Saturday, July 11, 2015

Review - The Hierarchy of Needs by Rebecca Grace Allen

The Hierarchy of Needs
by Rebecca Grace Allen
Series: Portland Rebels, #2
Genre: New Adult
Release Date: July 7, 2015

Jamie Matthews is stuck in a rut. After hitting a wall with her dream career, she’s back in her hometown, living a life as monotonous as swimming laps in the neighborhood pool.

Being surrounded by her perfect brothers is a painful reminder of her failure to launch. The last bonfire of the summer is an ideal way to let off steam, especially when she runs into Dean Trescott, the playboy friend she had one hot-as-hell night with back in high school.

Since the day Dean met Jamie, he’s loved her beauty, talent, and smile that lit up the whole damn block. But dating isn’t an option. She has a bright future ahead of her, and he refuses to chain her to his—helping run the family business that’s barely staying afloat.

A “what-happens-in-Vegas” weekend was supposed to get their craving for each other out of their systems. But neither counted on the past repeating itself, drawing them together in even hotter and dirtier ways and dangling the possibility they might both be able to get exactly what they need…

Warning: A friends-to-lovers twice over story that contains some hot ’n’ heavy kissing in the waves, hair pulling, and a man who knows how to use his hands. It may also feature a few practical jokes—only the fun kind, of course.

This was a great friends-to-lovers story that not only focused Dean and Jamie’s love affair, but also focused on both of them coming to terms with their pasts so they could move forward.

Both Jamie and Dean have issues from their past they are dealing with. Dean’s past of working in his family business, which has become his present and looks to be his future, has always had him pushing Jamie away. Jamie has always felt like the odd man out in her family. Her overachieving brothers make her feel like she’s not living up to the expectations her family has for her. Now that she is back in Portland, those feelings are magnified and have Jamie very restless.

When Dean finally gives in fully to his attraction to Jamie you just knew that these two were going to be explosive! Jamie and Dean had so much chemistry and I couldn’t wait to see what would happen. Of course agreeing to a weekend of getting hot and sweaty is just what they need to work things out of their system because they both know that whatever is between them can’t be more than lust – and getting hot and sweaty they most certainly did! These two were so perfect for each other though, and not just in the bedroom. There was such an ease that they had about them when they were together, and you could always feel the history and deep bond that they shared and you just knew how much they cared about one another.
Her fingers light, she began tracing the ink on his arm.

“Is this okay?” she asked.

He nodded and stayed silent, letting her touch, watching as she took him in. She caressed the sleeve, soft touches to the thorny spines he’d had drawn into his flesh.

“Barbed wire. I guess that’s kind of a warning, huh?” she asked. “A metaphorical ‘do not enter’.”

He chuckled. It was cliché, but true.

Light fingers stroked over his ribs. “Birds flying away. Freedom? Or wishing for it?”

Dean took a breath. She was right on the money.

“Both,” he said, but the word came out strained.

She moved to his other shoulder, following the map in his skin, but she wasn’t asking about them the way other women had, wanting his practiced stories. She wasn’t using it as a treasure hunt either, a ploy to get to something better.

She was reading him, as clearly as if he’d labeled his ink with signs.

“A compass rose, but there’s no cardinal points, no north or south. You’re drifting. Lost.”

His throat went tight. No woman had ever questioned why his compass had no direction, why he’d gotten a tattoo of something that was supposed to guide him without including the symbols that let it.

It reminded him to stay the course. Not follow his heart.

And Jamie had figured that out without even asking.
I loved watching both Dean and Jamie finally deal with their issues. They both had been stuck accepting a future they were not quite happy with. It was nice to see they both cleared things up with their families and made decisions that would set them on the right path to begin a future that would not leave them empty and regretful.

I really enjoyed this book and am curious to go back and read the first book in the series. This series is loosely tied together by a group of friends, so I had no problem starting with this book first. There was a bit of angst and a few moments where I wanted to shake Dean about his reasons for pushing Jamie away, but I loved the way the plot was developed and how the finding their own path led Jamie and Dean together. A nice addition to anyone’s TBR pile!

I received a copy of the book from the author for an honest review.

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