Monday, November 18, 2013

Review: Friends & Lovers Trilogy by Bethany Lopez

Friends & Lovers Trilogy
(Make It Last, I Choose You, Trust In Me)
By: Bethany Lopez
Pub. Date: March 2013
Publisher: Self
Source: Blog Tour

I received this galley in exchange for an honest review.

Friends & Lovers Trilogy includes Make It Last, I Choose You and Trust In Me. I have only read I Choose You and enjoyed it, so I jumped at the chance to be able to review all three books. For this review, I have decided to write a mini review for each of the three books.

This is a New Adult title - Meant for readers 18 and older.

In a small town, it's hard to recover from being dumped by your high school sweetheart. That's just what Briana has to do after Colin leaves her to follow his dreams. She focuses her energy into her friendships and the pursuit of her own goal of becoming a chef. Just when she finally feels like she's on the right path, he comes back to town.

Colin knew breaking up with Briana before leaving for college was the right thing to do. He was determined to leave small-town life behind forever, and that included his high school girlfriend. But when a sports injury puts him on the sidelines, he's forced to return home. Seeing Briana again brings back a lot of memories, and Colin wonders if he made the right decision. It doesn't take long for him to realize he wants her back, and this time, he wants to make it last.

Bree thought that she and her high school boyfriend Colin would be together forever. But when Colin goes off to college he decides he doesn't want to try the long distance thing. Bree has done her best to move on, but now, Colin is back home after an injury, and she realizes she is still really hurt and angry about what happened. I enjoyed watching the two of them rekindle their relationship, and watching them fall in love again. I especially loved the glimpses into the first time they were together. Overall a nice NA story, with a different twist.

Up until now, Nicole's life has been mapped out for her. She'd go to college, marry Jake and become the upstanding minister's wife. When she leaves that life to begin again in a small town in Texas, she finally has the freedom to live as she chooses. There, she meets Kent, a guy whose charm and passion make it hard to stick to her morals.

Dodging his father’s fists and protecting his twin sister made Kent into the man he is today. He learned by watching his mother stay by his father’s side that it’s better to keep relationships simple. Then he meets Nicole. Her sweet smile and genuine response to him land like punches to his resolve. After a lifetime of learning to protect his heart, can he finally let down his guard?

I really enjoyed Nicole and Kent's story. I actually enjoyed it a lot more the second time I read it. Nicole left her family's home because she didn't want to live the life they had mapped out for her. Kent is a sweetheart with a huge heart. Everything that Kent has done in his life was to protect his sister from their abusive father. I always respect characters that do things like that. Their relationship was sweet and real, and I was rotting for them completely. The two of them had a wonderful connection that anyone would be jealous of.

Roni’s dreams of becoming a contemporary dancer were smashed under the brutal rage of her ex-husband's fists. Getting divorced and starting over at the age of twenty-two was never her plan, but maybe in Texas, she'll find her path. When the town's local player, Rich, opens a Rec Center, she sees a way to rekindle her dancing dreams...and maybe have a little fun with her sexy new boss.

Rich never expected to fulfill his dreams in the town he planned to leave behind, but that's just what he's doing. His reputation as a noncommittal ladies' man might make it challenging to earn respect in the business world, but he's willing to prove that he's serious. In fact, when it comes to pursuing Roni, he's more than willing. But she's taking a page out of his book, not wanting to risk another relationship. Can he convince her that his playboy days are over and that she can trust him with her heart?
The last story in the trilogy is about Roni and Rich and easily my favorite of the three. Roni, who we met in I Choose You, is Kent's sister, and even at 22 you can tell all her brother wants to do is protect her, especially after what happened with her ex husband. Rich is the town player who acts like he doesn't give a crap about anything, but he really is the kindest man who wants to actually help people. I really loved these two together. I thought they were absolutely perfect for each other, and just what the other one needed.


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