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Love in all the Right Places: Don’t Deny Me by Megan Hart

Looking-for-Love

Love doesn’t make the world go ’round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile.

I have read a smorgasbord of romance over the last little while … and failed miserably at reviewing them. In order to ensure that at least some of these titles get some light upon them, I’ve decided to give them a day leading up to Valentine’s Day. Today’s feature: Don’t Deny Me by Megan Hart! 

dontThey had it all—until he broke her heart.
Now he’s back, and the heat between them cannot be denied…
Don’t Deny Me, now available for the first time as a complete novel, from best-selling author Megan Hart.

Alice and Mick had it all: the happy days, the heartfelt evenings, the hot, slow nights. Mick knew she was too much, too good, more than he deserved…and when Mick couldn’t give her what she needed, in a moment of crisis, they lost everything. Torn apart, Alice tries to pry him out of her life and move on—until a not-so-chance meeting at an old friend’s party brings them face-to-face once more. Now they’re talking again, Alice can’t escape the burning in her chest whenever he’s near, the way his eyes still follow her around the room…but she won’t repeat the mistakes of her past. Because people, and relationships, can’t really ever change.

But if Alice does decide to let him back into her heart—and into her bed—will Mick be ready to show her the man that he’s become…and take a chance on love? And can Alice ever trust him again?

Originally published as a three-part serial, Don’t Deny Me introduces us to Alice and Mick. They had a relationship once, but it fell apart and now they are meeting again at a friends’ weekend retreat after a long time away from each other. The story divides neatly into three parts – the introduction and re-acquaintance of the pair, their past history and their time together now.

Mick and Alice may be fictional, but their struggle is one that is every couple will understand, especially because so many of their problems involve miscommunication. When they first meet, they definitely like each other, and they enjoy spending time with each other. The sex is great, and they have a lot of fun. The difficulties start when fun isn’t enough, and when they realize that like is perhaps turning into something more. Some books focus on the big reasons for why people break up; this book instead chooses to focus on all the little reasons why couples don’t work … and gives us a second chance to see if the two can learn from their mistakes.

I found it difficult to connect with Alice at times, as I just wanted to take her aside and tell her to talk to him, already. Mick isn’t perfect, but he actively tries to listen to Alice and to figure out how to show her he cares; again, however, communication is a problem with him as well, as he prefers to show how he feels instead of using words. That’s a pretty common male belief (without making too many generalizations), or at least it’s not uncommon; I can think of at least three friends who have complained about partners who have done wonderful things for them, but have difficulty expressing their emotions. There’s a great side story that I hope makes its way into a different novella, because I think that Hart could make it truly memorable; here, there are flashes of brilliance, but these characters need their own story, dammit!

Overall, this is a quick read that takes a look at what love really looks like, beyond the sexytimes and the fun beginnings. Love takes work, and it takes two people who are willing to work with each other in order to keep showing – and saying – “I love you.” In the end, deciding that the person you’re with is the one for you makes it worth all the work.

Don’t Deny Me (Parts One, Two and Three) was provided by St. Martin’s Griffin in exchange for an honest review. It is available for purchase as a serial, or as one contained book from Kobo and other online retailers. . ISBN: 9781466885585, 288 pages total. 

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