Oh I loved loved loved this book! Keri is an aspiring editor who finds out her job is on the line unless she can get an interview with her high school sweetheart, a famous and somewhat media shy author. Keri is under no illusions that Joe will welcome her back with open arms, but forces herself to try anyway. She heads home, and is propositioned by Joe: spend two weeks with him family camping, and he will answer a question for every day she lasts.
So they set out for a fourteen day camping trip complete with daily ATV rides, angry and bitten ex-best friends, cramped showers, and lots of relationship woes. After just one day together, Keri and Joe know that the intense chemistry they shared in high school never fizzled out, and are hesitant to start any kind of relationship back up.
However Keri and Joe find themselves bonding in their shared cabin over the love they have for his niece and nephews, the struggles his brother and twin sister go through with their spouses, a crazy volleyball tournament of doom, and years of history that were never forgotten.
This book was fabulous, and I love the way Stacey touched on so much more than just the budding relationship between Joe and Keri. The family dynamics at the Kowalski campground blew me away, and brought reminders of many of the family trips I’ve taken in the past as a kid. The differences in how Joe and his siblings deal with their relationships speak volumes to what real life marriage and love is all about. I enjoyed watching Terry have to think about her marriage, and deal with the changes that needed to happen in order to make it work. I loved that Mike and Lisa both had insecurities, even after being married for over a decade.
I also loved how Keri and Terry were forced to deal with their broken friendship, and both were forced to take some ownership of where it went wrong. Knowing just how hard girls can be to deal with in high school; it was nice to see the two of them, even as adults try mean and cruel things to hurt the other before finally patching things up.
The slow seduction Joe weaves for Keri was Prince Charming meets Grizzly Adams perfect. The way he used their past to his advantage and lured her back into a comfortable way of being with him had me drooling for a little romance kick of my own. This light hearted romance is a great rainy day read!
All in all, I give Exclusively Yours 4.5 out of 5 ATV rides!