Note: This ARC was provided by the author via InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review.
Into the Heat is the second novel in author Tamara Lush's Burning Secrets series and is a second-chance love story between Leo Villaneuve and Jessica Clarke, who were young and in love at eighteen and seventeen, respectively, until a pregnancy scare gets his father and her mother involved and leads them to go their separate ways--with Leo headed to the Marines and Jessica staying in Palmira Island--once the pregnancy proves to be a false alarm. Without a word of goodbye or any communication whatsoever, Leo and Jessica go on with their lives. When a bomb cuts Leo's career short and leaves his closest friend dead and him with PTSD, he's left with no choice but to return home and takes charge of the new bakery his family opens in Palmira Island. Crossing paths with his first love gives Leo pause--the spark between them is very much there, but Jessica's reaction to seeing him again makes it clear that she's never forgiven him for walking away. Leo and Jessica are no longer the teenagers they once were, both carrying scars--physical and otherwise--but could a second chance at love help to heal and give them peace?
Leo and Jessica suffered from a lack of communication, with one secret too many getting in the way of them truly moving forward and with Leo being the one saddled with the unwanted responsibility of keeping things from his first love. Leo is twenty-three and Jessica just a year younger, but there are moments where she acts really immaturely, lashing out without much thought and often ruled by her emotions. The core of the story had to do with Leo and Jessica getting another chance at being a couple but needing to decide if they were going to go for it or not, but there was also a side story with regards to a local recruiting office having been burned down and Leo isn't quite sure what role he played since he had been sleepwalking near that area the night it happened. I wished we got a bit more of that mystery, especially since most of the book was basically a back and forth between Leo and Jessica with him pulling her in then pushing her away and same on her end. Still, I did enjoy Leo and Jessica's story and that small twist regarding their parents was an interesting touch. Into the Heat gets four out of five stars. ♥
Date Read: 06 May 2017
Learn more about Tamara Lush.