Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Blog Tour Stop & Giveaway ~ Awakening by Olivia Hayes

by Olivia Hayes
Published August 26th 2014
Adult Contemporary Romance


After suffering a terrible loss Caroline closed herself off to any more heartache. Haunted by the memory of love lost, she wonders if her heart can ever heal or if she will be alone forever. When her grandmother passes away Caroline reluctantly travels to a nearby town to help her family settle the estate and encounters a charming and irresistibly sexy man from her past.
Following his brother's untimely death Luke has made it a point to live in the here and now. But he's never been able to forget the beautiful blonde he met years ago. When she reappears unexpectedly he makes it his mission to win her over. Convincing her she belongs with him won't be an easy task, especially when she tries to deny their connection.
When their lives intersect in a wave of attraction, denial, and desperation, will the desire for love be enough to awaken their broken hearts, or will the guilt and grief of the past stand in the way of their budding future together?

★✩★ Buy the Book ★✩★

"That's my driveway you're standing in," said a deep southern drawl. I stepped back to see a man in a big black four door truck.
"Oh, gosh, I'm sorry," I said, taking a more few steps back so he could turn in.
I was waiting for him to head further down the road when he stopped the truck in my path and got out. He was tall, well over six feet. His eyes were hidden by a pair of sun glasses, but I recognized him instantly.
"I'm just going to check the mail," he said. "What're you doing out here anyway?" As he opened the mailbox and reached in to retrieve his mail, I noticed the way the muscles in his arms flexed.
"I was just out for a run," I said waiting for him to recognize me.
He looked over at me and stopped abruptly, as if seeing me for the first time. He lifted the sunglasses off his face and stared at me wordlessly. His dark green eyes held me motionless. He walked a couple of steps towards me raising his hand to touch my cheek. Sparks flew, and I inhaled sharply.
"Caroline," he said hesitantly, and then dropped his hand, searching my eyes.
My skin was burning where he touched it, but I managed to nod slowly.
"Hi Luke."
He didn't say anything for a moment, almost as if he wasn't sure what to do next.
"I heard about your grandmother. My condolences for your loss."
"Thank you," I said, looking down.
I felt a bead of sweat run between my breasts and suddenly realized how I must look.
"You are so damn beautiful." He smiled brilliantly, and my God his lips looked kissable. I tried not to think about how they would feel on me, and realized I was staring at them. God, my hormones were raging! I quickly cleared my throat, and tried to steer the conversation in another direction.
"Since when do you have anything nice to say to me?"
"Caroline, come on. We were such good friends once. I know I didn't treat you well for a long time, but I never stopped caring about you."
"I don't want to rehash the past Luke."
"Caroline, I lost you and Mark in the same day, and it broke my heart. I wondered how you were, how you were coping. I thought about calling you a million times, but I never knew what to say. Since then, I've been trying to get my life back on track, live in the moment and not dwell on the things I can't change, but you being here...... it's like a second chance."
I shook my head at him.
"I haven't moved on Luke. I still miss Mark every day, and I haven't forgotten how you treated me all those years."
He looked at me sympathetically. "I apologized for all that already. And I miss him too, you know."
"You used to stare at me like you couldn't stop looking, and then you would barely speak more than a word to me when I tried to talk to you. You accosted me in hallways, kissed me, screamed at me, disappeared. That's not something I can just forget, apology or not."
His green eyes simmered as his eyes narrowed.
"How was I supposed to act when the one thing I wanted most wasn't mine to have?"

I'm in love with you Caroline, I always have been. Just give me a chance to show you how great we can be together.”

★✩★✩★ 5 -Emotionally Charged, Lust Fueled- Stars ★✩★✩★
~this review may contain minor spoilers~

If I could sum this book up in one word it would be...WOW

After Luke left for college I rarely saw him, except around holidays. I missed him, his smile, his laugh, and the connection I thought we shared. But Luke never admitted to having any feelings for me, and eventually pushed me away. Since then he'd been surly, unforgettable, angry, perfect, and mean. But one thing he never was, was mine.

Suffering from a devastating loss two years age, Caroline has been shut off from living her life. Emotionally numb and unable to move on, she goes through the motions doing what she needs to survive and get through, but she is not living. When her grandmother passes away, she agrees to go with her mom to help settle the house and estate, returning to the small town she used to vacation at when she was younger which brings forth a swarm of memories she has tried so very hard to suppress. What she never could have expected, and isn't nearly prepared for, is running into a sexy-as-sin blast from her past. The feelings and emotions that rush to the surface for the first time in years is enough to knock her on her ass-she has no idea what to do with them and wants nothing more than to run in the opposite direction...but he is having none of that.

After the sudden death of his younger brother, Luke has vowed to live his life to it's fullest. When he sees Caroline for the first time in years, he refuses to let the one woman he has ever loved out of his life again. But convincing her that they are meant to be, while struggling through their mutually explosive chemistry, is easier said than done. Will he be able to help her heal and finally move on with her life; with him, or is she destined to remain hidden in her bubble of pain and suffering.

I know Mark would have made you happy, and your father and I would have been proud to have him as part of our family.”
“I feel a 'but' coming”
“But, you never looked at Mark the way you do Luke. You didn't blush every time his eyes met yours, and you certainly didn't allow him to whisper dirty things to you at the dinner table.”
“You heard that?”
“Yes, I did. But, I'm not judging.”

This book tore me apart, then slowly pieced me back together before ripping me up once more....again and again. The pain that Caroline went through, the guilt that she suffered- it's not something you can truly comprehend without experiencing it first hand; although, the author does a fantastic job of making you feel what she's going through. I will admit that little miss Savannah (Caroline) frustrated the ever lovin' hell outta me on a few occasions; she mastered the art of waffling, but I at least understood where she was coming from-even if it did kinda drive me nuts. Now Luke was pretty damn perfect. That man had the patience of a saint, but he's a man who knows what he wants and will not stop til he gets it, even when he is getting put through an emotional wringer of his own. And lets not forget how incredibly sexy he was; melt your panties, take a cold shower, how can you not want to jump him?!-SEXY (This book had some of The Hottest sex scenes I have read). I. Am. In. Love!! These two really were exactly what the other needed, even if it took some convincing- the best things in life are worth fighting for. As an added bonus, we also had a fabulous cast of secondary characters. They all brought something to the story, everyone was unique and they each played a crucial part in our leads lives. And then, as if the author hasn't put our hearts through enough, there is a major plot twist towards the end that literally made my heart stop, tears blurring the pages with a silent scream perched on my lips. I have never just frozen up like that while reading before- holy friggin intensity. I am truly amazed that this is a debut novel; Olivia Hayes has swept me off my feet, stolen my heart and my sanity, and SLAMMED head-first onto my 'One-Click Addiction List'. I CANNOT WAIT to see what she brings us next.

There has never been, nor will there ever be, another woman for me. I want to love you and protect you and keep you close for the rest of my life. I want to have children with you and grow old with you. If you'll stay with me, I'll spend every day trying to make you happier than you've ever been.”

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