Perfect for fans of Alice Clayton and Emma Chase, Lauren Layne’s Oxford series heats up in this story of forbidden desire as a brooding jock hoping for a comeback falls for a woman who’s strictly off-limits.
A year ago, Jackson Burke was married to the love of his life and playing quarterback for the Texas Redhawks. Now he’s retired, courtesy of the car accident that ruined his career—and single, after a nasty scandal torpedoed his marriage. Just as he’s starting to get used to his new life as a health and fitness columnist for Oxford magazine, his unpredictable ex shows up on his doorstep in Manhattan. Jackson should be thrilled. But he can’t stop thinking about the one person who’s always been there for him, the one girl he could never have: her younger sister.
Mollie Carrington can’t say no to Madison. After all, her older sister practically raised her. So when Madison begs for help in winning her ex-husband back, Mollie’s just glad she got over her own crush on Jackson ages ago—or so she thought. Because as Mollie reconnects with Jackson, she quickly forgets all her reasons to stay loyal to her sister. Tempted by Jackson’s mellow drawl and cowboy good looks, Mollie is sick and tired of coming in second place. But she can’t win if she doesn’t play the game.
BFF K’s Review
Jackson Burke finds comfort in the one person who is so off-limits. For years, Mollie Carrington has carried a torch for Jackson Burke. Besides their mutual obsessions, Jackson and Mollie have another thing in common, Madison. She is Jackson’s ex-wife, Mollie’s older sister, and a completely evil and manipulative B%^&*!
Jackson and Mollie have a shared history through Madison, but they also have their own relationship. As Jackson’s marriage was falling apart, he found a friend in her younger sister. Jackson confided in Mollie his ambitions and day-to-day frustrations. Mollie relied on Jackson also as a confidant and supporter. When Jackson finds himself in New York, he realizes how much he has missed Mollie and her company. But, Madison is like a bad rash that just keeps coming back. Lauren Layne has created a fantastic villain. I despise Madison, and it is so much fun to hate a truly nasty villain!
I really liked Mollie and Jackson. I was rooting for them to find their happy ending. This book is angsty – way more than I was expecting! When they were struggling with their relationship and their own feelings, I could literally feel my heart hurting for them. My tummy filled with butterflies from all of the romance and steamy scenes. One of the best parts of I Wish You Were Mine, and this series, series is the Oxford-Stiletto gang. It was great to check-in with Penelope and Cole. I love how this group has formed friends/family bonds and how fiercely they care for one another. (I’m dying for Lincoln’s book! I can’t wait to uncover his back-story!)
I’m becoming a BIG fan of Lauren Layne! The Oxford Series books have everything I hope for in a romance novel. I Wish You Were Mine is well written, emotionally charged, character driven, passionate and delightfully sentimental. I’m anxious for the next book in this series and one of these days, I’m going to fit the Stiletto series into my TBR. If you love a really enjoyable, character-fueled romance, you should definitely one-click this today!
An Advance Copy was received in exchange for an honest review.
Jackson took a sip. Perfection. Although what did it mean that Jackson’s life had turned into one where the highlight of his day was a well-made cocktail?
It wasn’t that Jackson needed the booze. He enjoyed it, certainly. Had relied on it more than he probably should have in those first few days when he’d gotten out of the hospital and come home to a whole lot of nothingness.
But these days he could take it or leave it.
Tonight, however, he was taking it. Sobriety had no place when you had to sit across from the most off-limits woman on the planet.
Knowing that didn’t stop the anticipation, however. He hadn’t seen her since she’d shown up in his hospital room to deliver a bag of Gatlin’s BBQ and . . .
His divorce papers.
That had been eight months ago.
He’d avoided her ever since, and he couldn’t even say why except that he’d avoided pretty much everyone. Jackson still spoke with his parents every Sunday, but everyone else—all the old teammates, the old neighbors—had eventually stopped calling.
Mollie hadn’t, though. Mollie had never given up on him. Until today, he hadn’t responded to a single text, a single email, and yet she hadn’t stopped sending them. That was Mollie for you. Fiercely loyal to both him and Madison, even when things had started to go to hell.
Mollie had been accepted to Columbia just about the time that he and Madison started coming apart at the seams. In hindsight, he was grateful that Mollie had been in New York when things started to go to hell in his marriage. That she hadn’t seen him at his worst.
At the time, however, he’d been hit with an unfair sense of abandonment. He hadn’t realized how much he’d come to rely on the much younger Mollie to mediate things between him and the volatile Madison until she was in a different time zone.
Even now, more than a decade since first meeting Mollie, he struggled to reconcile the fact that she and Madison had come from the same parents. Madison was perfectly coiffed, charming only when she was in the mood, and manipulative as all hell. Mollie, on the other hand, was adorably awkward—a brainy research assistant who cared a hell of a lot more about her scientific journals than her manicure.
But somewhere along the line, Mollie Carrington had ceased to be that awkward kid who talked about bugs at inopportune times. Somewhere along the line, she’d become his rock. The one person in the world, save for perhaps his parents, who always knew the exact right thing to say to make him feel like a human whenever he’d started to feel like a caricature of himself.
For years he’d tried to tell himself that it was just sibling affection—that he cared about her the way he would a sister. But then things had gotten worse with Madison—way worse. And Jackson had been hit upside the head with the truth: that maybe he’d married the wrong sister. That he didn’t want to spend the rest of his days married to the beautiful, brittle Madison.
He wanted someone who made him laugh. Who listened. Someone who cared more about people than she did about hair appointments.
Someone like Mollie.
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