Perfect for readers of Susan Elizabeth Phillips and Rachel Gibson, Molly O’Keefe’s second novel in her exciting new series—The Boys of Bishop—features an irresistible romance and unforgettable characters in a page-turning story that delivers equal parts emotion and humor . . . with a little edge to boot.
As the daughter of a wealthy politician, Ashley Montgomery has had enough of her parents’ expectations for her future and is going her own way, volunteering to work at a refugee camp in Africa. But her act of charity turns dangerous when she takes a boat trip and is abducted by Somali pirates. Enter Brody Baxter, who was a bodyguard for the Montgomery family ten years ago and doesn’t think twice about coming to Ashley’s rescue. Handsome and tough, Brody has always done what needed to be done. So he swoops in, saves Ashley, and brings her to a place where she can rest and recuperate without the glare of the press and her demanding family: Brody’s small hometown of Bishop, Arkansas. But Ashley soon realizes that she’s not the only one in need of healing.
Holed up with Ashley in a tiny apartment over his brother’s bar in Bishop, Brody is tempted and torn in ways he never anticipated. Beautiful Ashley, vibrant despite her ordeal, fearless enough to love him beyond his wall of self-punishment, is now determined to save him. But with a little faith and a lot of love, they just may find happiness in each others’ arms.
“Molly O’Keefe is a unique, not-to-be-missed voice in romantic fiction.”—New York Times bestselling author Susan Andersen
I’m a sucker for the wounded bad boy so I was drawn to Brody’s story. The fact that I also adored Ashley was a bonus. She’s the spoiled little rich girl who bucks her political juggernaut family to spend a year in Africa helping the poorest of the poor. She’s sassy, smart, and has a wicked sense of humor. And anyone who’s ever done something really stupid at at the age of 17 can totally relate to her.
This is my first novel by Molly O’Keefe and I love her style. She has a way building unresolved sexual tension to new heights. Her characters are believable and deep, no two-dimensional characters here, not even with the supporting cast.
The overall plot worked well, but there were a lot of subplots that I thought distracted from the main plot. I loved the story of Brody and Ashley and even their various subplots. Brody’s relationships with his brother and father, his personal issues cultivated from tragic events in his childhood, Ashley’s kidnapping by pirates, her family drama, and trying to stay under the radar would have been enough. I don’t know that the romance between Brody’s brother, Sean and the cafe owner, Cora, were necessary. At least not from their points of view. I would have preferred a tighter narration from just Brody’s and Ashley’s viewpoints. But that’s about the only thing I can find wrong with this well-structured plot.
All of the characters were really strong. I was impressed with the development work Molly O’Keefe did with each one. Solid backstories, deep wounds, and fantastic arcs all worked together flawlessly. Brody easily had the most transformational storyline, but Ashley did some growing of her own. She came across as more of that shy 17-year old early on, but rapidly grew to the confident 27-year old she was. Although I don’t even know if it was so much growth, as it was an awakening.
Cora and Sean were fun to watch, and I love that both of them had their own backstories, even if I didn’t feel they were fundamental to the plot. But it made them more alive. Finally, Sean and Brody’s dad came across as so authentic, I felt like I really got him, especially when he had his big heart-to-heart with Brody.
Never Been Kissed is a well-written, solid romance that reads more like steamy literary fiction in some places. Molly O’Keefe tells a great story, keeping the reader engaged, and has a gift for creating genuine characters that suck you into their stories.
I was provided a copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.
About the Book
Title: Never Been Kissed (Boys of Bishop Series #2)
Author: Molly O’Keefe
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
Release Date: July 1, 2014
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble
About the Author
Molly O’Keefe is the RITA Award winning author of over 25 books and novellas. She lives in Toronto, Canada with her husband, two kids and the largest heap of dirty laundry in North America.
GRAND PRIZE: $10 Gift Card and ebook copy of WILD CHILD. 2 runners up get an ebook copy of WILD CHILD.