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WhiskeyintheJar Romance

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Guest Reviewer at:  Reading Between the Wines book club

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"She thought it over, but couldn’t see any immediate loopholes other than the threat of her inner slut emerging, and she could darned well control that little bitch."— Susan Elizabeth Phillips

He's So Fine by Jill Shalvis

He's So Fine - Jill Shalvis

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Armed with a new name former child star Olivia moved to Lucky Harbor with the dual purpose of losing and finding herself.  Growing up in Hollywood with all the positives and negatives that comes with that, has lead her to become a very guarded and weary individual.  Lying by omission has become her new mantra as friendships and relationships start developing, despite her best efforts.  Cole is a native of Lucky Harbor who runs a charter business with two of his bestfriends.  A few years ago with the death of a very close friend, secrets came out that his girlfriend and now deceased friend were perhaps not bickering because they didn't like each other.  As a consequence, Cole has a very rigid line in the sand when it comes to any untruths.  When Cole and Olivia meet chemistry instantly binds them together as past issues lurk to tear them apart.
 
While this is the 11th installment of the Lucky Harbor series I, finally, felt like it was fresh and had something new to offer, something that has been missing in the previous books for me.  Even though families and all the issues that come with them was still a large part of this story, as it has been with all the other books in this series, there was energy to He's So Fine that pulled me into the story.  The story dives right in (literally) as Olivia and Cole meet right away and produce sparks.  They are always front and center and definitely have the chemistry to pull it off.  Olivia has a big heart but never veers into sickening sweet and Cole is the everyday man that just so happens to be gorgeous and be able to give MacGyver a run for his money.  Let's just say the man has the knowledge and a multitude of tools in his pants that are bound to impress.  While Olivia and Cole have lead vastly different lives, they seem to have the same issues, trust, and ultimately are searching for the same thing in life, security with that special someone; this is what makes them work so well as a couple and enjoyable to read about.
 
Past main characters and townspeople (can't leave out Lucille!) are mentioned enough to bring a smile to dedicated fans of the series but not overwhelming enough to confuse any new comers. This is an easy and enjoyable enough read that if you have the time you'll want to read it all in one sitting.  The ending wraps up a little too quickly as Cole's PTSD issues with the fire and explosion he was involved in with and Olivia's family drama are never truly resolved.  I really liked this couple so maybe this is just me being greedy and wanting more of them.  Anyway, I've previously complained that the latter Lucky Harbor books were all starting to run together but am happy to report Ms. Shalvis has stepped up her game again with this one.  There is a huge infusion of sweet and sassy into the story and characters that have made He's So Fine one of my favorites of the series.  I'm once again watching the calendar for the next installment which will feature Tanner the bad boy ex-Navy SEAL.