by Karen Booth
I have been intrigued by older woman, younger man relationships since I read my first romance with that dynamic when I was a teen. (It was Jude Deveraux’s The Invitation) When I read the synopsis for Karen Booth’s For Keeps I knew I had to try it… I’m just sorry I waited so long. I read it a few weekends ago on a plane ride and I couldn’t put it down until the final page. I loved the tenderness and the heat. 😉
For Keeps is a story of two lonely people finding each other. The fact that there is a twelve year gap between their ages is an element of the story. But it is not the primary focus. I appreciated that. I loved meeting Allie and Cooper and seeing the sparks fly between them. And watching them deal with the challenges of opening up to another person and dealing with their jobs and families and yes, the age gap. I liked how that wasn’t a joke and it was not their biggest hurdle to making the relationship work.
Allie is a smart, successful career woman running her own add agency. I liked her confidence and honesty. Cooper is her upstairs neighbor and though she’s attracted to “…Mr. Tall, Hot and Too Young for Me…” She doesn’t plan on pursuing him. She sees him as an extremely smart, driven man and someone so NOT interested in her. She couldn’t be more wrong. Cooper is drawn to her. He thinks she’s gorgeous, clever and spunky. He fantasizes about her age and experience. He admires everything about her and thinks she’s too put together to be interested in him.
When they act on the sparks between them their chemistry sizzles. The heat in this story is a delicious combination of sweet and spicy. Really HOT at times and then very tender. *sigh* I liked that I could see how Cooper felt about Allie and where his heart was. I loved that once he decided what they were to each other he was all in. I loved that he wanted to protect her but he acknowledged that she was capable of fighting her own battles. I could see where Allie was coming from and I related to her struggles to open up and trust Cooper and let down her walls and let him see all of her.
Here are a few of my fav lines
♦ “…I want to be with you. You’re the only person I want to talk to at the end of the day. You’re the only person I want to spend my weekends with. The question is what do you want? Because none of that matters unless you’re happy.”
♦ Someone could have told him he had to leave that instant for the most important meeting of his life and it would have made no difference. Allie was the most pressing matter at hand.
♦ Her relationship with Cooper was all about stripping those things away. It was a scary idea to leave herself, her heart, so exposed. But there was something liberating about it as well. She could be Allie, leave her faults on display and it didn’t matter. He still loved her. He still cared for her.
♦ All I want to do is tell him. All I want to do is walk upstairs and knock on his door and have him ask me where I was all this time. All I want is his arms around me all night long. All I want is Cooper.
I wanted Allie and Cooper to succeed against all the obstacles in their path. I thought the writing was beautiful and at times almost poetic. I loved the layers to the characters and getting inside their heads and hearts.
If you are in the mood for a quick contemporary romance on the steamy side, I recommend you pick up For Keeps and fall in love like I did. I was captivated by the characters and the emotional depth to the story. I loved it!
The Queen of Tarts
♦ ebook provided for review for my honest opinion.