Published December 7th 2012 by Entangled Publishing (Bliss)
About the book
Kendall Grisbaum is finally taking charge of her life—pouring her heart into opening a new bakery business and even allowing her best friend Georgie to play matchmaker for her. Trouble is, the one guy she secretly wants is Georgie’s older brother, Brad, who is decidedly off limits.
Brad can’t seem to get his little sister’s best friend out of his mind. He and Kendall used to be close friends, too, and as a local policeman, Brad can’t help but play protector, looking out for Kendall. When he offers to help her renovate her new bakery space on the side, their friendship—and their attraction—flares back to life.
Amid the temptation of doughnut muffins and blueberry cobbler, a new temptation draws them both closer. Can they take a chance on love when it means risking their friendship, even when not doing so risks everything?
You win some. You lose some. That includes people. You take a chance and let people into your life. Some stay and some go, but they all bring experiences and emotions that make up who you are, who you’ll grow to be. ~Brad
Kissing Kendall is very sweet and romantically tame story about two friends that take a chance at romance. This book was a perfect quick fix about love, loss and friendship.
Kendall Grisbaum happens to be going through a tough time in life. She lost her parents at a young age, as well as her husband who was in a firefighting accident. She’s not up for taking chances because she’s felt first-hand the disappointment and hurt of having people she loves exit her life. When her long time friend Brad starts to come around more often as he helps her get her new bakery ready for its grand-opening, she struggles with the feelings she has for him.
It’s been two years since Kendall lost Jake in a tragic accident, but Brad can’t seem to let go of the guilt he’s felt for harboring feelings for his friend’s wife. However, Kendall and Brad have known each other since they were kids, and when he finally takes a chance to expose his true feelings, he’s not quite prepared for the reaction he gets from Kendall.
There wasn’t really any point in this story that I felt remorse for Kendall’s loss. I don’t mean to sound like a heartless person, but it was clear that she was ready to move on and she simply needed to get over her fear of losing someone she loves. I appreciated how Shirk didn’t focus on the tragedy, but rather the aftermath of moving on. I feel Brad’s profession as a police officer challenged Kendall in several ways because as much as she wanted to “play it safe” with her next relationship, it was quite clear you can’t help who you fall for. I have a soft spot for service men and women, so I enjoyed Brad’s character immensely. He was the perfect addition to this cast of characters and it also helps that he was quite swoon-worthy. ~blushes~
I loved the added mix of the bakery and sweet treats. I might even try the recipe at the end of the story, but overall, it was fun to witness these two overcome their skittishness for each other and allow their feelings to just grow all the while enjoying a batch of muffins. :)
This story is light on the romance, but still full of heart. As with the other novel I read by Jennifer Shirk, I appreciate the awkward moments she infuses into her story because it makes them feel real. Kissing Kendall is a fun contemporary romance and once again Shirk does not disappoint.