March 31, 2014

BLOG TOUR: Stroke of Love (The Remingtons #2)

Welcome to my stop on the tour for Stroke of Love, the second book in Melissa Foster's The Remingtons series, organized by AToMR Tours. Read on for my review, and then check out the special offer Melissa Foster is extending to readers during the tour. And, be sure to visit the other stops on the tour!

Stroke of Love (The Remingtons #2), by Melissa Foster
Published March 11, 2014
World Literary Press
e-book, provided by the author and AToMR Tours
adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon * Barnes & Noble

Rating:  3.5 STARS

(From Goodreads)  Kate Parello runs a volunteer program in Belize for Artists for International Aid, where she deals with self-centered artists who use the program as a means to repair their marred reputations. She loves the country, the people, and what AIA stands for, but too many diva volunteers have turned her off to press-seeking celebrities altogether and left her questioning the value of the volunteer program. When she meets incredibly handsome and charming Sage, he stirs emotions she hasn’t felt for ages, even though he represents the things she despises.

Laid-back artist Sage Remington escapes his wealthy lifestyle in the Big Apple for a two-week journey of self-discovery to figure out how a guy who has so much can feel so empty. When he meets ultra-organized Kate, who lives her life the way he’s always dreamed of living his, the attraction is too hot to ignore, but Sage is there to figure out what’s missing in his life, not to find a woman.

Every look, and every late-night chat in the romantic jungle brings them closer together, but Sage can barely think past stripping away Kate’s misconceptions about him. Kate fights him every step of the way—even though she finds it hard to ignore the strikingly handsome, generous-to-a-fault artist who wants to do nothing more than right the wrongs of the world—and love her to the ends of the earth.

I loved the premise of Stroke of Love - that love could be found while working in the trenches of an underdeveloped country. There was a lot to really like about this book. The setting was awesome. The main project was well thought out. The writing was really compelling. And, the main hunky alpha male was pretty damn awesome.

Sage is unfulfilled living the good life in New York. He wants to use his artistic talent to truly help others in need. So, he signs on with a group that sends celebrities to underdeveloped nations for charity work. His group of pretentious publicity seekers goes to Belize to work under the watchful eye of Kate Parello who has become jaded over the years. Sage and Kate hit it off, and both manage to re-work the others' idea of what they want out of life.

The best part about Stroke of Love is the fact that nearly all of it takes place in a remote village in Belize. I loved the infusion of local culture. There was a lot of talk about local foods, beverages, language and people, which was really fun and refreshing.

The base camp area for the charity work almost seemed set up like what I remember camp was like as a teen with cabins for the participants and a main mess hall for socializing and meals. It was cool hearing about the set up and how the camp worked.

Sage is an artist - like, a painter/sculpture artist. He's amazingly talented and wildly successful. He's a millionaire many, many times over because of it. He goes to Belize because he doesn't want to just write a check to a charity. He wants to get his hands dirty and really DO something. He's gorgeous, artistic, filthy rich, a humanitarian, kind, generous, romantic. He's perfect.

Way. Too. Perfect.

Sage's only flaw is that he sometimes gets too involved in his art and loses track of time, therefore blowing off appointments and dates and such. This guy does not exist in real life. As described, he would wake up bright eyed and bushy tailed at the butt crack of dawn and create a masterpiece before breakfast. Next, he would rescue a kitten from a tree, visit a nursing home, take his girlfriend to an expensive restaurant, then have amazing sex with her all night long.

On top of that, Sage appears to come from a perfect family. He has four brothers and one sister. His brothers include a brilliant engineer, a published author, an Olympian, the owner of a successful software company and his sister is a highly-sought after model. His mother is also an accomplished artist, and his father is a 5-star general. Seriously. There is not one unsuccessful, disingenuous, unattractive member of this family. No black sheep to speak of. Everyone gets along and is highly supportive of one another. Again - a family like this is a mythical creature. I had a really hard time reconciling Sage and his family with what is reality, and that made the book as a whole a lot less impactful for me.

Kate was raised by veteran Peace Corp volunteers, and she lives to work with the less fortunate. She hates having to deal with the fake celebrities who only come to better their image and not themselves. She pigeon-holes Sage from the beginning, and that was my favorite part of their relationship. She wasn't so nice to him and thought the worse, and Sage had to work hard to turn her opinion of him around.

I did like Sage's ways to win Kate over to his side. I liked that he loved children and wanted to work with them to paint a mural on the side of the school. But, for heaven's sake, this man needs a fatal flaw! Couldn't he have been even a little bit of a jerk? Or even have a little BO or something? Anything? I also liked that Stroke of Love was told in dual POV. I liked being in on Kate's insecurities regarding her job and her relationship with Sage. I even loved hearing Sage's perfect thoughts.

I loved the ideas presented in Stroke of Love. I loved the setting and the relationships that formed. I just really, really wanted some more drama. Things seemed to come too easy to these perfect people, and it didn't seem quite real. In any case, I really want to visit Belize now.

About the Author

Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes contemporary romance, new adult, contemporary women's fiction, suspense, and historical fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Her books have been recommended by USA Today's book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the Women’s Nest, a social and support community for women, and the World Literary CafĂ©. When she's not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on  Fostering Success. Melissa has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.

Melissa enjoys discussing her books with book clubs and reader groups, and welcomes an invitation to your event.

Learn more about Melissa --> Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Special Offer

During this tour, Melissa Foster is offering two of her books FREE!

Lovers at Heart - Amazon or Barnes & Noble

Sister in Love - Amazon or Barnes & Noble


Melissa Foster said...

I'd love to visit Belize too...if it weren't for the fact I don't fly ;-)
Thank you so much for reading and giving your honest review. I'm so glad you enjoyed it!! XOXO

AToMR said...

Thank you for featuring STROKE OF LOVE. :)