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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.2 out of 5
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  • Second chances and secret babies

    I read this book when it was first released and recently reread it as it's being reissued. Upon rereading, it was even better than I remembered. I've now read several of Serena Bell's books and have enjoyed every one of them. Her books have that perfect mix of intense emotion, while not being over-the-top dramatic or grim. I love wounded heroes and secret babies as long as the reason for the father not knowing about the child is reasonable. In this case, Mira and Jake met in Washington state when she was 18 and he was 20 and on leave from Army Ranger training. They connected instantly and spent a few weeks together, but Jake didn't want a relationship due to his own baggage (alcoholic father and mother) and never gave Mira his last name, so when she found out she was pregnant, she had no way to find him. She did call around to various bases but since she didn't know his last name, his unit, or even that his first name was Jackson, not Jacob as she assumed, she never found him. She moved back in with her rather controlling father in FL, and has been living with them while raising her now 7 YO son, Sam. Finally, at age 26, she realizes that she needs to assert her independence or else she never will break away, so she takes a job in Seattle. On her first week there, at a physical therapist's office (Sam had broken his wrist), she runs into Jake who is on leave after an above knee amputation. He's growly and surly and barely hanging on to his sanity and initially rejects both Mira and Sam due to his own demons, but then is compelled to seek her out and start building a relationship. I really liked how Jake went from feeling like he no longer had any worth or anything to offer Mira and Sam, to slowly realizing that life goes on and that he wanted to live it fully and be in their lives. Mira also was forging ahead, determined to come out from under her father's shadow and to no longer settle for the "easy" path that he had laid out for her. She was protective of her son, but also wanted to give Jake every opportunity to participate and be a real father to him. ARC generously provided by the author.

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    2 person found this review helpful

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  • Hold On Tight

    Hold On Tight is a sweet, sexy second chance story that I quite enjoyed. I loved the emotional depth of the characters and story. I recommend to those who love military stories.

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    1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • best second chance romance I've read

    Hold on Tight is fantastically written – the perfect balance of emotions, with Jake learning to live again and Mira learning to stand on her own two feet. Plus both have to deal with the fact that they made a child together and now have to decide what that means for them going forward. But Bell does a great job of not letting things get too bogged down. Instead she manages to keep all of her characters steadily moving forward to something better and that HEA that we want so badly for them. (Complimentary copy provided in exchange for an honest review) Full review available at Romantic Reads and Such on wordpress.

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    1 person found this review helpful

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  • Okay but...

    So many narration and less dialogue from the characters making the story less interesting to read.

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  • Second Chance at Love

    Mia and Jake’s second-chance story in Hold On Tight by Serena Bell, book one in her Returning Home series, was an emotional, enjoyable and heartwarming tale. Eight years prior, Mira Shipley had a beautiful summer with the soldier she met, Jake Taylor. Jake was Mia’s first love, her first everything, and unfortunately they parted, not on great terms. When Mia discovered consequences from their last night together, she tried to find Jake to let him know about their son, but was unable to locate him, anywhere throughout the Army. At that point she vowed that if she ever saw Jake again, she would tell him he had a son, Sam. Mia was tired of living at home with her parents and very tired of her controlling father. When she is offered a job, across the country in Seattle, where they used to live, she takes it. Mia is raising her son on her own, without family or a support group nearby, her babysitter just quit, and while waiting for her son during his last PT session, in walks the messiest and hottest guy she’s ever seen, Jake Taylor; Sam’s real dad. Mia never expected to ever see Jake again, and is surprised at his anger and that he is wounded. Jake wanted to be a Ranger since he watched the destruction on 9/11; it is the only life for him. Getting injured and losing a leg in the explosion that killed his best friend has Jake at a loss as to what to do with his life. Then he sees Mia, the one woman he could never forget; the one woman he saw a future with. He is shocked at Mia’s news, that he has a son, but before she leaves, offers to watch Sam for her. Mia accepts Jake’s offer and realizes she needs to be patient with him; as well as give him a chance to get to know his son. Mia soon realizes that when it comes to Jake she’s a goner; there is no way for her to keep this alpha warrior from breaking her or her son’s hearts. After eight years the magnetic attraction and off the charts, sizzling chemistry is still there between them. It is going to take time and determination before they can overcome their fears, learn to trust each other, and maybe, just maybe, re-connect and become a family. Ms. Bell wrote an emotional and heartwarming romance that should not be missed. This tale abounds with emotions, magnetic attraction, sizzling chemistry, wonderful dialogue, and authentic characters giving Mia and Jake a second-chance at love while having a forever together as a family. I highly recommend Hold On Tight to other readers

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