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3 Stars / Contemporary / Review

Review: End Scene by Elise Faber

First came the director yelling, “Action!

Next came the actual acting.

Last came . . . the end scene.

Or at least, that was what I liked to call my job as a publicist to Hollywood’s elite. If my client hit it big, I was the one who’d made that possible. And while being on call twenty-four seven meant I was chronically single, I was fine with that. I’d been in a serious relationship once and had ultimately discovered that I wasn’t cut out for commitment or being tied down or living in a small town.

I needed lights and excitement, paparazzi and enough traffic that the air always smelled faintly of exhaust.

I definitely didn’t need one Aaron Weaver—my ex-boyfriend and current occupant of my former home and very, very small town in Utah—tying me down or making me feel like the world’s biggest jerk, just because I wanted my life to be something more than open fields and cow patties.

But then I had to leave L.A. and go home to my father, to my small town . . . to Aaron.

And I discovered there might be much more to him than I’d ever expected.

In fact, I discovered that I might have missed out on the best end scene of my life by letting him go at all.

Title:End Scene
Author:Elise Faber
Series:Lights, Camera, Action (Book 4)
Pages:206
Genre(s):Contemporary
Trope(s):Second Chance Romance
Point of View:
Location:US
HEA:✔️
Release Date:24th August, 2020
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Not my favourite

I’ve recently discovered – and very much enjoyed – the writing of Elise Faber. She’s got a very engaging writing style that is fast paced and makes you interested and care about her characters. While this book was no different in that respect, the story itself just didn’t grab me.

Mags and Aaron were high school sweethearts who broke up when they left school and wanted different things in life. Since then, Maggie has avoided her hometown – and Aaron – and the feelings that he still invokes in her.

On a rare visit home, the pair have several run-ins that aren’t exactly friendly. Aaron’s behaviour towards Maggie wasn’t mean, as such – and I understand that he’s still upset (even 10 years or so later) and there are unresolved feelings. But coupled with the relationship Mags has with her father, I felt the first third of the book was just Maggie getting emotionally beaten up about her past choices, her current choices and for following her dreams. Since we know it’s unwarranted – and Maggie just seemed to take it – it was a rather uncomfortable read for me.

And speaking of Maggie’s father – I understand that the relationship between him and Maggie was one of the fundamental reasons for her leaving, and not returning, to her hometown – and I understand it happens in real life… but this was another aspect that was uncomfortable to read. He’s called ‘gruff’ and ‘grumpy’ but a man who calls his daughter vile names, who is so mean to her when she does nothing but try to help him – is abusive.

When we get to about 50% of the book – that’s when I started to recognise the kind of story that I love to read – and the kind of story I’ve come to expect from Ms Faber.

“…really sweet – and hot…”

When Aaron and Maggie connect again, it’s really sweet – and hot – to see the pair start a new relationship while also seemingly pick up exactly where they left off. I liked that there were no games between the pair. No pretending that they didn’t still feel a connection – mentally and physically – or that they wanted each other.

And their physical connection was smoking hot! I loved it – even more so because it seemed there was 10 years of pent up frustration under the surface, and the fact Aaron wanted to show Maggie he was there for her and not just the sex. Frustration is fun, afterall!

I know some people aren’t keen, but I do like people speaking to each other in petnames. ‘Peaches’ and ‘babe’ are the most prevalent in this story. It’s sweet.

This is the 4th book in the Love, Camera, Action series by Ms Faber. While it can be read as a standalone, I was a wee bit confused by these other characters – Maggie’s Hollywood clients – who were name checked a few times throughout the story and popped up now and again. Had I read previous books in the series, I would have had some context. It didn’t stop me understanding the story but those relationships were lost on me.

Had I started half way through the book, this may well have been a 5 star read. As such, the first half – setting the scene as such – wasn’t a fun read for me. It was well-written (and kudos to Ms Faber for making me truly feel the injustice and discomfort of Maggie) as was the whole book. I just wasn’t keen on the emotions and story other than Aaron and Maggie’s love story. Only 3 stars from me, I’m afraid.

USA Today bestselling author, Elise Faber, loves chocolate, Star Wars, Harry Potter, and hockey (the order depending on the day and how well her team — the Sharks! — are playing). She and her husband also play as much hockey as they can squeeze into their schedules, so much so that their typical date night is spent on the ice. Elise is the mom to two exuberant boys and lives in Northern California.

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Love, Camera, Action Series:

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