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Sandy M’s review of Lean on Me by HelenKay Dimon
Contemporary Romance ebook published by Carina Press 22 Oct 12

I love a hero like Mitch Anders. He doesn’t judge, takes folks as they are, when he’s wrong he admits it, and he loves with all his heart. What more in the world could you ask for??

Cassidy has returned home – with no career and broke. Her goal of climbing  the world’s most dangerous heights is a thing of the past since an injury that nearly killed her. On top of that, the man she put in charge of her money absconded with every last cent. She has the clothes on her back and a few other items in her bag, no place to stay, and no friends in sight. An earlier faux pas concerning her hometown has left her a pariah, earning stares and gossip at every turn. Since her stepfather is acting pretty strange, not allowing her into the house he shared with her mom, Cassidy is camping out in the woods behind the local nursery. She’s even made herself at home inside for some snacks, but she does some work for the company to help balance out her helping herself.

When Mitch first lays eyes on Cassidy when she drops by his nursery, he’s smitten all over again. She’s grown up quite nicely since high school when his teenage hormones went crazy over her. Trying to shield her from the busybodies who can’t keep quiet, Mitch offers her a job, and because he knows she’s sleeping under the stars, he also offers her a place to stay – with him. He’s always tempted to help people through their crises, and while Cassidy is in the midst of a huge one, there’s something more about her that just calls to him. Mitch isn’t about to let her go this time.

I enjoyed these two a lot. Their early banter is fun and their later lovemaking is sweet and intense. Mitch is the only one, besides her stepfather, who believes in her, who doesn’t let one misstep color the way he sees her. Ms. Dimon gets the small-town feel down just right. I’m from one of those small towns, and it’s very true that everyone knows everyone and they know everyone’s business. The slight by Cassidy these townsfolk feel is real and they don’t let her forget it. Though at this point in time, I think it’s because it’s just habit more than hurt feelings anymore.

The mystery surrounding Cassidy’s stepdad is a little anticlimatic. As close as they were during her growing up years, I’m not sure I agree with the way he handles the situation. Of course, if he hadn’t, she wouldn’t be in the relationship she has with Mitch. I’m just imagining that being open and honest, working together toward a solution would also work. This is also where Mitch has his one and only doubt about Cassidy. Okays, so he’s just nearly perfect, but, like everyone, he’s entitled to a moment of uncertainty. It’s how he looks at it and takes care of it that counts.

As usual, HelenKay Dimon gives readers a fun romp filled with laughter and love, characters just like us who do their best to get through their day or through a tough time. Enjoy this one as soon as you can. It will definitely make you smile.

SandyMGrade: B


Cassidy Clarke once climbed the world’s highest mountains, but after an unexpected illness ends her career she’s back in her hometown, broke and hoping for a little luck. But the townsfolk aren’t exactly putting out a welcome mat for the woman who once snubbed them in the media, despite her apologies now.

Mitch Anders knows someone has set up camp on the grounds of his plant nursery, and he’s surprised to find his sexy high school crush ducking questions about where she’s staying. Though he’s sworn to stop cleaning up other people’s messes, Mitch offers Cassidy a job and a place to stay—his place. Bedsharing optional, but definitely welcome.

Out of options and too attracted to Mitch to keep things platonic, Cassidy says yes to his offer. She wants to get back on her feet financially and start a new career. She never expects to suffer a different kind of fall, one that has her believing Mitch just might bring her something bigger and better than luck.

Read an excerpt.