Desert Isle Keeper
Reckless at Heart
Zoe York brings a heartfelt and extremely enjoyable new series to life with the first volume of her Kincaids of Pine Harbour trilogy, Reckless at Heart.
Ex-firefighter and current EMT Owen Kincaid lives with his teenage daughter, Becca, who has fallen pregnant by her boyfriend Hayden. Hayden has made it clear – multiple times – to Becca during their rocky relationship that his dream of NHL glory means more to him than her or any incipient baby, so eighteen-year-old Becca is stuck between a rock and a hard place, her plans for moving out of Owen’s house to attend college dashed. Owen sympathizes – after all, Becca was the result of a teenage pregnancy herself and he’s only thirty-seven – but he knows Hayden will not help and can only brace himself and try to help Becca cope.
Owen hires Kerry Humphrey as Becca’s midwife. New in town and looking for a fresh direction for her life, Kerry resents Owen’s hovering and micromanaging when it comes to her care of Becca. They fight, they become friends – and soon they become lovers. But Kerry wants kids while Owen is done with his childrearing years (and has taken measures to ensure that they will stay behind him), and in any case, Kerry can’t pursue a love affair with her patient’s dad – so what do they do now?
Reckless at Heart is a fine contemporary romance about the unexpected curveballs life can throw at you. It – and its main characters – are refreshingly likeable, and their romance moves at a gripping but realistic pace. Their differences are settled in a realistic manner, and they actually speak to one another like adults and without undue melodrama.
It’s sensual and sexy, too, and as warm and appealing as spending time with two friends, as Owen and Kerry try to find their grooves and settle into them. There’s an amusing subplot about Kerry having a crush on Ricky Martin as a teenager, and the grumpy Owen’s clash with Kerry’s brighter and lighter point of view is interesting.
I liked all of the secondary characters. Becca is a realistic teenager, and Hayden evolves from being a one-note immature teen dad stereotype. Their secondary romance is sweet. Rachel, Becca’s mother, is definitely an enjoyable part of the story as well. She’s gone on to create a secondary family with several small children with another man while remaining a firmly entrenched presence in Becca’s life. Although Rachel and Owen have a realistically prickly relationship, neither is demonized, and they always put Becca (and eventually her child’s) well-being first.
I loved Jenna, Kerry’s realistic best friend (you can read about her romance on York’s website), and the feeling of a small town, which the author captures with grace and ease.
Reckless at Heart is a sweet story with hot sex between grown-ups, and in this day and age sometimes that’s all a reader needs.
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Lisa Fernandes is a writer, reviewer and recapper who lives somewhere on the East Coast. Formerly employed by Firefox.org and Next Projection, she also currently contributes to Women Write About Comics. Read her blog at http://thatbouviergirl.blogspot.com/, follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/thatbouviergirl or contribute to her Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/MissyvsEvilDead or her Ko-Fi at ko-fi.com/missmelbouvier