“I enjoyed this story about another member of the entertaining and warmhearted Kowalski family. I liked how this renewed relationship developed including all the issues they had to face with location, ex's and children. Ryan returns home to rebuild his family lodge and encounters his old flame...”see full review » see other reviews »
“I enjoyed this story about another member of the entertaining and warmhearted Kowalski family. I liked how this renewed relationship developed including all the issues they had to face with location, ex's and children. Ryan returns home to rebuild his family lodge and encounters his old flame now divorced Lauren.
“3.5 Stars”Monica wrote this review Tuesday, August 27, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Review Pending.”Tracy wrote this review Sunday, January 27, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“This was another good book on the Kowalski family. Ryan Kowalski had been in love with his best friend's wife. When Lauren rejected his plea to be with him, Ryan decided to stay away from his hometown. But on an extended leave to do repairs on his family's lodge he and Lauren have to confront their attraction for each other. And when it was time to leave Ryan and Lauren had to made decisions on how they could be together despite Lauren's son, Ryan's home and business 230 miles away and Lauren's vow not to have any more children. I liked this story. Ryan and Lauren had to deal with so many issues on family and their job before they could have their HEA. I guess my only quibble with this book is Lauren's decision not to have kids even though Ryan wanted them. I liked that that she was frank about this unlike another couple in the series (the enigmatic Drew and his wife Mallory) who divorced because Mallory lied about wanting children. I guess I felt bad for Ryan for having to give up having children to be with Lauren.”ALICE S wrote this review Thursday, January 24, 2013. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“Ryan Kowalski (36) has never forgotten Lauren Carpenter (34) after almost 14 years and the passion of his past has certainly tempered. She's only improved over time and he has a whole new set of feelings to contend with. Lauren has played the "what if" game with herself since her divorce eight years ago, imagining what her life might have been like if she'd taken Ryan up on his offer to run away with him. She's got a chance to play things out in the present but wonders if he still has any feelings for her.
Ryan and Lauren's relationship is truly a contemporary romance. As a single mother of a 16-year old teenaged boy, she's constantly juggling the demands of a job, strained finances and being a mom while trying to have a social life. Ryan is part of a big extended family (four hot brothers, a sister, and four equally attractive first cousins) and he's only in Whitford, Maine to help his brothers restore the family lodge as he has his own multi-million dollar company to run in Brookline, Massachusetts. He and Lauren not only have their own past baggage to deal with as they consider a long-distance relationship but all of these pulls from their current circumstances. There weren't easy solutions and it made this story more engaging, even in the midst of a pretty hot romance.
What made this story even more enjoyable were the many funny moments arising from being a part of a large family. Ryan has great relationships with his brothers but everyone is in each others' business. It helped balance out the tough aspects of the romance, it all seeming so normal while still providing a nice escape. And, you have the whole town involved in seeing these two make it.
Ryan and Lauren are two interesting personalities and have one hot romance in spite of their obstacles. I really liked how their story was presented with all of its ups and downs, challenges and triumphs, as well as the many siblings who provide more flavor. It ended a bit briefly but every book in this series includes updates for every member of this family so we haven't heard the last about them.
(I received an ARC from NetGalley)”
“The Kowalski part two series just doesn’t have that stamina to start with a bang and keep it going throughout. Ever since the Kowalski’s have been back, the stories just start off so slow before picking up towards the end and making you go ‘now where was this story 250 pages ago!’
I really didn’t see the ‘wow’ between Ryan and Lauren Carpenter. I honestly think the first 200 plus pages were about her son working off his debt to Ryan for vandalism, rehashing their past when he asked her to leave her now ex-husband, and Mitch and Paige’s wedding.
I did enjoy the wedding as all the Kowalski’s made it to the lodge. Sean and Emma are my favorite pairing, so I loved reading about them and their excellent news. As for the other things that took center stage for the first half of the story, only somewhat entertaining.
Now, once the wedding is over and Ryan and Lauren hook up, the baby steps are over and hello hot attraction and beautiful couple. Ryan is such a great guy and connected well to Lauren’s son Nick and frankly handled her ex, Dean, and his former best friend, well considering they all came with the package deal.
Lauren is one to worry and even though there time together is amazing, she can’t help but think of the impending hurdles facing them. And neither she nor Ryan is willing to voice how series things have become between them. Which only hurts them as the major work at the lodge comes to a close and Ryan is needed back in Massachusetts for his business full time.
Thinking to ease her worries, Ryan goes to Dean with his plan, but things quickly blow out of hand when Lauren isn’t happy he went to Dean. With things ending in yelling, things look to be over.
Luckily, they’ve both got some great family and friends who saw what these two had together and aren’t letting them quit.
Letting things cool off, they do gather to apologize and work out on their major problems. Which I had one with Lauren’s hard limit on kids. Seriously? Hopefully this will change in later books.
Just knowing his love for Lauren is willing to overcome anything and with Nick’s blessing, he wins over Lauren and the family he wants.
This was certainly a 2 stars for the first half, but I think a 3 is a good upgrade for the second half.
“Reviewed by ANN & posted at Under the Covers Book Blog
Stacey builds on that past in a way that further solidifies how well they work together. She simply doesn’t make a backstory for them and hope that readers accept that they belong together. She works hard to show readers that this is the case. I have to admire that. ~ Under the Covers
Lauren Carpenter once had a beautiful family. Now she and her husband are divorced and their son is an emotional teenager. Keeping her head up is a hard task when all she wants to do is simply catch a break. But when Ryan Kowalski returns to Whitford to help his family restore the Northern Star Lodge, Lauren finds that her heart has never really let Ryan go.
Ryan and Lauren have an interesting past. All is revealed as you read the book, but I have to say that Shannon Stacey really impressed me with this story. Not only was the writing free-flowing and well-written, but there seemed to be a lot of heart in it as well. Ryan and Lauren are up against their past, yet Stacey builds on that past in a way that further solidifies how well they work together. She simply doesn’t make a backstory for them and hope that readers accept that they belong together. She works hard to show readers that this is the case. I have to admire that.
Nick, Lauren’s son is a great addition to this book. I loved that he was both loving and crazy. I think it also brought out a lot of Lauren and Ryan’s character as well. It displayed their parenting techniques, their core beliefs and also how well they fit with each other.
ALL HE EVER DESIRED is definitely one of my favorites of this series, but I have a feeling that the next book might just steal my heart!
*ARC provided by Netgalley
“*”Cordykitten wrote this review Friday, November 16, 2012. ( reply | permalink ) Was this review helpful? Yes | No
“I love the Kowalski series. The first three were about the New Hampshire branch and the last two have been about their cousins in Maine. The Maine branch are a little less boisterous, but are just as family oriented, enough so you wish you were part of the clan. This book was about Ryan and Lauren, two people that really need to be together considering the second chance they're getting. When I first met Ryan in Mitch's book I thought he seemed kinda like a jerk, but after getting to know him it isn't that he's a jerk, it's just he puts a lot on himself. The running of his company, the rebuilding of his family's home and the guilt he carries from asking Lauren to run away with him years earlier. Meeting Lauren and her son, Nick, again after sixteen years makes him want her all over again. And after Lauren sees Ryan again all her "what-if " moments come crashing back. The two together made a great couple and what's more is they were a believable couple. And of course Lauren made a perfect addition to the Kowalski clan. I can't wait to read the next book, not just to read Josh's story, but because we always get to see little peeks into the lives of the rest of the family and see how they're doing.
Highly recommend this book even if you haven't read the rest of the series. But to get the maximum impact of the Kowalski men, you should definitely read the series in order. ”
“All He Ever Desired by Shannon Stacey
The Kowalski Series Book 5
Ryan Kowalski has come back to Northern Star Lodge in Whitford, Maine to help his brothers get it fixed up to sell. He’s been home over the past few years and each time he tries to ignore the beautiful Lauren. This time is different. Not only does he run into her in town, he catches her son vandalizing their property and makes Nick work it off. Leaving Lauren to come by the lodge to pick her son up and maybe giving Ryan a second chance.
Lauren Carpenter had been in love with Dean. Little did she realize before it was too late that Dean didn’t exactly return her feelings. She did not regret having her son, Nick. Even when he fell into the criminal category and had to work off his crimes with Ryan, a man she had an unusual past with. A man too handsome for any women to resist. Even her. Too bad he lives almost five hours away and will be returning there after repairing the lodge.
Once again Shannon takes us into the world of the lovable Kowalski family. Two of the brothers have found their forever loves, Sean and Emma’s story is in book 3: Yours To Keep and Mitch and Paige’s story is in Book 4: All He Ever Needed. As always we see hints of other love interests within the story as well to keep the reader looking forward to the next book. Which will be Josh’s story in All He Ever Dreamed. A really enjoyable series from the beginning. Book 1 is Exclusively Yours and book 2 is Undeniably Yours.
**Sexual situations and language
**Received through NetGalley for review