Published by Montlake Romance
Publication Date: March 22nd, 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Forbidden fruit can be downright intoxicating.
Vineyard manager Reese Clark is determined to bring her family’s Oregon winery into the big leagues, and she knows building a new tasting room and event pavilion is her ticket there. Having her ex-husband’s best friend—and her secret college crush—turn up to head the construction project, however, doesn't pair well with her plans. Between her nauseating lovebird parents; her motorcycle-riding, pot-growing grandfather; and her pet alpaca, fond of head-butting groins, Reese has more than enough chaotic characters in her life.
Back in college, Clay Henderson was more likely to be sprawled over a bar than building one. But even if the new clean-living Clay has matured as deliciously as an oak-aged chardonnay, he’s still off-limits. As Reese’s well-laid plans for the winery crumble like bad cork, Clay the newly sober gentleman is sweet enough to rescue Reese from a wardrobe malfunction and still spicy enough to play “I Never” with her. Can he overcome his past rep to offer her a love too heady to ignore?
His years as a stumbling drunk may have stolen a lot of his memories, but he’d never forget the curve of her cheek against her palm as she tapped her pencil on her teeth and looked toward the front of the lecture hall.
Thank you Tawna Fenske for coming into my life. I should apologize now but I found a new-to-me author and I am falling in love with her work. The first book of hers I read was Now That It’s You and fell in love with her brand of storytelling (you will read more about that closer to release day!) and I just had to start reading more. I have a tendency to go author binge crazy once I find one that I connect with. I’m not sure what made me pick this novel first in my binge but I’m glad I did. Flawed characters. Forbidden love. And a second chance not only at love but at life. Let It Breathe was everything that I crave in a contemporary romance.
Now it was more a dull emptiness. Mourning for what was supposed to be, instead of what was.
Let It Breathe had a colorful cast of characters that made this story not only funny as hell but full of depth. First there was Reese, workaholic vineyard manager Reese who is more than ok to abstain from anything romance. Her ex-husband, best friend, and winemaker Eric. Eric’s wife and Reese’s friend Sheila. Reese’s promiscuous but sweet cousin Larissa. Reece’s super-in-love-still parents Jed and Judy. And my favorite, her potty-mouth, old man-whore-ish?, pot smoking, shroom growing, grandpa Albert, aka Axel. A ball buster alpaca, Leon. And Clay who is the rehabbed alcoholic best friend to Eric and Reese. But of course you know by reading the synopsis that Clay is more than just a friend. Clay and Reese are each other’s forbidden fruit. And that forbidden burn between them is so intense. It’s quite possibly my favorite element of this story.
“It was always you, Reese. Always you.”
With the romance genre lately it feels as if lust and sex are replacements for passion and love. Sure, this story was plenty sexy, but you could feel the intimacy between Clay and Reese and I think that intimacy is one of the hardest things to convey in a story. Hell, the intimacy between them felt like a physical character of it’s own. There was Clay, Reece, and how they felt for one another. It was wrapped in their turbulent past, their forbidden future, and the want they felt for each other despite either of those things. And I felt all those things too! The only gripe I had about Let It Breathe was that it felt that it ended just a tad abruptly. I like to say that I don’t need an epilogue, but I really would have loved one. Especially since I wanted to know more about what happened with some of the other characters. Especially Sheila and Eric, and Larrisa, who I hope one day gets her own book. But other than that slight critique, I enjoyed the heck out of this and cannot wait to continue my Fenske author binge 🙂