Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Review & Giveaway: Carolina Man by Virginia Kantra

Carolina Man (Dare Island, #3)
Carolina Man (Dare Island #3) by Virginia Kantra
Publisher: Berkley
Publication date: March 4th 2014
My rating: 4 stars
Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo


Meet the Fletchers of Dare Island
Steady Matt, the son who stayed
Ambitious Meg, the daughter who never looked back
And warrior Luke, the Marine who never expected to return.

A heartwarming new novel in New York Times bestselling author Virginia Kantra’s beloved series about family ties, second chances, and the power of love…

Marine Luke Fletcher is determined to do his duty—first to his country and now to his ten-year-old daughter, the unexpected legacy of a high school girlfriend. But his homecoming to Dare Island in North Carolina's Outer Banks challenges his plans for the future and forces him to face everything that's missing in his life. He wasn't prepared to lose his heart to this child he never knew. Or to fall hard for coolly reserved small town lawyer Kate Dolan.

Former military brat Kate knows Marines can make lousy fathers...and she's got the scars to prove it. Giving her heart to a man who's bent on leaving seems one sure way to have it broken.

Now, no matter what it takes, Luke must prove to Kate and to his daughter that Semper Fi is more than a motto—and to himself that there’s more than one way to be a hero.

My Thoughts:
Carolina Man was a moving romance full of heart. This is the third story in the Dare Island series, and I loved this one so much I plan on going back and reading the first two.

Luke Fletcher is a Marine on tour in Afghanistan when he receives the news that his high school girl friend, Dawn, has named him as the father and guardian of her ten-year-old daughter, Taylor, in her will. He’s shocked but doesn’t hesitate in stepping up and taking responsibility.  Thankfully he has his family to care for her until his leave comes up, and the Fletchers are all about pulling together, “back to back to back” is their motto.  In the midst of all this is Kate, the reserved and dedicated attorney who’s handled Dawn’s will. She goes above and beyond her duties, and Luke can’t help but be drawn to this beautiful, selfless, and guarded woman.

Kate Dolan is an attorney who has made it her life to fight for the rights of women and children.  Kate didn’t have any advocate or protector when she was growing up, but she’s no longer a victim and is there to step up and fight for others.  At first, Kate is doubtful of Luke.  As the executor of Dawn’s will she’s worried about Luke taking on custody of ten-year-old Taylor when he’s never met her. Add to the concern is the fact that he’s a Marine, like her father. Yet, at every turn Luke surprises her with his care and concern, and his willingness to do whatever he needs to for Taylor.  Slowly her admiration for him as a good man turns into an intense attraction.

With your big muscled arms and your big generous heart and your tightlipped determination to be what Taylor needs. How could I resist you?

Kate and Luke’s romance was mature, thoughtful, and yet full of passion. Every time they were close the sparks would fly!  Still, Kate is very hesitant when it comes to any relationship.  Growing up with an alcoholic and abusive father left her with intimacy and trust issues, but thankfully Luke is very respectful and patient with her. I loved that he didn’t push her, and knew when to give her space. I admired Kate for being aware enough to realize when her past was holding her back, and in spite of her fears having the courage to open up and take a chance.  Kate’s abusive background provides much needed insight when it comes to Taylor and the two shared a bond that warmed my heart. The three of them, Luke, Kate and Taylor, were just perfect together!

The Fletchers were an amazing family.  Big, loud and loving and at first it’s overwhelming to Kate, but it’s also tempting.  Being part of the Fletcher’s means knowing that someone always has your back.  I can’t wait to get back to the two previous stories and get to know the Fletchers better.

I can’t write this review without mentioning the animals.  At the beginning while Luke is stationed in Afghanistan, his team comes across a neglected and abused dog and my emotions were running on high because of the situation.  The little side story was so touching (I’m a huge animal lover), and I’ve found out that it’s based on fact.  Virginia Kantra researched this for the story and you can find out more about Hunky Marines and Cute Puppies in her guest post on HERE on The Jaunty Quills.  Worth the click for the pictures alone!  Sooo cute!

This story captured my heart from the very first page!  It was realistic, heartfelt, and moving.  If you’re looking for a romance to sweep you away Carolina Man fits the bill nicely!  

Connect with Virginia Kantra: 

The publisher has graciously provided a Paperback copy of Carolina Man to one lucky reader.  Entrants must be 18 years or older.  The giveaway is open to US Residents only.  Just fill out the rafflecopter for a chance to win.

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  1. You had me at hunky marines and cute puppies. I've seen pictures, I've read some of the stories and I love that it's incorporated into this story!

  2. Aww this sounds like a sweet and passionate romance, Rachel. I haven't heard of this before, but it's a book I would most definitely pick up when I'm looking for a light romantic read. I think I might already adore Taylor from your review and quotes. Lovely review!

  3. Oh Rachel. This sounds lovely. I swear, my list of Reader's Den Recommendations is getting longer and longer...

  4. A romance full of heart sounds great to me, esp when it has such a pretty cover.

  5. I am so happy you enjoyed Carolina Man! I promise, if you liked this, you'll like the rest as well. Carolina Home, Matt and Alison's book, is my very favorite. Great review!

  6. this sounds awesome! Thanks for sharing :)

  7. That storyline with the dog with tug at my heart too. I like that it is based on a true story. This sounds like a nice little romance.

  8. This sounds really emotion-provoking and swoon-worthy! Definitely going to have to give it a try! Thanks so much for sharing Rachel, and, as always, brilliant review! :D

    ~ Zoe @ The Infinite To-Read Shelf

  9. Ooh, i love relationships full of passion. This sounds like a good read. Nice review.

  10. I love romances like this! And it sounds like the first two are equally good. Do I need to read these in order? I like that you describe it as a "romance to sweep you away." I need a lot of those on hold for when I want a palate cleanser, and something that will make me smile and swoon.

  11. Oh noooo....animals abused? I'm not sure I can take it....

  12. This sounds like a really wonderful romance, I love that the guys cared for the dog, and it's nice that the family was so fleshed out and made for great secondary characters

  13. Who can resist a guy like Luke? :)

    Thanks for sharing, Rachel!

  14. this series does sound very cute and sweet and the characters full of heart!


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