Series: Blum’s Bees #2
Release Date: February 24th, 2022
CW/TW: blackmail and threats, mentions of homelessness, mentions of death, divorce and a secondary character with a substance abuse problem
Least of all me.
The brooding construction manager is a man of myth and legend, rarely seen in the wild. Once upon a time, he was the star quarterback, the smiling homecoming king, royalty in our small town. Until tragedy struck. And then he disappeared completely.
Now he’s resurfaced, and I can’t keep my eyes off him.
He’s an island surrounded by lava, bound by a desert and guarded by dragons. I don’t stand a sunshine’s chance in a hailstorm.
Our siblings disagree and are out to prove it, nudging us into each other in the hopes we’ll fall. But with our town in tumult and the two of us firmly in the middle, nothing between us is easy. And when he’s faced with an impossible decision, I learn the truth of what I already knew.
No one can have Keaton Meyer.
And I have the broken heart to prove it.
This might be Staci Hart’s softest book yet and I absolutely loved it for that reason. It’s a grump x sunshine romance featuring the eldest of the Blum sisters (we met the whole gang in For Love or Honey) and the eldest brother of the Meyer gang. Daisy and Keaton have such an incredible romance and one that I spent most of my time swooning over. While their romance and love story may be soft, like with her other books set in the small town of Lindenbach, Staci tackles some pretty hard topics. I love that these stories aren’t just about the two leads, but about the people around them as well, because it really adds to the flavour of the story and gives their romance a little more of an oomph. As someone who’s read most of Staci Hart’s books, I have to say that these small town romances are a whole new favourite and I hope we get loads more!
Daisy Blum, like her sister, works on the family farm and helps around town as much as possible. She’s sunshine in every way possible and a genuinely good person. Daisy is also absolutely and completely gone for Keaton Meyer. Much like Daisy, Keaton is constantly doing things to help out the town he calls home. Along with his brothers, Keaton runs a construction company that provides services to all the residents of the town and anybody else who needs his help. In short, Daisy and Keaton are a match made in heaven. Except, both of them are holding onto the struggles and traumas of their past—they both lost someone they loved and getting over them has been hard. But when they find themselves in close proximity for a long period of time, all these feelings and desires they’ve been ignoring suddenly come to the surface and after a point, it seems silly to ignore what they want.
“Everything abandoned deserves a new story.”
There were so many things about their relationship that I adored. It’s sort of a slow burn, mostly because they’re around each other so much and the sexual tension felt like it was going to make them both combust a lot earlier than they did. But I loved the build up and how they slowly drew each other in. I also have to give credit where it’s due—the Blum and Meyer families are so nosy that they kept finding all kinds of situations where they would be able to toss these two together. I definitely appreciated Daisy being upfront and calling Keaton out on his cautiousness, because I think it’s sometimes important to just tell it like it is. There’s also some push and pull which made for interesting ‘will they, won’t they’ situations that had me giggling a few times.
I feel like I’ve mentioned this before, but there’s something almost poetic about the way Staci Hart writes her steamy scenes. You feel what they’re feeling and going through and it’s not just about the sex, it’s about the emotions these characters experience. I loved every minute of it and just kept wanting more. Because their relationship takes time to build, so does their sexual relationship and I really loved watching them go through those motions together.
Like with For Love or Honey, there’s a really great secondary storyline running through the book. Homelessness is something that we all see on a daily basis—no matter where you live—and the way it’s talked about and tackled in this story really made my heart full. I loved the effort and the passion these characters poured into the changes they were making. It also really makes you sit up and pay attention to what you are doing to make a difference to the homeless situation around the world.
And with all the little hints that were dropped through the course of this book, I cannot wait to see what happens for Poppy and I also hope we get some stories for the Meyer brothers, because they’ve got so much going on and I am beyond curious to see where it all goes!
Thanks to Staci Hart for generously providing me with an advance copy. I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.