Pure magic, how in the world can a story so full be crafted in less than 200 pages? Historical, Romantic all the good feels! I love how CCJ always gives a pleasant twist to the story, just when you think you've figured out where its going to lead....bam a sweet twist! Loved every part of this book!! Hailey and Ellis are awesome and I hope they share more of their story with CCJ so she can share with us :)!!!
Prior Affair is book 2 of the Night Shift series however can be read as a standalone. It is also a novella but we cover a lot of ground in these 170 pages all of which I loved. Let’s talk about shall we.
In this read we are introduced to our heroine Hailey Freeman, a freelance writer that has finally decided to put down some roots in Blackwood and take a new job with the magazine “Sugar & Spice”. Hailey also decided to research her family history and renovate her great grandmother’s home when a tragic event destroyed the structure . Enters our hero - literally, because he is a firefighter - Ellis Boyd who is on duty the night of the event. Ellis also is a member of BBC -Brothas Brewing Club (and the other one 😉).
From the very beginning these two were comfortable with one another. Which caused each of them to do things that were outside of the norm when dating because of this new level of intimacy. I love the inner dialogue we got from Hailey on this piece surrounding kissing. 🙅🏾♀️The spicy parts are amazing cause Ellis is the new boo 😘cause like I said he a member of the BBC. 😏
I am drawn in with the exploration into the women of Hailey’s family, which was fascinating. We got a peek into respectability politics with her family. But her relationship with her mom struck me and rings true for many women as the why behind the fracture of that relationship was discussed. Again here come CCJ true bombs. 😂In this exploration of her family history we learn about an event that took place over a 100 years before that shaped and forever connected the course of history for both Hailey and Ellis.🥺
From the sneak peaks CCJ offered us I knew I was going to fall in love with these two, and fall in love I did. I did receive this eARC from Christina C. Jones however, I did purchase an additional copy for a friend of mine that is married to a firefighter. What I have learned is that Christina knows best 🤷🏾♀️and I need to just read and enjoy. 5 Stars ✨
Firefighter and Brothas Brewing Club member Ellis Boyd finds himself experiencing a compelling attraction and sense of déjà vu with Hailey Freeman, a new resident of Blackwood and Executive Editor at Sugar & Spice magazine in this second volume of the Night Shift series. Ellis and Hailey meet when he offers her a ride from the hospital after her home is burned down in the first scene of the book. From the very beginning they are both aware of this underlying feeling of familiarity with each other that seems strange given that neither of them are the type to form bonds easily, especially romantic ones. Hailey’s research into her family history uncovers their unexpected connection to a prior affair.
Christina C. Jones includes a mystical element into a story that centers the history of Blackwood and the Freeman family. There are some cameo appearances from places and people from previous books, which is always fun for fans of the CCJ universe. The witty banter between Hailey and Ellis, especially when they are just getting to know each other, is beautifully written as is the scene when they have a bit of a conflict. There aren’t very many heavy scenes but there are mentions of the many tragedies, including death and homelessness, that Ellis encounters as a first responder and how he copes with not being able to save everyone.
I have mentioned before that rating CCJ books is hard because her writing is just that good. I’m giving this one four and a half stars, you should absolutely get this book (and Equivalent Exchange if you haven’t already) and add it to your TBR or read it today.
This has nothing to do with the book per se, but I love the way that CCJ is experimenting with delivering her books directly through her website. As an independent author this is a big deal and I for one am here for it. The current mechanisms to deliver books in audio and digital formats highly favors the content delivery platform. This is one of the reasons I tend to not buy books, but would rather borrow them from the library. Independent authors especially seem to be disadvantaged and it takes someone like CCJ to step out and show that it can be done successfully and blaze a path for others to follow. I would much rather put coins directly in the pockets of my favorite authors than the richest man in the world.
I loved this book. I enjoyed the whole concept that I didn’t see coming. Gosh I didn’t want it to end. This couple was drawn to each other and I kept waiting to see how they would be connected. I enjoyed the history of this story.
Christina Chrysanthemum Jones!!!!!!! How dare you do this?!? Like just how damn dare you write this book so well that I laughed out loud (very inappropriately I might add), cried real thug tears (ohhhh you messed me UP with that come to Jesus conversation with her momma), and pounced on my Boo to apologize like Ellis did 😏. It’s like you don’t even CARE that we have edges that we’re saving for ourselves. It has become abundantly clear that every single time you write something, your malicious intent is to snatch up our edges. This was such a beautiful story and then to give us a Laken/Keris update too! If I didn’t LUHHHHHH you so much I’d be through with you!!! Thank you for this. It was absolutely right on time!