Friday, January 8, 2016

Appealed (The Legal Briefs #3) By: Emma Chase

Hey ya'll, I am so excited to get to share my review of Appealed by Emma Chase with you today. 
I fell in love with series back when Overruled came out, and each book in the series just gets better and better. I thought Emma had outdone herself when Sustained came out and we got to meet Jake and Chelsea. And while I still love Jake, Brent has worked himself into my heart and I have to say I really adore him, and Kennedy both.

I also want to say a huge thank you to Gallery Books for sending me out not only an eARC but also a physical ARC of this book for my review. Gallery seriously takes the best care of us bloggers and I can't thank them enough for all the awesomeness they send my way ♥♥♥

The New York Times bestselling author of the Tangled books returns with the third romance in the Legal Briefs series, a collection of sexy novels about first crushes, second chances, and the final verdict of the heart.

When Brent Mason looks at Kennedy Randolph, he doesn’t see the awkward, sweet girl who grew up next door. He sees a self-assured, stunning woman…who wants to crush the most intimate—and prized—parts of his anatomy beneath the heels of her Louboutins.

When Kennedy looks at Brent, all she sees is the selfish, Abercrombie & Fitch catalogue–worthy teenager who humiliated her in high school in order to join the popular crowd. A crowd that made those years a living hell for her.

But she’s not a lovesick social outcast anymore—she’s a Washington, DC, prosecutor with a long winning streak. Brent is the opposing attorney in her next case, and Kennedy thinks it’s time to put him through a little hell of his own.

But things aren’t exactly working out the way she planned. Brent has his sights set on Kennedy, and every fiery exchange only makes him want her more—and makes her wonder if he’s as passionate in the bedroom as he is in the courtroom. In the end, they may just find themselves in love…or in contempt of court.

I don't think saying that I loved this book really does it justice. I FREAKING loved this book!!! (Yup I think that works much better hehe)

I fell in love with Emma Chase's books back during the Drew Evans's days, and jumped at the opportunity to get to dive into her new series when Overruled came out. And now I have to say I'm a little sad to finally be writing a review for the last book in the series. But I am also really excited to be writing this one too.

To give you a little bot of insight into how this went for me...
I started this book one night when I went to bed. Figured I would knockout a few chapters before falling asleep. Bhahahaha!!!!!! Only read a few chapters... I crack myself up sometimes.
And I say that because 6 hours and no sleep later I had finished the ENTIRE book.
And the sleep deprived zombie state I lived in that next day was pretty much worth it. Because I really loved this book (It comes in pretty equally to Sustained which I'm sure you know was the best thing since microwavable mac and cheese) So if that isn't telling you something onto of my sleep depravity I don't know what will hehe

So I guess I should really be getting into things now huh?

As is normal per my reviews I'll get down with the characters. But I'll get to them in a bit. I want to talk a little about why I think this book was so good in general.
So lets get this baby started...

One thing that always draws me to an Emma Chase book is her writing style. She keeps things pretty fun and romantic while still able to bring in some more pressing issues without things turning heavy and losing that fun sort of bounce. Brent and Kennedy both have some demons from their past to sort through (Kennedy more than Brent) and Emma created a good balance of showing how those past issues effected both of their lives now, and how they were dealing with them and fixing them while forging this adorable relationship that had me on my toes and laughing more than a few times. (No matter how hard Kennedy decided to fight it. And believe me, she is a fighter in more ways than one)

Something else about the way Emma writes... And this can even go all the way back to Drew is the inner monologue she gives the guys. We  get the story, what's happening to the character and to the people around them. But then we get this incredibly fun little side note (I guess that's the best way to explain it) where the main character kind of takes a break from the story and explains things to you. It makes you feel more like that character is sitting on a couch across from you telling you about something that they had happen to them, rather than reading a story about what they are going through. It makes the reading experience much more personal, and I can admit... When I did read Tangled way back when, that style sort of surprised me and took a bit to enjoy. But once I got use to it I actually find it a great way to write and wish more authors would consider doing the same with their books.
(Thank you Lauren Blakely)

Guess I will jump into characters now.
Lets start with Kennedy.

I really enjoyed her character. She is feisty and fun, and has this bit of a self conscious streak from past experience. She's had to change some through her life to fit the image her job demands, but for the most part Kennedy is still the same head strong woman. She is great at her job and I found her history with Brent interesting, and it even brought out my fictional character protective side. hehe.
I would love to reach in to this book and smack some of those people her and Brent went to school with. Maybe even Brent too for being a dumb boy (But I guess that in its self is expected. I mean we are talking dumb teenage boy in this instance)

But back to Kennedy. If you haven't read any of my reviews or just haven't picked up on it. I don't tend to like female characters nearly as much as I do the male ones, and lately I just have seemed to be in a crabby mood and picked them a part like one of those peel apart Twizzlers.
But Kennedy was a refreshing character.

She was sexy and wasn't afraid to call Brent out on his crap when it was needed.
She also was kick butt at her job. I mean let's face it. Even in today's society woman still face obstetrical when joining a dominantly male profession, and as I mentioned, Kennedy sort of changes her look to be taken more serious as a lawyer. But really she could wear a bag and people would still take notice of her. She demands respect and authority and gets it in the court room.
She's actually a pretty inspiring character. Especially when you start to see all the insecurities that are hidden beneath it all. She doesn't let them show very often, but when she does it sort of breaks your heart to see this strong beautiful woman worried about that sort of thing.
We all went through our weird phases through high school and it made me so mad seeing how dumb Brent was when it came to what Kennedy went through back then. Have I mentioned men are dumb yet???? Because they are. Even super hot fictional ones *grrr

So I want to change gears now and jump over to Brent. I knew just from the previous books in the series that I was going to love him. He's always been the goofy fun one to ease the tension during some of the more intense moments, and is always the first one willing to jump up and take action when it's needed. Like cooling off his two hot headed besties when they freak out about their women. Or when someone is getting in trouble (Like when one of Jake's crazy brood of kids get's themselves into trouble. Or Stanton gets all alpha male on Sophia *hint hint there is something that is happening in this book to trigger said behavior and you're going to LOVE it all you Stanton and Sophia fans)

But back to Brent.
Ok so if you read my review of Sustained or just happened to catch one of the many times I recommend the book to someone or talk about it (It comes up a lot haha) You may have been able to tell that I am sort of a huge Jake Becker fan. Like seriously I love the dude. He may even get ranked higher then Drew *gasp! yes I know that is like Emma Chase style blasphemy.
But I seriously loved him and his whole story with Chelsea and the kids. It was such an adorable book and I had been like nope, nothing can outdo this book or this fictional man. HA!
Ok ok so Brent may still not have beat out Jake necessarily, but I still loved him and he is definitely ranked pretty high in my fictional man loving.
Emma had the potential to make Brent more of a bitter tragic character after losing his leg as a kid and dealing with his slightly insane family. And while we get to see some of his struggles through that lose, we also see what kind of man something like that did to him. While he is a sort of man slut now and then, Brent is really a good guy. He takes care of his friends and tries to be there for his family? That one is a bit more complicated I guess and I wont go into too many details so it doesn't ruin anything for you.
But anyways, we get to see this amazing man that doesn't let what some would consider a tragedy to slow him in the least. After a rocky start as a kid getting use to things, and with Kennedy's help he learns to not let it get to him and even tends to joke about things regarding it.
But as I say that, I do want to mention that even hot fictional men have their bad days and so we also get to see a struggling adult Brent deal with that just a little. (Am I contradicting myself yet? Haha)
But that is something that I love about Emma's writing. She is so amazing at mixing the good and the bad. And when her characters do meet the bad she makes it into a triumph for them to deal with, and be able to get back up and keep going. (I may have the emotions of a 40 year old man, but I do have a heart deep deep deep down in there somewhere, and that sort of thing always makes me mushy. I AM A SUCKER haha!)

But Something else that really struck me with Brent was his love for Kennedy. He truly does care for the woman, and he has for a long while even if he is too dumb to make anything of it till now. His friendship and now relationship with her is what every person wants in their life I think. Someone that will push all your boundaries, but still be kind and caring when you need it. That whole friends into lovers holds some merit I think (Coming from someone who doesn't trust easily and tends to push the people she cares about the most away I can relate. I have always been one to build before jumping into things. Probably the reason I haven't dated since high school. But when I have let people in they have been ones that I have known for a while. And while it is backwards in this particular situation, one of my best friends started out as a boyfriend. And while our relationship was super short it turned into something that I would never take back. He has been there for me through so much heartache and pain, and he is the person I always turn to when things get bad. He's seen first hand the things I went through, been willing to defend me when I needed it. And I can say I've done the same for him. So do I think friends to lovers is my favorite kind of story? Yeah, it's real. And it's relatable. And I just sort of fall head over heels for it)

Bent is an amazing character to read. He has so much personality and so much chemistry with Kennedy and I adored getting to really see his side of things instead of just his supporting character role we've seen in the past. He is too funny and goofy and I really truly loved not only him and Kennedy but his dynamic with both Jake and Stanton and Sophia. The four of them are so funny together and seeing all of them get their happy endings makes me happy. I get attached to characters (maybe more than I do real people. That is seriously weird right? I'm just going to shut up now and go hide in the corner booth of the coffee shop I'm writing this in haha)
And to see them love, and struggle, and persevere makes me loads happy.
It makes me have faith that while these amazing people are fictional that there are people out there like them somewhere. (Oh god I really just need to stop. I sound so crazy right now I bet right?)

I also want to add that the way Emma ends this whole thing made me so happy. It was absolutely the most perfect way to end such an amazing series and I have to say it was giving me major feels.
I love it when authors can tie it all up and give you an ending that leaves you completely satisfied and happy.

So, in conclusion... (I don't think I have used that phrase since those five paragraph essays I used to have to write for standardized tests back in 8th grade haha)
This book is going to be a must read for the new year.
It is funny, romantic, and a bit dumb guy slap worthy (Maybe that was just me though in a few particular places haha)

But I am so serious when I say you will love this book.
It is definitely on my list as one of my favorite books of the year, and yes I know, the year has only started. But so far it is off to an amazing start and I am in love with everything I've laid my eyes on so far.

Look out for Appealed when it releases January 19th :)

I give APPEALED: *****5 Stars*****

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