The Sassy One by Susan Mallery

 

Romance

The sassy one The Sassy OneSusan Mallery; Pocket Star Books 2003WorldCatFrancesca Marcelli had been married once. It didn’t work out, but her husband died so her family doesn’t know. They think she’s nursing a broken heart. She knows she finally able to be herself – and she doesn’t want any serious relationships.

Instead she went to college. Now Francesca is working on her final degrees. Her sisters tease her into finding a man for a casual relationship. During her thesis work, she meets Sam Reese. He’s perfect for an on-going non-committed arrangement. He feels the same way. Then he receives the surprise of his life. Sam’s personal life is turned upside down. Francesca finds herself helping him with support and mediation.

The Marcelli family sees Sam as the answer to Francesca’s “broken heart”. She tries to keep them out of her business, warning Sam as well. Her open, loving family has been hiding a dark secret of their own. Now Francesca finds herself helping heal her own family as well as supporting Sam. And her casual feelings for him are becoming more serious.

Susan Mallery has created a realistic family with the Marcellis. Grandpa Marcelli owns a winery. He rules the family with an iron fist. His granddaughters, though, resist it. All of them are loving and close except for the streak of Grandpa’s autocracy. The sisters are close, and the oldest three are the focus of the first three Marcelli books.

The Sassy One takes the sister who is a psychosocial major who is also willing to speak her own mind. She spend years demeaning herself as dumb due to numerous factors, her dead husband being the final one. Now she knows who she is and will go toe to toe with someone if she has to. Well, she still backs off from Grandpa, although she lets him know when she disagrees.

There are some good surprises in The Sassy One. Sam’s is a bit unplausible, but Mallery makes it believable. Others can be predicted. This is a solid, twisty romance with enough meat to enjoy the story and look forward to the next book in the series.

Notice:  Strong sexual content

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