Had To Be You by Robin Kaye (Bad Boys of Red Hook #3)

Had To Be You by Robin KayeAvailable: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Contemporary Romance 

Publisher: Signet

My Copy: Sent

Reviewer: Pam

The last place he expected to find lasting love was back in his hometown…

Slater knew tragedy from a young age, but with the support of his foster family, he turned his life around. Now, back from a stint in the Navy, he’s packed up his motorcycle and returned to Red Hook to help to run the family restaurant—a job that comes with a tantalizing upside. Her name is Rocki.

Flirty, sweet, and outgoing, Rocki brings in crowds as the lead singer of the house band. And although she’s unable to resist the charms of this intense bad boy, she refuses to open her heart to him. Until a family crisis shatters Rocki’s easygoing demeanor, exposing something from her past she’d always hoped would stay hidden.

But Slater knows a thing or two about family secrets—and he sets out to prove to Rocki that their relationship could finally give them both a future worth believing in.

I love a great series with good family drama, people that you have history with that love you unconditionally, with a good romance of course. This is a perfect read for me, the third in a series about a family in Brooklyn that comes together after a heath scare. This story overlaps the second book a bit but the author does a great job of melding the pieces together and you could easily read the books as standalones.

Slater Shaw came back to help his father after his heart attack, he, along with his two foster brothers are helping run the bar until Pete is back on his feet. Slater has been gone for ten years, leaving for the Navy as soon as he could and then going to school. Even though he did not want to come back to Red Hook, he is glad for the diversion as he girlfriend just dumped him because of his pedigree, or lack of.

The Crow’s Nest has gone through some major renovations since Slater was here and he likes the changes his brother’s have made, he also is interested in the singer in the band and she seems equally interested in him, at least until she finds out he is Pete’s son. But that does not stop both their friends and family from pushing them together, subtly of course.

Rocki O’Sullivan has been in Red Hook for three years, becoming like a family member with those that live and breathe The Crow’s Nest. Not many know her past as she keeps it to herself but they all love her and welcomed her with open arms. When her brother is injured in a skiing accident many are surprised to find she even had a brother yet they rally around her as she turns to the family for help. Slater drives her north and is surprised to have not only her past come to light but the ghosts of his come out, horrific memories he never remembered come forward and threaten their tentative relationship and the relationship with another special person back in Red Hook.

I absolutely adored this story, with all its family drama, angsty romance, pain and heartache. The characters were well written and I thought the story line was done well. I like the two together; the combination is combustible, so hot and sexy with enough chemistry to light up the night. Slater is a wonderful hero that is dealing with life’s problems not realizing that he had this huge issue just ready to bubble to the surface. Rocki is also very likeable; she is an enigma, seemingly very friendly and gregarious yet if you asked anyone about her past, they would be clueless, as she was cautious with her life. While helping with her brother Jackson, the two go through some rocky situations, but seem to get through them, until Slater’s memories surface, and oh the tears that flowed.

The story pace was just right, we pick up the family as they are dealing with Pete’s illness and move right into Rocki’s trauma and Slater’s issues but that is not all, as there are still several past problems that are simmering just below the surface. But the author handles the multiple dramas well and I had to keep turning the page to see the outcome. I love the family, Pete is a wonderful dad and the brothers are just as they should be with fights and all, Nikki, the little sister is cute at eleven and I enjoy the camaraderie between the whole group.

I do not know if the author is continuing the series, however, I hope so as I enjoy the whole package, the setting of Brooklyn, the bar and the family dynamics.

I give Had To Be You by Robin Kaye 4.50 stars!


  1. Pam, I’m so glad you enjoyed HAD TO BE YOU! It’s always nice to hear. And the series is continuing. I just got a contract to write another novella and Jackson Sullivan’s book–it should be fun. 🙂

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