My rating: 4 of 5 stars
What if I fall? Oh, but my darling, what if you fly? ~Erin Hansen
I decided to leap blindly into Hard to Fall, the fourth story in the Take the Fall series by Marquita Valentine. Sometimes you just have to take that jump in life and in books. So I jumped, free-falling into Hard to Fall. I had not read any other stories in this series or any of this author’s books. Oh did I fall hard for Hard to Fall, a spellbinding and sexy story of love against the odds that hijacked my heart with a hero who made me swoon.
From the very first page, I sank into this story, submerging myself where I quickly became spellbound. The sweet, small town setting and vibe brought me back to my time living in a little North Carolina town. This Southern gal now living in Europe was transported back into the South where Hard to Fall felt a bit like coming home.
Coming home also meant politics. Growing up in the D.C. suburbs of Virginia, I could not help but live and breathe politics—whether I wanted to or not. I share a dislike of politics just like the hero in this story; his was part of his family where mine was part of my roots.
“It’s our family business that comes first… Walkers are career politicians. Have been since the Revolutionary War…and I f**king hate it.”
Hayden Walker with his dark blond hair, blue eyes, tall, and muscular body is the definition of hot. Speaking of hot, Hayden is a fire captain, every woman’s fantasy. A hardworking and hard-partying fire captain who doesn’t want to follow in his senator father’s political footsteps though it has been Hayden’s destiny since day one. Hayden feels hopeless and that feeling hits me, where I want to tell him to run for the hills and never cave into the cut-throat career of politics that can eat you alive.
“I know this is my duty. I know it is what’s expected of me, but I have a job, a career, but none of it matters to anyone but me.”
One distraction from Hayden’s political calling is the wedding of his best friend Hunter in Mexico, a much-needed getaway that comes at the right time for Hayden. A time to let loose and party before the reigns are tightened and the political noose is around his neck. Oh does Hayden party hard, so hard that a la Hangover style, he wakes up the next day in a blur though the beautiful woman he spots the next morning looks oddly familiar.
Saylor Dean, a beautiful brunette with brown eyes and curves in all the right places is the daughter of a famous Hollywood actress and absentee father of a Senator and runs an animal shelter. Her heart is as big as her brown eyes.
“Some might call me a lonely little rich girl with first world problems. I disagree with that descriptor, well, the lonely part anyway.”
Saylor may have gone to see her best friend, Evangeline, get married in Mexico but had no idea that she too would become a bride. One tonight together in Mexico was forgettable for Hayden but unforgettable for Saylor.
“Our night together was nothing but a fluke. Worse, it was forgettable. I am forgettable. Easily disregarded.”
I wanted to reach though the pages and hug Saylor and life her low self-esteem that had my heart breaking. Hayden can’t help but be attracted to his the best friend of his best friend’s wife; a woman who keeps crossing his path. A woman who he has no clue is his wife. Saylor is unique and Hayden can’t stop pursuing her.
“I like the beat of your drum.”
Hayden has never felt anything for a woman before beyond a physical attraction. Saylor is special; she is a spark of light in his darkened world that feels hopeless.
“You make me feel like…things can get better for me. Like my own ray of sunshine.”
His father has increased the political pressure, giving Hayden the choice of landing a bride in 45 days to help the Senator’s campaign or run for the second vacant senator position himself. Little does he know he is already married.
“My reprieve from a life of politics is quickly coming to a close.”
The chemistry between Saylor and Hayden is like fireworks, sparking with passion and promise.
“He gently grabs my chin, forcing me to acknowledge he’s there. With incite tenderness, he kisses me and I tremble.”
The past parades through Hayden and Saylor like a tornado, threatening to destroy everything and everyone in its path. Secrets and scandals await their debut. In the dirty world of politics, love may never stand a chance.
“I finally matter to someone…If I tell him the truth, I could lose that…I would lose that. He won’t look at me in the same way again.”
Politics is often fake but everything about this politically-powered romance felt raw and real. I could not help but feel every word I read in Hard to Fall, a tender and touching romance full of twists and turns that tugged at my heartstrings. The hero in Hard to Fall, Hayden, stole my swoon as he was utter perfection in the lethal mix of sexy alpha with a huge heart. The small town setting in the South brought more sugar to an already sweet romance. The surprise scandals with this tale’s twists and turns kept the reader guessing and wanting more.
Hard to Fall was my first book by Marquita Valentine and oh did I fall hard in love! I FELT ALL OF THE SWOON. This story quickly wrapped itself around my heart and never let go.
★★★★ ‘hard not to fall in love’ stars
As a hardworking, hard-partying firefighter, Hayden Walker values his career and his freedom. But as the eldest son of a U.S. senator, he agreed long ago to follow in his father’s footsteps and run for office, and that means settling down and marrying the picture-perfect wife. Hayden just isn’t ready for that sort of commitment . . . not with women like beautiful, curvy Saylor Dean—the naughty bridesmaid he recognizes the morning after his buddy’s wedding—tempting Hayden to stay single forever.
The unwanted love child of a well-known politician, Saylor has always felt isolated and alone, her only solace the animal shelter she runs in Forrestville. Then she meets Hayden at her best friend’s wedding. During their impulsive and unforgettable night together, Saylor feels desired like never before—only to wake up and find that Hayden doesn’t remember his drunken proposal, or their hasty marriage, or her. But when the truth comes out, Saylor finds it’s a lot harder to fall out of love than in love.