believes they will see the other again, but through the magic of fiction, they run into each other again all the way across the country in beautiful Beachwood Bay, where both characters are working through some of their past mistakes. Ryland is trying to reconnect with his family after leaving them seven years ago, and Tegan is pulling herself together in solitude after a stint in rehab. Neither should probably be getting involved with anyone at this time, but that's the thing about chemistry, right? Sometimes it's just impossible to ignore.

The writing here was pretty decent. There was a satisfactory build up of sexual tension between Tegan and Ryland, and a wonderful side story involving the families of both characters that was neither too undeveloped or so strong that it overshadowed the main plot. There was a little bit of mystery surrounding Tegan's previous boyfriend, just enough to keep me reading and wondering exactly what had happened between them. And then there was the relationship between Ryland and his mother, which once explained, enabled me to understand some of Ryland's inner turmoil. All of this was quite well done in my opinion. 

Where this story fell short for me was in some of the plot details.  Ryland's association with the mob (or whoever they were) never really felt authentic - I wanted more information for his history  to feel real. The ending felt really rushed and left me asking, "Really? That's it?"  And then there was the insta-lust/love between Ryland and Tegan.  It was just a bit much and a bit too fast for me to completely buy into it. Still, if you're not planning to analyze too closely, then "Unstoppable" is a sweet, romantic read with some memorable moments and great characters.

My rating: 3 stars

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