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Exes With Benefits by Nicole Williams…Blog Tour & Review

 

 

 

 

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***He wants a second chance. I want a divorce. To get what I want, I’ll have to give him what he does.***

From New York Times & USA Today bestselling author, Nicole Williams:

The only benefit I want from my ex is a divorce.

We got married for all the wrong reasons. The one thing we got right was our separation. I should have known better than to think I could bet on forever with a guy like Canaan Ford. Everything about him screamed impermanent, from his wild eyes to his restless soul.

When I left him and the small town I’d spent my whole life in, I swore I’d never go back. Never only turned out to be five years. Canaan claims he’s changed, but he hasn’t—same knowing smile, same rough demeanor, same body crafted from sin and sinew. And yet, something is different. He thinks this is his chance for redemption. My disagreement comes in the form of divorce papers dropped in his lap. He refuses to sign them. Unless . . .

He wants a month to prove himself to me—that’s his offer. One month to make me fall in love with him again and if I don’t, he’ll sign the papers. As much as I want to say no, I agree. I can suffer my ex for a short amount of time if that’s what it takes to be free of him once and for all. I fell for him once; I won’t make that same mistake twice.

He says we’re not over. I say we were over before we got started. Only one of us can be right, and I can’t let it be him.

 

“One month. That’s nothing in the scope of a person’s life.” He slid a bit closer.
“One month is everything when it comes to opening myself back up to you.”
He didn’t argue that. He let silence speak for him instead.
“What exactly are you expecting during this one month?” I might have winced when I heard myself say those words.
He rubbed his mouth, trying to hide whatever was trying to form. “For you to give me another chance. For you to be my wife.”
The term made me nauseated. “Your wife? As in your indentured servant? No way.”
It was a smile he was trying to hide. Not very successfully. It made me thankful I’d slipped into these old boots so I could give him a solid kick in the ass if necessary.
“Like be willing to spend time with me. That’s it. That’s all,” he added when he correctly interpreted the question in my eyes. The question.
“What will we be doing during that time we’re spending together?” I pulled at the chest of my dress when I noticed the way his gaze had lingered there a moment too long.
His shoulder rose. “Got any ideas?” There was an unmistakable glint in his eyes.
“No,” I answered instantly.
“You used to have plenty of ideas for filling the time.” He took a swig of his Coke.
“And then I learned how to use my brain.”
He studied my fake smile, almost like he was contemplating what it would feel like against his mouth. “Dinners. Dates. Simple stuff like that.”
I held my best poker face, considering his offer. I didn’t want to stay married to him. If one more month was what it took to be free of Canaan Ford, I could suck it up. I’d already made it five years. “No expectations of anything of a physical nature?”
“If I remember right”—his eyes narrowed as he rubbed the back of his head—“it was generally you who instigated all of that back then.”
I shoved his chest. Bad idea. Solid. Firm. Home.
My jaw ground as I worked to erase that word from my conscious where he was concerned. “And you were just the perfect gentleman.”
Canaan snatched my hand before I could pull it away. Holding onto it, he dragged me closer. Not so close that our bodies touched, but close enough the separation was painful.
“Exactly,” he said in that low voice of his. The one he’d whispered my name in so many times as he moved inside me. “A gentleman gives his woman exactly what she needs. As many times as she need it. Just doing my part.”
“How noble.”
“That’s right. So if you want to make any changes to this one month agreement, consider me your humble servant.” When his hand dropped to my waist, his touch hesitant at the same time it was insistent, I didn’t flinch out of instinct the way I should have.
Instead, I had to remind myself to pull away from him; to flinch at his touch. “I have a boyfriend, Canaan.” Even to my ears, it sounded like a weak protest.
His hand didn’t fall away when I stepped back. “You’re a married woman, Maggie.”
“My husband forfeited his rights years ago.” My eyes found his, expecting them to shoot away once mine made contact.
They didn’t. His gold eyes held to mine. “He’s here to reclaim them.”

 

I have written and deleted the start of this review I don’t know how many times. First and foremost, there is not one book that Nicole has written that I have not loved entirely. I fall in love with her characters and their stories so easily. That’s what Nicole’s writing does to me – she captures me completely and I never want the story to end.

And this happened once again with Exes with Benefits. I have to say, this was different than what I anticipated and that’s not a bad thing. The story was actually way better than I hoped and was nothing like I came to expect.

In Exes with Benefits, Canaan and Maggie are married at the early age of 18. Maggie leaves one night after a year of marriage because she can’t stand by and watch her husband kill himself slowly. And the constant fighting over that was enough to finally push her past fighting for them.

“We might have been good together, but we weren’t good for each other.”

Maggie is forced back home when her grandmother passes away. Her grandmother raised her since her parents passed away when she was a little girl. Canaan was awaiting her return and is dead set on winning his wife back. But Maggie has other plans; she is ready to pack up her grandmother’s few things, finalize their divorce and move on with her life. Canaan isn’t a pushover and asks to give him one month to prove that he’s man she married, not the man she walked away from.

I rooted hard for Canaan to win Maggie over. Lord knows she wasn’t going to make it easy on him and he had to earn her trust back before winning her heart over. As much as Maggie wanted to deny she no longer wanted Canaan, deep down her heart did, but her mind just got in the way. Canaan really touched my heart with his romantics and how he battled against Maggie, proving her wrong at every turn. How Maggie was able to hold back on not jumping Canaan every time he was nearby, is beyond me; that woman has amazing restraint, and he was her husband!!!

As I said before, Nicole has a way of sucking me into a story and never wanting it to end. I blasted through this book within one sitting. I didn’t want it to end, but I couldn’t stop reading it either. You will love Maggie and Canaan and their story. Thank you Nicole for writing another beautiful story that has me grinning form ear to ear like a love sick puppy.

 

 

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Nicole Williams is the New York Times and USATODAY bestselling author of contemporary and young adult romance, including the Crash and Lost & Found series. Her books have been published by HarperTeen and Simon & Schuster in both domestic and foreign markets, while she continues to self-publish additional titles. She is working on a new YA series with Crown Books (a division of Random House) as well. She loves romance, from the sweet to the steamy, and writes stories about characters in search of their happily even after. She grew up surrounded by books and plans on writing until the day she dies, even if it’s just for her own personal enjoyment. She still buys paperbacks because she’s all nostalgic like that, but her kindle never goes neglected for too long. When not writing, she spends her time with her husband and daughter, and whatever time’s left over she’s forced to fit too many hobbies into too little time.
Nicole is represented by Jane Dystel, of Dystel and Goderich Literary Agency.

 

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Comments

  1. Kathy Valentine says:

    Another awesome review court!!, shared on my socials!!

  2. Kathleen Bylsma says:

    Must have! Thanks and Shelved on Goodreads.

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