Up To Me by Christi Barth – Review and Giveaway
Ella Mayhew’s always appreciated the beautiful view of Seneca Lake from the spa window of her family’s hotel.But the view improves dramatically when a hot stranger runs across the grounds—shirtless. He’s the first man to kickstart her hormones in the three years since she lost her parents, and she doesn’t even know his name.
Graydon Locke’s on his umpteenth undercover assignment. The routine’s always the same: assess a business, recommend it for closure, then roll out before anyone discovers his decisions impact hundreds of lives. He’s always believed nothing good comes out of small towns. Why would this one be different? Then he makes two classic rookie mistakes—falling for the sweet, sexy girl who owns the very business he’s on the verge of axing. And letting the town’s residents get involved in both his life, and his relationship with Ella.
Ella’s the best thing to ever happen to Gray, but he’s lied to her from the start. If he pulls the plug on Mayhew Manor, the entire town may crumble. Ella couldn’t save her parents, but it’s up to her to save their hotel. Even if that means turning her back on true love.
Up to Me by Christi Barth is the first book in her new Shore Secrets series. I have read most of Christi’s books, as she is a master at writing sweet lighthearted romances, with wonderful couples, friendships and great secondary characters. Up To Me is no different. I really enjoyed this fast fun relaxing read that takes place in a small town, with all of its charm.
Ella Mayhew is our heroine, and you immediately find yourself caring very much for her. Ella is the masseuse in the hotel she owns, since she prefers working in her spa, rather then running the hotel, Mayhew Manor, which was left to her by her deceased parents. I really love these books that take place in small towns, where everyone knows everyone’s business. After the tragic death of her parents, Ella went into a shell, doing her work and meeting with friends (the whole town loves her), with no ambition to take control of her life. Instead, she would always follow whatever her friends or townspeople advise her to do in a unique way that you have to read to understand. Cute.
Gray Locke is our hero, and he has a secret. He is at the resort spying to get information and help institute a hostile takeover of Mayhew Manor, with Ella losing everything, and the town going down with it. But the moment Gray meets Ella, and she puts her hands on him and gives him a quickie (massage lol), he is lost. Gray begins to try to romance Ella, though he knows he will be there only two weeks, and soon he begins to have second thoughts about hurting her. Gray hates his job, but he needs the money to take care of his ill mother. What follows is a sweet charming romance, with a sprinkle of humor along the way. What happens when Ella finds out why Gray is really there? Will Gray do his job and help take away the hotel from Ella?
This was a beautiful romance that was slow to build. Though both had lustful feelings for one another from the start, they decided to go slow and learn about each other. Christi did this so well, not rushing the sex, and allowing this romance to grow. Gray helps Ella become more confident and sure of herself, thereby becoming the leader that she was meant to be. But will she forgive him?
I really enjoyed Ella’s friends, though many of them were a little too quirky for me. However, it was nice that they all stood by Ella, which is what real friendship is all about. This also added to the humor of the story. As the romance built to where they both finally succumbed to their lust, it left me anxious to where it would end. I loved both Ella and Gray, and to Christi Barth’s credit, I could not put down the book, as I needed to know what would happen. I wholly recommend you to read Up To Me, as it is a very nice romance, small town atmosphere, good storyline, great friends, and a great couple.
Reviewed by Barb
Copy provided by Author
Christi is graciously offering two giveaways.:
1st prize: An e-copy of her new release, Up To Me to one (1) lucky commenter at The Reading Cafe.
2nd Prize: An e-copy of Love at High Tide to one (1) lucky commenter at The Reading Cafe.
1. Please register using the log-in at the top of the page (side bar) or by using one of the social log-ins.
2. If you are using a social log-in, please post your email address with your comment.
3. LIKE us on FACEBOOK and then click GET NOTIFICATION under ‘liked’ for an additional entry.
4. LIKE us on Twitter for an additional entry.
5. LIKE Christi Barth on Facebook.
6. The giveaway is open Internationally
7. The giveaway runs from July 12 to July 16, 2014