After facing the same health scare that took her mother, adult film star Vera Eastman sets out on a road trip to finish her mom’s bucket list. First stop, the hometown she escaped the moment she graduated. Her defiant arrival puts her face-to-face with her first love—her first everything—Jack Reeves.
Jack’s still the guy who can steal her heart with a smile, but he hasn’t forgiven her for leaving, and avoiding him proves difficult. Not only is he her grandma’s neighbor, but Grandma pays Jack to mow the lawn shirtless, and his firefighter job has him frequently rescuing Vera, as her ability to find trouble—was it her fault the ladder on the water tower broke?—becomes as formidable a matchmaker as her grandma.
Small-town-itis must be contagious. That’s the only explanation for Grandma’s stupid cat being in love with Jack’s damn dog, for Vera’s sudden urge to move home, and for her falling for Jack all over again. Eating chocolate body paint out of the jar can’t even help her with this mess.
“The moment our eyes met, everything else fell away. The space that had separated us for so long vanished. The constant humming inside of me–the unquenchable need to keep going and doing and conquering–quieted, like the last raindrop of a thunderstorm.”
Fire Trucks, Garter Belts, & My Perfect Ex is my first book by this author and follows the story of Vera and Jack. Once upon a time, Vera and Jack had a love written in the stars. But, life and circumstance kept these two young lovers apart. It will be 11 years before these two will be reunited and Vera isn’t the same woman that Jack remembers….Vera is making quite the name for herself in the adult filmstar world and never thought she’d see the day that she’d return to the town she couldn’t leave fast enough. But, when Vera decides she needs to finish her mother’s bucket list, she has no choice but to return to the town she let behind. However, she never saw herself being reunited with her first love. One moment with Jack and it turns all of her precious plans upside down. He reminds her of all the good times, even if he can’t forgive her for the past. Jack and Vera attempt to become friends, but the fire that’s always been between them burns hotter than ever. Will Vera give small town living a second go, or is history destined to repeat itself?? There’s only one way to find out….
Overall, I thought this book was a quick and enjoyable read. The plot certainly was intriguing and kept me wanting to know more. I really loved the idea of Vera being forced to return home and face up to her past. I loved that she wanted to finish her mom’s bucket list, no matter the cost. I loved how easily Vera captivated total strangers, making them easily fall under her spell. I loved how hard she had to work to move past small town living and gossip. Not letting gossip get to you is a lot harder than it seems.
I found the chemistry between Jack and Vera to be real and honest. You could tell these two would just steam up the pages together despite their rocky past. There was still intense passion between them and only time would tell if they would be willing to put their hearts on the line again.
I will be honest with you that I had a hard time with Vera’s occupation. I was intrigued to see how the author would handle it, and did appreciate that she tried to humanize Vera and make her more relateable. But, for me personally, it was kind of hard to move past. I had a hard time wrapping my head around how accepting Jack was of Vera’s situation. I mean, on one hand, I liked that he accepted Vera for who she was and didn’t try to change her. But, on the other hand, I was like dude, how can you be ok with this???
Other than that, I thought this book was a fun and sexy second chance romance. This story doesn’t miss a beat and will certainly hold your interest the entire time. Fire Trucks, Garter Belts, & My Perfect Ex has just the right amount of small town drama, steam, humor and sexiness. This is my first book by this author and I would definitely be up for checking out more of her books in the future.
*I was provided an ARC copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review*