Series: Judge Me Not
Series Placement: #1
Author: S.R. Grey
Age Group: New Adult
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: September 3, 2013
Published by: S.R. Grey
Format: Ebook and Paperback
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Copy Provided by Author
Book Blurb:When it comes to tattooed bad boys, Chase Gartner is the real deal. Partying, engaging in meaningless sex, getting into fights—Chase indulges in it all during his late teen years, thus firmly solidifying his status as a heartbreakingly gorgeous but way-too-dangerous-to-trust guy in his hometown of Harmony Creek, Ohio. Then, following one fateful night of reckless decisions, Chase’s actions finally catch up to him and land him in prison.
Now, four years have passed and Chase finds himself a free man. He returns to Harmony Creek, ready to pick up the pieces and start rebuilding his shattered life.
Things are off to a promising start when he meets Kay Stanton, a young woman with a tragic past of her own. Despite a powerful attraction, Chase and Kay are naturally hesitant to become involved. That’s why friendship feels like the safest option. But when passions ignite and love blossoms, a relationship that is destined and meant to be can only be resisted for so long. When Chase and Kay finally succumb to their feelings they realize being together feels more right and true than anything they have ever experienced.
But their love is soon tested. Chase’s wild past still haunts and tempts him, and Kay is keeping a secret that could tear them apart.
I Stand Before You is a journey of hope and forgiveness, coming to terms with the past and moving forward. But mostly it’s a story of two damaged people who take a chance, open their hearts, and find true love.
***Warning: contains graphic sexual situations, drug use, some violence, and profanity***
Reviewers Note: I Stand Before You is book one in the Judge Me Not series and is a New Adult Contemporary written by S.R. Grey. I received this eARC from the author in exchange for an honest review through AToMR Tours.
Fun, Romantic, Occasionally Hot but Mostly Just Sweet!
I Stand Before You was a beautiful story about judgement, redemption, guilt and forgiveness. These characters were complete opposites but fit perfectly together as they were able to see past all their anguish, to the possibilities under all the challenges life threw at them.
I really enjoyed this story! And I loved the alternating POV’s between Chase and Kay.
Chase Gartner is the local bad boy. But once upon a time, he was the good kid who had a bright future and a happy life. His family consisted of his father, his mother and his younger brother, all living an affluent life in the pivotal moments of the housing boom. Chase, wanting to follow in his fathers footsteps, sketched building plans and hung out with his dad on construction sites. His young life was full of promise...
Then the bottom falls out of the housing market and his family crumbles. Poverty takes hold and they quickly lose everything. After his father takes his own life, Chase spirals out of control and his mother sends him away to live with his grandmother, but even being away from bad influences doesn’t stop him from forming new bad influences and his once promising life, ends with the next four years spent in jail.
When he’s released, he moves back to his grandmother's home which is now his home and he’s just trying to pick up the pieces of a ruined life and trying desperately to avoid the temptations of oblivion he so longingly desires.
But things start to look up when he meets the “hot chick” he’s been eyeing from afar.
Kay Stanton is a beautiful and respected young woman who teaches at the parochial school beside the church. She’s the towns good girl who is adored and loved and who bakes cookies for church fundraisers. But she’s hiding a secret she thinks will destroy the false image people have bestowed upon her if it were to get out. She’s drowning in guilt and loneliness and longs for a reconnection from the family who abandoned her.
When she meets Chase, she finds another lonely soul and together, they find friendship, companionship and trust. But secrets have a way of polluting even the sweetest of love and the challenges of life can often risk everything.
I really liked Chase. He was strong and vibrant and he was very much an alpha male. After he was released from prison, he tried hard to stay clean and out of trouble and he tried hard not to fight which was something he was always good at and loved to do. But he was also reliable so when the time came and he needed to resort back to his former fighter within, he took care of business, making him one smokin’ hot bad boy.
Kay was sweet and blamed herself for things that weren’t entirely her fault. She was hard on herself but after meeting Chase and realizing her judgments were casting stones, she became someone I could really connect with. She was a bit fragile but she also held a strength that was unwavering when it came to Chase.
The Trouble with Negatives...
I really enjoyed the characters and I really enjoyed the story. My biggest complaint was all the over usage of “this girl” or “that boy” or the variations of “my sweet girl”, “quiet girl”, “tough girl” or “wayward boy”, “tricky boy”, “blue-eyed boy”, “beautiful boy”. It goes on and on. Every time they referred to one another, there was some variation of “... boy” or “... girl”. It was distracting and about middle way through the book I found myself skipping over them so I wouldn’t have to read them.
The Wrap Up:
This one ends on a cliffy and there are several things unresolved so I'm glad to know there’s a book two, Never Doubt Me, and I’ll definitely be looking for it when its released in 2014.
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About the Author:S.R. Grey is the author of Harbour Falls and Willow Point, first and second novels in A Harbour Falls Mystery series. She is also the author of I Stand Before You, first novel in the Judge Me Not series (New Adult/Contemporary Romance), to be released September 2013.
Ms. Grey resides in western Pennsylvania. She has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from Robert Morris College, as well as an MBA from Duquesne University.
She is currently working on Wickingham Way, the third installment in A Harbour Falls Mystery series, to be released in January 2014.
Other interests include reading, traveling, running, and cheering for her hometown sports teams.
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