Monday, March 30, 2015

Review: Calmly, Carefully, Completely by Tammy Falkner

Calmly, Carefully, Completely 
by Tammy Falkner
(The Reed Brothers #3)
November 18, 2013
264 pages
Genre: New Adult Romance
Contains: strong language, sex, sexual assault triggers
Source: eARC for Honest review

She’s been locked upeven longer than he has.

Peter Reed is fresh out of jail, fresh out of excuses, and ready for a brand new start.
Reagan Caster needs to thank Pete for an act of kindness, but he wants more than just her thanks.

Reagan knows how to protect her body, but not her heart. And her traitorous body responds to Pete in a way it hasn't with anyone else.When Pete's innocent flirtation becomes more, Reagan's ready to accept what he has to offer.

Pete assumes Reagan needs to be loved carefully and calmly. 
But Reagan knows she needs to be loved completely. 

Can he give her what she needs?

I absolutely loved Pete and Reagan's story! This is the 3rd book in the Reed Brothers series. Now I loved reading the first two books, which are Logan's story. But this can easily be read as a standalone. But I warn you that you will likely fall in love with the Reed brothers and want to read all of their stories.

Pete and Reagan's story begins with a terrible assault, intertwining these two strangers' lives due to the cruelty of another. Fast forward, Pete and Reagan are once again in each other's lives, Pete fresh out of jail for something unrelated, and Reagan the fresh face Pete has thought about all this time, as they meet up once again, this time at a camp for boys. Time apart, however, has not broken their small but significant connection, and we get to see what happens when two people fall in love, one step at a time.

I absolutely loved Pete and Reagan. Pete has learned from his mistakes, but even with the jail experience, he is still the loving brother who would do anything for his family, which has now turned into the kind, considerate, compassionate man who is able to slowly but surely break down the walls that Reagan has built up around her. Pete is funny as well as serious, able to balance his emotions and think of those around him. I loved how he treated Reagan with respect and tenderness, but not as something broken or damaged. I also loved his interactions with the boys at camp. You could see the natural mentor coming out of him, and I loved this aspect of the story. And, of course, witnessing any and all of the Reed brothers interacting is always wonderful.

I also loved how strong Reagan was. She's been protecting herself for a long time, and with that self-preservation, she has pulled back from others. Yet she is still kind and genuine, and that shines through despite her walls. But I also loved that with Pete she was finally able to take steps away from those walls, and trust him and his intentions. She is young in some aspects, but a wary soul in others. Her respect and admiration for Pete are apparent, but also her blossoming feelings. I loved them so much together. I also loved Reagan's parents. They had such a fun dynamic to witness - overprotective dad and calm mom - and I could imagine them as real parents. 

This story is definitely a love story, and I fell for Pete and Reagan big time. But there are many other aspects as well. For such a sensitive topic as sexual assault, the author sure was able to make a beautiful, sweet story. Reagan's situation was handled really well, yet it wasn't dwelled on in the way I am used to. Perhaps that's due to the timeline of the book. But I loved that we get the heartbreak of what happened to her, feel the deep root of how she has been affected, but we also get a beautiful love story about two people who work so well together. Additionally, we get this youth camp with a mix of ex-cons, juvenile offenders, and disabled or disadvantaged children. All of their interactions were important and moving and I loved the integration of it all.

Bottom-line, I loved this story, loved the characters, and loved how the author brought it all together. I'm excited to continue reading the rest of this series. 

The Reed Brothers Series:
Book 1: Tall, Tatted, and Tempting

Book 2: Smart, Sexy, and Secretive

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