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Title: Just Close Enough (Alabama Secrets Series #2)
Author: Elizabeth Marx
Mature NA Contemporary Romance
A man out for revenge…
When Alexander Volkow raced into Crossroads, Alabama and bought up half of Broad Street, the entire town questioned his motives, but he didn’t care. He did it for one reason and only one reason — to find the man who went AWOL from the military with his brother, Kon. Knowing Kon, something is terribly wrong, and Alex is set on retribution.
But when all roads lead to the town’s favorite daughter, who just happens to be the missing man’s fiancée, Alex can’t help but be mesmerized by her alluring southern charm and sexy little snort.
A woman searching for a way out...
No amount of bartending, snake charming, or organic cotton growing can stop the fear blooming inside Polly Anna Coots. She knows if her MIA fiancée is found alive, he’ll want to follow through with their marriage plans, but she has had a change of heart — and not just because of the new man she can’t get out of her head. If her fiancée returns and she reneges on their future, she’ll end up DOA.
When one of Polly Anna’s snakes runs Alex off the road, sparks fly, and the two embark on a steamy collision course in a small town filled with secrets that add fuel to the smoldering fire.
Can either one of them get just close enough to acquire what they need from the other without falling in love?
*Can be read as a stand alone.*
★★★★ 1/2 stars
I've been eagerly looking forward to this book from the moment I met Alex and Polly Anna in Just in Case, the first book in the Alabama Secrets series. Those two had a fiery chemistry and I knew if given the opportunity, their story would be incredible and hard to forget. Thankfully, Elizabeth Marx also saw the possibilities and wrote their story.
Alex is a man on a mission. He's trying to find his brother and that means finding the man he thinks is responsible for his disappearance by any means necessary, even if that means keeping tabs on the man's fiancee. Alex isn't counting on his attraction to Polly Anna or how his feelings for his mission will change. I loved how determined Alex was to not only save his brother but get Polly Anna too. He was persistent, but never never obnoxious. For someone who was seen as an outsider, Alex was the savior and hated too. I loved how he did whatever he could to make those around him comfortable. Alex truly lived up to his last name Volkow; he really was a wolf. Don't get me wrong, Alex was noble, honorable, and an alpha but he also had a softer side. It was hard not to swoon seeing how deeply and fiercely he loved.
Polly Anna is the perfect foil for Alex. While he's all hard glares, highly educated, and driven, she's smiles and sunshine, intelligent, and also focused. Their goals are as different as their personalities, but they compliment each other so well. Polly Ana may not have gone to Ivy League schools, but she's no simple country girl. She's resourceful and a hard worker with a plan. There's no way she's going to stick around and wait for her fiancee to show up. I hated how terrified of him she was and why she stuck with him for so long. I loved seeing her light up around Alex. I kept hoping everything would work out between them, because after all they'd been through, both Polly Anna and Alex deserved all the happiness they could get. I also loved seeing Polly Anna with her family. I loved the way her father and brothers protected and looked out for her, while also allowing her to have her freedom and make her own choices.
Just Close Enough started off slow for me. I found that the flow was rough and I wasn't sure what direction the book was going in. A little ways into the book that changed when everything clicked into place. The story became clearer and picked up pace. After that there was no turning back and I didn't stop reading until the book was finished. I was also a little astounded by the number of Southern phrases in the book. It wasn't that they were there because the book is set in Crossroads, Alabama. However as someone who was born and raised in the South and has lived here for most of my life, many of these phrases were foreign and seemed over the top, almost as if they were being used to stereotype the people who live here. As the story picked up, the phrases fell by the wayside, and that's understandable based on what was happening in the book. I also have to mention that at no time was I ever able to predict what was going to happen next. Alex and Polly Ana are an unconventional couple and so is their story. It was really entertaining watching Alex pursue Polly Anna while she tried her hardest not to admit or act on how he made her feel.
Elizabeth Marx is known for writing stories that engage readers mentally and emotionally. Just Close Enough is certainly an intense and emotional read. I enjoyed how all the story arcs came together at the end. I also loved seeing Revell and Scarlett again, Mandy, J.T., and others from Crossroads Alabama. I'm really hoping the next book in the Alabama Secrets series will feature Mandy and J.T. I have a feeling Mandy isn't going to make things easy for him.
*Thank you to the publicist for providing a copy in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own and I was not compensated for them in any manner.*
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Just in Case (Alabama Secrets Series #1)
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About Elizabeth Marx
Elizabeth Marx writes deeply emotional romances that take her readers on a roller coaster ride through desire and despair. She is not afraid to push you over that first drop just when you think you know what’s going to happen next. Her writing is described as hilarious, heartbreaking, and heartwarming. Her characters achieve the ‘happily ever after’ through a journey of poignant and passionate moments.
Elizabeth resides in Chicago with her husband, girls, and two cats who've spelled everyone into believing they're really dogs.
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