Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Sunkissed Days (Magnolia Sound, #0.5) by Samantha Chase
[Blog Tour: Review + Excerpt]

Hello! Welcome to the next stop on the Sunkissed Days blog tour hosted by InkSlinger PR. I'm really happy to share my thoughts on this book with you! Sunkissed Days, the prequel in the all-new Magnolia Sound series by Samantha Chase, is available now!

Author: Samantha Chase
Series: Magnolia Sound, #0.5
Release Date: February 26, 2019
Find it on: Goodreads, Amazon, Apple, Kobo, Nook, Google Play, Audible

Mallory Westbrook is ready to make her move on Jake Summerford, the boy—now man—she’s been crushing on for years. Coming back to Magnolia Sound to celebrate her great-grandfather’s birthday provides the perfect opportunity to show Jake that she’s no longer a child. 

The last thing Jake expected to do at his mentor’s birthday party was to find himself kissing Mallory under the moonlight. Though he’s known her for years, the thought of kissing her never crossed his mind. But the shy tomboy he once knew is gone, and in her place is a woman he can’t resist. 

They have one summer before they go their separate ways. Insecurity wars with the possibility of a future together, but it could all come to an end before it even has a chance to start. 


I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own. Any quotes I use are from an unpublished copy and may not reflect the finished product.

Sunkissed Days was a lovely book! I adored all of the characters, especially Pops. He's my new favorite fictional grandpa (and great-grandpa). He's a sweet old man that has lived a very eventful and fulfilling life, and we see how he has impacted the lives of his family and community. Pops also shares a special relationship with his great-granddaughter, Mallory, and the boy next door, Jake. They've both played prominent roles in his life, and he cares about them and their futures. This story really warmed my heart, and made me miss my own grandfather. Zeke (short for Ezekiel and also Pops) was witty and seemed to always know what was going on.

Mallory and Jake have known each other for years, so it wasn't exactly insta-love, but it was close. Jake briefly resisted the attraction, because the four-year age difference had mattered in the past, but quickly succumbed to his emotions and desires (not that Mallory made it easy for him). Mallory has had a crush on Jake for years, and now she's finally old enough to do something about it. I appreciated her boldness and honesty, and really enjoyed the two of them together. They respected one another, and their interactions were sweet and frequently steamy. It was nice watching the two develop their friendship in addition to their romance.

Everything was going really well for Jake and Mallory at the beginning, so I expected them to hit a snag eventually. Unfortunately, I disliked that this particular roadblock could have been solved with more communication. A lack of communication and conversation always bugs me, especially when they've been really open and honest throughout the rest of the book. They shared their secrets, fears, and desires, but when a misunderstanding happens they just don't talk about it. It was heartbreaking, but avoidable. Also, Jake took stubborn to an entirely new level. I really wish he had accepted Pops' help from the start and avoided a slew of other problems, but his pride prevented him from accepting a kind gesture.

There were also a few inconsistencies, but that's likely my review copy and things have been changed since I received it. Mallory would be out on the deck, but then sit down on her bed. At the beginning, Sam pushed the final chair up to the table, but a few sentences later Jake added the last chair -- stuff like that. It's like an itch my brain cannot scratch, so I thought it was worth mentioning. 

I was also really curious about Sam! He's Mallory's twin (and I'm weirdly obsessed with books about twins) and seemed really nervous and on edge for most of the book. Clearly something was going on, and I was anxious to find out what it was. I enjoyed the subtle side-stories that surrounded Mallory and Jake. The entire family was fun and felt authentic!

Sunkissed Days was a wonderful prequel to a series I'm really excited to read! The ending was a little hard to choke down, but I understand it's setting up the next book. If Remind Me is anything like this one (minus the painful ending), I'll be a very happy camper.

About Samantha Chase:

Samantha Chase is a New York Times and USA Today bestseller of contemporary romance. She released her debut novel in 2011 and currently has more than forty titles under her belt! When she’s not working on a new story, she spends her time reading romances, playing way too many games of Scrabble or Solitaire on Facebook, wearing a tiara while playing with her sassy pug Maylene…oh, and spending time with her husband of 25 years and their two sons in North Carolina.


His first thought was finally.

But his second thought was this is so wrong.

Nudging that second thought aside, Jake Summerford put all of his focus into the responsive girl in his arms and dove in for another taste. For years he had denied that there was any attraction between himself and Mallory Westbrook.

She’d always been cute, always been sweet. But because of their age difference he’d never allowed himself to think of her as any more than a kid.

Well…she certainly wasn’t a kid anymore and he was fairly sure he was allowed to think a lot of different things about her.

Like how soft her skin was.

How full and wet her lips were.

How her family trusted him and treated him like one of their own.

Yeah, this was so wrong.

And still he couldn’t find the strength to care – not as Mallory pressed even closer and made the neediest little sound. He found his own arms banding tighter around her as he tried to think of the best place to move them for a little more privacy. Not too far away there was a party in full-swing for Ezekiel’s ninetieth birthday. There was a houseful of people, music was playing and really, it was where he and Mallory should be right now. How the hell had they gotten out here?

Oh, right. Mallory had given him a shy-yet-flirty smile and asked if he could help her move a painting from the boathouse, and like an idiot, he’d said yes.

And now look where they were.

Then a thought hit him – the boathouse! They hadn’t even made it all the way down to the pier before she had shocked him with this kiss. If he could maneuver them the rest of the way across the yard, they’d be completely out of view once they were inside the boathouse!

Carefully, slowly, Jake began to walk them further down the lawn toward the pier without breaking the kiss. The urge to swing Mallory up into his arms was strong, but right now he couldn’t think straight.

What the hell was happening to him?

He wasn’t a kid, for crying out loud! He was a man! A man who’d kissed more than his share of women. Women who…

And that’s when it hit him.

The enormity of what was happening here finally broke through and as much as he wanted to keep on kissing Mallory, he couldn’t.

Jake broke the kiss and took a step back. His breath was ragged and once his eyes focused on her and he saw how sexy she looked in the moonlight, he almost dove back in to start all over again.

“Why did you stop?” she asked breathlessly.

He swallowed hard as he tried to remember exactly why he stopped. In the moment, he knew it was the right thing to do. But now? Not so much.

How could he possibly explain to her how this wasn’t right when all he wanted to do was pull her back into his arms?


  1. Lack of communication really bothers me in books like this one. I'm not sure how I would feel about this but I'm glad that you liked it and it made you even more excited to read book one.

    1. I understand that their lack of communication is what sets up the premise for the next book (technically the first book in the series), but that doesn't mean I have to like it. I wish they had talked to each other, sorted their stuff out, and then did what they did. It felt unnecessary and uncharacteristic, since they'd both been so open with each other beforehand. After awhile, Jake started keeping things to himself, and then it went south from there. Overall, I did enjoy the book! I'm hoping Remind Me has more communication! :)

  2. Lack of communication always seems to be the reasons for these bumps in the road in romances.

  3. My #1 bookish pet peeve is lack of communication or miscommunication so I guessing that might be a stumbling block for me with this one. The whole communication thing is an easy way to create conflict but oh my gosh it drives me crazy. It’s like, one conversation could fix everything but instead there’s 200 pages of back and forth because no one is talking. Gah! (Um, okay, apparently I feel strongly about this one.. LOL)

    1. Maybe you should forget the prequel and just jump straight to the first book in the series, haha. Then you don't have to suffer through the miscommunication and lack of conversation, and just enjoy what happens four years later! ;)

      I have strong feelings about it, too. I haaate it when an entire book can be solved with two people talking once. It annoys the hell out of me. However, in this case, I understand that it was done to set up the first book and to offer insight into the character's lives. Why they haven't spoken, what transpired between them, their relationships with Pops -- all relevant. We'll see how Remind Me goes! :)


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“Stuff and nonsense. Nonsense and stuff and much of a muchness and nonsense all over again. We are all mad here, don't you know?”
― Marissa Meyer, Heartless