Make It a Double
Series: Last Call, #2
Published on April 19, 2014 Genres: Adult, Chick Lit, Contemporary, New Adult, Romance
Brody Markham has endured a nightmare, spending the last five years in prison and losing everything that was dear to him. Now he’s back home, trying to survive in a world he doesn’t recognize anymore. While his family and friends desperately try to reach through to him, he shelters himself further and further away from their love.
Alyssa Myers has worked her entire life to distance herself from the luxurious and privileged lifestyle in which she was raised. Running her non-profit agency, The Haven, she is content to spend her days helping abused animals find sanctuary, which fulfills her in a way that money just can’t buy.
Maybe it’s that she recognizes in Brody some of the same characteristics she sees in her homeless wards, but Alyssa is powerless to stop her personal quest to make Brody whole again.
While Brody struggles to surface from the darkness, Alyssa tries to protect her heart in case he’s not willing to accept the light that she offers him.
What a pleasant surprise this story was! This is the first book I’ve ever read by Sawyer Bennett and it certainly won’t be the last. While this is the second in the Last Call series, it can be read as a stand alone. I’m actually about to dive into book one because the characters in this series are incredibly real, charming, and sassy. I want to know them better!
This book is about Brody Markham, a quiet and anti-social yet hot, alpha male who walks around with a chip on his shoulder. We find out early on that he was just released from prison for killing a man while driving under the influence. He carries an incredible amount of guilt and truly believes he’s worthless. At times he’s arrogant, pissed off at the world -usually at himself even more, and is a jerk to those closest to him. Scorned by memories of his ex-girlfriend, as well as not moving on from his time in prison, he refuses to let people in, including his sister’s best friend Alyssa.
Alyssa Myers is a childhood friend of Brody’s younger sister. She’s incredibly wealthy which makes Brody despise her immediately. But what surprises Brody is that there’s more to Alyssa than her trust fund. She’s smart, spunky, sassy, but most of all, upfront, brave and confident. Her empathy and dedication for starting and running an animal shelter by herself is inspiring, and Brody finds it hard to (continually) resist her.
There’s a lot I enjoyed about this book. I liked the main characters interaction between each other and the friendly banter with the secondary characters. Sawyer Bennett paints a circle of friends who are loyal, funny, and honest. I really loved getting to know Alyssa and her spitfire attitude, but what I think captured my enjoyment the most was Brody. He surprised me in so many ways throughout the book. I loved seeing his personal growth develops as he comes to turn with the decisions he’s made, and finally opens himself up to his family and friends, and ultimately allows the chance to love again. There’s a twist in this story that surprised me. It was a pleasant surprise, but one that also tore my heart open. It’s a revelation, a truth that made my breath catch and my heart stop. When this surprise is ultimately revealed to all, it made my heart ache and tears were flowing.
But above everything else that I liked in this story, the romance between Brody and Alyssa was the it factor for me. Their romance is hot, steamy, and sexy as hell. If you’re a fan of angst in books, then this is a perfect read for you! The angst between these two characters was killing me!!! I wanted to peek ahead to see how and WHEN it would all work out for these two characters.
He’s not touching me in any way, but I feel every inch of him all the same. He’s never stood this close to me…just an inch or two away, and I can almost feel a vibration…a pulse…a pull…whatever, between us. It’s absolutely magnetic, and I have to wonder if he can feel it.
Brody is a quiet, at times-misunderstood, and captivating leading male. It takes him a while until he realizes he’s worthy of Alyssa’s kindness and love. And along the way, he says some of the most swoon-worthy things to Alyssa that melted my heart and cemented his position as a top book boyfriend. I loved that his declarations were not over the top, but simple, and heartwarming.
“You don’t amuse, Alyssa. You captivate.”-Brody
I mean, it doesn’t get much more romantic than that in my book. And Alyssa, I adore her just as much. She respects the man that Brody is and sees past the town’s newest released prisoner. Her feelings for Brody are never tested, but only made stronger throughout the book.
“Yeah…I love your brother. He’s kind of hard not to.”-Aylssa
This book has it all. It’s got character, it’s got charm, it’s got great characters. It also has an incredible story line and a swoon-worthy romance. I’m still thinking about this story days after I read it… it’s that good!