Sunday, January 26, 2014


Unraveled (Woodlands, #3)Series: Woodlands #3
Category/Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Pear Tree LLC
Publication Date: 1/20/14
Format: eARC
Source: Author
Rating: 4.5 stars

Twenty-five-year-old Sgt. Gray Phillips is at a crossroads in his life: stay in the Marine Corps or get out and learn to be a civilian? He’s got forty-five days of leave to make up his mind but the people in his life aren’t making the decision any easier. His dad wants him to get out; his grandfather wants him to stay in. And his growing feelings for Sam Anderson are wreaking havoc with his heart…and his mind. He believes relationships get ruined when a Marine goes on deployment. So now he’s got an even harder decision to make: take a chance on Sam or leave love behind and give his all to the Marines.

Twenty-two year old Samantha Anderson lost her husband to an IED in Afghanistan just two months after their vows. Two years later, Sam is full of regrets—that she didn’t move with her husband to Alaska; that she allowed her friends to drift away; that she hasn’t taken many chances in life. Now, she’s met Gray and taking a risk on this Marine could be her one opportunity to feel alive and in love again. But how can she risk her heart on another military man who could share the same tragic fate as her husband?
First Impression.... Oh. Looks like I have another great Woodlands book in my hands.
The Story... The Woodlands series takes a turn in a slightly new direction with Gray Phillips, not officially a member of the Woodlands gang, but a close friend and fellow Marine to Bo and Noah. Gray is at a crossroads, at a point where he must decide whether to reenlist in the Marines, or join civilian life. Burned badly by an ex, Gray is not interested in relationships, and then he meets Sam Anderson. Sam lost her husband in the war two years ago, and has spent the time since barely existing. Meeting Gray for her is like waking up. He's everything she thinks she never wants again, but can't stay away from. Gray feels the same, but his past may destroy his future.
The Characters... Gray was introduced in Unspoken, when Bo and AM visited him in San Diego. He didn't have a lot of page time, but he did make a big impression on me. When I learned Unraveled was his book, I was very intrigued. That interest paid off, because Gray was a very engaging and likable character. He has a strong dilemma on his hands, with his choice between his duty to his fellow Marines and the stress of the lifestyle. I was honestly prepared to be more frustrated by him, given his anti-relationship stance, but Frederick gave much insight to his thoughts and doubts and feelings.

Sam Anderson is a character that even the hardest-hearted readers will find impossible not to like. She's a young war widow who is exhausted by being defined by her husband's death. Her sense of obligation to her husband's memory is admirable, and the author did a brilliant job of conveying her pain, exhaustion, and struggles in moving ahead. I did love that we got to meet Sam at a point in which she was beginning to be ready to move on, and not in the midst of full-on grief. She was just a really well-developed and endearing character.
The Writing... I think Frederick is an incredible writer. Her style is a bit quiet or subdued, with great prose. The dual point-of-view was done well, with each character having a distinct voice. And I really love how she writes her men. They're Alpha, without being Alphaholes.
The Heat... No doubt about it, Unraveled is definitely the steamiest book in the Woodlands series. And when I say steamy, I mean WOAH. Gray and Sam have a great chemistry. The intensity and frequency of their...interactions was on par with the situation and feelings moving through them.
Was Unraveled Un-putdownable? It took me approximately two paragraphs to fall into this story. It's not that the opening was especially attention-grabbing. It's more that Frederick is a great writer, and I felt like I was slipping into the comfort of an author who's never let me down. Invaluable.
In the End... Unraveled is a great addition to the Woodlands series, possibly my favorite. If you love this series, you'll love this installment. If you haven't tried the series, wait no longer.

Favorite Quote:

  "I'm going to kiss you now." His voice was deep, rough and matched the rest of his thoroughly masculine body.
  "I know," I whispered back. And I wanted that kiss from Gray who ordinarily wouldn't be my type at all. I wanted it more than I wanted breath. When his mouth molded against mine, it felt like bliss, as if my whole cold body had been submerged into a warm bath. If I thought I was engulfed before it was nothing like I felt at that moment. My entire world--my thoughts, my feelings, my senses--were full of him.

The Woodlands Series
Undeclared (Woodlands, #1)  Unspoken (Woodlands, #2)  Unraveled (Woodlands, #3)
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My Reviews
Purchase the Woodlands Series

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  1. Well, well, well ... looks like I have another series to read. Man, that quote is smokin'!

  2. GIRL! You had me at marine :D I love the kind of stories where characters grow to care and love when they think they're incapable :) "The dual point-of-view was done well, with each character having a distinct voice." -- YES! The lack of this completely ruined Masquerade by Nyrae Dawn for me... When you say steamy, it MUST be steamy, haha. I'm sold :)

  3. Yeah kinda hard to give up on this one after marine - I mean there is something with guys in uniforms. Anyhow I like the sound of this one and I love books with dual POV. Great review, Andrea :)

  4. I have been seeing this book pop up a lot recently and it definitely sounds like one I would enjoy. I'll have to try and get my hands on these. Great review!

  5. I really liked this one too but Unspoken is still my favorite. It was hard to top Bo for me :)

  6. I haven't read Undeclared yet so I don't want to know what happens here! Glad you enjoyed this one though!

  7. The chemistry between Gray and Sam sounds amazing, how can you resist a hot marine after all?

  8. I loved the first two books in this series, so I'm beyond excited to read this one. This one sounds a lot more intense than the previous two books and it sounds like Gray and Sam have tons of steaming chemistry together.
    I'm so glad to hear you enjoyed this, Andrea.
    Lovely review!

  9. I haven't read this author before but this series is on my TBR list. Looks like I need to get to it from your review. *sigh* So many good books.

  10. Always great when characters have a lot of chemistry :D glad you enjoyed this one. I am going to have to really give this series a shot!

  11. That's great you loved this one so much!! I'm curious about these military novels, but then again, when they deal with tough issues, I never know since my brother's in the army. Thanks for sharing though!

  12. Oh lord..the steamiest one yet? I have the first two on my list thanks to yours truly and dang if this isn't going on too! Awesome review. Sorry I haven't been returning the love, I am battling an illness that is kicking my butt.

  13. Yay! Great review Andrea! I couldn't agree more! I love Jen's writing style and wow the steam factor in this one! I love Gray but like Nereyda Bo is still my nĂºmero uno!

  14. Fantastic review, Andrea! I have GOT to get started on this series. I own them...what's the problem?!? Oh yeah...time! ;) The books sound incredible and I really, really want to meet these Alphas! *swoon*

  15. I have the first book in this series and I keep meaning to pick it up. I've seen great reviews and it seems like a story I'd enjoy. I laughed at this phrase from your review: "They're Alpha, without being Alphaholes." Alphaholes? Priceless new word! Lol! Wonderful review, Andrea! :)

  16. Ok. I am buying this series right now! What an excellent Review Andrea! I love steamy reads, and the fact that this author's prose made you slip in to the story after two paragraphs speaks volumes! I can tell how much you and Jessica are enjoying this series, and I need to join in :)

  17. Great review. I really need to read this series.

  18. I'd like to read this one. Glad you liked it.


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