Monday, February 29, 2016

Review: Fight to the Finish by Jeanette Murray

Fight to the Finish by Jeanette Murray
Series: First to Fight, Book 3
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Contemporary Romance
ISBN: 9780425279281
Release Date: March 1, 2016
Source: Publisher
Buy it here: Amazon | B&N

Kara is a single mom working hard to keep life running smoothly for herself and her son, but a custody battle is wearing her down. When her friend suggests asking a JAG officer for some unofficial advice, Kara agrees—and soon finds herself officially head over heels…

As a Judge Advocate, Graham has seen his share of nasty custody disputes—and he plans on keeping his distance from this one. But this purposeful, passionate woman has a way of drawing him ever closer to the edge. And when Kara’s ex starts to throw his weight around, Graham will have to choose between toeing the line or stepping into the ring…

Fight to the Finish is sexy, funny, and completely addictive. I’ve been dying to read Kara and Graham’s story since they first struck sparks off one another in Below the Belt, and author Jeanette Murray did not disappoint. Kara and Graham’s book is a wonderful blend of reality and romantic fantasy – aka the perfect kind of story to be swept away by.

Graham won me over from the start. He’s a sexy-as-hell Marine and a lawyer to boot, but it’s his incredibly open heart that grabbed my attention. He’s head-over-heels for Kara and fully admits it to himself, but he’s patient and respectful of her boundaries. He’s generous to a fault, but no doormat. Graham is essentially the perfect combination of strength and protectiveness with a healthy dose of sensuality and humor thrown in. I loved that he not only fell for Kara, he developed a father-son relationship with her son, Zach, that stood on its own two feet and wasn’t a by-product of his burgeoning relationship with Kara. As for Kara, she’s a single mom who has worked her tail off making a life for her son. I admired her strength, resilience, and her intelligence. Life isn’t easy for Kara, between her son’s severe food allergies and Zach’s deadbeat dad. Going into Fight to the Finish, I was a bit worried what I’d think of Kara’s reasons for pushing Graham away (since it’s been obvious throughout the series he has a thing for her). The obstacles in Kara’s path aren’t merely ones thrown in for romantic tension. I won’t spoil the story, so suffice it to say her ex is a jerk who would ruin her life and Zach’s if he could. Ms. Murray makes every obstacle in Graham and Kara’s path worth overcoming, because these two are downright fantastic as a couple. Their romance is the perfect blend of sexy and sweet.

Fight to the Finish is the third book in the First to Fight series. What makes this series as a whole so charming are the relationships between the main characters. Brad, Marianne, Greg, and Reagan (from Below the Belt and Against the Ropes) all play strong supporting roles and the book would not have been the same without them. The friendships are an integral part of the story, adding a lot of humor and even more heart to the tale. Add in the resolution of the mystery involving who is trying to sabotage the Marine Corps boxing team and you have an incredibly full, interesting story.

All three First to Fight books have featured smart, likeable, mature characters, and Fight to the Finish is no exception. I absolutely adored Kara and Graham and I am completely enamored with their romance. I finished Fight to the Finish a well-satisfied reader and I cannot wait to read Graham and Kara’s story again!

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