Blackmail never felt so right.
Celia Grant has spent the last ten years keeping her past at bay, building her Hollywood reputation as America's Sweetheart. When ex-boyfriend Ryan Harrington threatens to reveal her darkest secrets, she has no choice but to return to Demo, Kansas, and the people she left behind. In exchange for Ryan's silence, she will appear in a reality television show that promises to save his family's legacy.
Ryan Harrington knows an opportunity when he sees one, and using Celia to save his family is one he can’t ignore. But he didn’t count on the pull they still have on each other.
Celia reminds herself that she and Ryan were never destined to have a happily ever after ending like in the movies she stars in. But even as the ghosts of her past refuse to be suppressed any longer, she finds herself tempted by the hopes of a love she never thought she could have. Between secrets, fame, and love, Celia’s made the riskiest return of all.
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My Review: 4 1/2 stars
This was a great story. Ryan is trying to get his brother's girlfriend's idea of a reality show off the ground and the only way he can do it is if he pulls the one card he has and use it to blackmail his ex. Celia has build her life on pretending. She's not really the person you see on television, she much more damaged. She's got a lot of baggage and doesn't want to be seen as a victim. On the one hand I admire her for getting herself out of the situation. On the other, the way she did it was really messed up. It doesn't matter that Ryan and Celia have been apart for 10 years, the chemistry they have is right there, like nothing ever happened. When Celia's carefully constructed world starts to crumble, because of a most unlikely person, Ryan wants to be there for Celia. But the reality is that Kansas is far from Hollywood, and compromises would have to be made. Ryan is not one for compromise. He likes to tell the truth no matter what. Just when it looked like things would be getting better for them, that inflexibility could be the end for them both. I liked the idea that Nicole had with this story and I really enjoyed the characters, their snarkiness and sass. That made it a little more real for me and helped me to connect with them. I really liked them, especially Ryan and his big heart.
Nicole Helm grew up with her nose in a book and a dream of becoming a writer. Luckily, after a few failed career choices, a husband, and two kids, she gets to pursue that dream.
Nicole lives in Missouri with her husband and two sons, and writes her novels one baby's nap at a time. She's slightly (okay, totally) addicted to Twitter (@nicolethelm), loves watching the St. Louis Cardinals, and her dream is to someday own a barn.