Her twin sister is missing.
When Ariana Costas heard her twin sister, Zoe, had disappeared, Ari left Vermont and returned to her Jersey girl roots to find her. Ari didn’t know what to expect from her search, but danger around every corner, dodging bullets, and a hunk in a leather jacket saving her was not it.
He thought she was someone else.
Detective Quinn Donovan thought he located Zoe Costas. Beautiful, dark-haired, and a perfect match to the description he’d been given, he believes he has his lady. Except as it turns out, the gorgeous woman is Zoe’s twin Ariana, the college professor. Suddenly, Quinn’s job is more about trying to protect Ari who is in trouble deeper than the Atlantic at high tide. There’s more at stake than trying to protect her without spilling his well-guarded secrets.
Will he lose his heart and the girl in the process?
|Title:||Under the Boardwalk|
|Series:||Costas Sisters (Book 1)|
|Trope(s):||Law Enforcement Romance|
|Point of View:|
|Release Date:||7th July, 2020|
Romance and more
This is something slightly different from Carly Phillips – in that it contains more than just her usual hot and heady romance. While not a romantic suspense, there’s also an element of, well, mystery, I suppose you could call it, with Ariana’s sister’s disappearance and the ongoing investigation into the casino where she once worked. We also have the storyline of Sam – and another romance of Connor and Maria.
The main course is definitely still the romance between Ari and Quinn. Okay, and probably both of them coming to terms with their pasts and what they want from the future.
I really liked Ari and from the first you could tell she was far from the stereotypical nerdy professorial type. I loved her first interaction with Quinn and how she held her own. I even loved the fact that she was more than a little messed up about what she wanted – and how to reconcile her feelings for her family while still loving them fiercely. I did feel she got put through the ringer a bit. Everyone’s a bit of a therapist and once or twice I wanted folk to cut Ari a break – she was doing her best!
Our hero’s name is Quinn. That’s all that I need to say about him because with one of my favourite hero names, how could he be anything less than perfect? He’s grumpy, gruff, infuriated yet reluctantly intrigued by the mystery of Ari and what she’s up to. Strangely, he’s quite trusting but also a complete cynic. And with a hard childhood in the foster care system, he’s just a little boy at heart and I wanted to give him a big ol’ hug. Poor baby!
The relationship between Ari and Quinn is very push and pull – both aware that it can only be short term, but unable and unwilling to stay away from each other. And when they are together, it’s deliciously combustible. There’s lots of grabbing and chemistry and hot sex – just what you would expect from a Carly Phillips’ story.
The ‘more’ in the story is that there are a few other things going on. I liked the story of Sam and it never took away from the main romance – probably because Quinn, and then Ari, were so intrinsically linked to Sam and that storyline.
We’ve got another burgeoning romance between Quinn’s partner, Connor, and a casino waitress, Maria. I would have loved to read a wee bit more about this pair as I liked their antagonistic relationship and blossoming romance. I also really enjoyed the banter/conversations between Connor and Quinn. Clueless, the pair of them!
There’s quite a cast of characters in this story on top of our main couple. Ari’s family are eccentric in the extreme but I really liked them. They didn’t come across as ridiculous – despite the crazy situations they got into – and I also never felt overwhelmed about these extra people! Oh, and Spank the monkey, of course!
I also barked out a laugh or two in this book – which is always a nice bonus!
This book stands alone but there is a second in the (Costas Sister) series, about Zoe, Summer of Love (previously Summer Lovin’). I’m looking forward to reading that as I very much enjoyed reading this romance with something more, and look forward to catching up with everyone again. 4 stars and a truly engrossing and enjoyable read.
*This book was originally published in 2004. It has an updated cover and, presumably, the content/storyline has been tweaked for its 2020 publication.
Carly Phillips gives her readers Alphalicious heroes to swoon for and romance to set your heart on fire, and she loves everything about writing romance. She married her college sweetheart and lives in Purchase, NY along with her three crazy dogs: two wheaten terriers and a mutant Havanese, who are featured on her Facebook and Instagram. She has raised two incredible daughters who put up with having a mom as a romance author. Carly is the author of over fifty romances, and is a NY Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestseller. She loves social media and interacting with her readers. Want to keep up with Carly? Sign up for her newsletter and receive TWO FREE books at www.carlyphillips.com.