After We Fall
A hot tortured farmer? A city girl teaching him how to love again? Sign me up!
Margot has a late visitor. Her ex wants to get back together and proposes to her. If that doesn't smell fishy...yet she considers it. The next day at a fundraiser he presents his "new fiancé". Only...it isn't her. She's had enough, something's gotta give. After throwing a tray of scones at her ex-jerk she decided to go out of town to get away from the gossip. She takes on a new client on behalf of her and her best friend's PR agency, a small family farm whose owners focus on sustainable agriculture.
Jack's and his brothers' farm is struggling a little bit. They need to grow brand awareness, stand out from the multitude of farms but Jack doesn't like change. And the barbie doll who is supposed to show him his own business? No way is he on board with the plans she has for the Valentini Brothers Farm. Add to that the feelings this woman awakes in him, feelings he doesn't want and deserve...he needs to get rid of her and fast.
Jack and Margot couldn't be any different. He is an ex soldier now farmer with a traumatic past who lost his anchor when his wife died. Grouchy, ill-mannered, downright rude. Margot is a city girl, used to luxury and abundance. Yet something ties them together. They have an insane chemistry and although Jack is volatile and puts up walls within seconds, her big heart and easy smile makes them weaker and wears him down, little by little. She knows how to treat him, to push and prod when he needs it and to leave him be when he doesn't.
Careful, city girl. I'll want to keep you." She laughed as I let her go. But the scary thing was, I was only half joking.
Soon he finds himself seeing more in her than the spoiled city girl he thought her to be. She is strong-willed and doesn't let him roll over her like a bulldozer which I loved. Jack needed somebody who stood up for herself. But she is also incredibly forgiving, because she knows that behind all those walls is a good man and while she didn't leave him hanging for too long his grovelling was delicious and sweet.
Jack's heart is so broken and shattered that it feels like it will never heal. The way he holds on to the past and thinks that he doesn't deserve anything good in his life is painful and so misguided. He lashes out when he feels cornered and hurts Margot almost to a point where you can't fix what's broken. But there is also a sweet side to him and one that can see what he is doing despite his inability to actually DO something about it. Both of them reflect a lot about themselves, Margot probably even more so than Jack.
How could I compare my situation, which was probably just boredom, to his tragic loss? What a spoiled brat I was, complaining about "something missing" from my life. I'd never wanted for anything.
Their whirlwind romance develops fast but even though they give in to their building desire for one another quickly it doesn't feel insta because Jack keeps pushing her away. And anyway was the push and pull in this story an emotional roller coaster.
But forgiving myself would mean giving myself permission to move on, to be happy when I didn't deserve it. I'd never make that mistake again.
My heart broke for these two a thousand times over and when the story came to a conclusion the epilogue was well deserved and beautiful. I left them in a place I felt comfortable with and confident that their future would be bright. It's a story about healing and filling a void they both feel with love.
One more thing I want to mention is their chemistry. God were they hot together. Jack was quite the dirty talker and if he doesn't make your girly parts tingle then I don't know what will!
She wrapped her fingers around my shaft again and looked up at me expectantly.
"Good Girl. Now listen to me. I want you to stop being so fucking polite. Use your hands. Get messy. Make noise. Forget about being queen of the prom and suck me off like the greedy little slut under the bleachers. Got it?"
I have had a lot of firsts this year. This is another new to me author and I know it won't be the last. Melanie Harlow's combination of humor and heartbreak has made me an instant fan. I can't wait to read more of her!
I'd never been so aware of my body or felt so driven by its need. Never experienced hunger or thirst or exhaustion to the point where my body craved food, water or sleep the way it craved to be filled by this man. Connected to him. Anchored to him.