Hearts Like Hers by Melissa Brayden is the second book in her Seven Shores romance series. Because it follows a different couple falling in love, it can be read as a standalone (although I think everyone should read the first book, Eyes Like Those, anyway!).
Autumn Primm has let life pass her by for far too long. She’s damn proud of her successful coffee shop, The Cat’s Pajamas, but at 34 she’s still single and doesn’t have a family. Attending her ex’s wedding is just the wakeup call Autumn needs to finally reach out and grab the life she wants.
Kate Carpenter’s heart hurts every time someone calls her a hero, until one day it’s too much and she knows she needs to get out of town. An extended road trip to Venice Beach sounds like just the ticket, where no one will know her as a firefighter from a sleepy town in Oregon. After meeting a gorgeous redhead at the beach, Kate’s more than a little happy to find her behind the counter at the excellent coffee shop next to the Seven Shores apartment complex where she’s staying for her vacation.
Autumn and Kate can instantly feel that there’s something between them, but with Kate only in town temporarily and Autumn focused on her own future, they know they can’t have more. They can just be friends though, right?
Kate and Autumn are incredibly likeable. They have instant chemistry, which is fun to read, and watching each woman get all aflutter around the other is so satisfying. They’re both warm, caring, and sensible, and I loved seeing how they supported each other with a strong friendship while their romantic interest was growing. I also appreciated that although each woman had her own arc and went through some serious personal growth, it was for themselves rather than to make them fit together in a relationship.
If you liked Isabel, Taylor, Gia, and Hadley in Eyes Like Those, then you’ll be happy to know they all show up in this book! I especially appreciated getting to know Gia and Hadley better as they support Autumn through some pretty serious personal issues (and I’m eagerly awaiting their books!).
The Writing Style
Hearts Like Hers has a breezy style that makes it a perfect beach read. The romance is paced well, the sex writing is super hot, and even the conflict made perfect sense and honoured Autumn and Kate’s journeys.
Just like with the other books in this series, Melissa Sternenberg did a great job narrating this Hearts Like Hers. She’s such a good match for the overall tone of the Seven Shores books, and while I was already familiar with how she performs Autumn and her friends, I enjoyed hearing how she brought Kate to life. If you’re at all inclined to listen to books, I totally recommend getting the audio for this one.
Unsurprisingly, everything worked for me with this book. And, at the risk of parroting my review for Eyes Like Those, the standout element for me is the way Brayden writes female friendship. It’s so refreshing to see books celebrating it, and every scene with the friends made my heart happy.
*looks at watch*
*checks the calendar*
I have to wait until JUNE for the next book!
Eyes Like Those is still my favourite of Melissa Brayden’s books, but Hearts Like Hers is a wonderful romance and a worthy installment in the Seven Shores series. Just make sure to start it when you don’t have anything else going on, because you won’t want to put it down!
Excerpt from Hearts Like Hers by Melissa Brayden
“Don’t take this the wrong way, but you’re even prettier up close.” Kate sat back in her chair.
“How could I take that the wrong way?”
Kate glanced at the ceiling and back. “I don’t know. Might be crossing a line. We don’t really know each other yet.”
The yet was not lost on Autumn. The yet came with so many fun possibilities.
“It’s not crossing a line,” Autumn said, feeling daring for the first time in a while. “And thank you for what you said, but I’m not sure I can hold a candle to a mysterious out-of-town firefighter.”
Kate offered a small smile, the kind that mattered. Most of Kate’s smiles did—that much Autumn could already tell. She didn’t throw away her smiles. While only occasional, they seemed sincere. “But here’s the thing I don’t get.”
“And what is that?” Autumn asked.
“Why you agreed to have coffee with me. Unless…”
“What?” Autumn said, enjoying this.
“Unless we have a thing happening. We do, don’t we?”
Autumn held her thumb and forefinger together. “Little bit. I think.”
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Hearts Like Hers
Bits and Bobs
- ISBN number: 9781635550146
- Publisher: Bold Strokes Books
- Audiobook Publisher: Bold Strokes Books Inc
- Narrator: Melissa Sternenberg
Melissa Brayden Online
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