New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jay Crownover continues her delightfully sexy Saints of Denver series with the next thrilling standalone, SALVAGED! Don’t miss this amazing new novel and grab your copy today!
5 All In CROWNS
I have enjoyed every single book in this series of standalones. With her last book, I thought Church owned my heart, but Hudson Wheeler plowed him over. Wheeler, Poppy, and their story to happily-ever-after is a paragon of romance.
The one aspect of Jay Crownover’s characters that makes me enamored with them every single time is how they are broken but not damaged. These men and women have all suffered some kind of hardships, some worse than others, but all of them are survivors, none more so than Hudson and Poppy. These two have been put through the ringer by life and the people who should have loved them. What is admirable about them, though, is that they aren’t damaged beyond repair. They are a tad beaten down, maybe still suffering from the effects of crimes committed against them, but they are both still fighting and still trying to heal and do in the arms of each other. These two build this relationship on compassion, understanding and support. They accept each other, flaws, issues, etc. and trust implicitly, making them a model relationship for what real love look likes.
The chemistry between them from the very first kiss is magnetic. With little to no touching, Jay Crownover is able to convey the electricity that pulls them together. As Poppy’s trust builds, their intimate moments together only get that much better, and readers will not only enjoy these steamy scenes but they will also find happiness in each moment because it captures how Poppy is starting to really heal and live again.
Jay Crownover can write a romance that always has me sitting on the edge of my seat. There is a little bit of everything: angst, passion, suspense. Behind every story, though, there is always a theme that resonates. For Salvaged, the author really drives home the idea of family and what makes a family. Through this story as well as the series, readers get to see that family is really about support, love, compassion, and understanding. Blood doesn’t matter, love does. Being ALL IN with every single person you consider to be family is what is really important.
I am so sad to see this series end, but Jay Crownover delivers an epilogue that brings it all together and leaves readers with that happy, warm feeling of contentment, as this whole “family” has gotten to their HEAs. It is truly a series that everyone should read, and it will be going in my re-read pile, as I am not sure I will ever be able to let them go.
ARC received in exchange for an honest review.
Hudson Wheeler is a nice guy. Everyone knows it, including his fiancée who left him with a canceled wedding and a baby on the way. He’s tired of finishing last and is ready to start living in the moment with nights soaked in whiskey, fast cars, and even faster girls. He’s set to start living on the edge, but when he meets Poppy Cruz, her sad eyes in the most gorgeous face he’s ever seen hook him in right away. Wheeler can see Poppy’s pain and all he wants to do is take care of her and make her smile, whatever it takes.
Poppy can’t remember a time when she didn’t see strangers as the enemy. After a lifetime of being hurt from the men who swore to protect her, Poppy’s determined to keep herself safe by keeping everyone else at arm’s length. Wheeler’s sexy grin and rough hands from hours restoring classic cars shouldn’t captivate her, but every time she’s with him, she can’t help being pulled closer to him. Though she’s terrified to trust again, Poppy soon realizes it might hurt even more to shut Wheeler out—and the intense feelings pulsing through her are making it near impossible to resist him.
The only thing Poppy is sure of is that her heart is in need of some serious repair, and the more time she spends with Wheeler, the more she’s convinced he’s the only man with the tools to fix it.
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I put my hands to my cheeks and held my face. I could feel heat under the surface and I could hear the rush of blood between my ears.
“Are you going to be okay? Do you need me to get you something? Should I grab Dixie?” He sounded genuinely concerned about me and that only made me shake even harder.
“No, I’m fine.” I wasn’t fine and hadn’t been in a very long time. “Dixie is in Mississippi. She took Dolly down because Church moved into the house he rented for them and she wanted the dog to get used to their new home and so she could see what it was like to have a yard.” I was babbling but I couldn’t stop the words from pouring out. “How do you move me without laying a hand on me?”
He looked up from where he was watching the puppy dig into his chow. Those blue eyes were like lasers as they cut into me from across the room. He put his hands on the counter and leaned forward. “What are you talking about?” His voice held that same even tone but there was something in it, some deeper note, that let me know he knew exactly what I was talking about.
I wrapped my arms around myself in a protective hug and met his look with a pointed one of my own. “I get stuck, frozen with fear. I end up caught between memories and reality. Most people grab my arm or touch me somewhere to get me moving again. Either that or they go around me like I’m in the way. You made me move without doing anything.”
His eyebrows shot up and the corners of his mouth pulled down in a frown. “People shouldn’t touch you unless you tell them it’s okay, even if you are in the way.”
His words had me shivering in a completely different way than I had been before and I was the opposite of cold. “I didn’t use to mind it.” The words cracked and sounded almost as broken as I felt on the inside. “I mean being touched. It was until…after.”
He lowered his gaze and I saw his chest rise and fall as he sucked in a deep breath. “The reason doesn’t matter. If you don’t like it, people should respect that. No one has a right to put their hands on you unless you want them there.”
Right there in that moment I thought I wouldn’t mind it too terribly much if he walked across the room and replaced the frail and thin arms that were currently holding me together with his thick, strong, tattooed ones. It was probably the only touch I would ever crave but I would never be brave enough to ask for it, so I cleared my throat and awkwardly made my way closer to where he was standing. I lifted myself up into one of the barstools that was across the counter from him and put my hands on the cool surface separating us and prayed they would stop shaking.
About Jay Crownover:
Jay Crownover is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of the Marked Men, The Point, and the Saints of Denver series. Like her characters, she is a big fan of tattoos. She loves music and wishes she could be a rock star, but since she has no aptitude for singing or instrument playing, she’ll settle for writing stories with interesting characters that make the reader feel something. She lives in Colorado with her dogs.