A better story
Anything but this series
someone that does not have a baby voice
the high school story
just an overall boring tail
This was the second time I experienced this wonderful story and I still like it as much as I did the first time and maybe even a little more. I still remember picking this book up the first time at my local library shortly after its release. I remember looking for something new to read and the bright colors on the cover of this book called to me. I had never heard of Lisa Kleypas but I decided to take that book home with me and give it a try. I fell in love. Liberty's story grabbed me and I was soon telling all of my friends to read this book. I have now read a good portion of the books that Kleypas has written and have enjoyed every one of them but I have a soft spot in my heart for this story - maybe because it was my first.
Since it has been years since I read this book, I decided it was time to listen to the audiobook that I have had sitting in my audible account for quite some time. I must admit that I was not in the love with the narration right away but in the end I really enjoyed Jeannie Stith's narration of the story. She did a fantastic job of giving each character a different voice and I think she was able to show Liberty's voice maturing through the story. I was pulled in the story just as completely during this audiobook listen as I was when I read the book.
This is Liberty's story. I really think that this is a coming of age story more than a romance. Yes, there is romance but the focus of this story is Liberty. The book starts out with Liberty as a young awkward teenager living in a trailer park in Welcome, Texas. She experiences many of the things a typical teenager does - crushes, boyfriends, school, and spending time with friends. Liberty is forced to grow up quickly when tragedy strikes. Instead of giving up, Liberty works hard to find a career and takes her responsibilities seriously. Through her work, Liberty meets Churchill and a friendship quickly forms. She eventually takes a job as Churchill's assistant and moves into his home.
The romance in this book is different in many ways. As you may be able to guess from the cover, there is a love triangle (see there is 2 cowboys and only 1 cowgirl - big clue right there). The romance really comes at the very end of the book and it is intense. The big difference is that Liberty dates others during the course of the story. She doesn't have a lot of boyfriends but she does have a few. She also spends a lot of time thinking about the boy she met back in the trailer park, Hardy Cates. I must admit that I have spent a lot of time thinking about that boy myself. There is just something that I love about Hardy - where was this kind of teenage boy when I was a teenager? Then we finally get to see Liberty fall in love and try to figure things out and I couldn't help but be happy for her. I absolutely love how this story ends.
Lisa Kleypas does a lot of things right in this book. I fell head over heels in love with her characters. The only character that I didn't like in this story was her mother's boyfriends and a couple of the losers that Liberty dated. The pacing of the story was perfect and I found that I had a really hard time putting the story aside. I actually sat on my bed with my headphones one evening because I had to know what happened next, despite the fact that I have read the book before and already knew. This says a lot both about the story and about the narration.
I would highly recommend this book to anyone who loves a good coming of age story. This story of Liberty Jones is really hard to put down because everything is so vivid. I know that this is a book that I will come back to read again many times in the future.
I read this book a couple of years ago, and recently upgraded the book to the audio version. I throughly enjoyed revisiting this beautiful love story.
very romantic & funny. took a little while to get to the meat of the story, but overall was very sweet
All business but contemporary fun!
This is the first book I read from this author. The story had a somewhat unexpected twist to it, which was welcome. I wish I hadn't read the preview of the book because it really did give away half the story.
Libby Jones went overcame a number of struggles in her life and came out stronger in the end. My only comment would be that her character could have used less naiveté given these experiences. However she does shine at the end. I also wish we got to know Gage a bit more throughout the book. He really seemed to be a solid man.
I love books and love to get lost in the fantasy. I'm always looking for a new good story to bury myself in. :)
Warning...I do tell who Liberty ends up with in this review so don't read it if you don't want to know.
This was a pretty good story. I liked Liberty and Gage and liked their story overall.
Liberty is a good woman that hasn't had an easy life. She grew up with her mother but her father died when she was young which left her and her mother in a tight situation money wise. Her mother went out with guys that weren't worthy of her and Liberty never understood why her mother did what she did. When she was still in high school, Liberty's mother had another daughter but wasn't much of a mother and Liberty became more of a mother to her sister than her mother was.
The story begins when Liberty is 15 years old and her and her mother have just moved in to a trailer park in Welcome, TX. That's where Liberty meets her first love, Hardy. Hardy is a few years older than her but there's a definite connection between them. Over the years, the attraction between Liberty and Hardy grows stronger but Hardy wont let it go any further because he said if he was with Liberty she might tempt him in to staying in Welcome. Hardy makes it very clear that he's determined to leave town to make something of himself and he's not willing to stick around for anything, including her. Liberty understands this but has lost her young heart to him so it doesn't help much. Liberty tried dating other guys but no one makes her feel like Hardy does and she finds that she's always looking for Hardy in the guys she dates. Hardy leaves town and things get worse for Liberty when her mom dies (without insurance) leaving Liberty on her own with a sister to take care of and little else other than bills. Liberty does have a bit of good luck when she manages to get a scholarship for a beauty school. Once she finishes her training she's able to get a good job in a nice salon. This is where she meets Churchill and becomes friends with him. Many people think that Churchill is her Sugar Daddy but it's not like that at all, they're actually just friends. Liberty and Churchill are friends for a few years when he offers her a new job, one working for him (paying a lot more than what she makes now) as his assistant. Part of the job is living at his house and Liberty isn't sure (especially considering her sister and how things might affect her) but eventually she agrees.
When she first moves in things aren't easy due to Churchill's son, Gage. Gage is convinced that Liberty is sleeping with his dad and is pissed about her moving in. He eventually comes to terms with everything (and realizes Liberty isn't sleeping with his dad) and isn't necessarily nice to Liberty but stops being outright mean to her. At one point, Gage gets sick as a dog and Liberty decides to stop in at his apartment to check on him because no one can get him on the phone and Churchill is upset, thinking something bad might have happened. When she gets there, Liberty finds Gage is very sick and in need of some help. She's rather soft-hearted so she stays for a few hours to fix him some food (home-made chicken and dumplings) and take care of him. After this, things get better between Gage and Liberty and (with some pushing from Gage's family) they end up on a date together. That goes well and they start seeing each other. Liberty hasn't had very good luck up until now with men and sex, typically having a lot of trouble with the big O, but fortunately things work very well between Gage and Liberty in that area. The main strife between Gage and Liberty is the money situation (she doesn't like him spending money on her and he gets annoyed because he just wants to give her what he wants without thinking about how much it costs) but overall they get along pretty well. Just as things are going well for them, Hardy shows back up. He's has some success with his business ventures and now has money, lots of it. Hardy tells Liberty that he wants her now that he's in a position to be with her. Liberty is totally confused at this point because she's been falling for Gage but she still has unresolved feelings for Hardy from their almost romance when they were young. Liberty has a lot of thinking to do and she spends some time with Hardy (with Gage's agreement) trying to see how much of her feelings are still true and how much are leftover from what she used to feel for him. Liberty ends up deciding that her true feelings are for Gage and not Hardy. Soon afterwards, Liberty finds out that Hardy did something pretty lousy and it just proved to me that Hardy had changed (not in a good way) in the years since they knew each other and that Liberty made the right choice in going for Gage. Liberty and Gage come together for good and start their HEA.
Overall this was a pretty good story. I will admit that I ended it with a little bit of mixed feelings because I got invested in Hardy as the hero when I started the story so I couldn't help but be a little disappointed that young love didn't win out in the end. But considering the way things went I think the Liberty and Gage was the right outcome and one I was happy with. I liked Liberty...she felt like a pretty normal woman, not perfect but not a bad person...just someone trying to get as best she can. I liked Gage (once he got over his initial butt-headed behavior) but wished he had been a bigger part of the story (he didn't enter in until around 2/3rds of the way in). I was disappointed that Hardy came back just to end up being a jerk. I'm not sure if I'll try the next book in the series as it's around Hardy and Gage's sister and that almost seems a little too weird for me, especially so soon after this book. I'd recommend this story. :)