Toni Blake’s new heartfelt Coral Cove series brings Blake’s incredible talent of creating a story that’s filled with hope and love. ALL I WANT IS YOU starts off the series with the story of Christy Knight, a character who appeared in her Destiny series. Readers will remember Christy from her encounter with Anna Romo, the heroine of Hall Moon Hill (a 2014 RITA Award Finalist), the last installment in the Destiny series. Christy’s life changed when a horrible fire claimed the lives of her mother and father; she’s left to deal with the aftermath of financial troubles on her own. Christy grew up in the small, cozy town Destiny, Ohio, but she feels her future lies elsewhere. In hopes of figuring out what’s next, she’s decided to move to the city.
Christy and her roommate Bethany are struggling to make ends meet. The beautiful jewelry she creates doesn’t pay the bills. To top it off, Christy’s just found out about her Grandpa Charlie’s own financial troubles and that he may be asked to leave his assisted living home. As his only living relative left, Christy feels it’s up to her to help but she can barely help herself. Bethany thinks it’s time for Christy to grow up and find a guy who’s smart, sexy, and solvent. Though Christy’s hesitant about the plan—she’s a romantic at heart after all—faced with few options she’s willing to give it a shot.
The search spells disaster from day one. Her first date fails before it even starts! She did, however, meet her sexy neighbor Jack DuVall. He’s not quite the man she needs at the moment—if only his blue eyes weren’t so mesmerizing. It seems the rugged handyman fits the first two categories (smart and sexy), but he’s all wrong for her. As Jack helps Christy with small patch-up jobs around the apartment, they develop a friendship. Jack hasn’t been entirely forthcoming, he’s not really just a handyman and he’s nowhere near broke. Wary of trusting others because of a painful past he doesn’t want to revisit, he thinks it’s best to wait before sharing too much information about himself.
Meanwhile, Grandpa Charlie thinks it’s time for Christy to take a break from her day-to-day stresses and get some much needed R&R by visiting him in sunny Coral Cove. Knowing she’s short on funds, Jack wants to help Christy make the trip happen, but how can he without exposing that he’s actually loaded? He joins her under the pretext of needing a vacation as well, splitting the expenses. As the long hot days turn into sizzling nights together, Jack can’t deny his reasons for going along are far from noble.
The Coral Cove charm captivates Christy and Jack, and a passionate, loving relationship blossoms. Jack finds he had it all wrong—Christy’s not only gorgeous, but feisty and completely irresistible; after so much heartbreak and let downs Christy feels she finally has someone she can trust. But, when Jack shares secrets he’s been holding back, the relationship is compromised. As they both struggle to find their way back to each other, the quirky seaside town of Coral Cove could prove the perfect place to find a red-hot destiny of their own.
My Review:Loved this story! The romance is slow building, the characters are well developed, and the story moves along at a great pace. Not only did I love Jack and Christy, but I also fell in love with the town and the people. All the supporting characters were so well described, that by the end of the story I felt like I knew them and they had become close friends. I like how this wasn't your typical insta-love story. Jack and Christy fought their attraction, and in doing so, they not only fell in love but formed a strong friendship. The side story, of the grandfather's lost true love, was a constant reminder of what can happen when we don't have faith in a love that is found. If I had to summarize the theme of the story it would be that our faith in love can make us take risks, hope for a better tomorrow, or simply waiting on someone to return to us. A great romance that I will recommend to my readers. Steamy-ness is moderate and tasteful.
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About the Author: USA Today bestselling author Toni Blake’s love of writing began when she won an essay contest in the fifth grade. Soon after, she penned her first novel - nineteen notebook pages long. Since then, Toni has become a RITA-nominated author of more than twenty contemporary romance novels including her recent 2014 RITA nomination for Half Moon Hill the last installment in her popular Destiny series. Her books have received the National Readers Choice Award and the Bookseller’s Best Award, and her work has been excerpted in Cosmo. Toni lives in the Midwest and enjoys traveling, crafts, and spending time outdoors. Learn more about Toni and her books at www.toniblake.com.