Ideal Image (Snapshot #2) by Freya Barker & KT Dove
In one blinding flash, the very fiber of her existence is shredded.
For criminal lawyer and single mother, Stacie Gustafson, a dependable career, a well-organized life, and an immaculate image, had always been her armor. Without it she’s left exposed and struggling to create a new existence for her and her daughter. No matter how hard she tries, she is unable to avoid her history.
All it takes is one look at the blue-eyed woman, for Nicolas Flynn to be transported back ten years. Sure, her appearance has changed, but then so has his, since he turned his life around. His devotion to his small-town law firm is tested with the arrival of this bittersweet blast from the past, making for a persistent distraction. One that drags along more trouble than she left behind.
For someone we only got to know superficially in Freeze Frame, I’m so glad that Freya and KT gave us more of Stacie. She got caught up in a whole ton of shit during Ben and Isla’s drama and she finally gets to have some happiness in her own book.
Stacie is Ben’s sister and had the horrible luck to be caught in an explosion that has left her scarred and a little bit reclusive. But that doesn’t mean she’s a weak woman. She’s an ex-ADA, she’s a single mother and she’s used her tragedy to help raise money for burn victims. She’s pretty kick ass, actually.
Nick intrigued me. He’s a collection of dichotomies. He’s a successful lawyer, but he doesn’t seem to have the douchbaggery gene that seems to be prevalent in that profession. Being a lawyer, he’s a snazzy dresser and he carries himself well, but you get the impression that he is more comfortable relaxing in his worn (and still sexy) jeans on his father’s farm. And while, most of the time, he’s smooth when interacting with others, he’s so sweetly unsure and awkward when he has any contact with Stacie.
But, there’s a lot of hiding in this book, which is what adds a layer of mystery and a thrill to this story. Nick is hiding that he’s known of Stacie for years. He knows things about her past that even she doesn’t know and would be devastating to her mental well-being. Stacie is hiding from everything. Work, relationships and to a degree, the public… Ben is hiding from what he sees as his failings in protecting those he loves, and a sinister presence is hiding from everyone…
I love the tension that Freya and KT have built in this book. There was a lot of nail biting and hoping that what I thought was going to happen, didn’t. I was pulled in and not let go until the end.
I liked where this story went. They did a great job of connecting all the pieces so you don’t feel like you’re were holding loose ends and you’ll find yourself rooting for Nick and Stacie to finally get their HEA after all the crap they’ve gone through to find each other.