In Holding Out For A Hero by Amy Andrews, Ella Lucas’s hometown of Huntley, Australia, has never been a comforting place for her. She was always the social outsider, never quite good enough for any of the cliques because of her mother’s reputation. Even though they didn’t have much interaction, Ella always felt like badboy Jake Prince was somewhat of a kindred spirit. His father was the town drunkard who also liked to gamble, so Jake knew how vicious gossip could be.
‘She wasn’t here for his Dr Phil advice. She was here for the sex. And from what she heard, Jake had more than a few degrees in that.’
Flash forward almost two decades and Ella finds herself back in town after her mother passes away. Pushing aside her grief, she uses the opportunity to give the neighborhood busybodies something to really talk about when she asks Jake to follow her upstairs to a room over the local bar. Their earth-shattering day together ends when Ella leaves town, but she can’t forget Jake or the incredible way he made her feel.
“What kind of a gentleman would I be if I let a lady walk home by herself in the dark?”
“It’s not dark yet, and anyway, I’m not alone, am I? I have the hound from hell, ninja dog with me.”
They both looked down at Cerberus, who wagged his tail and trembled at the same time.
Jake rolled his eyes at the pathetic combination and started walking again. “I insist.”
Two years later their paths cross one more time when Jake buys the bar Ella and her BFF Rosie haunt on Fridays. Jake is now a very famous, okay…infamous, retired Australian football star who wants nothing further to do with the game. Math teacher Ella has been thrown into the role of school principal and is fighting to keep her school from closing. When a crazy idea gets tossed about to create a football team and win a prestigious award to save the school, Ella is forced to try to recruit hottie Jake to come to their rescue. But will Jake help Ella and her unruly band of teenagers or will he walk away like she did two years ago?
‘He had the strangest feeling he was about to be devoured.’
Holding Out For A Hero is a funny, smexy contemporary romance with absolutely unique characters that are easy to love. The dialogue is off the charts hot! And we have not one, but two couples to follow, both of which have crazy chemistry between them.
The main hero/heroine couple of our story is Jake and Ella. Both were loners and misfits growing up in Huntley so they have a good understanding of where the other is coming from. Ella is a math geek with insecurity issues thanks to her childhood. I connected with her pretty quickly and her need to help others in similar situations. She has a good heart but is a bit untrusting of men romantically.
Jake was the ultimate badboy growing up and though he tries to hold it together, the tendencies are still there to want to solve issues by fighting and drinking. He is a good guy (and very, very sexy!) who has done a lot to help others in need over the years. That part he keeps quiet, which is very realistic given his situation. I shared his pain during certain scenes when he was misunderstood basically because of his reputation and his football career.
Rosie and Simon’s romance was also a hoot to read about. The ex-carny Goth girl with the straight-laced wealthy guy with political ambitions. I mean…there’s a whole lot that can happen there. And it does! I think I fell in love most with Rosie’s aunts and Cerberus the stray dog. The aunts were set in their ways and seemed a bit grouchy, but to me they had the biggest hearts of all.
If you haven’t read anything by Amy Andrews before, this is a great book with which to start. I really enjoyed her smooth writing style and the quirky characters she created. I definitely recommend reading Holding Out For A Hero!
Publication: October 15th 2013 by Momentum Romance
Holding Out For A Hero
When sensible schoolteacher Ella Lucas rides into her home town on a Harley and seduces the resident football hero, Jake Prince, she figures she can be forgiven and move on. After all, she’s just buried her mother.
Two years later, back in the city, their paths cross again but this time Jake is in the process of destroying her favourite dive bar. With her home facing a wrecker’s ball, her school being closed down and her 15-year-old brother hell bent on self-destruction, it’s the last straw. Throw in a dominatrix best friend who is dating a blue ribbon guy so straight he still lives at home with his mother, it’s no wonder the sanest person in Ella’s life is a dog.
With all this to contend with, the last thing Ella needs is Jake back in her life. But, as fate would have it, Jake is the only chance she has to save her school.
As the school football season heats up, old secrets threaten to surface and Ella takes on greedy developers, school boards and national tabloids. But can she save not just her home, her school and her brother, but also the reputation of the man she’s never been able to forget? And, more importantly, does she want to?
Holding Out for a Hero is a quirky, heartwarming tale of unlikely romance, friendship and family.
I have read a couple of Amy’s books, Driving Her Crazy and Girl Least Likely to Marry (from The Wedding Season – good series!) & really like them. I will definitely pick this one up. Thanks for the review!