Read with: iBooks for iPad
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Blue Heron, #4
Hero: Jack Holland
Heroine: Emmaline Neal
Date of Publication: September 30, 2014
Started On: September 26, 2014
Finished On: September 28, 2014
The fourth book in the Blue Heron series by Kristan Higgins tells the story of Jack Holland, the only son in the out of John Holland’s four children. Jack has been a substantial part of the previous novels in the series and I was properly excited to be finally reading about him and his road to the happily ever after.
Jack handles the actual wine making process behind the Blue Heron vineyard, the family’s business. Everyone sees and defines Jack as perfection itself from his family to everyone in town to practically anyone who has ever crossed his path. Graced with good looks of the kind women find it hard to look away from together with a bucketload of charm makes him easy to love. Jack is elevated from his status as perfection itself to the town hero when he rescues three boys from drowning, an act that puts Jack in the limelight like never before.
Emmaline Neal is the deputy police chief of Manningsport, having moved just nine months back after having her heart broken by her fiance who had moved on with another woman. Being invited to their wedding means having to turn up to save face and Emmaline is determined to acquire a date of sorts to go with her as moral support. In the end it is Jack who fills the role and though Emmaline has her reservations about going to a wedding where she would be emotionally vulnerable with a man who renders her speechless most of the time, there is not much she can do about it given the short notice.
In Your Dreams tells the story of two individuals who each have powerful back stories to tell. Emmaline the heroine’s story is one that can move most to tears; the rocky childhood that she had, the way she had found that someone with whom she thought she would spend the rest of her life with by the time she had hit eighth grade, only to have her heart smashed to pieces by the wicked turn of events that takes place. The wedding is the place where she is determined to put her past to rest, but it doesn’t come as easy as it sounds.
Jack the perfect son, the perfect citizen of Manninsport finds himself battling symptoms of PTSD though he’d rather die than admit to the fact. Determined to ignore the debilitating conditions to which his symptoms reduce him to, Jack grasps the wedding which is to be held out of town as a lifeline thrown his way, a chance to get away from everything and just breathe. Put his ex-wife into the mix and Jack is ready to scream (something that totally goes against the perfection that his character is famous for) and while neither Jack nor Emmaline thought that anything would happen between them, something that irrevocably ties them together does.
In Your Dreams while wasn’t as heart wrenching as some of the other novels in the series when it came to the relationship between the hero and heroine nevertheless proved to be a riveting read. I couldn’t for the life of me put down the book even into the wee hours of last night and I just had to finish the 400+ pages of the book before I could sigh in contentment and sleep knowing that all was right in Jack and Emmaline’s world.
I totally fell in love with Emmaline. Having had a tough time while growing up, Emmaline makes for a steadfast, snarky and beautiful person. The way she hurts over the man she fell in love with was one that touched my heart and I could literally feel the pain that coursed through Emmaline as she moved through the different stages of heartache before finally moving on.
Now Jack, I had a teeny weeny problem with because there was nothing but perfection to him. It’s hard to put into words what exactly that I found off in Jack but I think there was a little bit too much emphasis on how perfect a man Jack was. There is no one that perfect, everyone has their flaws and everyone has their quirks that annoys and pisses other people off and endears them to others. Though Jack’s past broke my heart I just felt that he needed to come down from that pedestal a bit and reach the level of us humans. I also felt a bit cheated out on not having seen Jack move on from his battle with PTSD; there was a reference to him getting help but I would have loved to see more of that actually realize in the story after having seen how much of an affect the symptoms seemed to have on his life. I know I would be in the minority when it comes to thinking this way about Jack but that is how I felt when I was reading In Your Dreams.
That being said, Kristan Higgins never ceases to amaze me with the incredible stories that she writes and In Your Dreams is no exception. Recommended for those who love humor of the laugh-out-loud variety (the husband seemed perplexed by my bouts of laughter that he couldn’t find any reason for) and those who love honest to goodness variety of storytelling that would keep you up way past midnight turning the pages. And most of you would literally love Jack to pieces. I loved the way he could seduce the pants off of Emmaline and boy, was he good at it. Grab a copy and indulge. You wouldn’t be sorry you did.
Final Verdict: Delicious with a lot of heart; Higgins delivers an unputdownable tale.
He turned his head to breathe in her smell and felt her shiver. She didn’t pull away.
That skin smelled so sweet. He dropped a kiss on her bare shoulder. Smooth as water.
Emmaline inhaled, her breath shaky.
Another kiss, this one closer to her neck.What are you doing? a small voice asked, but it was faint, drowned out by the hard, deep pulse that was thudding through his body. She tasted as good as she smelled.
He pulled her hands over her head and held them there, still kissing her mouth, her neck, the softness of her breasts against his chest making him drunk. She wasn’t protesting. In fact, little sweet sounds were coming from her throat, and he could swear he felt her skin get hotter under his mouth, because he was kissing his way down her neck, scraping her skin with his teeth, because Emmaline Neal was edibly delicious.
Clearing her throat, she looked down at the rumpled sheets. “Hungry?” she asked.
“Starving.” He reached out and, very slowly, pulled the tie of her robe.
“There’s still some cake,” she whispered.
“I wasn’t talking about cake,” he said, his voice deep and rumbly, and her girl parts gave a hot, sudden throb.