Saturday, June 12, 2021

Blog Tour: Review & Excerpt of Building a Surprise Family by Anna J. Stewart


Author: Anna J. Stewart 
Publisher: Harlequin Heartwarming
Publication Date: July 27, 2021
An instant familyIs life-changing!

Pregnant construction supervisor Jo Bertoletti doesn’t need anyone’s help…or another heartbreak. So she’s putting handsome, kindhearted firefighter Ozzy Lakeman firmly into the friend zone. After all, she’s just passing through Butterfly Harbor, and her life is too complicated for a summer romance. But Ozzy feels an immediate connection. Can he convince the woman of his dreams to take a chance on building a forever family with him?
My thoughts:

Building a Surprise Family is the 10th book in the Butterfly Harbor series.  I haven't read any of the other books and it mostly held up as a stand alone.  There are a lot of side characters that have back stories.  Because Jo is new to town, we do get backstory for the other characters through conversations. I found this kind of helpful, yet it did slow down the story for me. I would have rather just had more of Jo and Ozzy together.  

I loved Ozzy. He has worked hard to improve himself both physically nd professionally.  I loved how he fell so quickly for Jo and did what he could to protect her.  He worked hard to show her she didn't need to be alone any more  My biggest complaint was that we are reminded of his weight loss over and over.  That did get a bit old after a while.  However, his insecurities came across as real.  Jo also brings a lot of baggage to the relationship.  I was rooting for her to realize she could find a home in Butterfly Harbor.  

The book ends with a bit of a cliffhanger and no real resolution to who was trying to sabatoge the construction site.  I'll have to keep my eye out for the next book to read what I assume is Gil's story. I'm hoping the mystery will be resolved then.   I do recommend this one.  It was a sweet and clean romance and a nice way to get me out of a slight reading slump.

Here is a sneak peek.  The book comes out in July!

The truck’s engine suddenly went silent. Ozzy walked over to greet the driver. “That is a thing of beauty,” he said as the door opened and the driver dropped to the ground in front of him.
Every thought he had disappeared straight out of his head.
Tall, curvy and with sun-streaked blond hair knotted into a messy pile on top of her head, Butterfly Harbor’s latest arrival faced Ozzy with a wide, welcoming smile on her round face. Beneath the barely-there sunlight of the May morning, her skin seemed to glisten in the chilly air. She had light brown eyes, almost amber with flecks of gold that sparkled when she smiled. She wore snug jeans that accentuated everything a man like him enjoyed, sneakers that looked as if they’d been worn into the ground and a snug short-sleeved turquoise T-shirt that displayed a surprisingly round stomach.
The new foreman was a woman?
pregnant forewoman?
“Didn’t realize there’d be a welcoming committee.” The woman closed the truck door and stepped up to him. “I know I wasn’t expected until next week, but I wanted to get a jump on settling in. I’m Jo Bertoletti. You are not Mayor Hamilton.” She gestured to Ozzy’s T-shirt with the BHFD logo on the front peeking out of his jacket.
“Ah, no, ma’am.” Ozzy shook her offered hand. Her skin felt rough and calloused, proving she was someone who was used to getting her hands dirty. Beneath that observation, a dull buzz shifted through his system. “I’m Ozzy Lakeman. I was in the diner when you drove down Monarch Lane. Just thought I’d come up and be the first to see what was happening here.” His own smile widened as something oddly definitive dinged. “I guess that makes me the welcoming committee.”
“I appreciate that, Ozzy Lakeman of the BHFD.” She beamed at him before her expression shifted into a knowing one. “Judging by the look on your face, I’m betting you weren’t expecting someone…like me.”
“I…uh.” There had to be a way to answer that without sounding like a complete sexist or jerk. “Like you?”
Jo snickered. “Don’t worry, Ozzy. Not the first time I’ve seen that reaction when I arrive on a site. And it’s not because of the little bun I’m baking in here. Bun in the oven. That’s such a weird phrase. Although come to think about it, I have spent my fair share of time waiting for my sourdough starter to develop.”
Ozzy could only nod. His ears were buzzing and his heart did an odd little skip and jolted in a manner he’d never felt anytime he’d swiped right.

About the Author 

USA Today and national bestselling author Anna J Stewart can't remember a time she didn't have a book in her hands or a story in her head. Early obsessions with Star Wars, Star Trek, and Wonder Woman set her on the path to creating sweet to sexy pulse-pounding romances for her independent heroines. Anna lives in Northern California where she deals with a serious Supernatural addiction and an overly affectionate cat named Snickers.
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