Series: Ribbon Ridge #4
Published by Avon Impulse on November 17th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
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Evan Archer has always preferred peace and solitude to the loud antics of his large, hard-to-navigate family. But when Archer Enterprises needs a new creative director, Evan jumps at the chance to claim the job he’s always wanted. Moving home is easier than he expected, but Evan isn’t prepared for the stunning A-list celebrity hiding out in his family’s garage apartment.
Following a major tabloid scandal, movie star Alaina Pierce escapes to Ribbon Ridge. She’s immediately drawn to the quiet, picturesque town and the incredibly sexy—if a little quirky—Evan. He may be built like a Greek god, but he’s honest and straightforward… so different from the Hollywood types she normally dates.
Their attraction is undeniable, but Alaina can’t elude the paparazzi forever, and Evan has no interest in being in the limelight. When the secret she’s been keeping is exposed, the idea of Evan—of real love and a family like the Archers—could vanish in an instant.
An Avon Romance
I don’t normally jump into a series 4 books in, but I’d heard about this one, and the concept of a hero with Asperger’s was intriguing. I ended up really enjoying it, enough that at some point, I’d like to go back and read the earlier ones. I really liked the Archer family. They’ve been through a lot, but somehow they’re still standing, still strong.
Evan was… I really liked him as a hero. I don’t know anyone on the spectrum, nor do I pretend to be an expert, but Evan came across as real to me. It’s clear from the first time we meet him that there’s a sensory issue or something happening with him. Since I hadn’t read the previous books, I found out with Alaina exactly what that was. Evan is one of sextuplets, and it seems like all six of them have something going on with them. Asperger’s, OCD, lung disease, depression, sensory disorder, etc. When this book opens, one of them, Alex, has committed suicide after so many years of dealing with his physical issues. That may be the catalyst that kicks off the whole series, because it doesn’t come across as something that has just happened, but I’m not sure. All of the siblings and their parents are dealing with it as best they can. Alex sent them each a letter, and Evan has been doing his best to fulfill the requests Alex made of him.
My heart broke for Evan a little. His family owns a line of successful breweries, and most of the kids are involved in one way or another. All Evan wants to be is a graphic designer, but he doesn’t think anyone in his family will accept him as one, so he gets a job with them under false pretenses. He genuinely didn’t think he had a chance to do what made him happy and get love and acceptance from his family, and it was really difficult for him to be ok with lying to them.
Alaina was an A-list celebrity hiding out in Ribbon Ridge to avoid a scandal. Darcy Burke was really clever to put the two of them together; Alaina, a woman whose career and life hinges on popularity and publicity and social events, and Evan, a man who mentally can’t deal with touch or crowds or a lot of noise. There were times in this book I really didn’t see how she was going to make this work for them. Since it’s a romance, I don’t think it’s a spoiler to say that she did make it work out, and it worked for me, too. The ending felt a little rushed, and there were a few things with Alaina’s family that I would have liked fleshed out a little more, but overall, I thought this was a really well-done story about a family I’d like to read more about.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: