by Megan Squires
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Determined to move forward, Maggie embarks on her first year of college, hoping to finally put her past behind her, exactly where it belongs. But that’s hard to do when the present is just as difficult. And even harder when someone like Ran, the gorgeous paramedic that keeps crossing Maggie’s path, challenges her to face things head on, rather than bury them like she always does. Ran hasn’t had a perfect life either. But there’s something different about him, and something different about the way he makes Maggie feel. Maybe meeting Ran is life’s little gift for Maggie—a sort of consolation prize for enduring everything she's had to go through. But things don’t come easy for Maggie. Why should love be the exception? And just when everything starts to settle, it’s all turned on its head once again. If there is one thing Ran has taught Maggie, it’s that you can’t sit on the sidelines of your own existence. When life takes something that’s yours, you have every right to demand it back. Only for Maggie, that is easier said than done.
Going into Demanding Ransom I expected the book to be filled with romantic angst based on the synopsis but Megan Squires delivered a twist I didn’t see coming and a ride I thoroughly enjoyed. This is a wonderful romance, filled with growth, forgiveness and taking chances. Three-word review: memorable, heartwarming, tender.
Maggie Carson hasn’t had the perfect text-book life and in her first year of college, she hopes to move forward. Enter Ran, a drop dead gorgeous paramedic who turns Maggie’s world upside down and teaches her that sometimes you need to face the past to move forward. The tale that unfolded grabbed me from the first page and held me captive.
Things haven’t come easy for Maggie and she carries a pretty big chip on her shoulder. She isn’t always an easy character to embrace but as Squires peels back her layers and reveals things you begin to understand her. She is more courageous than she knows and her love of family, determination, and willingness make her believable. From the start, Ran is smexy, witty and almost too good to be true. Squires gave him depth and like Maggie peeled back his layers showing how his vulnerability and personal growth. The romance built slowly, and I loved the snarky banter these two shared. I was rooting for them and hoping for a happy ending. Cora, Maggie’s boy crazy, high on life roommate was a hoot and Tate a fellow paramedic was a solid friend. While they weren’t as fleshed out, they were good friends and interesting enough, that I would enjoy reading their stories. The family is present, and I loved some and loathed others.
Squires’ world immediately sucks you in and is action packed from the beginning. From the way Maggie and Ran met, to their slow building romance and personal growth I was captivated. At times Maggie annoyed me, as she tried to hold up this carefully constructed wall placed around her heart. She is fully functional and uses snark and avoidance when things get too real, but Ran sees right through her and his patience and acceptance were wonderful, making him completely swoon-worthy. The characters were completely fleshed out allowing me to form connections that enhanced my reading experience. The romance builds slowly, is low on angst and develops out of trust making it feel genuine. This was relatively clean for NA but we do get some seriously hot kissing scenes. Just when everything is feeling wonderful and I am giddy, Squires throws in a twist I couldn’t even imagine. I was flabbergasted and turned back the pages trying to somehow undo or change what I had just read. *loved it* The event floored me and kept me up reading to see how it would all unfold. The tale focuses on some emotional issues such as forgiveness, acceptance, and trust. The flow and easy writing style made this an easy read allowing me to slip away from reality.
Demanding Ransom was a wonderful love story and while labeled New Adult, there is nothing to keep young adults from enjoying it. I look forward to trying more of Megan Squires’ books.
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