Monday, November 24, 2014
Review of In the Fire by Nikka Michaels & Eileen Griffin
In the Fire by Nikka Michaels & Eileen Griffin
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Within a few pages of starting In the Fire, I was absolutely heartbroken. I signed up to review it over a month ago and didn’t reread the blurb before starting it. So when I picked it up to read immediately after finishing In the Raw I was expecting a continuation of Ethan and Jamie’s relationship – either as they struggled with the long-distance relationship or picking up at Jamie’s return from Paris. Suffice it to say I was devastated to learn that Jamie didn’t return to Seattle when he finished his training in Paris, but went to New York for an internship there instead and that his and Ethan’s relationship had fallen apart over the distance and time. I wanted to freaking cry. As much as I hated the way in which the book began, I knew I had to stick with it because I could not bring myself to believe that Ms. Michaels and Ms. Griffin would not give these two the happily ever after they deserved.
In this installment, we find Ethan and Jamie living on separate coasts eight years later. I was shocked to learn that Jamie had become a celebrity chef. Not because he lacked the talent, but because it meant more time being a business and less time being a chef – which was one of the major reasons he avoided joining the family business. On the other hand, Ethan’s career progression did not surprise me in the least. And I was pleased to see that Claire was working with him in Cal’s restaurant and that she was still just as feisty with her brother as she’d always been. When an awards dinner forces them to face one another after eight years, well I’ll just remind you that Ethan was an arse and is still an arse, but this time around he is a wounded arse and that makes for one heck of a confrontation and one sexy bathroom scene when Jamie takes a REALLY drunk Ethan back to his hotel room to insure he’s safe for the night.
Although In the Fire is filled with a LOT of emotional angst as both men felt the other let him down eight years ago, it’s just the right amount of angst and the emotional struggles the two deal with give the story a feeling of realism. With both men still raw about the dissolution of their relationship, immediate or quick trust on either side would not be believable. I liked that there was no quick resolution and that both parties avoided talking about the situation as it was in line with the characters we knew. It’s also what made their individual moments of self-realization that they were still in love with one another that much sweeter – and the sex that much hotter. Additionally, the authors did a really nice job of keeping life moving forward as Ethan and Jamie were figuring out what they wanted. Jamie has a couple of intense confrontations with people who weren’t Ethan and it was quite enjoyable to see that change in his personality. In the same vein, Ethan had to deal with a seemingly endless number of incidents at Cal’s restaurant that were endangering its continued success. There was no magical stop to life as they attempted to reconcile and it just made the book that much more believable. I loved the ending of In the Fire and hope that the authors plan to add to the series as Claire deserves her story told. Either way, In the Raw and In the Fire are definitely on my reread list.
I received a complimentary copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Reviewed by Angela at Crystal's Many Reviewers!
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