And Then He Kissed Me is the second book in the White Pine Series from Kim Amos. This is my first book by her, but it can standalone with no problems though the characters are interconnected. This one had its sweet moments and I enjoyed this story for the most part. There were a few things that kept this one from being great for me though.
Audrey Tanner got her heart broken five years ago when the man she was falling for up and left her with no explanation. She thought that she had found the one in Kieran Callaghan, and hasn't been able to forget him since he left. Now five years later she has lost her job as a high school gym teacher and is forced to find whatever work is available. When she takes a job at the local Harley Davidson dealership, she never expects for her new boss to be none other than Kieran Callaghan. Though the chemistry is still strong between them, Audrey doesn't trust him to not break her heart again. Kieran has spent the last five years turning his life around, and though he tries to stay away from Audrey he can't help but want to fix their relationship. But Kieran knows that he needs to be honest with her if they have any hope of a future, and he isn't sure that she will still be willing to give him a shot when he tells her why he really left her all those years ago.
Though I liked Kieran and Audrey okay, I didn't really feel connected to them. In fact in the beginning of this story, I wasn't sure that I would like Kieran at all. He had left Audrey with no explanation really, and when he showed back up he was instantly a jerk to her...never-mind the fact that he was the one in the wrong. But when we got his POV it was clear that he didn't even understand why he was being that way to her, and he actually seemed to feel bad about it. He started to change as the story went on though, and I did like seeing him be honest with Audrey. He was determined to turn his life around, and part of that was telling her everything. Audrey was kind and a great person, always looking out for others. But there was just something about her that made her hard to connect to for me. It wasn't that I disliked her, I just didn't really feel anything much about her. There were times that she frustrated me alone with Kieran, but I thought that they were good together when they were open and honest with one another. They had good chemistry, but I just felt like things between them took a long time to really get anywhere and at that point I was losing interest.
The other thing for me that I had problems with was the fact that the author threw in some unnecessary drama. I won't spoil the story and say what happened, but I just didn't really feel like it was necessary or that it added anything to the story. It pretty much came out of left field and didn't make any sense to me. Not only that, but I really disliked Audrey's sister Casey. She was always saying how she was looking out for Audrey and that she wanted what was best for her etc. But she never really seemed to listen to what Audrey wanted or treat Audrey as the adult that she was. She was condescending and manipulative, and I frankly couldn't stand her. Her story is coming up in the series, and I think that Kim Amos definitely has her work cut out for her. I think that if you are a fan of small town contemporaries or second chance love stories, that this one might be worth giving a shot. It was a good light and easy read. But it also wasn't what I had really been expecting and the things I mentioned kept me from really being able to love it.
**ARC Provided by Publisher**