Chasing the Wild Sparks (book 1) – Ren Alexander

Chasing the Wild Sparks

I own a copy of this book. No review was requested. All thoughts are 100% my own. Though not technically a part of this story, you can read my review on Hadley’s brother’s story, Keys to Jericho, here.

Blurb

What would you do if the love of your life doesn’t want the same life you do?
Hadley Beckett has failed in not only her career, but as a daughter, friend, and girlfriend.

Hadley’s longtime boyfriend, Finn Wilder, who is Richmond, Virginia’s local daredevil and favorite sportscaster, isn’t afraid of anything…except for LASIK surgery, dancing, marriage, and kids—the last two being what Hadley desperately wants with him. Finn leads a very public life; however, he leaves Hadley in the dark about most of it. Despite his public persona, Finn is viciously protective of his private life. Excluding their families, his best friend and Hadley’s friends, nobody knows he has been dating her for three years. Finn loves Hadley and he knows she wants to get married. Nevertheless, he has his own reasons for not wanting to marry her.

Fearing at 33 that she will soon be too old to have kids, Hadley wants Finn to change his mind and marry her, yet her insecurities about his seemingly charismatic personality and his constant rebuffs have her questioning her aspirations. With conflicting advice from her friends, Hadley concludes she should take things into her own hands.
Would he change his mind then?

Finn pressures Hadley into moving in with him, but being traditional, she wants to be married first and she wants to stick to her beliefs, just as he clings to his own. Finn has tolerated Hadley’s stubbornness long enough and he’s reaching his breaking point.

Finn Wilder has his own story to tell.

My Thoughts

We meet Hadley and Finn first in Keys to Jericho, technically, as his story starts before hers. She’s his sister and she has had a rough go of things since her mom left her left them with their dad. And though that’s not a major component to the story, it is still brought up. But Hadley loves Finn. Oh does she love him. He’s tops in everything. The only problem is, Finn only wants to be with Hadley where his fans can’t see him. He doesn’t tell his co-workers about her. And she’s starting to feel like his dirty secret after being with him for three years. Finn loves Hadley. Oh how he loves her. He’s so in love with her that he’s terrified of risking anything that could take her away from him. He wants her to himself and not share her with his fans and co-workers. He doesn’t want his publicity to touch on her and make her uncomfortable and incapable of being free from the public eye. But Hadley is bringing him down all the time because she’s constantly going on about getting married and having a family. But he’s seen what marriage does to people in love…and he’s afraid to marry her because it’ll destroy what they have.

I’ll be honest, I wasn’t a fan of Finn’s in Keys to Jericho. Though I understand that he truly does love Hadley, I’m still not supah keen on him. I think he can’t see the forest for the trees and that he’s selfish in his love for Hadley. I liked Hadley in Keys to Jericho, and I grew concerned over her throughout Jared’s book. But I’m not as keen on her in this one. She’s nagging and whining all the time and she hyper-focused on getting married as if life cannot have meaning without it. And her friends treat her upset over their great news as if she’d had a miscarriage and they just showed her their new baby. I know this is the first book of their story, so I’m sure I’ll see a lot of growth between them because they are mutable characters.

I loved loved FLOVED Greg Rodwell! He reminded me of a Jack Black type personality with a body like Channing Tatum and a face like Marlon Teixeira. He was the right amount of funny and whimsy and he knew just what was needed to keep everyone in a better frame of mind. But I would say that Rodwell is much deeper than he allows people to see. There’s something more to that man, I’m hoping we get to see a deeper glimpse into him.

Ms. Alexander wrote this story before Keys to Jericho, so I can’t say she has continued building that world here. And honestly, this place is pretty far removed from that story. Though Adam and Jared Beckett are mentioned, they aren’t present in this story at all. But I will say that you can tell that these two stories touch and intertwine into one another. I have already purchased both the second and third book in this series to finish it out because now I have to know…Will Finn be the man he needs to be, or will someone else swoop in and steal the girl? So would I recommend this book? I most definitely would. And while I know the two aren’t truly joined books, I think I’d read Jared’s story first. It really feeds your desire to know what the heck happens with Hadley and Finn. I would make sure that if you do buy the book, you understand that there is sex in here. Actually quite a bit of thinking about sex (especially on Finn’s part) and that it is more than fade to black and a wee bit more than steamy.

About the Author

Ren Alexander was born in Wheeling, West Virginia, but grew up in a nearby tiny, historical, college town in the Northern Panhandle of the state. She graduated from West Liberty University, where she received a B.S. in criminal justice. Although interested in that field, her true passion was reading and writing. She currently lives in Detroit, Michigan with her husband, two daughters and two cats. “Chasing the Wild Sparks” is Ren’s first novel.

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