Mischief After Midnight; Lost Harbor #9
(An interconnected standalone within a series)
Publication Date: June 1, 2021
Genre/Tropes: Small Town/Brother’s Best Friend/Boss-Employee/Contemporary Romance
Author: Jennifer Bernard
Fall in love with Alaska while falling in love with Toni and Bash. I was giggling and deeply sighing while rapidly flipping pages over this adorable couple so I could watch them fall in love even faster.
I love falling in love with the town over and over again, but even more with each couple that finds their couple match up. Toni and Bash are absolutely perfect and so is their story!
There is almost nothing better than when a childhood crush finally gets fulfilled. For me, those are one of my favorite and fully satisfying romance stories to read. Toni had a huge crush on her brother’s best friend, Bash Rivers, from the moment she knew what a teenage crush was. Unfortunately, in the ultimate definition of the word, Bash crushed her teenage heart when he left town years ago and he ultimately took her heart with him, unbeknowingly. Toni’s kept every relationship superficial up to that point, but when Bash comes back to town as much as she’d like to reexamine those old feelings…well…Bash is now her boss, perhaps it’s time to take a look at her life and the next phase of where she wants to go. It might be time to unfriendzone some people and take a long hard look at what she wants.
Bash owes a lot to Sally, the owner of the Olde Salt Saloon, along with the Del Rey family. When Sally decides to retire Bash can’t pass up her offer, but more than that he wants to visit his best friend, Tristan, who recently had an accident and even see Tristan’s tagalong sister, Toni. It’s been a few years since he’s actually seen Toni and once he does he likes what he sees, but things are complicated, even with the intense chemistry he feels brewing between them. She technically works for him now, she’s also the sister of his best friend who is still recovering from a serious accident and lastly, but no more important, Bash doesn’t know if he’s actually going to stay in Lost Harbor for good. Ignoring all his feelings and emotions is best, until he no longer can.
Some of my favorite parts of this book are when either Toni or Bash are in the Saloon. The patrons are hilarious, especially when Bash is first learning. They give him grief, in the best way that a small town knows how. Toni of course knows everyone, and even though Bash should since he grew up there, it’s been over a decade since he left and new people come and old people go. That saying that as much as things stay the same, things also change. Toni and Bash are perfect together for that very reason, especially in a local hangout.
I get giddy anytime someone new pops up wondering whose story could potentially be next. I seriously could never get tired of returning to Lost Harbor. Fan for life here.
A sizzling “brother’s best friend” standalone in the Lost Harbor, Alaska series
Bartender Toni Del Rey is the quick-witted queen of the Olde Salt Saloon, famous for trading barbs with grizzled fishermen and putting rowdy customers in their place. Independent and fearless, she’s only ever lost her cool over one man—the childhood crush who got away. These days she sticks to the F’s: friends, fun, and fu…well, you know. But now Bash is back, and more crush-worthy than ever. Worst of all, he just bought the Olde Salt, which makes him her brand-new boss.
Bash left Lost Harbor long ago to become a professional fighter—and to forget his nightmarish childhood. He’s only back to return a favor, but when he sets eyes on Toni, he may never want to leave again. His best friend’s little sister has gone from tomboy to tempting, from mischievous to maddening—a fact he can’t ignore while they work side by side at the Olde Salt. But between Toni’s fierce independence, his reputation as “Bad News” Bash, and a few deep dark secrets, they’re hardly suited to anything lasting.
Then again, you never know what a little mischief after midnight will lead to…