This is the first book in the Once a Marine series. I don’t know if it is the whole alpha thing that military men have going on or what it might be. But I have a big ol’ soft spot for these books where retired soldiers who knew untold grief and devastating trauma find some happy-happy. And that whole middle age crap that I have going on added to the not having any kids of my own–makes me love these books where people are pregnant or have hidden babies like the book equivalent of candy.
I felt a little like this book ripped me off a little. I thought with the title “The Baby Bargain” it would be an actual baby… but hey, Adam Waters was an acceptable Band-Aid for the misleading advertisement. I forgive you for not giving me an actual baby in the bargain, Jennifer. The alpha male went a long way to ease my distress.
Megan Young has sailed the Adam Waters seas a few too many times before. She dated him during college and he broke her heart when he left her for the Marines. The last time he came home for his parent’s funeral she dipped her toe in and came away with a souvenir that Adam isn’t even aware he left. But Adam is ALWAYS leaving and since when the last time he left Adam told her he was never coming back, he doesn’t even know that he has a son. From all the history Megan has with Adam though, the one thing she does know is that Adam doesn’t want a family. She is pretty sure he won’t want their baby boy, but he doesn’t need to, because she has all the love in the world to give him–since she was left with an overabundance when Adam left anyway.
For the last decade Adam has survived war torn countries and watched his friends die horrible deaths. He’s back in Raven’s Cove to sell his folk’s home and get free of the last tie to the place that is an albatross around his neck. The only bright spot in the dark memories of his home town is Megan. She was what got him through the worst nights in the even more nightmarish places. It was her face, the very memory of her that gave him the fuel to keep on. When Adam saves a stray dog after it is struck by a hit and run and brings it to her for care at her clinic he uses it as a means to reconnect. And maybe to get a little TLC for himself as well.
These two have NO willpower where the other is concerned. They are like magnets. I’m pretty sure they can smell one another within a mile radius and from that point forward lose all ability to function as competent, logical platonic adults. I would say it’s disgusting but they really are GOOD for one another and it was one of those loves that just makes you feel tingly inside when you read their story. Adam is a great broken, boob of a bad boy. Megan is a perfect let-me-kiss-it-if-it-hurts-heroine and when they are on the same page I think Jennifer Apodaca wrote pure romance novel magic.
If I have any complaints at all it would be that the who-dun’it? was a bit too obvious. This wasn’t a mystery novel per se like many of the other titles written under this name, but I loved it just fine for the mushy-kissy-face story it was. I really can’t wait to read more in this series. I’d like to learn about this mysterious Cooper Sims. He sounds like one of those guys who will slip into a retirement home and make threats to your grandfather while playing bridge with him. ~I got that from that thing Adam said about sending Cooper to see Meg’s dad. I didn’t pull that bridge thing out of my dupa.
Jennifer Apodaca also writes paranormal and contemporary titles under the name Jennifer Lyon. Check out her website, Facebook, Goodreads as J. Apodaca & J. Lyon, Amazon Author Page as J. Lyon, and Twitter.
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