Title: RARE AND PRECIOUS THINGS
(The Blackstone Affair Book 4)
Author: RAINE MILLER
Hosted by: The Book Avenue
The fourth part in the New York Times bestselling series, The Blackstone Affair: A bright beginning for two damaged souls fighting for their hard-won love, and the promise of a new hope to secure their happily ever after.
Fresh from an idyllic honeymoon along the Italian coast, the Blackstones prepare for the birth of their precious baby and the challenges of settling into a new home. But things get complicated when specters from the past reappear to threaten the very foundation of their relationship. Ethan and Brynne will have to fight harder than ever for each other. Rare and Precious Things is the story of two people who both need the other in order to be complete, but learn just how "rare" their brand of love is when they have to risk everything in order to hold onto it.
***5 Rare and Precious Stars!!!***
After waiting for months for the continuation, and sadly, the conclusion of Ethan and Brynne's story, Rare and Precious Things delivered a very touching, emotional, and happy wrap-up of the life of the Blackstones, and even their family and friends. And I’ve read this during my beach vacation!
Rare and Precious Things picks up right after Eyes Wide Open, the newly weds are off to their wedding night and honeymoon. Cue, the very hot sex scenes of Mr. and Mrs. Ethan Blackstone. Who would expect less?
Maybe I just waited long enough to read this or that I have in mind that this is the end (at least for now) for one of my favorite book couple, that while I was reading, I can't help the feeling of Raine Miller already tying up the loose ends, resolving issues and problems of both Ethan and Brynne, and of course, the anticipation for little baby Blackstone's arrival.
Ethan Blackstone is still the same hot, alpha, protective man that we know who is obviously in so deep with his American girl.
In Rare and Precious Things, Ethan is now a husband and soon-to-be Dad who would give and do anything to protect and make sure his wife and child would always be safe. He’s even more hot in that way when men are protective of their woman but still doing it in an affectionate and loving (and okay, with a lot of “shagging” too) way. He’s willing to do anything, including facing his past and seeking help, just to be able to move forward.
Brynne Bennett Blackstone, the lucky lady who managed to effortlessly steal Ethan’s heart, who is so patient and understanding with his struggles, who loves him unconditionally, who is strong, brave, and speaks her mind. I’ve always admired Brynne and as Mrs. Blackstone, I admired her even more. She stood beside her husband, talks to him about what’s on her mind and how she’s feeling, there is no unnecessary drama from her, she’s willing to do anything, including facing her past, just to be able to move forward.
We also get to see Ethan and Brynne’s friends and family here and they were all as lovely and as supportive as they’ve always been.
Fair warning though, if you are a book crier, prepare yourself for an emotional ride. I’ve cried several times in different parts of the book, and it’s not just because it’s "the end" but because of all the emotions going on with Ethan and Brynne as newly weds facing their pasts.
Those parts and Brynne missing her dad got to me. Because hello, who sunbathes and cries? Yes, me.
I love, love, love how Raine Miller resolved the Oakley issue from the past and present, how she interjected Thomas Bennett into the story, also how we are made to understand what really happened to Ethan in the war and what the cause of his nightmares are. Rare and Precious Things is as much as an answer to all our questions from Naked to All In to Eyes Wide Open as it is a conclusion to our beloved Blackstones.
The ending was AMAZING!!! We get to see baby Blackstone and a glimpse of their family life 3 months after Brynne gave birth. Ethan was doting father, I love it!
Stars: 5 Purple-Raine stars!
Recommended to: Everyone who’s read the first 3 books in the series and want to read the Blackstones after the wedding. Loves strong hero and heroine, hot, steamy sex and a cute baby.
POV: First person. Dual POV. (I love dual povs!)
Series: Yes. Last book of the series.
Cliffhanger: No. But I’m hopeful for a novella.
ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review
~ Review by Mara
“BELLA, you look magnificent, the glow in your cheeks, everything, is utter perfection.” Marco, kissed me on both cheeks as was custom, then held me at arm’s length for a thorough perusal. “Lovely dress. I can see that marriage and motherhood is agreeing with you, darling.”
I felt Ethan’s hand at my back soften and relax at Marco’s friendly, but appropriate greeting. Maybe he’d get over his paranoia that Marco was trying to bag me every time he photographed me. Ethan just didn’t understand that Marco wasn’t like that at all. He was a professional photographer doing a job with me, and nothing more. Well, nothing more than a working, platonic friendship. He’d always been kind to me, and I liked working with Marco Carvaletti very much. I hoped Ethan could see it here tonight as we all interacted.
“It is, Marco, and I don’t think I could be any happier.” I leaned into Ethan, nudging him to speak up.
“Mr. Carvaletti, thank you for the invitation. We’ve been looking forward to this all day.” Ethan lied smoothly, offering his hand, playing the social gentleman to perfection, which he was well skilled at. I guess he did it out of love for me. I knew he didn’t want to be here anymore than he wanted me modeling. I mouthed a thank you only visible to him. He kissed me on the cheek and whispered in my ear, “Don’t forget about Simba, baby.” Then he wandered off to get drinks for us.
Marco took me on a tour of his elegantly restored 17th century villa as I marveled at all of the art. He had a whole room set up as a gallery of his photographs. There were a couple of me in there. One where I sat in a formal chair with one knee up, strategically placed, my expression far away and pensive. The other pose was a side view recreation of a vintage Ziegfeld Follies girl with a feather boa and some satin pumps. It was one of the first portraits I posed for and I really thought it was nicely choreographed.
“It is a beautiful piece, bella. I knew when we did that series you had the gift.” Marco stood behind me admiring the image he had created with me as the subject.
“I was so nervous posing, but you made me laugh when you told me to imagine Iggy Pop in a dress.” I shrugged. “That broke the ice and I was fine after that.”
“That one works for me every time, bella.”
“Well, Iggy Pop in a dress is funny, so good job, Marco.” We laughed together and made our way back to the main gathering.
Where was Ethan with my drink? I scanned the room for sight of him, but didn’t see his tall form standing out among the crowd anywhere. And I needed water.
“He is talking to Carolina and Rogelio, my friends,” Marco said, correctly reading my quest to find Ethan. “I believe they have discovered they are acquainted already.”
Really? Ethan knew people at this party? I suppose it wasn’t as bad as he’d predicted it would be after all. Couldn’t wait to bust him about his whining to come here.
“Oh, well that’s great. I look forward to meeting them. But first, I need to get some water. I’m really thirsty after spending a long time swimming in the ocean today. Must be all the salt.”
“Come with me, bella, I will take care of you.”
Raine Miller has been reading romance novels since she picked up that first Barbara Cartland book at the tender age of thirteen. And it's a safe bet she'll never stop, because now she writes them too! Granted Raine's stories are edgy enough to turn Ms. Cartland in her grave, but to her way of thinking, a hot, sexy hero never goes out of fashion. A part-time teacher and writer of sexy romance stories every other chance she gets pretty much fills her days. She has a handsome prince of a husband, and two brilliant sons to pull her back into the real world if the writing takes her too far away. Her sons know she likes to write stories, but gratefully have never asked to read any, thank God! Raine loves to hear from readers and to chat about the characters in her books.
OTHER BOOKS IN THE SERIES
NAKED (BOOK 1)
ALL IN (BOOK 2)
EYES WIDE OPEN (BOOK 3)
CHERRY GIRL (BOOK 3.5)
Blackstone Affair spin-off, yet can be a standalone
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