Series: The Boudreaux #6
Author: Kristen Proby
Genre: Contemporary Romance
From New York Times Bestselling author Kristen Proby, comes a steamy and passionate friends-to-lovers romance—EASY NIGHTS! The sixth standalone title in the Boudreaux Series, Savannah and Ben’s highly anticipated story is now available on all retailers! Grab your copy today!
The Boudreaux Series—Sexy. Intriguing. Easy.
No one said change was easy…
Savannah Boudreaux knows what it is to hurt. To bleed. To be afraid that the man she’s promised to be true to until “death do us part” might in fact separate them far sooner than anyone had ever anticipated. But Van also knows what it is to survive. To move on. To live life to the fullest. With five brothers and sisters and a loving mother as her constant source of strength during the pain and the healing, Van realizes there is little else she needs.
But some things never change…
Benjamin Preston sat on the sidelines of the Boudreaux family for years, in love with a woman he couldn’t have. As the best friend of the Boudreaux brothers since childhood, Ben has seen both tragedies and joys in the family. And as a former MMA fighter and Krav Maga expert, Ben’s used to fighting for what he wants—and winning. His hands were tied when Savannah married her high school sweetheart not long after graduation, but now two years have passed since Ben found Savannah broken in her own home.
Sometimes what you need most has been right in front of you the whole time…
Van’s convinced that happiness isn’t in the cards for her, no matter how right it feels to be in Ben’s strong arms—and his bed. Ben is determined to win her heart and fight for her trust. He’s promised to protect her, to be her friend. But more than anything, he wants to finally make her his, and this is one fight he’s not willing to lose.
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I spin at the sound of Ben’s voice, and silently cringe. I look horrible. I’m sweating like an ice cold drink without a coaster, and the clothes I wear here are skin tight, making it easier to move.
“You’re not usually here at this time,” I say and dab a towel on my face. “What’s up?”
“I had a meeting with another instructor,” he says with a smile. “Thought I’d say hi.”
“Hi.” I smile and readjust my ponytail. It’s much smaller now, but I can still pull it back. “How was your day?”
“Busy,” he replies and surprises me by letting his eyes travel up and down my body. “I like the new hair. You look great.”
“I’m a mess.” I chuckle and hook my towel around my shoulders. “You, however, do look great.”
That’s a fucking understatement. He’s in cargo shorts and a black tank top, showing off his tattoos and his muscles.
Good lord, the muscles.
“Can I show you a few things?” he asks, breaking my concentration on his muscles.
“Sure,” I frown as I follow him back into the empty classroom. “Am I doing something wrong?”
“No, I just want to go over some form things.” He leads me to the center of the room and stands behind me, looking into my eyes through the mirror.
Oh God. This is way sexier than it probably should be.
“Assume the stance.”
I follow his directions and work very hard to not react to his strong hands on my sides as he walks me through punches, kicks, and better ways to keep my center of gravity.
“You’re small,” he murmurs and pushes my legs just a little closer together. “I want you to keep your feet just a little closer together. You’ll have better balance.”
I nod. “It feels better.”
He smiles at me. I can’t keep my eyes off of him in the mirror. The way he moves, his facial expressions.
Ben has always been attractive to me, but holy shit, did he get hotter? Or was I just too broken before to see it?
Because holy shit, he’s hot.
“I just asked you to do the spin/elbow move.”
“Oh.” I bite my lip and will myself to stop ogling his arms.
“Are you okay?”
“Of course.” I do as he asks and spin, attempting to ram my elbow in his nose, the way I’ve been taught, but he blocks and sends me onto my ass. “Damn it.”
“You’re not spinning quickly enough.”
“I’m as clumsy as they get,” I remind him. “If I spin too fast, I’ll fall on my ass. I’ll be helping my attacker more than anything.”
“It’ll actually feel easier,” he says, helping me to my feet. “You can do this. I’ve seen it.”
“You’re taller than anyone else I’ve ever sparred with.”
“Good,” he says and narrows his eyes. “Chances are, if you ever have to defend yourself, your attacker won’t be shorter than you.”
“True.” I nod thoughtfully.
“But if you’re still not comfortable doing this with me, that’s fine. I can make suggestions for Shelly to work on next week.”
“I’m okay,” I reply, and am surprised to realize that it’s true. It wasn’t long ago that I couldn’t stand for any man to touch me, not even my brothers. But I don’t mind so much now.
In fact, I’m utterly shocked to realize that his touch is turning me on. I don’t remember the last time I had sexual thoughts toward a man. Even Ben. Which was one more thing that made me sad.
But hello, long lost hormones.
I can’t believe Van and Ben’s story is finally here! After wanting this book since the very beginning of the series, now it’s here, it revealed to be a bittersweet event, because it simultaneously makes me crazy happy that we finally got these two’s story, but sad because it also marks the ending of one of my all time favorite series and family, the Boudreaux. Oh, well, that just made me enjoy it that much more, and savour every single word.
Easy Nights is a emotional, hopeful and romantic tale, with plenty of steam, from friends to lovers. But what surprised me was that this book was as much about healing, and personal growth, as it was a romantic novel.
I’m here, I’m alive, and I don’t look like I’m going to break at any moment.
It finally feels like that chapter is closed, and I’m ready to see what the next one brings.
Two years have passed since that horrific night where Savannah’s abusive husband raped, beat and tried to murder her – event not retold, we just know from the previous books’ info -, but she survived, and now divorced and feeling that she’s finally healed, she decides it’s time for a new chapter in her life.
Just so it happens this new attitude is exactly what breaks Ben’s resolution to stay away from her. Knowing he has the support of her brothers, and that Van is finally in a good place, and ready to start anew, even her sassiness and flirty spirit are back, proves to be too much, and he decides he can’t take it any more, pretending just being friends and lays all cards in the table.
“This is what I want,” he whispers. “You are what I want, Savannah.”
Well, and I, like their family, have to say: It’s about time!!! LOL
Since his feelings are more than reciprocated, given both have been trying to ignore and deny their attraction since their youth, it was only nature that their relationship developed at the speed light, and they very soon expressed their love and feelings.
“You’re amazing, Savannah.” He presses his lips ever so gently to the soft skin below my ear. “You’re the most fantastic person I’ve ever known in my life, and I love you so much my body aches with it.”
‘Friends to lovers’ and ‘best-friend with little sister’ normally are very tricky tropes for me to fully enjoy, given my personal pet-peeves, specially because normally the main characters already saw the other with other people, or proclaimed to have always loved (or been IN love) with the respective other since forever, but then go against it and sleep with others. I can honestly say this was beautifully solved and exposed here, because although they had always been attracted in some way, and loved each other in a caring way, they never claimed to have been ‘in love’, nor were other people rubbed in each others face, and the references to their sexual past are almost non existent in the book. I was so happy with that, but what truly blew my mind was the way Kristen Proby, via Mallory explained perfectly why now was the time they were meant to be together. I adored this…
“And I feel stupid, like I should have known Ben was the one for me all along.”
“He wasn’t the one for you yet,” Mallory says quietly. “People fit differently in our lives at different times. You weren’t meant to be with him until now, because you weren’t the person you are until now.”
“I believe that,” I say slowly. “And I wonder if we’d dated a decade ago, if it would have stuck. We were both young, and like Mallory said, different people. The chemistry was always there, at least on my part. From what he’s told me, he felt it then, too. But would we have really fallen in love? I’m not so sure. And if we had fallen in love, the odds of it surviving through college are probably smaller.”
Isn’t that the most perfect way to see this trope?! So incredibly thought out and exposed!
Even Ben’s himself reveals the same understanding. This says it all,
“You’re a special woman, Savannah Boudreaux. I’ve known that since we were young. I don’t feel like the time we didn’t have together was wasted because it made us both into who we are today, and without that, we might not be together now.”
Of course that now that Van and Ben thought all her trauma and horrid past where finally behind her and their HEA was just within reach, someone decides to try to steal that peace and destroy all they built together, and all the healing she finally obtained.
“Then why do I still have that horrible dream?”
“Because the past is always with us, even when we think we’ve moved on. There’s something, even if it’s in your subconscious, that’s still afraid of him.”
I’ll not reveal any more because I want you to enjoy the ride as much as I did. Van’s ‘rebirth’ is as much part of the book as is the romance between them, and I understand that was the objective, to show her strength and it’s possible to survive something like it happened to her and still obtain your very own HEA, but, in my view that kind of stole a bit of the focus and emotion on their relationship on itself. Don’t get me wrong, there is plenty of passion there, and sexy times, but after so much expectation since the very first book, I was hoping to feel even more chemistry and emotion. Maybe that was me, but at times I felt Ben was far to contained, when I thought he would be more Alpha. I know he was unbelievably understanding of her situation, and for that he showed more restrain, to protect and take care of her, but I wanted more emotion, even more passion between the couple! Nonetheless, Easy Nights was an amazing cherry on top of this EXTRAORDINARY series. That epilogue sure was the perfect closure, and I confess I shed a tear or two, with how beautifully is written.
And now I’m sad because it seems I’m saying goodbye to some of my loved ones – which they after all – and this spectacular New Orleans setting. I hope this isn’t the last Kristen gives us of this universe.
I miss the Boudreaux already… Uhmmm, guess it’s time for a reread! 😉 <3 <3 <3 <3
“Don’t you ever fucking forget what you are to me,” he says. His blue eyes are on fire and on mine.
“What am I?” I ask and watch in fascination as his eyes darken. His jaw tightens. His grip on my ass digs in just enough to sting.
It’s fucking delicious.
“You’re everything.” He kisses me, his lips much gentler than the rest of him. “You are the beginning and the end of me, Savannah. I don’t work without you.”
“You’re my everything too,” I reply.
ARC kindly provided by the author via InkSlinger PR for an honest review
a Rafflecopter giveaway
And don’t miss the first standalone titles in the Boudreaux Series!
EASY LOVE (The Boudreaux #1)
EASY CHARM (The Boudreaux #2)
EASY MELODY (The Boudreaux #3)
EASY FOR KEEPS (The Boudreaux #3.5)
EASY KISSES (The Boudreaux #4)
EASY KISSES (The Boudreaux #5)
EASY FORTUNE (The Boudreaux #5.5)
New York Times and USA Today Bestselling author Kristen Proby is the author of the bestselling With Me In Seattle and Love Under the Big Sky series. She has a passion for a good love story and strong, humorous characters with a strong sense of loyalty and family. Her men are the alpha type; fiercely protective and a bit bossy, and her ladies are fun, strong, and not afraid to stand up for themselves.
Kristen lives in Montana, where she enjoys coffee, chocolate and sunshine. And naps.
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