The premise of the book intrigued me and I seem to have a soft spot for the whole wounded character being brought back to life by the right, if not surprising, person. And Shut Up and Kiss Me fit the bill. It was a sweet, sexy, quick and easy read with likeable characters that kept me turning the pages to see what was coming next.
Caden has had his world turned upside down in a short period of time and though he’s healed from some of his wounds, there are some that are still festering and holding him back from moving forward with his life. Cade was surly, uncooperative and unwilling and yet I didn’t blame him for any of it because sometimes getting your head and heart back in the game take some time. Thankfully he isn’t an asshat for the entire book and ended up being a sweet and sexy guy.
Tasha has spent most of her life trying to make her father proud of her but to no avail. She thought she had the perfect boyfriend and that they were destined to have the perfect marriage and life, but that blew up in her face. She has all of this going on and yet there is still a heart of gold that beats in her chest and her need to help people keeps her going, even when the going gets rocky. I liked Tasha. She had a doormat vibe going at times especially when it came to her dad (though that’s understandable) and her ex (yeah, not so much), but her determination to help Cade proved that she had a backbone in there that needed the right type of stimulus to come out and play.
I’ll admit that their relationship moved quickly, but since they didn’t jump directly into the I love you’s I was good with it. I would have liked to see them dig a little deeper into what made the other tick, but they had a decent enough start to make a good go at a relationship. I loved how Tasha never gave up on Cade, that was a huge bonus for me. There were many times when she could have thrown the towel in, but didn’t. She gave as good as she got. Cade for his part, was a pain, but once he got over what he “couldn’t” do, he really did get his shit together. There wasn’t a lot of angsty drama tripping them up and they were pretty damn hot together, but then a big pothole in their journey to their HEA happened and I was alright with it, but not so much with how it was resolved.
Without going full on into spoiler territory with this, the quick and dirty is that the situation revolves around an unexpected reaction which leads to asshattery and then the fallout from that. Now, I don’t think the asshattery was called for, it was mean and grovelling was definitely needed BUT I also think the other party needed to do a little apologizing as well because to me it showed that they weren’t practicing what they’d been preaching about living your life. And while an apology may have been thought, it wasn’t spoken nor did that person fully explain what led to fallout which had everyone firmly on that person’s side. So bottom line, they were both wrong and reacted like asshats. I’m probably in the minority with this, but up until that point I was good with how everything was going and then it went a little sideways. Not what I wanted, but it did and I own it.
As for the writing, the dual 1st person POV was done well and the pacing was good. Devlin and Rena, the MC’s from the first book in the series, show up quite a bit throughout the story and though I didn’t read their book, I never felt lost as to why they were so important to Cade or Tasha. While the last part of the book went a little sideways for me, Shut Up and Kiss Me was still an enjoyable read to escape with for a few hours.
~ Copy received from the publisher via NetGalley & reviewed voluntarily ~
Cade: I tried. I really tried. I should be out of this small town by now, finishing my law degree and partnering up with my buddies, but I couldn’t resist one last street race. Now I’m sidelined in the hospital, and while my injuries will heal, I’m not so sure my voice will return. What kind of attorney can’t talk? Yeah, exactly. I’m afraid that I won’t be able to come back from this... until Tasha Montgomery reawakens every competitive bone in my body.
Tasha: I nearly watched Cade Wilson die on that lonely stretch of road. He’s damn lucky just to be alive, even if he doesn’t realize it. I know he’s destined for bigger and better things, but I don’t mind helping him get there as he relearns everything he took for granted. Cade’s a good student, a real perfectionist; I can tell how much his stutter bothers him. But when he lets his kisses do the talking, everything else disappears. And one day, maybe he’ll be able to tell me that he wants me—as much as I want him.
A former job-hopper, Jessica Lemmon resides in Ohio with her husband and rescue dog. She holds a degree in graphic design currently gathering dust in an impressive frame. When she’s not writing super-sexy heroes, she can be found cooking, drawing, drinking coffee (okay, wine), and eating potato chips. She firmly believes God gifts us with talents for a purpose, and with His help, you can create the life you want.