Monday, September 17, 2012

Third Time's a Charm (Holland Springs)

Third Time’s a Charm is the 2nd book in the Holland Springs series from Marquita Valentine. From the author’s website.~

Not even Holland Springs' Most Notorious Resident can stop this Love Spell.

Customers come to Rose Holland’s apothecary shop for three things: to hear her uncanny matchmaking advice, to buy the “magical” hair and skin products she sells, and to accuse her of trying to steal their men. For years Rose has been entirely innocent and almost content with that status quo. But that was before sexy, smooth-talking Sasha Romanov came to town and made her want to use her love potions on him… until he broke her heart. Now corrupt town officials want to seize her land and sell it to an industrial giant, and her only hope for help looks like the one man she can’t trust—or stop herself from falling under his spell. 

Alexander “Sasha” Romanov seems like every woman’s dream: charming, handsome and fabulously rich. But while the people of Holland Springs think he’s in town to generously invest in their economy (and possibly one of their daughters), Sasha struggles to save his sick mother from his vicious uncle’s plans by doing everything the greedy businessman wants. And Vlad Romanov wants Rose Holland’s land—at any cost. 

Despite Sasha’s vow to get the job done and keep his hands (and everything else!) off Rose, the blue-eyed witch enchants him. But his mother’s life remains in the balance. Sasha must find a way to protect his mother, sabotage his uncle’s plans, and win the woman who’s captured his heart without destroying everything she loves.

I was given a copy of Third Time’s a Charm by the author with a promise to give an honest review. This is the first book I’ve read from Marquita Valentine, but it won’t be my last. I like her voice and loved so many of the characters in the series.

I loved Rose Holland from the moment she first appeared on the page. She is such a strong woman and is the backbone of her family. She is the one who has always taken care of her family’s land and their heritage. She runs the apothecary shop in town that uses her family secret recipes for hair and skin products. She also is the one who always knows how to match couples up and send them to the Holland Springs when the time is right.

Sasha Romanov comes to town and turns her world upside down. He is being forced by his uncle Vlad to work with the local businessmen to steal Rose’s land from her and her family. Sasha only is working for his uncle to keep his sick mother. Sasha of course didn’t realize how hard it would be to keep his hands off of Rose…or her sweet baby girl Ivy. Sasha and Rose have the best chemistry together. They have some of the best making out scenes I’ve read in a long time. When they finally do make love, it was beautiful and filled with passion.

Of course, Rose and Sasha have many struggles before they can finally get a happily ever after. Sasha has to come clean with Rose about why he is really in town. Rose’s sister Summer, who is really Ivy’s mother comes back and takes Ivy away, and her little sister Skye leaves town to go away to school. Add in Sasha leaving town, and Rose is at a cross-roads in her life. Only after Ivy comes home does life start to seem normal again. The fact that Sasha is still gone from their lives is one thing that keeps Rose from being completely happy. With the help of Sasha’s cousin, Rose is able to finally tell Sasha how she feels and he can finally show Rose how much he loves her too.

I have to say a couple of times, I really wanted to kick Sasha, but really thought Valentine did a great job with the redemption of Sasha and showing the strength of Rose. While this book was the second in the series, I feel like it stands alone well. For more information about the author, please check out her blog.

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