Review: Between the Sheets by Molly O'Keefe


Title: Between the Sheets (The The Boys of Bishop #3)
Author: Molly O'Keefe
Date of publication: 29 July 2014
Genre: Romance, Small town

Author's links: Website / Twitter / Facebook / Goodreads
Purchase Links: Amazon / B&N / iBooks

My rating: 4 stars


After years of running, Wyatt Svenson has now parked himself in Bishop, Arkansas, trying to do the right thing and parent a son he didn’t even know he had until recently. Over six feet tall and packed with muscles and power, Ty likes to get his hands dirty, fixing his motorcycle at night and keeping his mind away from the mistakes he’s made. Then his pretty neighbor shows up on his driveway, doesn’t bother to introduce herself, and complains about the noise. First impression? She should loosen up. Funny that she turns out to be his son’s elementary school art teacher—and the only one willing to help his troubled boy. Ty needs her. In more ways than one.

Though Shelby Monroe is safe in her structured life, she is drawn to Ty’s bad-boy edge and rugged sexuality. What if she just lets it all go: her worries about her mother, her fear of heartbreak, and her tight self control? What if she grabs Ty and takes a ride on the wild side? “What if” becomes reality—intense, exhilarating . . . and addictive. But Ty wants more than a secret affair. He wants it all with Shelby. But will she take a chance and open her heart? Ty is determined to convince Shelby to take the biggest risk of her life: on him.


This is my first book by this author, it's third in the Boys of Bishop series but it can be read and very much enjoyed as a standalone. I''m generally a fan of small town romances and I liked this one quite a lot. I was surprised how edgy and raw it was. 

I found the general premise of the story very intriguing - a shy school teacher falls for a single father, sort of biker, new comer to her small town. As it turned out, things are not what they seem on the surface. I loved how refreshingly unique both main characters are. There is nothing cliche or standard about them. Both Ty and Shelby bear the scars of their past and are struggling with some serious issues in their present.

She is traumatized by a overzealous religious father who hated her and she bears the guilt of letting him humiliate and abuse both her and her mother. She hides the scars of a very public sex scandal and all this makes her closed off and often she reacts to harshly, mostly out of an instinct for self-preservation. Shelby is a complex, troubled character, with unique powerful voice. I didn't like her all the time, but the author really made me sympathize with her struggles and feel her pain, frustration and even tender hope for the future.

Ty, on the other hand, was absolutely wonderful and I loved everything about him. He is a kind of bad boy, trying to reform in order to be a good father to his 11-year old boy who just discovered him a couple of months ago. He was trying to settle down, to learn to be a good father but things are not easy either for him or for son. He was attracted to heroine but her hot and cold attitude coupled with his delicate situation of being a new father, made things between them rather complicated

I loved the kid, he was such a wonderful character. Ms O'Keefe created gave us a sincere portrayal of his fears and dreams and hopes. he was a great addition to the romance and had a key role in the overall story.

As some weaknesses of the book, I have to admit  that I i had some issues with the writing itself. The  multiple points of view made it confusing at times as who exactly is speaking. The transitions from one voice to the other were not always smooth. Heroine referred to her mother both as Mom and as Evie and I found it confusing.

My main complaint is the nature of the sexual relationship between the characters. They came together as a means to escape their troubles, as a way to forget about the real world. Their lovemaking was intense, raw and quite rough, often driven by anger. I was Ok with it initially because I found it fitting to the current state of mind of the characters. Still, when their relationship progressed and the feelings between them grew into love and affection, we didn't see their angry sex turning into lovemaking. I missed seeing  a more tender side of their sexual relationship.

I'd say it was a rather unusual small-town romance which I greatly enjoyed. It has the small-town feel of friends and family supporting each other, yet things are kept real - there is no sugar-coating of the heavy issues Ty and Shelby had to deal with. I can recommend it to all fans of contemporary romance with strong characters and well-developed and engaging story.

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