Release Day Launch: Worth It All: Claudia Connor

Worth it All (The McKinney Brothers #3)
Claudia Connor
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Expected April 19, 2016

“Read Claudia Connor for a consistently raw and emotional love story,” recommends Carly Phillips. Now the swoon-worthy McKinney Brothers series from this bestselling author continues as JT, the youngest of the trio, discovers that only love can make him whole.

She’s fighting for control. . . . Paige Roberts learned to fend for herself growing up. Now she’s doing everything possible to give her daughter, Casey, the stability she never had. But when the vivacious five-year-old decides she’s done wearing her prosthesis, Paige faces her toughest challenge yet: trusting a handsome, brooding stranger who simply wants to help.

He’s struggling to connect. . . . JT McKinney lost more than his leg in a car accident that stole his dreams of pro football. Eight years later, he's made a new life for himself far away from his old one. His business is developing cutting-edge prosthetics and he’s more than happy to turn his attention to machines instead of people. Still, he can’t shake the feeling that something’s missing.

Will they take a chance on love? . . . When JT gets the chance to help Paige’s daughter, he takes it. He never planned on the two of them tearing down his walls or teaching him to believe in himself again. Paige might not believe in happily ever afters, but JT wants more than anything to be her prince. They’ll both have to let go of the past if they want a future.

J.T. (Jake) McKinney's life changed in an instant and ruined his plans. He managed to make a new future and dealt with most of the fall out, but it still had some long lasting effects on him. He is now a successful biomedical engineer with his own high tech prosthetics company. He's got good friends and a family who loves him even though they do not live close. But he is lonely and only has his work that keeps him going. He's got his own personal demons that eat at him and make him feel undeserving.

Paige Roberts is a hardworking, determined, caring, single mom to a five year old firecracker named Casey. She is tired, lonely and stretched thin. but she is dedicated and hopeful  she can change their circumstances. She is a realist though and does not believe in fairy tales for Prince Charming.

They develop a sweet crush that buds into a friendship and passion. But she's got  a lot on her plate and is not used to thinking of her own needs. And he is still coming to terms with some of his own issues. 

This was a much lighter read than I was expecting based on our previous view of J.T. and the last book. But it happens years past the events in previous books and each of the brothers are truly different and have had unique life experiences. It was sweet, heartfelt, funny, but had just enough emotional turmoil to add some depth. These two both had to overcome their own negative thinking at times and open themselves up to risk and taking a chance. Jake especially had guilt he had to face and lean to handle in order to to have a chance at feeling whole again. And he had his work cut out for him to try to make Paige learn to believe in true love for both her and her daughter. This really centered about finding a home, personal growth with healing, gaining self worth, and having faith and hope.

I loved getting to spend more time with all of the McKinney clan. They are such a boisterous group and all are back in all of their chaotic glory.  I adored Paige's precocious daughter, Casey. She shined bright in every scene and her relationship with Jake made me melt. His friends, Simon and Lynn and her cousin Jenny all added to this likable cast.

Like his brothers, Jake was such a caring and swoony hero even though he had issues holding him back. Paige was strong, centered, and such a loving person. And their individual relationships with Casey and shared determined to help her have the best childhood experiences they could just added to the feels.  Their story truly touched my heart and made me happy.

I was gifted a review copy in exchange for an honest review. 
JT (Jake) McKinney is the youngest of his siblings by several years. He has always felt a little bit removed from the rest of his brothers and sister, simply because of age, but he made that distance measurable when he moved across the country to settle in California rather than remain close after the accident that cost him his leg and his football career. He carries emotional scars from the accident, but has put enough of his pain aside to build a successful career designing cutting edge prosthetic devices.

Paige works two jobs while taking college classes as she can fit them into her schedule while still leaving time for the most important thing in her life: bouncy, energetic, five year old Casey, her daughter. All that hard work has left little time for Paige to relax or enjoy herself without Casey as the center, despite the efforts of her cousin to get her to have some fun for herself. But fending for herself is nothing new for Paige, she has been doing it since she was a child.

There is great development between Jake and Paige. Paige is so focused on Casey and her needs that Jake had to use what he could to get time with Paige. He was able to show that not only was he interested in Paige, but he was interested in that little girl as well.

I love the bond that quickly developed between Jake and Casey. Their shared experience, in the eyes of a five year old, was sweet and touching. I loved that Jake worked so hard to make Casey comfortable so she saw herself as he saw her. I am a sucker anytime children are involved with a single guy in the story. Watching Jake step in, as Matt did in Worth the Fall for Abby’s kids, always makes me fall for the guy.

The drama level in this story was perfect. There is insecurity about what each was feeling, but it played out nicely without feeling like too much angst. The questions added a level of interest that added drama without overwhelming the easy storyline.

The McKinney family is such a great one to revisit. Jake’s siblings fold Paige and Casey into their ranks before the new additions even realize it is happening. While Jake knew his family would love Paige and Casey, he could not have predicted the outcome of introducing them to his family as it unfolded. Because this book is so far removed in time from the first, it was fun to see Matt and Abby’s kids all grown up, or at least more grown up than they were when we first met them. 

This was a lighter story than I expected. The cute, fun story was filled with likable characters, great relationship building, and details that kept the story moving forward.

ARC provided by author/publisher in exchange for an honest review.

They meet on a beach
. . . 
Abby Davis isn’t wearing a skimpy bikini or sipping umbrella drinks, not when she’s busy chasing around four little ones. And Matt McKinney isn’t looking for fun—he’s a Navy SEAL, a grown man with a long list of missions . . . and fallen brothers.

They only have a week. . . . Abby has brought her children to this beach to start over, to give them the enjoyable memories they deserve. Matt’s been sidelined by a combat injury, and haunted by the best friend he lost and the promise he made: to remain a SEAL—focused and dedicated. This leaves no time for what he’s always wanted: a family.

But a week is all it takes. . . Matt opens her heart while Abby soothes his soul. And though they plan to say good-bye when the week is over, something magical happens on that beach, something neither can forget. Something utterly, completely worth falling for.

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When a McKinney brother falls in love, powerful emotion and overwhelming desire are never far behind. 

Two hearts locked away . . . Hannah Walker spends her days coaching children through injury and trauma, one therapeutic horseback ride at a time. She knows all too well how violence can change a child and leave scars that never heal. It’s easy for her to relate to the kids; what isn’t easy is the thought of facing her own harrowing past.

Millionaire playboy Stephen McKinney could use a little coaching himself. Five years ago he encountered his most horrible nightmare—and the nightmare won. No matter what he achieves, nothing can make up for that awful night . . . or so he believes. 

Both desperate for a second chance . . . Stephen is used to getting what he wants. And he wants Hannah. So when she turns him down, he’s intrigued. What he doesn’t know is that her secrets will lead him to a place he never wanted to go again . . . to a side of himself he’s tried to forget . . . a side that would scare Hannah away from ever loving him. Now his only chance to win her trust is to bare his soul, risking everything he tried so hard to protect.

Claudia Connor Website/Facebook/Twitter

New York Times bestselling author Claudia Connor attended Auburn University, where she received her undergraduate and masters degrees in early childhood education, and completed her studies in Sawbridgeworth, England. Always a lover of happy endings, she enjoys movies, reading, and spending her days putting on paper the stories in her head. She lives near Memphis, Tennessee, with her husband and three daughters.


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