Just My Luck (Escape to New Zealand #5) by Rosalind James
Just My Luck (Escape to New Zealand Book 5)
A little distraction can be a wonderful thing.
Nate Torrance has a job to do, and the biggest rugby boots in the world to fill. He can't afford to lose his focus, especially not to a brown-eyed Canadian who pushes all his buttons and looks much too good in a climbing harness.
Allison Villiers may not know what she wants to do with her life, but she's clear about one thing. She's not impressed by the new captain of the All Blacks, however big a deal he is to the rest of New Zealand. If only her unfortunate taste for adventure didn't keep leading her astray . . .
Just My Luck starts off with strong Pride and Prejudice influences. There are two couples stories here - Ally and Nate (the main couple), and Kristen and Liam. Kristen is the recently divorced sister of Hannah from Just This Once. She was headed to New Zealand to try and heal from her divorce and such and convinced Ally to come with her for a year for a bit of adventure. Nate and Liam are both rugby players for the All Blacks, Nate being the new captain. I love the setting and the rugby player romances that these books are. I don't know that much about rugby, but I did see the All Blacks at some community thing that we happened upon while visiting New Zealand. I love the writing and how the Kiwi dialect is in there, seeing what they say that is different from me. I like learning all of that.
As for the story, it was good. It wasn't my favorite of the Escape to New Zealand stories, but it was a good read. I only wish we would have had a separate book about Kristen and Liam though as I loved their story and wanted to see more!
Ally and Kristen meet Nate and Liam for the first time at the climbing gym where Ally is working. Ally is a bit of an adventure junkie. She loves to rock climb and cliff jump and anything active and exciting. The first few meetings between Ally and Nate don't go so well. Nate just keeps stuffing it up somehow and it really was kind of endearing. Unfortunately Ally is believing the terrible things Devon is telling her about Nate. Not sure why she believes them, especially after Devon acts kind of weird with her (like wanting to take her and her friend out, not just her). Devon is obviously after the connection to the famous rugby players, but Ally believes Devon when he tells her how horrible Nate it. I know Nate messed up at times, but he seemed like a genuinely nice guy. Eventually it works out and Ally gives Nate a chance, but there are more issues there.
Nate is a very organized guy. He has his life scheduled out in detail. He has only one thing he really cares about, rugby. He needs to focus on that and cannot afford any distractions, especially since he is the new captain. He has some big shoes to fill and Ally would be a distraction. He is so focus and organized he doesn't see how he could fall for Ally, have a real, serious relationship with her and focus on rugby. He is kind of geeky and one of those really smart people that doesn't see the obvious things that are right in front of him. I did enjoy reading him as he seems like such a nice guy.
Ally tries to keep things relaxed with Nate, but there are of course issues at the end to work through. Nate does take her for granted at times. He just assumes she will always be there when he needs/wants her, but he won't commit to a deeper relationship. They are exclusive, but eventually Ally wants more. I am glad they were eventually able to work everything out.
As for the secondary relationship I loved Kristen and Liam. Kristen is beautiful and she often times has issues with that. Guys don't want a relationship with her. She is not the one they have deep conversations with because they only see her beauty. Liam is different. He sees her at a party and sees how uncomfortable she is surrounded by a group of guys. He saves her from that situation, but doesn't press her for more. She also is still trying to figure out how to be on her own and doesn't want to depend on another guy. She has given herself a year to be by herself without a guy. Liam is so incredible with her. He likes her, wants to be with her, but knows that he needs to go incredibly slow with her. They are friends, hang out often and have a lot of fun together. Kristen does grow to care for Liam, but she wants to stick to her timeline. She needs to know she can do it herself. They were great together and I wish the entire book would have been about them. I would have loved to have seen more of their outings and them growing closer and closer. I liked their story more than Abby and Nate's story.
So overall I did enjoy this book. Nate was so nice, even if he didn't see what was right in front of him or took Abby for granted at times. I loved how he was different from the other guys from prior books. Kristen and Liam were great as well and I loved watching their relationship grow. A good read and I look forward to more from this author.
Rating: ★ ★ ★1/2