The Heart Teaches Best

M.J. Schiller
The Heart Teaches Best
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Kissmet Publishing
Release Date
February 2014
Book 2 of Real Romance Collection
Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense/Mystery

*This book is part of a COLLECTION not a series, different characters, different settings. They all center around people with "real" jobs, (teachers, firemen, construction workers, roadies...) unlike my other collections which feature rock stars and royalty. They can be read in any order.) *

He's the cop...

Cooper Sullivan is the cop in charge of investigating a murder outside of a Los Angeles night club. The famous romance author, Sydney Essex, has been found strangled in the parking lot. When the young officer returns to the scene of the crime the night after the murder, he gets involved in a fight in order to protect a woman, who he realizes afterward, is the victim's sister. Soon he finds himself torn by his attraction to the irresistible blond teacher, and his need to maintain a professional distance.

She's the teacher...

Laney Essex is distraught over her sister's death, so the high school English teacher returns to the bar where the crime occurred to find answers. To her dismay, she is only left with more questions, many centered on her developing relationship with Cooper Sullivan. Is the pull she's feeling towards him reciprocated, or is the handsome detective only showing her professional courtesy, or, perhaps, even pity?

...but he's the one teaching her lessons of the heart.

When Laney receives a threatening phone call from Sydney's murderer, it quickly becomes evident that the man who killed her sister is after her, too. Can Cooper figure out who the killer is before it's too late? And if he does solve the case, will it just be another file stamped "CLOSED" in red and locked away in a drawer, or will the sparks that have been flying between the two finally ignite?

Book Review by Jennifer Smaldone Bosco (reviewer)
Nov 10, 2014   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
211 people found the following review helpful
Endearing and suspenseful.

Cooper Sullivan is the cop investigating the murder of Sydney Essex. Sydney was a famous romance author who was strangled in the parking lot of an L.A. night club. When Cooper goes undercover one night at the club to try and get information on the killer, he has a run in with a club goer who is assaulting a woman. Cooper is immediately drawn to the blonde beauty and then realize she is Laney Essex, the sister of the victim in his case. Can he help find the killer and keep his hands to himself around Laney or will he give in to the pull of desire for this woman, something like he has never felt before?

Laney led a fairly quiet life as a high school English teacher. Though she came from money, she was no poor little rich girl. She loves her sister Sydney more than anything. So when she is murdered, leaving Laney alone in the world to deal with their domineering mother, she is devastated. And desperate to find out who could have killed her sister, a girl who was so vibrant and full of life.

A chance encounter puts Laney in the sights of Officer Cooper Sullivan, the young cop investigating her sister's murder. She is instantly attracted to him, but she knows his concern and kindness is all part of the job. He couldn't possibly want her. As they work together to figure out who the killer is, Laney finds herself falling for the handsome officer. But she's sure when the case is over, they will go their separate ways, leaving Laney heartbroken once again.

The story of two people who meet through tragedy, but find a way into each other's hearts.

This is my second book by M.J. Schiller and I am definitely a fan. The book is part of a collection, but it can be read as standalone. Each book is about different characters but along the same story lines. Real people with real jobs, real lives and real problems we can all relate to. With a bit of suspense thrown in.

I really liked Cooper right from the start. He is handsome, loyal and just an all-around sweetheart. His instant attempts to protect Laney really endeared me to him. Laney was a great character considering all the trauma she goes through, and she still manages to have her moments of strength that get her through the tough times. It helps to have a big strapping cop shoulder to lean on. It is one of those books that has the main character fall in love pretty fast. But I didn't mind it because the author does a great job making us care about the characters and their developing feelings.

Much of the story is extremely relatable, sister bonds, friendship bonds and family ties. I loved the camaraderie between Cooper and his friend Aidan. His relationship with his very Irish American family was very pleasurable to read.

Behind all the falling in love and family togetherness is a really good suspense story. The danger that Cooper and Laney face kept me on the edge of my seat. The author did a fantastic job getting me to feel like I was in the story, whether it was running from the killer or hanging out with the characters at a fun family dinner.

I definitely recommend this endearing, suspenseful romance to anyone who likes a good love story with a little drama on the side. I am without doubt getting the first book in this collection.
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