Thursday, May 8, 2014

Review: Barefoot in White by Roxanne St. Claire

Barefoot in White by Roxanne St. Claire
Series: Barefoot Bay Brides, Book 1
Publisher: South Street Publishing
Genre: Contemporary Romance Barefoot in White Cover
Source: Author
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

Destination wedding consultant Willow Ambrose has fought a battle with the scale for much of her life, but she has finally won the war. By putting her past behind her and cutting off all contact with anyone who knew her before and, of course, controlling everything she can, Willow has carved out a new body and a new life. But when she comes face to face with someone who left an indelible mark on her heart years before, all that threatens to crumble.

Navy SEAL Nick Hershey is on medical leave, doing a friend a favor as a stand in “man of honor” at a beach wedding. He might not be that interested in the nuptials, but the wedding planner catches his eye the minute they meet. When he realizes Willow is really a girl he knew in college — and a girl he unintentionally hurt to the core — he knows he has some making up to do.

Willow has learned how to beat every temptation...but Nick’s sweet as candy kisses just might be the one thing she can't resist. But the closer they get, the more the past threatens to tear them apart. Can overcome their history in order to have a forever future?

Barefoot in White is a gorgeous, emotional story of love, forgiveness, and new beginnings. Roxanne St. Claire has written many wonderful books, but Nick and Willow’s is my absolute favorite of hers to date.

Willow is now on my list of all-time favorite heroines. She’s fought hard to shed not just weight but the identity she held for the first twenty-six years of her life. Willow is a strong, successful woman but that doesn’t mean she’s invulnerable. Her past haunts her whether she wants to acknowledge it or not, and my heart absolutely broke for her. I loved Willow, plain and simple, and I wanted her to find happiness both with herself and with Nick. Nick Hershey is as sweet as his name suggests. In college, he unwittingly hurt Willow, but there’s no doubt that he deserves a second chance with her. Nick’s sexy as hell, but it’s his good heart and his own scars that really drew me to him. He and Willow have amazing chemistry and their story had me avidly turning the (digital) pages of Barefoot in White. However, Ms. St. Claire doesn’t make things easy for them. Neither acknowledges it at first, but both Nick and Willow have some healing to do over the course of the story, and it was a wonderful process to watch, ups and downs and all.

Barefoot in White is the first book in the Barefoot Bay Brides trilogy, which is set in the larger world of Ms. St. Claire’s Barefoot Bay. A couple of past favorite Barefoot Bay characters have cameos, but aside from our hero and heroine the supporting cast is made up of mostly new faces. The standouts are, of course, Willow’s friends and partners, Gussie and Ari. The two of them cracked me up and I can’t wait for these candy-betting wedding planners to get books of their own.

It’s hard for me to be objective when reviewing Barefoot in White because so many things about this story touched me. I laughed, I teared up, and I smiled when Willow and Nick got the happily ever after they so deserved. I absolutely loved Barefoot in White and I cannot wait to read the next Barefoot Bay Brides story, Barefoot in Lace!

FTC Disclosure: I received this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.