Series: Rock Canyon #5
Published by Avon Impulse
Publication Date: April 7th, 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Buy Online: Amazon ♥ Barnes & Noble ♥ Kobo
Disclaimer: I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book. All opinions stated are solely mine.
Codi Gary returns with another fabulous Rock Canyon romance: when veteran marine Everett Silverton meets the town’s smooth-voiced DJ Callie Jacobsen, sparks fly—but is passion enough to give these wounded souls another chance at love?
Callie Jacobsen isn’t about to open her heart to just anyone. Not so very long ago, trusting someone changed her life forever—and not in a fun way. Now she’s better off focusing on her career, her friends, and her dog. So when former Marine Everett Silverton takes an interest in her, Callie’s more than a little wary. No matter how charming he is, men are a bad idea. In fact, she’s got the scars to prove it.
But Everett isn’t convinced Callie should shut everyone out—especially not him. He may be a hero to the people of Rock Canyon, but he’s got his own demons, and he bets they’re not that different from Callie’s. Still, he knows it’s going to take more than chemistry to get her to let her guard down. Everett will do whatever it takes to show her she’s safe with him. All she has to do is take a chance, take a step … and take his hand.
Callie Jacobsen learned the hard way that love was not for her and she has the scars to remind her. As a part of getting her life together, Callie moved to Rock Canyon in search of a new beginning, one which does not involve a man. She likes her life as it is now, focusing on her friends and her dog and she enjoys her job as a DJ at a small-town radio station. The highlight of her days is when her mystery caller ‘Rhett’ calls in to the show and she gets to chat with him for a few minutes. ‘Rhett’ is actually former Marine Everett Silverton. Everett returned from Afghanistan with both physical and mental scars. In spite of being hailed a war hero by all, Everett does not feel worthy of the praise and battles the guilt of surviving when his best friend did not make it back and has channeled his energy into his organization, counseling and helping vets struggling with PTSD adjust to life back home. He is interested in Callie and looks forward to the daily chats with her, even though he has never met her and has no idea what she looks like. In such small town and with friends in common, Callie and Everett surprisingly never had an opportunity to meet each other because they both prefer their own company to hanging out with friends, but a chance encounter changes all that.
I had some difficulty finding the words to express how I feel about this book. Not that the story is a bad one, but the usual words – fun, flirty, lighthearted, etc.- do not really fit. This is a very intense and emotional story of two people with a lot of emotional baggage, two people with vastly different ways of coping with the trauma in their pasts. While Everett faced his demons and was motivated to help others who had gone through the same experiences as he had, Callie buried her issues and never fully dealt with them. It took Everett coming into her life to make her realize that her main issue was that she blamed herself for what had happened years ago and has never really forgiven herself. In order to reach out for the future she could have with Everett, she had to learn to forgive herself and move on.
Bad for Me is a great story on personal healing and finding love after a traumatic past and even though the story revolves around weighty issues like PTSD, alcoholism and survivors’ guilt, they do not overwhelm the romance. The characters are very realistic and it’s so easy to get caught up in the story. Ms. Gary writes a great character in Callie. The depth of emotions and her personal journey were quite difficult to read, but she had Everett to lean on and she also found supportive friends. Everett was just perfect for Callie: calm, patient and steady. I like that he knew what he wanted – a future with Callie – and was not afraid to go for it.
My recommendation: Be sure to keep the tissues handy for this one.