Following up Elizabeth Hayley’s The Best Medicine from her Strictly Business series of contemporary romances, this pedometer geek reader next tackled the second novel of the series, Just Say Yes. Both novels were received through a Goodreads giveaway, and this is the extended review of Just Say Yes.
Just Say Yes
by Elizabeth Hayley
Published as a Signet Eclipse novel
by New American Library, 2015
an imprint Penguin Random House, LLC
As this reader indicated in the previous review of The Best Medicine, the author is actually two women, known as Elizabeth and Hayley. The writing duo continues by telling the story of two of the ancillary characters introduced in the other novel, but now it is their story, their road to love.
Quinn Sawyer (one of Lauren’s friends) is a good girl, an always playing-it-safe girl, but she wants to break out of (what she considers to be) her boring side. In a moment of frustration, she pitches an idea for an article she wouldn’t mind reading, about getting out of one’s comfort zone. That is, doing things that people wish they had done, but never had the guts to do is the way she puts it to her editor. Having pitched it as an idea, she is stuck because she is now asked to write it.
Enter reformed bad-boy Tim Jacobs (Scott’s older brother), whom Quinn had met and become friends with through Lauren and Scott. Tim volunteers to help her find her inner bad-ass by helping her; in fact, he is more than willing to do this.
Neither realizes how much it will affect the other as Quinn comes up with an off-the-top of her head list of things to do that is well outside her perceived boring life, and Tim holds her to it. Her list includes getting a tattoo and hitchhiking, and for all of items on her list, Tim is going to be supporting her with his presence.
Each has secrets feelings for the other, and both desire a deeper friendship, a deeper relationship. Yet, Tim doesn’t feel he is good enough for her, that he could never be good enough for her, that his previous actions preclude any sort of long-term happiness. Still, Quinn has never been happier as she and Tim become closer through their shared interactions.
Will Quinn release her inner rebel and complete the tasks she has set for herself with Tim’s help and encouragement? Can Tim ever forgive himself for his past and allow Quinn in? Is love possible for these two?
While this reader thoroughly enjoyed the first book in the series, which was received as an extra book in the giveaway, this was the story that appealed to me more from the outset. Perhaps because of my own innate outward good girl-inner rebel, I could relate to Quinn’s feelings of worrying later about regrets of only living safely, never pushing the boundaries.
Per usual, there were various What-the-tuck trends: Tim was green-eyed (but then so was his brother Scott); hair tucking occurred. On the other hand, these characters, much like Scott and Lauren from the previous novel, were not extremely wealthy; they seemed like average people…people a reader might be friends with if they were to meet in real life. There are some spicy moments throughout the contemporary romance as well as some language, but nothing that bothered this reader.
Making changes and redemption, second chances and looking beyond the surface were a few of the reasons that make the book enjoyable. Humorous moments are interspersed with moments of reflection, but no elaboration is included to avoid spoiling the plot. This reader’s suggestion is this: Just say yes…to reading it.
An addendum: from page 192: “Most of them had large holes in their ears, stretched by metal rings, and a few of them weren’t wearing shirts.” For those who aren’t aware of this practice, the stretching of ear lobes is called gauging (having been informed by my younger son a dozen or so years ago when I asked), but the author doesn’t label it as such. Perhaps the duo, who pens these novels under the pseudonym of Elizabeth Hayley, didn’t have the same enlightenment as my son provided me (Thanks Mark for teaching me oh-so-long-ago!).
Having read the first two novels in the series, this pedometer geek reader looks forward to reading the next book, The Wedding Arrangement, as well as reading their self-published series called The Pieces Series, which helped launch their traditionally published career with Signet Eclipse.