Tuesday, January 10, 2017

RELEASE BLITZ, 5 STAR REVIEW &GIVEAWAY: Worth the Wait (McKinney/Walker #1) by Claudia Connor

Title: Worth the Wait
Series: McKinney/Walker #1
Author: Claudia Connor
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: January 10, 2017


The first in a spin off series of the New York Times Bestselling McKinney Brothers, WORTH THE WAIT takes readers on a journey through young love into adulthood in a heartwrenching, second chance love story.

Nick Walker thought nothing could destroy what he had with Mia. He certainly never thought he would be the one to destroy it.

Now ten years later, Mia James is in Special Agent Nick Walker’s path once again and this time he’s determined to shed the weight of regret and finally claim the future that was always meant to be theirs.

It won’t be easy. Mia’s heart was shattered by Nick and now, just when she’d pieced it back together, it’s been broken again, bringing their past to the surface, including her own secret about that day everything went wrong.

***Every title by Claudia Connor is a Contemporary Romance and a full stand alone novel. No cheating, no love triangle, no cliff hanger.

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My Review

I received an advanced copy of this book with the promise of an honest review. 

Talk about a swoon worthy hero. Holy crap. I have been on the edge of my seat waiting for Nick Walker's story pretty much from the moment that he was introduced. This book is told in present time and in flashbacks. We knew that Nick raised his sister, but now we get the story from his point of view. The excerpt below is one of many flashbacks that will make your ovaries hurt and want to actually go into the book, steal Nick and make him yours. SORRY MIA.

Nick met Mia when he was in college and Hannah was just two years old. After accidentally dumping the contents of his backpack on the ground, Mia was there to help him. A couple days later they met again and Hannah instantly took a liking to Mia and vice versa. It doesn't take long before she becomes a part of the Walker family. It stays that way for years until tragedy strikes and Nick shuts Mia out leaving her feeling like the only thing she can do is leave. Now it is years later and unbeknownst to Nick, Hannah has reconnected with Mia. When they finally come face to face, old wounds, as well as old feelings, are reopened and they have to decide if they can forgive and forget their past in order to move on. 

While they were away from each, they both went through a lot. Mia is trying to get over a heartbreaking loss that has shattered her already fragile heart. This subplot broke mine and made me sob on more than one occasion. Before Nick came back into her life Mia was handling it on her own. She wasn't handling it well, but she was doing her best. When Nick discovers what is going on he wants to help, but she's not sure she can trust him. Meanwhile Nick is still getting over what happened with Hannah and holding on to her a bit too tight. He is also carrying around lot of guilt and blame where blame should not be placed. Nick and Mia have a lot of emotional scenes, both good and bad, but that is what brings them back to where they belong...with each other. 

Nick and Mia's story is an emotional one that will make you laugh, cry and leave you wanting more. I just loved this book so much. We also got some insight into Nick's relationship with not only Hannah, but also his brothers. After the death of their parents, Nick took on the role as head of the family and that didn't always go over well. But there are these sweet moments with the Walker boys and young Hannah that melted my hear and make me look forward to reading their stories. And of course there is that overlap with Hannah and Stephen's story (HI MATT & ABBY. I LOVE YOU GUYS!) so we get to see it from a different angle. I knew that Nick was unhappy about the relationship, but now we got to see it from his side. While reading Worth the Risk I found myself chuckling at Nick's banter with Stephen and this book was no exception, especially in the very EXCELLENT epilogue. I got so excited when Claudia announced that Nick would get his own book and I was not let down. 


~twenty-four years ago

Nick pressed two fingers into the sleep deprived headache pounding in his temple and tried to concentrate on professor Jenkins’s explanation of ideal gas law. He circled a line of notes, ignored the knock on the auditorium door until he heard the familiar cry. Hannah, who he’d left in the university daycare two hours ago.

The high pitched wail wasn’t his two year old sister’s hurt cry. It was her scared cry with a touch of pissed off. In the six months since their parents’ death, he’d learned to tell the difference. He’d learned a lot of things. Like if he didn’t take her to the bathroom, she’d likely wait too long and have an accident. Like green beans made her throw up, but she’d eat them if he told her to. And she would never, ever go to sleep without Mr. Bunny.

He was up, out of his seat, and halfway down the auditorium stairs before his professor laid his pen down.

Nick’s eyes narrowed on the young blonde in an oversized sweatshirt with silk greek letters sewn on the front. She held a sobbing Hannah dressed in the sunny yellow sundress he’d picked out that morning. She hadn’t been crying when he left her. Now her eyes were red and snot mixed with tears dripped into her mouth. Hannah lunged for him. His arms engulfed her small body and his heart squeezed like it always did when she held onto him.

“I stay you,” Hannah said. Each word tumbled out of her with a jerk of her tiny shoulders.

“What happened to her?”

“Nothing happened to her. She hasn’t stopped screaming for the past hour and she bit three people. We can’t keep her like that.”

Several responses came to mind.

She’s just a baby.

She missed her nap.

And the loudest of all, it was my fault for leaving her.

Hannah raised her head to look at him, giant tears hanging from golden lashes. “I bite.”

“Well. At least she’s honest.” Professor Jenkins turned his questioning eyes to Nick. “She yours?”

He hesitated, but only a second. “My sister. But yes, she’s mine.” And at that moment she became even more his, which seemed to be the case every day. Every day, a little more his.

Author Bio

Claudia Connor is the author of the New York Times and USA Today Bestselling series, The McKinney Brothers. Her debut novel, WORTH THE FALL, hit the New York Times Bestsellers list in 2014 and received numerous Best Contemporary Romance of 2014 accolades.

Claudia attended Auburn University, where she received her undergraduate and master’s degrees in early childhood education. After teaching kindergarten and first grade for ten years, she retired to be a full-time mom to her three daughters. Always a lover of books, and always one to have stories playing in her mind, she decided to try her hand at writing. It took seven years to finish her first novel and a new love was born.

Claudia lives near Memphis, Tennessee with her husband, three daughters, two cats, and a singer-songwriter Siberian Husky. She continues to write warm, heartfelt, and emotional romances with a bit of steam, a lot of family and always a happily ever after.

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