Ah, this series. I came across the Romancing Manhattan series by Kristen Proby while I was looking for romances with adult characters (because that’s my jam lately) while being a breezy read. This was one of the top series recommended. This is a series about three brothers with a law firm in Manhattan and their interconnected love stories. And what can I say? It delivered just what it promised: a good dose of romance and a good time.
All the Way (Romancing Manhattan, #1)
Finn Cavanaugh is known for being a force to be reckoned with in the courtroom. He owns a successful law firm with his brother and brother-in-law in Manhattan. On the rare occasion that he has down time, he spends it at his home in Martha’s Vineyard. But when Finn’s troubled niece goes to stay with him for the summer in Martha’s Vineyard, he’s reluctant to take time off from work. That is, until he meets his beautiful new neighbor, London.
London Watson is a Tony Award winning actress on Broadway. When tragedy strikes her family, leaving her alone and injured, she flees Manhattan for Martha’s Vineyard. Hoping she can figure out how to pick up the pieces of her life, London is convinced that she’ll never be able to return to the stage. But when she meets the charming young girl next door and her sexy uncle, they soon lure London out of her shell as she finally begins to heal from the wounds of her past.
But when London feels confident enough to return to the spotlight, she’s dealt another devastating blow. Will the newfound love between London and Finn be enough to conquer all? Or will it be over before it has a chance to grow…? (via Goodreads)
I miss this kind of romance! All the Way has the all-too-familiar trope of accidental meeting after the first encounter, then falling in love in a remote place where they could just forget their worries away. The beach house setting kind of reminded me a bit of Emily Henry’s Beach Read. It was saucy, yeah, but I didn’t feel the chemistry between the MCs that much. It was a bit insta-love-y for my liking and everything just went a little too fast. Finn was sooo controlling that I got annoyed a lot of times especially with his arguments with London towards the very end (I almost wanted to pull my hair off because I was so frustrated!). London confused me as a character and I didn’t feel the charm. There were also a lot of high-calorie-food shaming in this book and I don’t tolerate that in my household. However, this introduced me to a lot characters that will be central to the plot of the next couple of books. The book sets up the story for the next couple of books but it honestly felt a little detached compared to the two. This was an enjoyable read, though, if just for the drama. I finished this hoping that the next book was significantly better.
All it Takes (Romancing Manhattan, #2)
Quinn Cavanaugh doesn’t do anything halfway. He drives fast, works hard, and plays even harder. And the word “commitment” doesn’t exist in his dictionary. He has no plans of settling down with one woman for he needs to be free to move on to the next big thing—whatever or whoever that may be. Each party knows the score going into it, and it’s all been working out fine. That is, until a sexy new colleague enters the scene.
Sienna Hendricks doesn’t give much thought to Quinn and the revolving door leading to his bedroom. She’s way too picky about who she shares her time or her body with and screwing around with a colleague isn’t part of her plan either. Quinn doesn’t intimidate her. And unlike most other members of her sex, she doesn’t melt into a puddle at his feet whenever he’s near. Most importantly, she has no issues telling him no.
But for a man who has the world at his feet, Quinn isn’t accustomed to being rejected. And he’s not about to let that change—no matter how persistent Sienna is. To his surprise, Sienna is everything he thought he’d never find. Pursuing her, and convincing her he’s changed, is going to be the biggest challenge of his life. One he’s completely up for…. (via Goodreads)
If there is a book that can absolutely stand on it’s own in this series, it would be All it Takes. I absolutely loved this one. This story has much more interesting characters and a more enjoyable storyline. The chemistry of Quinn and Sienna here is palpable – and watching them fall for each other felt natural. I also loved how both of them are unapologetic for their independence and success – which really set them apart from the couples of this series. This book and this ship is my favorite from this series! Most of the story was centered in the law practice, giving us a glimpse of the Cavanaugh-Shaw firm. It also has family as a central theme (aside from the romance) which I appreciate. This book cemented Romancing Manhattan as a comfort read, for me. (All it Takes is also the book that sent me in a spiral of legal romances, which I will be talking about in a separate post.)
After All (Romancing Manhattan, #3)
When Carter Shaw’s wife died five years ago, he was left to pick up the pieces not only of his own broken heart but also that of his devastated eight-year-old daughter, Gabby—leaving him with no time for anything else, let alone dating. But recently, Carter has noticed women again and soon even begins dating. No one has stuck around for long, mostly thanks to one very angry Gabby.
Nora Hayes has worked as Carter’s assistant for years. Recently divorced herself, Nora spends many hours at the office and helping Carter with his daughter whom she adores. Despite loving her job and being wrapped up in the Shaw family, Nora’s never given her handsome, kind workaholic boss a second thought, especially in the romance department.
But then the snowstorm of the century hits, and Nora finds herself stranded at work with Carter overnight. And suddenly, she sees Carter in a whole new, sexy light. The sadness that’s lived in his eyes for so long has now been replaced with pure, unadulterated lust—and Nora isn’t quite sure what to do about it. For after the pain of her divorce, she never thought she would give love a second chance.
Carter and Nora have always believed in never combining business with pleasure. But how can they possibly deny the all-consuming chemistry between them…? (via Goodreads)
What a nice conclusion to a beloved series! I don’t read a lot books which discusses dating as a widower (with a kid) and/or as a divorcee but After All did just that in a SINGLE story – which was such a breath of fresh air. There were a couple of complications in terms of handling Gabby’s attitude towards the her father’s new relationship, gaining trust, and navigating all the baggage that both Carter and Nora have. I love the P.S. I love you-ish letter of Carter’s wife to both Gabby and Carter. One touch that also made this whole story work was the fact that Nora and Carter have known each other a long time, so there is an established friendship and a healthy amount of trust that is not easily gained otherwise. There’s so much drama in this last installment. Normally, I don’t like this but it was entertaining as hell. I probably shouldn’t have laughed as much as I did when I was reading this but there are times when it became too ridiculous that all you can do is laugh. It made me happy, though, and it was heartwarming in all these unexpected places. I loved how the three books came together here. The regular cameos of the ships from the first 2 books were fun and, honestly, is one of the things that really made this series. Sienna x Quinn (from All it Takes) is still my favorite ship in this series but Carter x Nora is also a charming pair. And that Epilogue (in Maggie’s POV)? It is such a lovely touch and it tied the whole thing with a neat little bow.
I am totally recommending this series if you want some easy romantic and spicy reads, with fun (adult, talk 30+) characters and strong family themes. 💛