Carrie Ann Ryan
The Gallagher Brothers series from NYT Bestselling Author Carrie Ann Ryan continues with the one brother who thinks he can handle it all and the one woman who could change that.
Owen Gallagher likes everything in its place and is organized to a fault. While his brothers have each dealt with their own personal tragedies and stresses, Owen figures he’s had it pretty easy. That is until his perfectly ordered world is rocked at its foundation and he’s forced to rely on others. Now, he must heal his body and his soul while trying to ignore his delectable and utterly off-limits neighbor.
Liz McKinley is stressed out, exhausted, and not in the mood for a bearded and growly man in her ER. When she patches him up to the best of his ability, she’s prepared to push him firmly from her thoughts. Of course, that would be easier if she and her best friend hadn’t bought the house next to his. Now their paths seem to cross daily, and she is finding it harder and harder to say no to the injured and angry man next door. But she’s been scarred one too many times in her life, and even though this Gallagher looks good enough to eat, she knows that sometimes, sating that craving is the worst thing she can do.
When Owen first glimpsed Liz, she was collecting her friend from a bar. He was immediately attracted to her and knew he would have to get to know her, that is if they ever run into each other again.
Liz wasn’t thrilled she had to go pick up Tessa at a bar, but that’s what friends and roommates were for. She just wasn’t expecting to have to make a stop at the bar to meet a couple of men before Tessa would leave. She was even less happy when she gets called back into work. Being an ER nurse the schedules were killer and being called back was even worse.
Well, Owen has something run into him, instead of the other way around. A truck comes out of nowhere to send him flying in the bar’s parking lot. The last thing he expected was for Liz to be his nurse. With him drugged for surgery and her being the epitome of professionalism, he grasped onto the familiar face. He really didn’t think about asking her to talk to his family, he just did it. I mean they really didn’t know each other.
Unfortunately for Liz, this faux pas on his part has the rumor mill flying. Hospitals are notorious for gossip among staff. She doesn’t need this complication when jobs are on the line with the coming new budget. She totally thinks everything will be alright, that is until she finds they are neighbors. So not good, especially when she really, really wants to get to know him better in spite of her feelings that nothing should ever happen between them.
“I’m fine, Liz,” Owen said softly. He reached out and wrapped his hand around her wrist. “Just a little embarrassed that I bit it like I did. I saw you walk out to your porch earlier so I figured you saw me fall. That’s why I was lying down like I was. Not because I actually hurt, but because I’m an idiot.”
She frowned, studying his face. “You’re not an idiot. Everyone trips.”
Owen rolled his eyes as he forced himself to a sitting position. She tried to help him, but he waved her off. “I trip more than others recently. Or, at least, it feels like that. Thanks for checking me out, though.” He wiggled his brows. “And not just now.”
She swore she could feel herself blush and she hated her pale skin. “Let’s get you inside.”
“Anything you say, Nurse Liz.”
“And stop calling me that.”
“But you are Nurse Liz,” he said with a smile as they both stood up. “But I guess every time I call you that, I remind you that you used to be my nurse and that means it would be wrong to check out my butt. So I guess I’ll stop doing that.” He turned and shook his ass in her direction, looking over his shoulder as he did. “What do you think? You like the jeans? They’re pretty old, but you should be able to get a nice glimpse of my assets.”
She couldn’t help herself.
She laughed and looked down at his butt. “Yes, I guess I can get a nice glimpse. But that’s the only thing I’m getting. Just a glimpse.”
“Whatever you say,” Owen replied and took her hand. She was so surprised, she didn’t pull away. “Can I offer you a cup of coffee? To say thanks for running to my aid?”
She thought of the bitter cup she’d left on her porch, but for some reason, she didn’t answer as she should. “Okay.”
Surprise filled his eyes for a moment, and it matched her own. “Okay.” He smiled and pulled her toward his front door and inside. She hadn’t gotten a good look at it last time, but now that she did, she liked what she saw. Strong lines and colors filled his home, and it looked like someone cleaned up daily.
In fact, she was pretty sure the place was cleaner than hers had ever been, and she might have been a little jealous of that fact.
“Cream and sugar?” Owen asked as he poured two cups.
“Both please,” she said. “I can drink it black and usually do at work, but I have a sweet tooth.”
Owen’s eyes flared. “Good to know.”
Liz licked her lips, and his eyes dropped down to follow the movement. This was so not a good idea. She shouldn’t be here, and she sure as hell shouldn’t be following up on any attraction they might share. He wasn’t good for her, and she damn well knew she wasn’t good for him.
And yet when he set her coffee cup next to her hand on the kitchen island, she didn’t move to reach for it. Instead, she stood still, and he moved closer, so close she could feel his breath on her lips, the warmth of his body achingly close to hers.
“Tell me to stop,” Owen whispered. He moved even closer, resting his hand on her hip. Her heart raced, and she tried to say no, tried to remember that she shouldn’t do this.
She didn’t tell him to stop.
Ryan, Carrie Ann. Passion Restored (Gallagher Brothers Book 2) (Kindle Locations 860-885). Carrie Ann Ryan. Kindle Edition.
It seems like things are going to go slow and smooth but alas Liz’s past comes flying into her mind every time she thinks things will be alright. I found myself as frustrated as Owen as they fumble into one thing after another.
I love the closeness of this family and how it neatly intertwines with the Mongomerys via Maya. I just wish the struggle they all seem to go through to be with their soul mates wasn’t so difficult to overcome.
5 Contented Purrs for Carrie Ann!
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New York Times and USA Today Bestselling Author Carrie Ann Ryan never thought she’d be a writer. Not really. No, she loved math and science and even went on to graduate school in chemistry. Yes, she read as a kid and devoured teen fiction and Harry Potter, but it wasn’t until someone handed her a romance book in her late teens that she realized that there was something out there just for her. When another author suggested she use the voices in her head for good and not evil, The Redwood Pack and all her other stories were born.
Carrie Ann is a bestselling author of over twenty novels and novellas and has so much more on her mind (and on her spreadsheets *grins*) that she isn’t planning on giving up her dream anytime soon.
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