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Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Intimate Flames by Annette Snyder

Intimate Flames by Annette Snyder
Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Full (224 pages)
Heat: Spicy
Rating: 4 Books
Reviewed by Camellia

Bradie Carpenter holds only memories of love lost. Armed with determination after Grant’s tragic death, Bradie ventures forward with their son. Without the exclusive Blain family name or the advantage of the family fortune and, diligent to overcome the obstacles of single parenthood, she sets a goal of a better life in the picturesque town of Union.

Andrew “Amen” Packard married too young with an unrealistic view of the future. After a turbulent divorce attributed to pressure from his firefighter career, Amen chooses his heated profession over affection for wife, family and friends. Not until he meets Bradie does he rethink his decision to exclude love from his life.
Can Bradie discover that money doesn’t always extinguish love?

Will Amen allow a ready-made family near enough to bash towering walls of seclusion?

Is friendship and attraction enough to heal the lives of two souls charred from fate?

Bradie Carpenter hated surprises. They usually hurt. She also hated being considered “trash” of “the lesser community”. But, she had loved Grant, and she loves their son Blain unconditionally.

In Union, a small town a hundred miles from Walters where she and Grant had lived, Bradie builds a life for herself and Blain. She manages a convenience store and rents a cottage from the Parkards, owners of the store. Independent, and self-reliant, she guards her heart, determined to never suffer the pain she had suffered when Grant died and his folks rejected her and Blain. The Packard family treats her like family and insists she come to their picnic on the Fourth, even though she tries to keep her distance. Down deep inside she feels sure that they will reject her someday just like Grant’s parents had.

Amen Packard, a firefighter from Walters and the youngest son of the Packards, locked his heart away years ago when his wife Judy left. She could not live with his firefighting job—a job that is his very life. At his family’s Fourth of July picnic, he sees Bradie and Blain. She is beautiful, graceful, funny, and confident, and is as self-willed as a fire. His body, so long disinterested in participating in a relationship, comes alive.

Bradie and Amen tiptoe around each other for weeks. Both of them still have raw scars from the hurt of their first loves. He finally admits he cannot get her out of his mind. The heat he feels for her is like a fire—a fire that cannot be extinguished. He wants that fire.

Bradie does not date. Blain is her number one concern. Making a living and a life for herself and him consumes her time. However, Amen ignites a flame down deep in her being that she thought had gone out. Along with it comes all the “what if’s” that a single mother must consider before considering her own needs. What if she got involved with Amen and he died in a fire, what if their relationship died after Blain became attached to Amen, what if his family rejected Blain and her, what if….

When malicious, small-town gossip cuts too deeply for Bardie to bear, the closeness that she and Amen had come to share is shattered. Amen, planning a surprise with a ring to give her, is shut out of her life, but his heart seems not have gotten the message.

The emotional climax of INTIMATE FLAMES is fraught with fears. With courage and honesty, Bradie searches her heart and soul to find the strength to reach out for love and finds it in the aftermath of the fire. Bradie is a heroine “that can” and does risks much to get her happy-ever-after with her firefighter who has a ring in his pocket.