2018 Book #18 – Maybe This Time by Nicole McLaughlin

51ShRF+aNjLTitle: Maybe This Time
Author: Nicole McLaughlin
Date finished: 2/24/18
Genre: Contemporary romance
Publisher: St. Martin’s Paperbacks
Publication Date: February 27, 2018
Pages in book: 336
Stand alone or series: #2 in Whiskey and Weddings series
Where I got the book from: NetGalley
NOTE: I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

Blurb from the cover:

Maybe This Time is the next heartwarming contemporary romance from Nicole McLaughlin in her Whiskey and Weddings series.

Jen Mackenzie has been knocked down more than a few times, but she always gets up and makes sure she has the last word. It’s the reason she now considers herself equal parts self-sufficient and free-spirit. But since losing her job and trying to help her mother beat cancer, real life—and her occasional careless choices—have begun to catch up with her. Her one saving grace: The Stag, a boutique distillery that has become Kansas City’s go-to wedding venue. The only catch: One of the owners, TJ Laughlin, happens to be the one man who somehow manages to make Jen feel inadequate.

TJ has secretly had a thing for Jen since high school. Now, as her new boss, it’s a daily struggle between revealing his feelings and wringing her beautiful neck. Only one thing is for certain: he can’t stand idly by and watch the woman he cares for struggle. She may be convinced that accepting TJ’s help is a weakness. But all he sees in Jen is beauty and strength, inside and out. As things finally heat up between them, can TJ find a way to convince Jen that love is about give and take—and having it all, together?

My rating:  3.5 stars out of a scale of 5

My review: I was provided a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review.

TJ and Jen went to high school together but now they’re in their early thirties and Jen is a bartender at TJ’s distillery. They’ve been circling each other like cats in heat for the past 15 years, each having their own relationships while still being secretly in love. Luckily TJ finally gets the courage up to say something. Jen and TJ were both just such stubborn people and at first they can’t seem to let their guards down enough to make a go of it. Overall I liked the characters ok but Jen wasn’t exactly what I usually look for in a heroine. I did love how colorful she was and I loved that she had tattoos and wasn’t the conventional good girl. At the same time, for such a strong character, I didn’t like that she needed rich TJ to come swoop in and pay off her thousands of dollars of credit card debt. That being said though, I did like the characters and I especially liked the setting of the distillery in the small town. TJ was such a devoted hero and he really was just so romantic and sweet. I liked this book overall and I’d be interested to read others in the series.

Link to author website

Click on the cover to go to the book’s Amazon page

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