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Pulled Beneath by Marni Mann
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Pulled Beneath

by Marni Mann

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I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

I did not expect to like this book as much as I did. Yes, it's a romance, but it's also a bit of a mystery and was character driven. I liked the writing and the story. I kept trying to figure out why Drew's mother never told her about her family (I think it was a little extreme to do so forever) and wondered what Aunt Shirley's secret was and why Drew's parents were murdered. We find out all in the end. I liked Saint but not Rae and Brady turned out to be a mess. But the story kept my interest and I read it in two sittings. I'm glad to find out it's a series and will definitely read the others when they come out. Kudos to the author for good writing. By the way, as a person who likes to swim, I enjoyed all the swimming, lol. I too find it relaxing and conducive to daydreaming while doing laps. But I hate open water swimming; I'm a pool gal. And I loved the dog and the best friend, who was always there for Drew, no matter when or why and flew up immediately when asked. She's awesome! ( )
  sandra.k.heinzman | Apr 2, 2015 |
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.

I did not expect to like this book as much as I did. Yes, it's a romance, but it's also a bit of a mystery and was character driven. I liked the writing and the story. I kept trying to figure out why Drew's mother never told her about her family (I think it was a little extreme to do so forever) and wondered what Aunt Shirley's secret was and why Drew's parents were murdered. We find out all in the end. I liked Saint but not Rae and Brady turned out to be a mess. But the story kept my interest and I read it in two sittings. I'm glad to find out it's a series and will definitely read the others when they come out. Kudos to the author for good writing. By the way, as a person who likes to swim, I enjoyed all the swimming, lol. I too find it relaxing and conducive to daydreaming while doing laps. But I hate open water swimming; I'm a pool gal. And I loved the dog and the best friend, who was always there for Drew, no matter when or why and flew up immediately when asked. She's awesome! ( )
  sandra.k.heinzman | Apr 2, 2015 |
Full Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the author, via Goodreads, in exchange for an honest review.

My Thoughts: Losing a loved one is never easy. Losing a parent would be shell, but I can only imagine how terribly painful that would be. The strength you have to dig deep and find is admirable and even a little scary.

The beauty of Pulled Beneath‘s story telling is incredible. It felt like the author gave the story credibility and did these characters and their grief justice. At first, I didn’t really think it would be my kind of story because it seemed to be sad and full of self-pity. I couldn’t have been more wrong if I’d tried.

The characters were relatable and so was their pain. Even if you’re not dealing with the exact same issues, it’s unbelievably easy to relate to Drew and Justin/Saint. They also had impressive chemistry. I really liked the slow build between them. Nothing felt rushed for the sake of telling a story. The pace fit the characters and the trials of their demons.

Overall, I truly enjoyed every minute of Pulled Beneath. Even with its very serious subject matter and depressing circumstances, it was a joy to read and understand. Whether you empathize or sympathize with the characters, you’ll still get something worthwhile from their story. There is some sexual content, so readers should probably be 18 and older. As long as you meet that requirement, I would recommend Pulled Beneath.

For more reviews, check out http://reviewsinapinch.com/ today! ( )
  ReviewsInAPinch | Oct 4, 2014 |
Pulled Beneath by Marni Mann
Book #1: Bar Harbor Series
ARC from the author
4½/5 stars

Bugger me, does Marni Mann know how to start a book! From the very beginning of Pulled Beneath, I was drawn in and consumed by this read. Within the first chapter alone we have a booty call and change-your-life-forever event for the main character. There is no build up to the awful just a twenty-something, fresh out of college girl coming home in the middle of the night to find her parents have been brutally murdered and the sole survivors are she and her dog, Bella.

Drew Stevens never imagined a life without her parents but when they are brutally murdered in their home, Drew must find a way to pick up the pieces and move forward with her already totally unplanned life. To make matters completely worse, the universe hates Drew and within weeks of her parents murder she discovers she not only had grandparents but they have now both died for real and Drew has inherited the family home in Maine. WTH???? Determined to deal with the house in Maine in record time and return to her “life” in Florida, Drew sets out for Maine and the past she didn’t even know existed.

And because Marni Mann likes to totally and completely screw with her characters in the most heinous of ways, the universe continues to piss on Drew’s parade once she arrives in Maine. Though the family home is lovely and sits right on the beach, it needs a lot of work before Drew can unload it on its future owner. Setting up the remodeling work isn’t at all difficult since her grandparents left her a generous fund to cover the costs. What proves to be difficult are the people Drew encounters during her stay; a stay that is greatly extended by the request of the contractor. Intending to keep her head down until she can leave town, Drew somehow finds herself drawn into the life and drama of small town Maine. Though scared she may uncover yet another family bombshell, Drew begins to mingle with the locals in an effort to learn more about her family. Here’s the skinny:

Brady: the younger half of the remodeling team who seems to be a perfectly nice guy with no ulterior motives. Yep, he’s the only guy on Earth who only wants to be friends with the hot new chick in town  Though the friendship is welcome, Drew begins to notice cracks in the nice guy façade including some weird twitchiness and a stunning temper.

Rae: this young lady is pretty much an unknown quantity until the very end of the read. Suffice it to say, Mann is not done with this character and when we eventually get her story, it is going to be a wild and crazy ride.

Saint: Someone with a name like Saint shouldn’t make a girl think such wicked and evil thoughts.  But, when you look and act like Saint does, it is no damn wonder Drew finds herself so completely drawn to him. Saint and his grandparents live next door to Drew and have known her grandparents for decades. Getting close to Saint in order to learn about her family seems completely logical. Recognizing the pain that Drew is experiencing, Saint desperately tries to live up to his name and not cause any more difficulties for his new neighbor but some attractions just can’t be denied. Oh, and did I forget to mention that he is all kinds of tattooed up? BONUS!!!!

The Past: Small town life seems impossible to Drew until she really begins to dig and to understand what drove her parents from Maine. Not only did her parents leave Maine but, they never returned AND told Drew she had no family. Secrets that big can’t stay hidden forever and if Drew has any shot at a happy and healthy future, she has to face the past her parents fought so desperately to conceal from her.

The Bottom Line: Pulled Beneath is a whole new side of Marni Mann and I, for one am glad to see the emergence of this side of one of my favorite authors. Though still teeming with darkness, secrets, and sex, Pulled Beneath is a far tamer read than Mann’s Shadows Series. Some things however, are exactly the same including a tight and intricately woven plot, complex and well-rounded characters, some lovely naughty bits and, just enough in the way of unanswered questions to have me already checking Amazon for the release date of book two! Overall, a fast and furious read that will appeal to a wide variety of NA+ readers. ( )
  arthistorychick | Apr 6, 2014 |
What would you do if you discovered that your life has been an intricate and tangled web of lies? Do you let the loss, secrets, and betrayals from your family's past pull you beneath the surface into a deep hole, or can you rise to the surface and move forward?

For Drew Stevens, this is what she faced after the brutal murders of her parents in their Sarasota, Florida home left her broken and disconnected ... only to have her world turned upside down even more when a letter from an attorney in Bar Harbor, Maine reveals the news that she had a family in Maine, one that she never knew existed. The estate of her grandparents on her mother's side gifted her a house and oceanfront property. From an intricate web of deceit, everything in Drew's life is different now ... Drew travels to Bar Harbor in search of the answers to her family's past, a search that will lead her on a journey of self-discovery and healing as the truth of her family's past is unraveled one strand at a time.

In Pulled Beneath, the first book in the Bar Harbor Series, author Marni Mann pulls the reader into an intricate and complex tale filled with loss, lies, secrets and betrayals ... a tale of struggle and heartache ... and a journey of self-discovery, healing, and redemption. Written in the first person narrative, the reader follows Drew Stevens on her emotional journey in search of answers to her family's past.

The author does a wonderful job of weaving a tale that is complex and full of angst. The drama and mystery of Drew's family's past takes the reader on an emotional roller coaster ride. With an intriguing cast of characters who are realistic and flawed, to a richly detailed setting that transports the reader from the warmth of Sarasota to the cool oceanfront of Bar Harbor, you can't help but get drawn into the mystique of the family's past as it slowly unfolds. Add in a mysterious neighbor named Saint who has his own painful past, Drew finds herself pulled to him ... two broken people drawn to each other by the intertwined bonds of pain ... but can they help each other heal?

I loved the mixture of the mystery and the slow building romance between Drew and Saint. The intricate complexity of the story had enough drama and intriguing twists and turns that kept me captivated and turning the pages. I loved the chemistry and deep emotional development of their relationship, especially their shared bond of swimming as a means to disconnect and find peace. The author does a great job of letting the reader feel a real connection with the characters as the story unfolds. I enjoyed following Drew's emotional journey, but at times her indecision and self-wallowing had me wanting to smack her upside her head! I loved Drew's best friend Gianna, her love and support for Drew was phenomenal, and I would be remiss if I didn't mention Bella, Drew's Yellow Lab, who was faithfully by her side throughout the journey. I can't wait to read the next two books in the series: Pulled Within and Pulled Apart.

Pulled Beneath is a breathtaking story of one young woman's journey of overcoming tragedy, survivor's guilt, and a painful family past through self-discovery and a healing kindred spirit.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of the book from the author / publisher in exchange for my honest review and participation in a virtual book tour event hosted by Chick Lit Plus Blog Tours.

http://jerseygirlbookreviews.blogspot.com/2014/04/pulled-beneath-by-marni-mann-a... ( )
  JerseyGirlBookReview | Apr 4, 2014 |
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