When three powerhouse romance authors team up to create a rock star romance series, you better believe I’m reading it! Plus, the fact that book one, Lies and Lullabies, was written by one of my favorite and most-read authors, Sarina Bowen? Well, that just sealed the deal.
At its heart, Lies and Lullabies is a second chance romance with plenty of sweetness and heartwarming moments. It not only introduces the band, Hush Note, their hardworking team, and their exhausting and demanding lifestyle, it brings us the story of Kira and Jonas and sets up the backstory for the remainder of the series.
Kira and Jonas are both a little broken and missing something in their lives, but find a healing connection with one another in a tiny, picturesque resort town in Maine.
After they spend a life-altering summer together, they go their separate ways with Kira none-the-wiser about Jonas’s secret rock star life.
Five years later, they meet again in the same sleepy town, but this time, everything has changed. Jonas has grown, and he knows that he wants a second chance with the woman he hasn’t been able to forget.
However, he gets the surprise of a lifetime when he sees Kira again—with their adorable and precocious daughter in tow.
Second chance romance is one of my favorite tropes (you can see more of my faves here). Secret babies, however, are fine when done right. With Kira, her reasoning for keeping their daughter a secret just didn’t pass the smell test.
Jonas, on the other hand, handled the revelation well and stepped up to win over both of his girls. He and his abundance of thoughtfulness and sweetness single-handedly saved the story for me and kept me reading until the end.
The secondary characters are delightful and I really enjoyed the dimension they added to the storyline.
I love Sarina Bowen and her books, but this one just lacked the spark that I have come to expect from her writing. I still enjoyed the story, but I wanted more ‘oomph’ and fleshed-out history of the band.
Unfortunately, Lies and Lullabies fell a little flat for me, but I am looking forward to reading the rest of the series to read about the rest of the band.
I watched Adam carry my daughter up the wooden steps and onto the store’s screened porch, then I turned the car around in the post office driveway. Idling past the Kreemy Kone, I happened to glance at the couple seated at the picnic table. The woman was watching me, but the guy was reading a magazine. Then, maybe because he sensed my gaze, he looked up, smiling. His mouth fell open in surprise.
And my heart absolutely stopped.
Jonas Smith was sitting right there on the bench. After five years, he barely seemed real. In my mind, he’d become a mythical figure. Back when I’d known him, he’d called himself John Smith. He’d given me a fake name. A fake name, and thus a fake friendship for an entire summer.
And on the very last night, he’d given me a baby.
Then John Smith had left town, and I’d never spoken to him again, had never seen his face. Not in person, anyway. It wasn’t until a year and a half later that I’d spotted him on my computer screen, looking out at me from an ad for a new album called Summer Nights.
And now he sat casually on the picnic table bench in shorts and a T-shirt. Like a specter from my past.
Stunned, I pressed the gas pedal. But in my rearview mirror I saw that he’d stood up, his eyes following my car.
The woman he was with called to him. “Jonas?” He didn’t respond. Instead, he took off, trotting after me.
Go home was all I could think to do. But of course, John, or Jonas, knew where my father’s house was. Adam would be on his way there too. With Vivi.
I had driven maybe fifty yards, to the place where the road veered left and curved around the lake. But I didn’t make the turn. Instead, I stopped the car in front of the beach. I got out and closed the door. I could hear the slap of flip-flops coming my way.
“Kira,” his voice begged.
With my heart beating wildly, I walked away from him, down the little slope and out onto the town dock. My throat went dry. I knew I wasn’t behaving rationally. The dock was a dead end, unless I planned to swim away from him.
But there was no escape anyway. The sensible part of my brain knew I would have to deal with the fallout. If he was here in Maine, I was going to have to tell him the truth even if he’d broken my heart.
I closed my eyes at the sound of his voice. The water lapped gently under the dock. If I turned around, he might not truly be standing there. I held my breath.
That’s when he began to whistle softly. The first four bars of “You Are My Sunshine.”
Goosebumps rose on my arms.
“You remember,” I gasped, whirling around. Five years later, and he still knew to warn me. He hadn’t forgotten that I used to startle if he—or anyone else—approached me from behind.
He walked towards me slowly, his hands spread wide, muscular arms on display. His hair was shorter now, but still the most beautiful shade of sandy blond. “Of course I remember, sweetness. Never sneak up on Kira.”
Thank you for the advanced copy of LIES AND LULLABIES by Sarina Bowen. All opinions are my own.
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date published : September 22, 2018
pages : 278
audiobook narrators: Erin Mallon, Tim Paige
audiobook length: 7 hrs, 57 min
Once upon a time, he gave me a summer of friendship, followed by one perfect night. We shared a lot during our short time together. But he skipped a few crucial details.
I didn’t know he was a rock star.
I didn’t know his real name.
Neither of us knew I’d get pregnant.
And I sure never expected to see him again.
Five years later, his tour bus pulls up in Nest Lake, Maine. My little world is about to be shattered by loud music and the pounding of my own foolish heart.
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