Eden Goodnight went to Los Angeles to make it big, not to be publicly humiliated by her cheating fiancé at a red-carpet premiere. But when Eden returns to her hometown to put the scandal behind her, she can barely find a sympathetic shoulder to cry on. Turns out the locals are worse than the paparazzi, and they all think she’s turned into a spoiled brat. But in a strange twist of fate, the one person who seems to understand what Eden’s going through is Cooper Mayfield . . . the boy she left behind.
Small-town charm is no match for the glitz and glamour of Hollywood. At least that’s what Coop’s been telling himself all these years. As Eden’s old flame—and the landscaper for her family’s historic home—Coop feels some responsibility for getting her out of her funk. But as soon as he sees that million-dollar smile, he’s a goner. Soon they’re making out like teenagers again. But when a life-changing role falls into Eden’s lap, Coop just hopes she doesn’t give up on a love that’s meant to be.
Jilted was so much fun to read! It’s a second-chance romance in the vein of Reese Witherspoon’s Sweet Home Alabama and it has all the things I look for when reading a romance: witty banter, sexual tension, a bit of angst, fun secondary characters, main characters that I really like, and a hilarious scene involving clothes being tossed out the window that garnered me some strange looks at the gym.
Right from the start I knew I’d love Eden. She’s down-to-earth but glamorous and doesn’t apologize for the life she chose, even though it’s a far cry from how she grew up. She’s a Hollywood superstar who’s never forgotten her roots—despite never returning home except for one brief day to attend her grandmother’s funeral. After she takes her (former) fiancé down publically for cheating on her, she flees to Newberry, Georgia where she grew up and runs smack dab into her first love, Coop.
Talk about unapologetic. Coop hasn’t had a relationship in 14 years but admits, at least to himself, that he’s probably the town whore. I loved that Coop didn’t allow his breakup with Eden to turn him into a bitter person. When we meet him he doesn’t even connect his lack of relationships with his broken heart 14 years before. He’s built up the landscaping business he inherited from his dad and life’s been good.
And that’s what set this book apart for me.
Coop and Eden didn’t have a nasty breakup. They didn’t spend 14 years heartbroken and bitter. They just broke up and went on with their lives after suffering through some sadness. I’m not sure I’ve read a second-chance romance like this before. Yes, Coop has something he’s bitter about regarding Eden, but it has nothing to do with how they parted. It’s all very… adult. So often I read these second-chance books and the characters haven’t grown at all in the however many years they’ve been apart. But, Coop and Eden did.
And, did I mention unapologetic…
This is a sexy book. There’s a lot of sex in it. Coop and Eden? They learned some moves since they lost their virginity to each other. They have fun showing each other what they’ve learned. I mean, they have fun. (okay, there’s ass play, so if that makes you uncomfortable, plan to skip ahead).
Of course, there are misunderstandings, which I thought were tentative at best, but they led to angst which I love, so it was okay. There’s a jealous wannabe girlfriend that causes trouble that you enjoy watching get taken down a peg or two. There are the typical small, southern town folks that are both closed off and friendly (but not at the same time). And, Eden may have ended up being just a little too perfect… but southern girls sometimes do and that’s okay.
4 stars for Jilted. Heat level: 4.5
I received a copy of Jilted from NetGalley and InkSlingerPR in exchange for honest feedback.
Jilted was published in July 2017 by Loveswept.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Since the release of her debut contemporary romance novel, Off Sides, in January 2013, Sawyer Bennett has released more than 30 books and has been featured on both the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists on multiple occasions.
A reformed trial lawyer from North Carolina, Sawyer uses real life experience to create relatable, sexy stories that appeal to a wide array of readers. From new adult to erotic contemporary romance, Sawyer writes something for just about everyone.
Sawyer likes her Bloody Marys strong, her martinis dirty, and her heroes a combination of the two. When not bringing fictional romance to life, Sawyer is a chauffeur, stylist, chef, maid, and personal assistant to a very active toddler, as well as full-time servant to two adorably naughty dogs. She believes in the good of others, and that a bad day can be cured with a great work-out, cake, or a combination of the two.