Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Blog Tour: Almost Just Friends (Wildstone #4) by Jill Shalvis

Almost Just Friends
Wildstone #4
By: Jill Shelves
Published: January 21, 2020
Publisher: William Morrow
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Source: eARC from the publisher in exchange for a honest review
Book Summary:
New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis returns to Wildstone with the touching story of finding your place in the world—and the people who make it home. 

Piper Manning’s about as tough as they come, she’s had to be. She raised her siblings and they’ve thankfully flown the coop. All she has to do is finish fixing up the lake house her grandparents left her, sell it, and then she’s free. 

When a massive storm hits, she runs into a tall, dark and brooding stranger, Camden Reid. There’s a spark there, one that shocks her. Surprising her further, her sister and brother return, each of them holding their own secrets. The smart move would be for Piper to ignore them all but Cam unleashes emotions deep inside of her that she can’t deny, making her yearn for something she doesn’t understand. And her siblings…well, they need each other. 

Only when the secrets come out, it changes everything Piper thinks she knows about her family, herself…and Cam. Can she find a way to outrun the demons? The answer is closer than she thinks—just as the new life she craves may have already begun.

My Thoughts:

Almost Just friends was a wonderful story about friendship, family, love, and life.  Piper Manning lost her parents at the tender age of thirteen, and came with her younger siblings, Gavin and Winnie, to live with her grandparents in Wildstone.  She took on the burdens and responsibilities of raising them and was more like a mother than a sibling.  Piper is looking forward to selling the house and cottages on Rainbow Lake; that her family inherited from her grandparents, so that she can move away to Colorado, and go to college to become a P.A.  Piper longs for adventure and a life of her own, now that both of her siblings flew the nest many years ago.

However all of Piper's plans are interrupted when Gavin and Winnie show up, and plan on staying as a family at their grandparents house.  Both have heavy burdens to bare, and secrets that they are keeping from their older sister.  To top it off, Piper meets the sexy, handsome, and caring, Cam who happens to be on leave from the Coast Guard, and is visiting his father, and Piper's neighbor, Emmitt, after the loss of Cam's younger brother.  Things have now gotten complicated for Piper, and she just might discover there is plenty of adventure to be had in her small little hometown of Wildstone...

I loved Piper.  She reminded me of myself.  She carried her bullet journal/planner everywhere, and was obsessed with making lists for everything.  She cracked me up with her bucket list, and secret secret bucket list!  She loved her siblings more than anything, but she could come off a little bossy and judgemental, as far as they were concerned.   

Cam rarely smiled when Piper first met him, but she made him happy.  He saw what a treasure Piper was, and he made her feel wanted, appreciated, and seen.   Cam was such a sexy manly man.  He looked out for Piper, and was an excellent listener.  He helped her to have fun, and relax.  These two connected, because they had both had challenges in their lives, where they could relate to one another.   Plus the chemistry between them was sizzling!

I loved the secondary cast of characters as well.  Emmitt, Cam's father, was hilarious!  I loved learning about Gavin, and he had his own romance as well.  Winnie was going through a lot, but I loved her strength, resilience, and courage to pick herself up, and become the mature adult that she wanted to be.

My favorite aspects of this story were the humor that was infused all the way throughout the story, as well as being able to relate to it when it came to loss, mourning, and learning how to live again.  The two romances were fun, but my absolute favorite moments were when everyone was together, whether they were bickering or having a good time!  If you are looking for a story that will have you laughing aloud, make you happy, and is real and relatable to life, and experiencing loss, and love; as well as needing to learn resilience, you should pick up Almost Just Friends by Jill Shalvis!

Book Excerpt:

The last time a woman had ordered Cam to strip had been a very different scene altogether, and it’d been a while. Generally speaking, he liked to be behind the wheel in most situations, but he’d never had any complaints about a woman driving in his bed. “Interesting bedside manner.” 

“Okay,” she said. “How about strip, please.” 

He laughed, and he realized that until tonight, it’d been a damn long time for that too.  “Well, since you asked so 
nicely . . .” But still he hesitated. 

“Trust me, I’ve seen it all before.” 
He pulled off his shirt, wincing when the cotton stuck to the deepest slice across his chest. 
Piper blinked, and for the first time all night, appeared short of words. 

It was pretty damn cute, especially with the mud on her nose. “Thought you’ve seen it all before.” She bit her lower lip, eyes suddenly hooded, and he couldn’t resist teasing her. “So, how do I stack up?” 

That got her, and she rolled her eyes. “Like you don’t know. Sit.” 

The couch seemed too . . . personal, so he sat on her coffee table. She dropped to her knees at his side and doctored up first the cut on his left palm from where he’d nicked himself in his dad’s kitchen, and then the two slices on his left biceps, and then the biggest one across his chest, during which time he did his best to ignore the feel of her soft breath on his skin and failed. 

When she’d finished, she looked down at his cargoes and saw the blood seeping through from his thigh. Rising to her feet, she stepped back, gesturing for him to lose the pants too. 

“Seriously,” he said. “Doesn’t even have to be dinner. An appetizer would work.” 

“If you’re real good, I’ll give you a sticker.” “How about letting me look at your secret secret bucket list instead?” 

Her eyes narrowed. 

“How about we stop talking now?” 

“Wait.” He cocked his head. “Does this mean you also have a secret bucket list? And possibly a not-so- secret bucket list?” 

She had hands on hips; a fresh, clean gauze in one hand, antibiotic ointment in the other, her expression dialed to Not Feeling Playful. 

With a rough laugh, he stood and took the gauze and ointment from her. “I got this one, Doc.” And then he gestured for her to turn around. 

She did with a smirk, and then spoke over her shoulder. “Didn’t peg you for the shy type.” 

“Oh, I’m not shy.” He shoved his icy, muddy, wet cargoes to his thighs, and yeah, the cat had come within two inches of de-manning him. “Just didn’t want to have to fight you off.” 

“Don’t worry,” she said. “I always get verbal consent first. And I bet you didn’t want me to see your tighty-whities.” 

He gritted his teeth as he cleaned out the cut. Son of a bitch, that cat had gone deep. “They’re not tight and they’re not white.” 

“Batman undies?”

“Commando,” he said, and that shut her up. When he’d finished and pulled his pants back up, he lifted his head and found her facing him. His brows went up. “See anything you like?” 

Instead of answering, she blushed. And he grinned because, yeah. She’d definitely seen something she liked. 

From Almost Just Friends by Jill Shalvis, published by William Morrow. Copyright © 2020 by Jill Shalvis. Reprinted courtesy of HarperCollinsPublishers https://www.harpercollins.com/9780062897800/almost-just-friends/

About the Author:

New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis lives in a small town in the Sierras full of quirky characters. Any resemblance to the quirky characters in her books is, um, mostly coincidental. Look for Jill’s bestselling, award-winning books wherever romances are sold and visit her website, www.jillshalvis.com, for a complete book list and daily blog detailing her city-girl-living-in-the-mountains adventures.


  1. Oh I always have a good time with her books

    1. She's one of the author's that I go to for a guaranteed good read :)

  2. Ahhh, rooting for her to finally get her chance to live it up after raising her siblings.

  3. I have always enjoyed Jill's books.

  4. I love this series, more and more, with each book, and for me, the success was very much due to the ensemble. I loved the storylines given to each of the siblings, and really enjoyed seeing them reconnect and work through their past together.

  5. I liked the review, sounds like a book I will enjoy reading.

    1. Thanks Rita! It was such a wonderful reading experience!

  6. i am so glad the story fit the cover...fun. i enjoyed the excerpt and loved their banter.
    sherry @ fundinmental

  7. Oooh this is up my alley. 🤣😉 I love ensemble romances with a large realistic cast behind the romance. And I can totally get behind a big sister sacrificing for her siblings. And the excerpt was cute.

    1. I'm glad you discovered a book that interests you! This story won't disappoint :)

  8. Yay! I'm glad you enjoyed it too :)

  9. that book looks great and i read it piper has to see how she will handle her family

    1. It was a great read! I hope you get the opportunity to read it soon :)

  10. I've only read one of her books but I really liked her writing style. I need to read more from her because this sounds great.


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