Exclusively Yours (Kowalski Family, #1) by Shannon Stacey
Published: December 20, 2011 by HQN Books
Received: purchased ebook from B&N
When Keri Daniels' editor finds out she has previous carnal knowledge of reclusive bestselling author Joe Kowalski, she gives Keri a choice: get an interview or get a new job.I was in the mood for a fun, romantic adult book that would capture my attention and read like I was watching a movie. Shannon Stacey gave me just that + so much more in her first book, Exclusively Yours, among the Kowalski Family series. I jumped the gun and read the third book in this series late last year, but was told I could read these stories out of order and wouldn't feel lost. It's completely true, but it was still nice to see how it all started with the first book.
Joe's never forgotten the first girl to break his heart, so he's intrigued to hear Keri's back in town--and looking for him. Despite his intense need for privacy, he'll grant Keri an interview if it means a chance to finish what they started in high school.
He proposes an outrageous plan--for every day she survives with his family on their annual camping and four-wheeling trip, Keri can ask one question. Keri agrees; she's worked too hard to walk away from her career.
But the chemistry between them is still as potent as the bug spray, Joe's sister is out to avenge his broken heart and Keri hasn't ridden an ATV since she was ten. Who knew a little blackmail, a whole lot of family and some sizzling romantic interludes could make Keri reconsider the old dream of Keri & Joe 2gether 4ever. [goodreads]
The Kowalski family is introduced in this novel as a large, overbearing group that means well and just wants to see each family member be happy and succeed in life. I loved the individual stories this book held, giving a sneak peek at some of the relationships that would be explored further in upcoming books. The main focus of this story is about Keri and Joe, high school sweethearts that have a smoking hot past! Though it's been several years since they've seen each other, one would think a broken heart should be minded by now -- considering Keri left Joe just after graduation to chase her own career dreams in California. But as soon as they're forced back together once again, it's obvious those broken pieces have never truly healed.
The setting for this story takes place at the Kowalski family campground that the family attends every year. Keri finds herself on this wilderness vacation with the family just after Joe cons her into going along in order to get a story out of him for her job that's on the line. After all, he's now become a recluse famous author, and if anyone can get a story out of him, it would be Keri! The tension is seeping from the pages after just one night spent in the cabin, alone together. I could not flip the pages fast enough to find out if they'd end up in the same bed before the vacation was over! I loved how Stacey took two characters who knew each other so well, yet reintroduced them as strangers discovering the other for the first time.
If you're a fan of contemporary adult fiction that focuses heavily on romance and all the feel good things that go along with it, then I highly recommend picking up this series by Shannon Stacey. She's definitely becoming a favorite of mine to read in this genre and I can not wait to read more about these lively, interesting characters among the Kowalski family.