The Storm Inside
by Alexis Anne
Book 1 in The Storm Inside series
The hardest thing I'd ever done was let go of the one person who needed me most...
Jake Spencer was the kindest, truest, strongest man I'd ever met. He also had the worst childhood I could imagine. All he needed was a chance and someone to love him. I gave him everything I could, but it wasn't enough.
It took me a long time to accept that there was nothing else I could have done. That disappointment has followed me ever since. I built a career and a supportive network of friends, but kept love out of my life.
I was on the rise and thought nothing could slow me down, until my greatest failure came back to haunt me. Jake came home, stronger and wiser. Whatever it was he needed to overcome his past, he'd found it. Somewhere, or with someone, else. I hated that it wasn't with me.
His sudden reappearance has thrown my life into a tailspin. He's back to claim the life he wanted, to be the man he says I deserved, but I'm not the girl I used to be. Professionally I am powerful and moving up. Personally I'm broken and uncertain, but mainly...I'm angry. Falling in love with Jake was the easiest thing I'd ever done, losing him was the hardest, and giving him a second chance might just cost me everything.
The Storm Inside by Alexis Anne is the first book in her Storm Inside series, and centers around Eve and Jake. Eve and Jake fell in love in college, and were inseparable. But Jake had a tough home life, and his self-esteem issues bled into their relationship. But Eve didn't care - she loved him, and he loved her. But one fateful night, when Jake confronts his abusive father, it ends with him leaving town. No phone calls, no letters. Ten years go by, and Eve has pieced herself together. She is successful, and has great friends. But she has kept her heart to herself. But that wall she built around herself is at risk of smashing when Jake comes back to town - permanently. Jake wants another chance, but can Eve put all the hurt aside, and open herself up to Jake again?
This series has been on my TBR for a while now, and after my terrible last read, I was ready for something new. Something that would get me out of the book slump I could feel myself sliding into. Unfortunately, I picked wrong, because The Storm Inside has its problems. Ones that took me out of the story. There were some editing issues, which I am willing to get past if the story is good enough. But as I found the story lacking, it bothered me. I think the idea behind the story is great. I love a second chance romance. Small town romances are great. Her family was great. Her friends, for the most part, were great. You know, except for her best friend, the PSYCHOLOGIST, totally disregarding Eve's feelings, and telling her to give Jake a chance. But whatever. But there are some glaring issues with the characters themselves that had me shying away from this book - specifically in regards to them acting their age. They are in their 30's, and yet their reactions and expectations are immature. For example, Eve's reaction to learning Jake *gasp* had sex with other women in the past ten years. Her calling them whores is just abhorrent. She conveniently forgets that she has also slept with other men, as is her right as a single woman. Just like it was his right to do so. And no matter how its explained, there was never a good enough, solid explanation for why Jake would leave without saying goodbye. Or sending a freaking letter. It's just a plot hole I couldn't get over.
I ended up skimming from 50% on. I wasn't interested in putting more time into a book that wasn't thrilling me, and was doing the exact opposite of what I intended in regards to my reading slump. So it wasn't for me. But I know there are a lot of Alexis Anne fans out there, so it might be a book you enjoy.
The sex. That was it.
Thunderstorms are a full body experience from the light and the vibrations, to the sound of the wind, the pounding of the rain, and the taste of the humidity in the air. Maybe he was right when he said I loved him too much. Maybe he loved me too much too. The two of us together were self destructive and blind. We blocked out the world and allowed ourselves to be consumed. Jake: “Be mine and no one else’s?”
It was the most terrifying and wonderful thing I had ever heard in my life. I wanted Jake like I’d never wanted anything and hearing his frantic plea that I be his...
Eve: “And will you be mine?”
His grin split his face in two,
Jake: “I already am.”
I kissed the soft spot on his cheek where his invisible dimple was peeking out,
Eve: “Then yes.” Jake: “Ten years ago I ran away from my demons. I’m back to make those demons afraid of me.” Poor ugly fish were hours or minutes away from being someone’s dinner. I felt like one of those fish. I had been happily swimming along, blissfully unaware danger was right around the corner. Jake wanted me for his dinner and I wasn’t sure how I was going to keep him from killing me. By choosing to love someone damaged, you accept the consequences along with it. Joe: “You need help, you ask for it. We’re your family, and we take care of our own. That includes you.”
Jake froze and a little color drained out of his face. I think he was a little shocked to hear a statement that bold from my father, of all people.
Jake: “Yes, sir,”
My dad rolled his eyes again and sighed,
Joe: “Stop that ‘sir’ crap, too. It’s Joe.”
Jake nodded again.
Jake: “All right, Joe.”