It's the beginning of a new term at Wyckham College, Oxford, and a fresh start for Lauren Cusack. Her fingers were badly burnt when a whirlwind romance with gorgeous English aristocrat, Alexander Hunt, became too hot to handle - and now she's determined to keep her distance.
Her resolve is shaken when Alexander appears on her doorstep - he's been completely torn apart by some devastating news. Lauren knows that she should stay away, but their chemistry is undeniable and she soon finds herself back in Alexander's arms.
Can Lauren handle the drama that comes with Alexander Hunt? Or will she has to sacrifice the most exhilarating passion she's ever known . . .
(The Second Time I saw you is the 2nd book in the Oxford Blue Series.)
Pippa Croft is the pen name of an award-winning romantic novelist. After studying English at Oxford, she worked as a copywriter and journalist before writing her debut novel, which won the RNA's New Writers' award and was later made into a TV movie. She lives in a village in the heart of England with her husband and daughter.
I was given an ecopy of this book by JB at brookcottagebooks.blogspot.com in exchange for an honest review which I'm more than happy to give. This is the second book in the Oxford Blue Series and I was a little concerned that I hadn't read book 1 first but JB assured me that The Second Time I Saw You could just as easily be read as a stand alone book and I would have to agree. I didn't spend too much time thinking I wonder what happened in book 1?....Until I'd finished it and now I want to read it to understand the characters a little better.
Lauren is determined to stay away from Alexander and start a new term with a clean slate. However this proves impossible - Alexander turns up with a tale of woe and before you know it Lauren is sucked straight back into a relationship.
Their relationship however, is pure chemistry when they come together it's like burning magnesium mixed with water - you can feel the heat and the reaction before it happens. It's a classic case of cannot live together, cannot live apart. Add family & friends with secrets and problems to the mix and poor Lauren is being pulled in every direction.
Pippa has developed characters that evoked quite strong reactions - it's not often I'm reduced to shouting at a book - 'for god's sake' was uttered on more than one occasion as I willed each of them to get a grip. I can't say I loved any of the characters really yet their characteristics I felt were perfect and suited the storyline. Valentina (Alexander's ex-girlfriend) and Prof Rafe were suitably awful, evil and slimy respectively whilst Alexander's 17 year old sister comes across as gullible and vulnerable yet at the same time manipulative and controlling putting poor Lauren in a very difficult position.
I read and finished this book in just three sittings and despite my lack of love for the characters I did enjoy the book and I'm now left wanting to know more. I liked the storyline and sub-stories very much. I feel like I've only eaten half a sandwich though having skipped the bread and gone straight for the filling. I want to see if my opinion alters or is still the same once I can see the progress and changes in both Lauren and Alex so I'm going to read book one then two again before I move on to book three.
I do recommend this book and agree with JB it could be read as a stand alone book but would say if like me you like everything to be all neat and tidy then read book 1 first. It will be interesting to see if my thoughts stay the same. All in all this was a captivating read of friendships and relationships, with more ups and downs than a roller coaster.
I gave this book 4/5 stars