stay with me


Loved the first book in the series!




At 21, Calla hasn’t done a lot of things. She’s never been kissed, never seen the ocean, never gone to an amusement park. But growing up, she witnessed some things no child ever should.   She still carries the physical and emotional scars of living with a strung-out mother, Mona—secrets she keeps from everyone, including her close circle of college friends.

But the safe cocoon Calla has carefully built is shattered when she discovers her mom has stolen her college money and run up a huge credit card debt in her name. Now, Calla has to go back to the small town she thought shed left behind and clean up her mom’s mess again. Of course, when she arrives at her mother’s bar, Mona is nowhere to be found. Instead, six feet of hotness named Jackson James is pouring drinks and keeping the place humming.

Sexy and intense, Jax is in Calla’s business from they moment they meet, giving her a job and helping her search for Mona. And the way he looks at her makes it clear he wants to get horizontal . . . and maybe something more. Before Calla can let him get close, though, she’s got to deal with the pain of the past—and some very bad guys out to mess her up if she doesn’t give them her mom.

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Stay With Me is part of J. Lynn’s series about college students finding love and overcoming tragedies. I really enjoyed the first few books in the series, and was eager to jump into this one. Stay With Me is the story of Calla, whom we meet in Be With Me and is Teresa’s friend. Calla has a very dark and secret past that she completely shelters her college friends from. In reality, her friends do not know anything about the real Calla or what she has gone through in her life, and that is fine by her. She has no connection to her former life and no desire to revisit it. When her tuition check bounces, she discovers her mother has cleaned out her back account and she heads back to her hometown to confront her mother and get back her money. That is where she meets Jax.

Oh Jackson James! He is quite the hero in this story. A former Marine, who saw more than his fair share while serving overseas, Jax has come home and is working at the local bar, Mona’s, the same bar Calla’s family owns.

Jax and Calla have an instant attraction, but Calla has quite possibly the worst self-esteem I have ever seen in a female character. In fact, I found her complete lack of confidence disruptive to the story line. Does she have scars? Yes. Does she think people are judging her based on those scars? Yes. After some time, it got to be too much for me. This good looking, protective man wants to spend time with you. He has told you in multiple ways that he wants to be with you… ACCEPT IT!

It’s a good thing that Jax has a protective streak in him, because Calla is going to need protecting. Her past is worse than more people could imagine. While she has distanced herself from it, her reprieve is over. Calla is in trouble and coming home might have been the best and worst decisions she could have made. There are a lot of really fun side characters in this one, Roxy, Reece, Uncle Clyde and Katie, and they add to the storyline and I could see a few of them getting their own story (Roxy and Reece, please!)

While I didn’t enjoy Stay With Me as much as Wait For You or Be With Me, it was a good story all the same.  I definitely enjoyed the suspenseful component of the story. J. Lynn is definitely a go-to author for me!

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