Type: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Crimson Romance
My Copy: Sent
She’s a small town nurse who had to grow up fast. He’s rock music’s most infamous guitarist. When a day at the beach turns life or death, their worlds collide, and no one will ever be the same.
Kate Gibson’s life has been all about family. She spent her high school years taking care of her dying mother, and her college years raising her younger sister.
Alec Sawyer’s past was an excess of everything: drugs, parties, rock, sex, and money. His downfall had been long, spectacular, and public.
Thrown together by fate and the media, Kate and Alec find themselves falling in love. But dating in the spotlight has its downside, and some secrets are better left in the dark.
I was very pleasantly surprised by this book. I knew it was a debut effort, so obviously not an author I’d read before. I didn’t expect very much, but Rachel Cross delivers a clever, sweet, sexy, heart-wrenching at times loves story between two people with real problems and real feelings. It wasn’t always perfect and I did have some issues with it, but overall I was very pleased.
Kate Gibson is a twenty-something nurse who is old beyond her years. She spent her childhood watching her father abuse her mother. Kate supported her mother through a terminal battle with cancer during her teenage years, and at eighteen she took on the monumental task of raising her young sister after their mother’s death. Now that her sister Emma is grown and away at college, Kate is sort of floundering in her life. Having been responsible and careful her entire life, she realizes that in doing so she has sheltered herself and never really lived.
All of that changes in one heroic moment on the beach. During one of her morning runs, Kate rushes into the ocean to rescue a drowning surfer. Alec Sawyer, former rock star turned lawyer happens to be surfing nearby and helps Kate get the unconscious man to shore. Thanks to Alec’s celebrity status, the rescue immediately thrusts the two strangers into the media spotlight. Alec is used to it, Kate is not. She grudgingly agrees to accompany him to New York for a television interview. As a celebrity and now entertainment lawyer, Alec knows all about how to spin things in the direction he wants them to go. He has no problem spending time with the lovely Kate while giving the media the attention it demands.
Kate and Alec’s relationship blossoms from there. They are a true case of opposites attracting. Alec has lived his life in the fast lane. During his rock star days, there weren’t too many places he didn’t visit, parties he didn’t attend and women he didn’t hook up with. He lived fast and hard for a decade before the death of his bandmate forced him to re-evaluate his life. He has been sober for ten years, but knows one small slip and he could be at rock bottom again. Kate is much younger and she is as innocent as Alec is experienced. Despite the difficulties life has thrown at her, she is refreshing and naïve and not nearly as jaded as Alec. Her attraction to him scares her because she knows he is way out of her league. Kate is the exact opposite of the women Alec usually dates but he can’t ignore the way both his body and his heart respond to her.
Their chemistry jumps off the pages of this book and the way that both of them fight it (and lose) over and over again is realistic. I don’t usually quote passages from a book in my reviews, but this fully explains Kate’s inability to resist Alec:
“His past was a series of casual affairs and philandering, and yet, despite all that, she was half-way in love with him. This beautiful, damaged man could smash her heart to bits with little effort. But part of her needed to see him again. Needed him.”
Some of the drama in this book was a little over the top. I thought that Kate and Alec had enough going against them without the stalker storyline and her family troubles. Minor complaints, though. The one thing I really didn’t like was Alec’s tendency to bail on her, but that completely fits with his character’s past so while it was lousy, it was believable. Kate and Alec were good with each other and for each other and I loved their happy ending.
I give Rock Her by Rachel Cross 4.25 stars!