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  • Good, just didn't measure up to others in series

    One Under is the ninth book in the Porthkennack series, which features works by various authors and takes place in a Cornish town steeped in history. While they occasionally loosely linked by characters or local lore, the books all can be read as standalones. This is the second book Miss Merrow has wrote for the series, so there’s a bit more overlap with these characters. However, I have yet to read that book and had no trouble at all jumping right in with the couple featured in One Under. This title had so much potential with likable characters, an extensive backstory, and a good plot, but it never really fell in line for me. Although I certainly enjoyed Mal and Jory’s story, the pacing regularly felt off- a bit jumpy and often repetitive enough that I was tempted to skim. Additionally, Mal’s hot and cold routine trampled my nerves as well as Jory’s feelings, leaving me less than enthused about his character as the book progressed. This frustration was compounded with the insta-love bit. Though it wasn’t so blatant to really bother me at first, it felt as though deep feelings came out of thin air rather quickly, which was especially hard to accept given how much back and forth was occurring without a lot of honest communication. Although I did like the idea of Jory and Mal as a couple, there was simply too much time wasted on getting to that point when I’d rather have seen the relationship develop on page and the men sort through their personal and familial issues. I did appreciate that their extraneous issues with Jory’s siblings, Jory’s ex, and Mal’s PTSD weren’t magically mended with a dollop of love, but this book didn’t quite reach the heights I expected when I first started the story. I think fans of this series or author may enjoy One Under, but I can’t say it’s one of my favorites within the Porthkennack series. *Received eARC via Netgalley. The publisher and author had no influence over this review*

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