Review: Key To Her Heart by Ellie Rice
My first thought after finishing this book was this - there is no way in Hades this is Ellie Rice's debut novel. I didn't even find any typos. ;) But in all seriousness, here's a bit of advice - never judge a book by what number written it is. I've had authors tell me they get nervous about people reading their first books because of various issues, but I have always found those warnings to be irrelevant. If you're an awesome author, it does not matter if this is your first or 50th book. They are all going to be just as incredible.
Story Line: Okay, for me, this book has two main story lines. The first is the week that leads up to Ang's brother's wedding. The second part is when Valerie and Stone are back home to their normal lives. While they are away in essentially paradise, they feel that delicious pull to one another and begin their physical relationship with an expiration date. Oh, if only it were that simple. Once the wedding is over, Val returns to her job working for her ex's parents. Oh, side note, her ex died a ways back and sweet Val has yet to truly move on with her life. But things take ANOTHER turn when she finds out her new boss is literally the last person on the planet she expected it to be. Twist and turn again and next thing we know, we have painful pasts being drug up, evil step mothers to deal with and a funeral that was surprisingly sad. Oh, and if you think you're going to make it through the funeral chapter unscathed? Think again. So. Many. Unexpected. Details.
Interaction: It's no secret that Stone is a playboy. He flirts with anything with a pulse. Yeah, one of THOSE guys. And then there's Val. She wants no part of the act that Stone is throwing at her. But what she does want is just a week to let go and just live. And who better to give her this short lived escape than Stone? They have long talks. And of course they have chemistry - and it runs deep. So, for me, it was no surprise when their expiration date came, that neither could truly let go. Stone makes one of the best character developments I have ever read. His transformation isn't instantaneous, which can come across as unbelievable. But more than just growing out of his flirty nature, Stone becomes a man that any woman would be lucky to have. And he proves that to Val over and over again.
Laundry: This is one of the few things I'm always super cautious about with authors that are new to me. Are they going to write tons and tons of laundry scenes? Are they going to be slightly graphic? Are they going to be so graphic I have to look away for a bit? Ellie Rice found a perfect balance between dirty laundry and strictly vanilla. Stone and Val have picture perfect chemistry between the sheets. He talks just dirty enough and she gives in just enough for it to be perfect.
Depth: I've read my fair share of books. Over 60 in 2018, to be honest. I like to think I can see things coming before they actually do since my life's mission is to become a professional reader. With that being said, there were details to this story line that I honest to God, did not see coming. Val's backstory is heart breaking. She has a lot of negativity pulling her down. And Stone's history isn't any better. I could feel his pain and her inner struggle as if it were my own. That's the stuff that makes phenomenal books.
Pick up Key To Her Heart today! You will love falling in love with Stone and Val's story. Cross my heart. :)