by Susan Mallery

June 2009
ISBN: 978-0-373-77372-5
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Mass Market Paperback

Skye Titan, the middle Titan daughter, leads a full life, even if it is not necessarily a totally happy life. She loves her soon to be eight-year-old daughter, Erin, and she is proud of the accomplishments of her foundation which helps feed hungry children. But even after all the years of living under her father’s thumb, she still has not found a way to be totally her own woman.

When Skye’s past collides with her present, her world is shaken. Mitch Cassidy, Skye’s one time true love, is back in Texas, only he has changed dramatically. Coming back from Afghanistan with part of his leg missing, Mitch is sunk deep in anger, depression, and pain. And a big part of him blames Skye for his pain because if she had not broken up with him and married the man her father insisted she marry, he would never have left. When Mitch discovers that Skye has a daughter, his anger is intensified. What has Skye been hiding from him?

As Mitch and Skye navigate the murky waters of their relationship, truths will emerge that will change them both, and force them to grow stronger. But will their love survive?

Susan Mallery can create likable characters that seem real and genuine. Unfortunately, so far her Titan series has been a bit of a disappointment for this reader. Skye, while she seems willing to stand up to Mitch about her decisions, caves again and again when it comes to her father. She takes his verbal abuse and cries about it but does not try to change the cycle. It was very difficult to see her as a strong female character.

I did enjoy the re-emerging love story between Skye and Mitch. It was not easy for them but given their past, I would not have expected it to be. I also particularly enjoyed Mitch’s struggle and eventual acceptance of the changes in his life. Perhaps it went a bit too smoothly, and even too quickly, but I think Susan Mallery convincingly captured the struggles a wounded soldier returning to civilian life faces. I am also glad she put a twist on the pregnancy portion of Skye’s past.

Lip Service is far from perfect and it is not Susan Mallery’s best. But I am becoming more and more intrigued by the jerk that is Garth and that will keep me reading even as the Titan sisters seem to be less than interesting characters.

Reviewed in May 2009 by Sarah.

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