Title: Kiss Me If You Can
Author: Carly Phillips
Published in July 2010 by Harlequin
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Other Books by Carly: The Bachelor, The Heartbreaker, the Playboy, The Hot Zone Series, Lucky Series
Sam Cooper was good at his job. His status was a disappointment for his father, but there was not a lot his dad could do for Sam. Oneís physical body, or the results of damage to it, often determined the personís limitations, and that Sam couldnít be a cop was the cause of his fatherís unhappiness. Of course, coming from a long line of NYC law enforcement personnel, Jake hoped his sons would follow in his path. Mike did, but Sam suffered a rotator cuff injury playing sports, and it was reinjured in the academy training. The report from the surgeon was not promising, and so Sam took himself out of the force because of the physical limitations imposed. He knew the injury weakened him and he could jeopardize the safely of his partner or fellow officers. It was something he didnít want to live with, ever. His father understood, but it was still a blow for his dadís hopes. Sam had always enjoyed writing, however, so he decided he would tackle crime from the journalistic end. He hoped he could help the police in that way. Influencing people from a journalistic point of view could be advantageous when it came to police investigations, so he put his talents to work and became a crime beat reporter.
The last thing he expected was to become a story himself, but it happened when he was at the right place at the wrong time and foiled a robbery at a jewelry store adjacent to his favourite vendorís spot. All heíd wanted was a couple of dogs, he was not expecting the events that put him squarely in the spotlight, followed with a feature in the new ďBachelor BlogĒ which has every single woman in New York on his doorstep. It also has everyone of his acquaintance, including his father and brother, questioning him about the possibility of him finding a steady girlfriend and/or a wife. This is not something Sam wanted to talk about, nor is it something he wants to even think about after his disastrous marriage to Annie. It was the travel her job as a flight attendant entailed. Her long hours and increasingly frequent absence from his life led to insecurity, suspicion, disillusionment, and eventually the end of their relationship and marriage. The Bachelor Blog also has him targeted when his apartment is broken into, and the police are called in again. This attention is not what Sam wants, he would rather be known for his writing, but the events have sparked his long-blocked mind and given him a whole new idea for a book.
Travel, and the ability to indulge the wander-lust of her gypsy soul, gives Lexie Davis a life she loves. Being in the business of web design allows her the freedom to indulge because she can access the internet from anywhere. She is very successful, but has no ďrootsĒ to speak of, no permanent place to call home except for the spare bedroom at her grandmotherís apartment. It has never bothered Lexie before because she felt more at home with Charlotte than with her parents. Born into a driven family didnít help her with relationships either. Especially, with Lexieís penchant for travel and her dislike of any kind of strenuous schedule or regimen, roots were hard to come by, and the only home she ever really felt welcomed in was with her grandmother. That is why, when she felt the attraction to Sam Cooper, she really wanted to run the other way. If it wasnít for the ring he accepted as a reward for stopping the jewelry store crook, she probably never would have thought twice about him. She has been badly burned by a relationship, and until now, hadnít even thought about her lack of male companionship. The thought, Ďwhy now and why this maní resounded as she thought back to her attraction to Sam, the piece of jewelry, and how it might connect to her family.
Lexie knew Sam was a man of his word when she did show up for their meeting, and he did bring the ring. To find out his apartment was burglarized while they were meeting was a definite danger signal, and yet she paid no attention to what she felt except for her desire to get that ring for her grandmother. Even if it wasnít an exact match to the necklace her grandfather gave Charlotte, it was close enough. The origins of the necklace bothered Lexi on some basic level, and she didnít want Charlotte hurt by finding out it was stolen merchandise, but all the same, she was curious, and her best leads would come by sticking with Sam. Well, that was as good an excuse as any, and as long as she told herself this often enough, maybe she would actually start believing it instead of thinking on the attraction she was feeling for the handsome reporter. It didnít help much since her grandmotherís best friend Sylvia was constantly with Charlotte, and both were working on Lexie to bring Sam around. They continued to be convinced there was something going on there besides the client relationship Lexie has claimedÖ
Kiss Me If You Can by Carly Phillips is a delightfully quirky book, steeped in suspense, full of surprises, and around each corner, romance might have a chance to bloom. That is only gonna happen if Lexie and Sam allow it to take root. Between the pair, neither has a great track record when it comes to love, but then they have never had Lexieís meddling grandmother to deal with as a matchmaker, or her friend Sylvia. Between the pair, Lexie has her hands full and is having to really take a second look at the man. She has to reevaluate her priorities, and even Lexie has to admit she finds Sam Cooper very attractive, even if she does consider him a pain in the butt. For Samís part, the mystery of the ring, and its match to Lexieís grandmotherís necklace keeps him guessing. Considering he canít get a straight answer from the old lady, and Charlotte is more occupied with getting him and Lexie to the altar, he has made remarkable progress with his investigation into the origins of the ring. But as with all good things, he may have to set it aside if it brings danger into Lexieís life.
Kiss Me If You Can is full of life, sparks, mystery, and love on a scale you can only find in a Carly Phillips book. She does modern New York very well, and brings to life the hustle and bustle of the streets, the lives of its inhabitants, and the spirit of the grand city herself. She threads her mystery through the past actions, and brings the repercussions in to the light of day through the accidental foiling of the robbery by Coop, and the discovery of a ring that would match her grandmotherís necklace by Lexie. Determination on both parts insures they will meet, but will they stay together? And what part if any does or did Lexieís family play in the 1950ís robbery? All these questions and more are answered in Carlyís Kiss Me If You Can. For those of you who are Carly Phillips fans, this is a MUST READ for you. For those of you who have never read a Carly Phillips book, this is a good starting point. All in all, I say Kiss Me If You Can is a book that will have to stay on my keeper shelf, and I hope it will find a place on yours as well.
Yours in good reading,
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