Paperback: 284 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (Aug. 4 2016)
Synopsis: A STANDALONE NOVEL that does NOT need to be read in conjunction with any other book. From New York Times bestselling author, Penelope Ward, comes a friends-to-lovers story with sexy new characters. After getting dumped, the last thing I needed was to move next door to someone who reminded me of my ex-boyfriend, Elec. Damien was a hotter version of my ex. The neighbor I’d dubbed “Angry Artist” also had two massive dogs that kept me up with their barking. He wanted nothing to do with me. Or so I thought until one night I heard laughter coming through an apparent hole in my bedroom wall. Damien had been listening to all of my phone sessions with my therapist. The sexy artist next door now knew all of my deepest secrets and insecurities. We got to talking. He set me straight with tips to get over my breakup. He became a good friend, but Damien made it clear that he couldn’t be anything more. Problem was, I was falling hard for him anyway. And as much as he pushed me away, I knew he felt the same…because his heartbeat didn’t lie. I thought my heart had been broken by Elec, but it was alive and beating harder than ever for Damien. I just hoped he wouldn’t shatter it for good. Author’s note – Neighbor Dearest is a full-length standalone novel.
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As soon as I heard that Penelope Ward was releasing another book, I marked it in my calendars and counted down the days until it was released. Neighbor Dearest is a stand-alone novel, however it is tied to her previous book Stepbrother Dearest. This newest novel follows Chelsea, the ex-girlfriend of Elec, the male lead and stepbrother in Stepbrother Dearest. It picks up after her an Elec’s split, as the reader follows her through her breakup pain and eventual encounter with her neighbor.
Her neighbor, Damion, is also her building owner. After a rocky start to their relationship, they quickly hit it off and become quick friends – but the attraction is undeniable. Damion distances himself from Chelsea for reasons she can’t understand, but soon does.
While I really enjoyed learning more about Chelsea’s character, I missed the original characters, Greta and Elec, from Stepbrother Dearest. There was something more enticing about the forbidden-ness of their relationship, which Damion and Chelsea’s relationship lacks. The “can’t put this book down” factor was slightly lower in this book and the story line a little more predictable.
This is not to say that this book wasn’t enjoyable. I still really liked the characters and their story line, however, I found that this book had a more serious tone to it than its predecessor. I would still recommend this book to people – especially those who read Stepbrother Dearest.