Swimming Naked Discussion Thread

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403 comments on “Swimming Naked Discussion Thread
  1. Laura says:

    Hi — I forgot to answer Tara’s question yesterday about Nick and the editor saying I needed to make him less likable. I never considered it because I was half in love with him and couldn’t stand to make him a bad guy. LOL

    • Tara says:

      Long day @work. It’s beem snowing all day and I’m finally following…

      That’s what I thought, but I thought I’d ask.

  2. janet says:

    Ms Laura I see you! Redemption for Laura! I love Angela!! I wanna be her friend. Angela if you read this come join this blog and accept my friend request!

  3. Tracie says:

    I know we have been debating back and forth on the 4 month affair and many say that would be considered a relationship. I’m fortunate to have a son-in-law that is a Doctor Of Pharmacy and a Board Certified Clinical Pharmacist. He works with several clinical psychologist and loves breaking things down. He follows Dr. Jordan Peterson on Podcast and loves his insight into human relationships. I cornered him and we talked about the the four month affair and the text messages. He read them and he asked me what I saw when I read them and I said sex. He said exactly as much as they were screwing it could only be considered as physical. Then he asked me what I thought Phil’s investment was based on the text messages. Me being me I said an erection… He said an emotional investment would have been endearments and plans outside of the bedroom. Then he posed another question. If he didn’t think he was going to get caught and wanted a true relationship with the OW, instead of a physical encounter, why wouldn’t he say intimate relationship endearments to her in a text? Phil would of been just as flirty with Kim in text as he would of been with her in person. He agreed with a man being able to compartmentalize and separate his sexual activity with Kim, from his emotional connection with Lina. I then asked him about Phil’s redemption in SN. He said if the roles were reversed, would Lina be as hated as Phil by some? I told him probably, they would of thought she was a dog. He said redemption from one person to another is based on a persons ability to forgive. Pretty much in the eye of the beholder….

    • janet says:

      Thank you! Eye of the beholder. Yup! But Phil was a pig for 4 months. No way getting around that. But all of SN was Phil making up for those 4 months and trying to set things right so he is forgiven.

      • Tracie says:

        Well we all wallow in mud sometimes, doesn’t mean we have to be taken out with the garbage….We can be brought in washed off and forgiven…Love my Phil….

        • Laura says:

          He isn’t perfect — far from it. I should know — I wrote him. He remained a hypocrite (not forgiving Lina’s father or Julian) throughout. He’s flawed but he loves Lina more than anything — that I know. And like Lina said to Nick — if you haven’t experienced that kind of love, it’s impossible to understand.

          • Tracie says:

            Exactly and he himself admitted he was flawed and flawed or not Lina wanted her first and only love back…..

          • Tara says:

            He’s not perfect, that’s what makes him interesting. No character should be perfect. Perfect is boring. Perfect doesn’t make mistakes, perfect doesn’t need redemption.

            Laura, somewhere in this mix you commented the editor for WPF wanted Nick to be the bad guy/villain. Did you consider it and where would you have taken it? Just curious.

    • AnnaNJ says:

      Hi, Ladies! I am new here and I need your help. I read all the comments posted on Laura’s blog. I love all her books. English is my second language, so I apologize for any grammar errors. I love Hunter’s. I love- hate Phil. After SN I said ok Phil I forgive you, even you didn’t grovel enough but you make Lina happy. Unfortunately due to free evening I reread WPF and again SN and…I can’t forgive him, because I can’t digest a couple of things.
      1. Why Phil continued affair with Kim for another 2 weeks after Steamboat? Even when he looked at Kim’s face he saw Linas face? I can’t ….it ruined my forgiveness
      2. Why he accepted tie from her???
      3. Why he was running every Saturday?
      4. Why he did sleepovers at Kim’s? I hope they didn’t snuggle!!!!
      5. Did Phil in the beginning of the affair set any boundaries with Kim?
      I read that it’s in men’s biology that they can separate physical attraction from emotional but I think Phil fell hard for Kim. It was not love but He was very attracted to her, and definitely liked her very, very much. She was beautiful, intelligent and sassy. They not only work together, they f…like rabbits and they were running every Saturday!!!!! Phil accepted a gift from her! He must have know Kim has feelings for him! In my opinion The Steamboat house event was a meaningless for Phil because he still screwed Kim for another 2 weeks!!! Why not next day???and this ruined my forgiveness. I think Phil opened his eyes when he accepted a gift from her, he knew Kim is in love with him and soon she will be more demanding. I want to see a moment when he broke up with her and why exactly he finished things with her. I want forgive him!!!!!Help!!!!

      • janet says:

        Hi Anna. You should like you need the past blog “therapy.” There are thousands of our old comments that addresses everything you are tormented with now. Laura answered every single one of your questions there. Start from the oldest. I think you will re forgive Phil after that. Happy reading!

      • Laura says:

        Hi Anna!
        I’m sorry you’re feeling tortured.
        I think because I know what’s in Phil’s heart, I forgave him in WPF. He was traumatized as much as Lina from the attack. He truly believed he had to protect and keep his family safe. When he failed with Katie it broke him. That’s how he was able to cheat — Lina was pulling away from him and he felt he was losing control of his family — control is essential to him — it’s a flaw but it’s him. When he came to the big realization in Steamboat it took him a couple of weeks to process it. Kim was his escape but suddenly he could no longer escape because his two world merged — he felt too much guilt. He wasn’t himself and he almost lost his family because of it. The tie meant nothing to him, so until Lina mentioned it, it didn’t register really. He was living a compartmentalized life.

  4. Tracie says:

    Good Morning Girls…I was thinking that Kim to me never appeared to be a psycho, but selfish and manipulative. Cammie cleared that up for us after the Yoga Studio scene. People can be selfish without being crazy…I’ve read several single dad romances were the exact same situation occurred that we saw in SN. Wherein, a woman wanted the man or career more than she wanted her child. Kim was inattentive to her child, based on the hours she spent working and chasing her own happiness. Liam was not her priority, Phil was! Lina on the other hand never appeared to be weak, but excessively strong. A four month affair didn’t dim Phil’s potential to be the man she married 25 years ago. Lina accepted Liam with open arms, because he was an extension of the man she loved, not an obstacle she had to overcome.

    Laura what would Phil have said to Lina, when they walked out of that courtroom…

    • Laura says:

      Yes, Tracie. You understood what I was trying to convey perfectly. Kim was never meant to be a psycho. I know I’ve written this before but I’ll repeat because it was a while ago. When I originally wrote WPF the editor told me to make Nick a bad guy, because as written too many readers would fall in love with him. She said Phil was going to be hard enough to love with his faults and I shouldn’t have another character competing for the reader’s loyalty. I obviously ignored the advice. There was only one villain in this story — Kim. She was selfish and put her own wishes before those of anyone else. Phil was flawed but he was in no way a villain. In When I Saw You the villain was the ex husband.

    • Laura says:

      I think he would have said, “God, I love you.”

      • Tracie says:

        That is so hot….I can picture them walking out and him pulling her close to his side, whispering God, I love you in her ear. Lina would definitely have tears of happiness as they walked to the court clerks office to get their custody papers. Once in the car, he would kiss her deeply, thanking her. They would also discuss Logan and Lina would assure Phil that he would be fine…..Swoon…

    • janet says:

      I agree. Kim is simply a bad human being. Are we not allowed to have an antagonist in books anymore? It’s not that hard to understand. Also, Lina wasn’t weak to stay in her marriage. If anything she did it for selfish reasons. She tried living without Phil and she wasn’t happy. Sure, she sacrificed a lot for Phil but she did that for herself not for Phil.

  5. Tracie says:

    Girls I have a think question…Whem Phil and Lina were separated he called the kids everyday if he didn’t see them…In SN Kim sent him daily updates on Liam…Do you think on the weekends when Logan was distancing himself from
    his family, that Phil went 3 days without reaching out to Logan either with a phone call or a text? I just can’t see Phil not reaching out to Logan on those weekends knowing he was hurting….

    Phil missed his son, even after he put Liam to bed, he probably wished he could of spent time with Logan…especially when Lina had drinks with the office or the Friday night when he was alone while Lina was in NY…I bet he would have done anything to have Logan since he was alone…

    • Ann says:

      Tracie, I think Phil would have texted him just so Logan knew that his Dad was thinking of him. Logan was very stubborn, but very hurt when Liam became a reality.
      I liked how Phil would kiss Katie’s head when he came into the room, and he did the same to Megan. He loved his kids.

      • Laura says:

        Yes, definitely. He would have texted him goodnight at a minimum

        • Tracie says:

          You know Phil never seemed selfish to me where Logan and Liam were concerned…I think his desperation for Logan to accept Liam wasn’t because he wanted to force Liam on Logan, but because he didn’t want to gain a son and alienate another…One wasn’t worth more than the other…When Phil would say Logan ignores Liam or Logan is gone for the weekend etc…I think it was some frustration, but mostly like he said in the walk scene I’m not losing you more than I have too…I think Phil felt guilt that because of his actions, his son no longer felt comfortable at home when Liam was there….

          • Laura says:

            He was home for six months before he even introduced Liam to the family. There was no pushing going on. But I think his frustration with how long it took Logan to accept Liam was as understandable. He wanted his family together. He wasn’t blaming Logan. He knew he was responsible but until Logan accepted Liam the family wasn’t truly together

          • Tracie says:

            Exactly Laura…Chapter 2 when he goes to the Farside home to get his clothes and came home…he stood in the doorway and watched Lina cook and had dreamed of that scene a million times over the past 6 months being home and having dinner with his family…. Also, if Phil would have been pushing Liam on his family he would of taken him for Christmas! Instead he said NO, because he knew Lina and Logan weren’t ready….Love my Phil

          • Laura says:

            Good point, Tracie!

  6. Ann says:

    Happy Sunday girls. Hope everyone is doing great today!

    • Katie says:

      Nailed it.

      • Carrie says:

        Yes you did!!😂🤣

      • janet says:

        Bahahaha. Can I get it in black?😁

        Happy weekend! Sooo, I have to confess I’m kinda liking all the drama on goodreads. It sure beats watching Real Housewives of Atlanta! I chomped my way through a pack of butter rum lifesavers last night catching up on the haters and you gotta love them. SN is definitely a buzzzzzzworthy book if it wasn’t before. If I had never heard of Laura Branchflower, I would have one clicked after reading those comments. Oh wait, that’s what I did for WPF. 😉

        I like Laura blakely. She wrote one angsty slow burner. 21 stolen kisses. Taboo!

        • Katie says:

          Oh! That’s on my TBR. I’ll read it now…the cover for it on GR was keeping me away but the one on amazon is better.

          • janet says:

            She’s usually more funny but this one is not her norm. It’s slow though.

          • Katie says:

            I think she might be like Penelope Douglas for me. I just read one by Blakely and dnf at 70%. But I can already tell I’m loving stolen kisses. I’ve only liked Birthday Girl by Douglas. Slow is OK as long as it’s good once you get there.

      • Tracie says:

        Katie love the shirt…Laura would need one in the purple…that color signifies royalty….😘. I’ll take one in the black as well since it will be more slimming LOL…

      • Ann says:

        Great! Of course #1. Purple too for our Ravens.

    • Jordan says:

      Hahaha amazing

  7. Katie says:

    Anyone like Lauren Blakely?

  8. Laura says:

    a little bit of Lucas…

    The lower level was packed with people, requiring Cassie to weave her way around bodies as she headed for the entrance. She was almost there when she saw him. Lucas Roe had just entered the club. Her pulse began to pound. He was dressed casually in faded jeans and a dark V-neck, the sleeves pushed midway up his forearms. The scruff on his face was noticeably thicker than the previous day. Her bodies reaction to him was unsettling. It was as it had decided it wanted him regardless of what her mind thought. She considered retreating before he saw her, maybe hiding in the bathroom for a few minutes.
    The decision was taken away when his head turned and their eyes met. His eyes narrowed in recognition before his gaze dropped. Heat rushed to her cheeks as he blatantly looked at her body. When his eyes returned to hers there was no masking the raw desire in his stare. She averted her gaze and resisted the urge to cross her arms over her chest. The dress suddenly felt too revealing, the neck line too slow. When she was jostled from behind, she realized she was blocking the way to the door.
    She began to walk again, focusing on a spot on the wall to the left of where Lucas was standing. Her heart was pounding like she’d just run a sprint. She was going to walk past him without acknowledging him. It may have been middle school behavior, but the reality was she felt like she a bit out of control and couldn’t think of a better option.

  9. Tracie says:

    Good Morning Girls, I was reading Chapter 21 of SN…What do you think Tom was going to say about Lina before Phil held his hand up and said “I know what my wife is.” It must have been something hot, because Phil wanted to punch him in the mouth…Love my Alpha

    • Ann says:

      I think Tom was going to say, you are a complete idiot Phil, to screw over someone as beautiful and kind as Lina and every man out there wants to sleep with her!!! Take that Phil!!

      • Tracie says:

        Ann I was thinking about some of the comments on GR and people acting like Phil’s personality had changed because he treated Kim bad…But let’s think about WPF, Chapter 30 when he shredded Lina and then ignored her, never allowed her to ask how he was, etc….I think the way he treated Kim was inline with her actions and his personality …He would of been amicable with Kim, if she wasn’t trying to hurt Lina….

        • Ann says:

          I think you’re right Tracie. When Lina really broke Phil’s heart he just closed himself off from her. He couldn’t deal with it.
          As far as Phil’s personality, we all know that Phil can be your worst enemy if you cross him. Kim crossed the line when she went after Lina. Another thing about Phil, he hates Lina’s dad and Julian for their past actions, which is hard to figure since he fucked up so so bad himself. We know Phil’s not perfect, but he did take full responsibility for his actions and totally blamed himself for being weak.

  10. Katie says:

    I just read The Wild Side Trilogy. Borderline too much sex but a good read. 4 stars. I had to jerk reading until the end. Now I want a family drama. Here’s a list I’ve been keeping. What should I read?

    Leaving Haven Kathleen McCleary
    Slip of the Tongue Jessica Hawkins
    More Than Friends Barbara Delinsky
    Bounce KMJackson
    Evidence of the Affair Taylor Jenkins Reid
    Untouched Amy Marie
    A Corner of Her Heart Claire Yezbak Fadden
    Saving Grace AD Justice
    I Can’t Let Go Cheryl Barton
    Tear Stained Beaches Courtney Giardina
    Whatever It Takes L Marreta
    A Perfect Marriage Laurey Bright
    The Woman He Married Julie Ford
    Gravity LD Cedergreen
    The Unwanted Wife Natasha Anders
    Wrecking Ball BN Toler
    Take This Regret AL Jackson
    The Affair & The Consequences Collette Freedman
    8 Weeks Bethany Lopez

    • Katie says:

      KEEP not jerk

    • janet says:

      I don’t know the last two so I must look them up. I really liked Taylor Jenkins Reid but it’s not HEA. Neither is tear stained beaches. I also really liked wrecking ball by BN toler. Unwanted wife reads like a harlequin romance with a mean hero but people loved that. It was just so so for me Same with saving grace. Didn’t like the writing too much. If anything, read that cheater book Tracie read, Goalie. I thought the husband is redeemed and he cheated for years. Skip Barbara delinsky and Leaving Haven. The guy says things like we are mated and we are umami(he’s a chef). Whaat?!

      • Tara says:

        I liked Saving Grace, I thought the hero was redeemed.

        Goalie… I vacillate on this one, I think the hero is redeemed but honestly, he cheats for years! from day one of their relationship, and doesn’t think, “hmm, I shouldn’t do this.” Considering all his encounters, he’s lucky he didn’t get a disease or pass one onto his wife. And, it feels like the author comes up with a way to explain/justify his behavior. I’ve read it several times, and still feel the same way, annoyed.

      • Ann says:

        We are mated?? Me Tarzan, you Jane, type of thing! Funny.

    • Janet says:

      You should also check out RK liley’s other series. Up in air has a good evil
      OW and she writes angst really well. It’s bdsm though. Also have you read Sylvia day? Another good series.

    • Tara says:

      This builds off Janet’s comments… Bounce is good, untouched is okay—I didn’t like the writer’s voice. Whatever It Takes is good—he admits to a one night stand on a business trip, alternating chapters are flashback starting with the beginning of their relationship. The Woman He Married—I had issues with the story, hero is an asshat. I liked Gravity and Wrecking Ball. Take This Regret is book 2 of a trilogy, each book is about the same couple and each has a HFN/HEA ending.

      If you like Harlequin style books, I’d recommend The Unwanted Wife and A Perfect Marriage and I’d add The Ultimate Betrayal by Michelle Reid and Marriage Meltdown by Emma Darcy.

  11. Katie says:

    In other news, has anyone read Slip of the Tongue by Jessica Hawkins? I just got it on KU. Looks promising.

    • Laura says:

      It’s free right now for Amazon Prime members too

    • Tara says:

      I’ve read it, it’s a good book. I wouldn’t want to give anything away, but I didn’t find the heroine that likable. It’s been awhile since I read it. I didn’t realize it had spinoffs, both are KU. I might pick them up.

    • janet says:

      Isn’t that the one where the heroine cheats? No way can I read that. I’m sorry to say I hold a double standard when it comes to reading this theme. I can’t read it if the girls the culprit.

      • Tara says:

        LOL—that’s what I didn’t want to give away. I hate to admit I have the same double standard. For some reason I think we should know better.

        • janet says:

          We wouldn’t apply this in real life so it’s ok. I have to like the hero but I want to love the heroine. Otherwise I can’t root for her.

      • Katie says:

        It was listed as cheating husband

        • Tara says:

          Hmm, since we’ve already included spoilers, it’s been awhile but I’m sure he was just pissed off with his wife and she was making assumptions, really poor communication between them.

    • janet says:

      I’m re reading a Cherrie Lynn’s breathless series. the guy shaves his head, is a musician and a tattoo artist. An evil ex is in here. goood! Did I tell you guys I’m 49? Lol. Maybe this is my midlife thing. Athletes, musicians, and strippers! Love them all.

      • Katie says:

        I’m 34, and I have a new case of Bieber Fever. Whenever I listen to pop on apple radio and he comes on, I want to dance. He’s good!

        • janet says:

          You are sick! Bahaha.

          No the wife definitely cheats. It reminds me of that movie faithless? With Diane lane. I hated her character and could not understand how she could do that to Richard gere. That movie messed me up for a week.

      • Tara says:

        I LOVE that book. It had a novella sequel that came out last month. I’m very picky about musician stories. I absolutely love Kylie Scott’s Stage Dive series! I’m 55, I wonder if I’m too old for these books too

        • janet says:

          Yes! I read that yesterday and that made me want to reread the first one. Don’t get the novella. It’s 80 pages for $3.99 and I read it like in 40 min. Laura should charge 9.99 for her 400 pagers. Basically Macy wants to get pregnant and the evil OW is happy and married to another guy and got rid of her dreads. Throw in a couple sex scenes between ghost and Macy and that’s the novella. You guys should really read Stinger by Mia Sheridan. Angst!! I’m telling you reformed porn stars should be Laura’s 8th book!!

          • Ann says:

            Tara, I’m 64 and you are not to old for these books!! I read the stage dive series a while ago too.
            Janet that movie Unfaithful with Diane Lane was so good. I couldn’t believe she got caught up in the affair and poor Richard Gere.

          • Tara says:

            Janet, are you kidding me, I read it on the release day—lol. Definitely not worth 3.99, but it was a nice visit with Macy and Seth.

            I’ve tried a couple of porn star books, not my thing.

          • Tara says:

            Ann, glad to hear we’re not too old 😘

        • Laura says:

          I just read the sample for the first book in the Stage Dive Series — LOL at the end of the first chapter OMG

        • janet says:

          Lol. Never mind then. I have a couple of stage dive series. They are good? I’ll go back and pick one up.

          Ann, you amaze me with all your book and movie title knowledge. Not being sarcastic.

  12. Tara says:

    Hi ladies,

    My job has kept me insanely busy for the last week, but I have been following his thread…

    Laura, you created an amazing story of not only a couple but a family surviving infidelity; and it really is an entire family’s story. I can’t wait for Lucas’ story. I’m with Janet, I’m a sucker for an alph, make him an athlete and I’m happy dancing.

    Tracie, you can’t worry about the 1⭐️ ratings. There are always people who won’t get past cheating, no matter how fabulous Phil is they’re not getting past it. You asked the question about Phil understanding Logan’s anger. I completely think he understands it. Mike outright asked him how would we have felt if it were dad. Phil’s thoughts confirmed the guilt.

    Katie, 1. The photo stories tab is AMAZING!! 2. Again, don’t worry about the 1⭐️ reviews. Some people will never get past the cheating, so they’re going to have a difficult time with the story and are going to focus on what they don’t like. One reviewer outright said the don’t normally read about cheaters, she had preconceived ideas.

    Ann, I agree a hurt Logan is a pretty stubborn guy. There are 3 stories I’d love to see from the Hunters… Logan, Liam and believe it or not Megan. Megan is such a difficult character—very singleminded and not in a good way. She needs to learn some real empathy and not to judge women who chose to be SAHMs like her mother did for 20 years. I’d love to see if she ever grows as a person.

    Janet, congrats on finishing the condo!

    You ladies are the best!

    • Ann says:

      Hi Tara! I agree with you that us ladies just rock! I loved your comment about Laura’s writing too. Like Laura commented earlier, she wrote a story about how a couple can overcome infidelity. That’s what this was all about.

    • Katie says:

      Thanks Tara. I hate 1 stars because they remove talent from Amazon’s algorithm just because some idiot wants to rant. If it’s a terrible book with no plot and is full of errors, sure, give it 1 star. That’s rarely the case though, from what I’ve seen.

      • Tara says:

        I understand the algorithm issue, these people are reviewing with their emotions, not admitting it’s well written but not “my thing”, sadly.

      • Kayberla says:

        This is exactly why I dont like to rate books I didnt like. Unless they’re awful writing or truly wretched characters, you have to comb theo8gh for nice things to say. I wonder what people who dont like cheating novels are looking for when they buy one? If you know it’s a hard line for you, why did you read it knowing you would tear it up in review.

    • Laura says:

      Thanks, Tara!
      I’m not sure Megan has the ingredients to make a good heroine lol. I actually have to like them. Definitely yes to Logan and Liam — I’m looking forward to those — especially Liam. Obviously, we will catch up with Megan in those novels. And at the end of SN she was at Liam’s graduation, so she made a point of coming. That says something.

      • Tara says:

        Yes to Logan and Liam! You’ve made me an incredibly happy reader 😁. I keep hoping she becomes more likeable. Did she show because she wanted to or because Phil wanted it? Overthinking on my part!

    • janet says:

      Thanks Tara!
      To add to what you said about low ratings-some readers can’t see past what Phil did and won’t forgive him even if he won the nobel peace prize at this point so I say don’t reason with them. I also think it’s funny that one wrote how she didn’t like women being pitted against each other and that Laura took the easy way. Well, l I read an interview on Margaret Atwood and she said something along the lines of she didn’t create anything that didn’t already happen/exist. Kims are everywhere. We see them on TV, movies, books and in our lives and if Kim is evil then she exists. How naive are you to think otherwise? A woman tried her tricks with Tracie’s husband(remember the apple story? omg). Ok, not a great examples but it happens. On a lighter note, Chris Cuomo is hot! I keep seeing him as Phil. lol

      • Tara says:

        I agree I didn’t get the reviewer that didn’t like seeing women pitted against one another. Hello, can someone say mean girls. We all know them, we all have had to deal with them. Chris Cuomo is a no for me, he makes me think of Andrew and he’s a major yuck for me.

        • janet says:

          Andrew would be mike in this scenario. Lol. I’m going to be more careful how I rate if it has to do with algorithm. I rate most books purely for my benefit because I can’t remember half of the books I read if they don’t stand out. I didn’t realize it affected authors.

          • Tara says:

            I liked Mike too much to think of him as Andrew.

            I hate to admit I don’t review much. I know I should. Back when Blogspot was popular I had a combo reader/review/mommy blog. I also wrote a monthly blog post for Romancing The Blog, it was a fun website that had a daily post from writers and readers with lots of interaction. I could be pretty snarky—older and wiser now.

          • Laura says:

            He’s definitely Phil’s size!

    • Katie says:

      I could go on and on about this. A 1 star book I wouldn’t finish, and I certainly wouldn’t waste my time to review it or buy the sequel or another book by that author. 1 star signals don’t read this book. It doesn’t signal- this author is great, it just isn’t my thing. If a 1 star rating comes with constructive feedback, then great. But these reviews I see just make a statement about some social issue. So, what is constructive about that? Telling authors to only write the stories they (the readers) like? That leaving the husband is the only acceptable outcome? Write your own fucking books then.

      I’m telling you, I’m about ready to put on some spandex and jump in the ring.

      End rant.

      • janet says:

        Yet they will pick up the same theme for their nighttime reading tonight. I don’t understand.
        Did you rate the adultery club?

        • Katie says:

          Yes I gave it 4 stars. Hated the guy but it was written well.

          • Tara says:

            It was very well written, but the hero was too wishy washy—realized he made a mistake, but stayed, even though the OW didn’t like his girls.

          • Katie says:

            He realized he made a mistake but he didn’t fight for his family. And I think his affair was worse than Phil’s with near I love yous and gifts and no real rational reason to cheat other than family life and a boner.

          • Tara says:

            I don’t have a problem with the near I love yous, if he’s going to cheat I’d like to think it’s somehow worth throwing away a marriage for, maybe something “better”. I know this concept has been discussed before, not everyone agrees with me. I agree he wasn’t willing to fight for his family and that made him a weak hero.

  13. janet says:

    Hi all! I like seeing all the 5 stars! Haven’t checked amazon but lots of new people are loving SN. For every one idiot there are 3 people who loved it so Laura will do just fine. Our Katie here has been holding fort and defending her obsession to the end!

    Moody alphas are my jam! And athletes are my weakness! Can’t wait for Lucas.

    • Katie says:

      You keep making fun. I’ll be the one taking taking credit for “discovering” our Laura when they’re making movies for her books.

      • janet says:

        I’m not making fun of you! I think you and Laura are in sync!

      • Tracie says:

        Kbabe remember sweetie, some people’s minds just can’t be changed, you just have to outlive them…those people for me are the ones that couldn’t pour pee out of a boot with instructions on the heel…Just saying….

        • janet says:

          Omg pour pee out of a boot!! Lolol. It’s true! I say leave them be and let them feed of each other. You will just get mad.

  14. Katie says:

    Ann, did you see the new Photo Stories tab on this website? 😉

    I came across a book that might be good and thought of you. It’s the woman who cheats. In Between by MA Fernandez.

    • Tracie says:

      I did noticed it this morning KBabe! I also loved the baby on the SN storyboard, that’s exactly how I imagined Liam….

    • Ann says:

      Hi Katie. I just looked at the photo series section!! Awesome job! You are so good!
      I’m going to check out the In Between book. Thanks

  15. Ann says:

    Tracie, Mexican restaurant scene? Yes I loved it. Lina stayed classy when Kim tried to stir her up with being too old to be a mother!
    Kim was not even a worthy threat. Phil was probably thinking he was in a damn fog to get involved with her!

  16. Tracie says:

    Good morning girls….I had a laugh this morning..I checked Goodreads and Amazon to see how our SN is doing. I read one comment this morning that cracked me up and for all you Team Phil ladies we did an excellent job at exhausting our opponents..Hip Hip Hooray!!!!!

    • Ann says:

      Hi Tracie. I also just checked Good Reads, and Amazon. Did you see
      all the new 5 star reviews from yesterday on Good reads? There were quite a few. Yay, I think we all did good! The pictures helped too, thanks to Katie!
      Everyone is coming over to our side. LOL

      • Tracie says:

        How could you not come to our side???? Even though Phil screwed up with the four month affair….how could Lina just stop loving him? Kim was a villain in my opinion, she used an innocent child and had an agenda and Phil got caught in the trap…But he turned it around and loved his wife through it, even though he was the one that put his family in that situation. I know there is a lot of women that say “I couldn’t..I can’t…I won’t….THEN DON’T.” I’m kind of like Lina, if wanting to be apart from the people I love is unhealthy, then I’m happy to be unhealthy. That doesn’t mean I’m a doormat, it just means I have a heart big enough to forgive, love and believe in second chances. If I was perfect, then maybe I would be one of the “I won’t”, but by grace I’m forgiven and everyone deserves that same opportunity, because NO ONE is perfect….Just saying…

        This story was beautifully written!!!

        • Ann says:

          WPF and SN are my go to favorite rereads. When I started reading WPF it just grabbed me and I couldn’t put it down. I fell in love with the whole family!
          I think Laura has gained new fans too. I’m excited for her.
          Tracie I loved your explanation on forgiveness!!

          • Tracie says:

            Ann I have read them several times and still read scenes from both. I know she has gained more fans and I’m very proud of Laura…she writes from the heart and is not a production line author that throws repetitive work out to the reader. They are actual once of a kind stories, with true to life characters, no way I’m passing up what she puts out…

            Have we talked about the Mexican Restaurant scene yet? Loved how Lina handled both Kim and Phil in that scene.

        • Laura says:

          Thank you for understanding the point of the story. From the beginning I wanted to write about a couple who SURVIVED infidelity.

          • Tracie says:

            You did Laura and it was beautiful…

            How is Lucas? You know before long we will have to start a Lucas Swoon thread Lol…Have you come up with a book, you know we could help you with that LOL…

          • Laura says:

            Lucas is coming along. He’s interesting and his family is a little odd

          • Tracie says:

            Well mine is too, but you got to love us LOL…..

    • Katie says:

      I can’t with some of these reviews. They’re acting like Kim being a villain is why Phil chose his wife. Did they even read the book(s)? It had nothing to do with Kim. Why do some of these people read cheating books just so they can get pissed off? If you’re going to read it, READ it, and have an open mind. Jesus Christ. I love the idea of love conquering all- even a betrayal as big as Phil’s. It’s a beautiful story.

      • Tracie says:

        They read them hoping everyone is miserable, so they themselves can thrive on misery…HEA’s and redemption doesn’t fall into the misery category…So they are disappointed…I always want a HEA when I’m reading a romance or family drama book… Now if they are an Ass like Ned we are dumping them, but Phil wasn’t he was a man with faults that owned his betrayal and then fought for his families forgiveness…Swoon

  17. Tracie says:

    Laura did Phil notice that when he was actually getting Liam 3 weekends a month, plus two days a week that he was actually getting to see Liam more than he was Logan? Logan would be gone all weekend, sometimes three weekends a month, plus two day s a week he stayed in his room, because Phil didn’t usually drop Liam off until late even during the week. I wondered if he would of noticed or if it weighed on his mind…

    • Laura says:

      I don’t know if he was comparing the time, but he definitely didn’t like Logan leaving. He was feeling guilty for not spending enough time with both of them

      • Tracie says:

        I asked that question because I wondered when he said I’m not losing any more time with you than I have too, was because he noticed Logan no longer felt comfortable in his home with Liam there….I thought when I read that scene that Phil was missing Logan too…

  18. Tracie says:

    One more thing girls, do you think Phil Googled William Rouse when Lina announced she was going to NY with him? I so do or I hope he did…how hot…..

  19. Tracie says:

    Laura what was Phil thinking while he set beside Lina on the beach, while she was trying to let go of her anger over Kim moving back to Baltimore?

    • Laura says:

      He was feeling out of control and guilty for what he was putting Lina through

      • Tracie says:

        IF Inwould of been Phil, I would have constantly felt like I was in a pressure cooker with all the emotional push and pull….I did like it when he told Logan, not using a condom could change the trajectory of his life…He was speaking from experience and I think Logan got his meaning….

  20. Katie says:

    Has anyone read All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood?
    That’s my next to read

  21. Tracie says:

    Girls I was thinking about the courtroom scene last night and wondered if Kim felt justice had been served when she made the deal with Phil about full custody. I honestly think in her warped mind, she thought she was wrapping a ball and chain around their neck and taking away their freedom. What a dog…you wrote her so good Laura…

    • Ann says:

      Tracie, I think by that point in the story Kim was done with Phil. She knew she could never have him and she gave up Liam. She didn’t need Phil’s child support now that she was going back to New York with a much larger salary. Remember in the beginning, she did not Lina around Liam at all!! By the end, she didn’t care that Lina was going to be Liam’s mom. She never wanted a baby, she just wanted Phil. She was a horrible person to be able to give up her child like that. Karma will get her. Laura did write her so good. All she thought about was herself.

      • Tracie says:

        Ann remember that comment where she told Phil..you don’t want him full time anymore than I do….how awful…I wondered what Phil was thinking…Probably you are wrong bitch..but I can’t ask Lina to raise him….

        • Laura says:

          I think that statement devastated Phil, knowing Kim didn’t want him and believing he couldn’t take him either.

          • Tracie says:

            My heart went out to Phil knowing the guilt he carried regarding Lina, Logan hurting and resentful…When Phil told Logan in the walk scene that other than Lina he had failed Liam most of all, really broke my heart…Knowing his actions put Liam in harms way in the Christmas scene and having to walk away from Liam when he was crying for his daddy not to leave him with Kim….WOW! Looking back on his transgressions ate him alive….

            Do you girls think Phil ever really understood Logan’s anger?

        • Katie says:

          That was the worst! You don’t want him just as much as I don’t.
          I can’t! If a child can’t soften a person, nothing can.

      • Laura says:

        Exactly — Kim had mentally moved on at that point.

      • Tracie says:

        Kim didn’t mind Lina picking up Liam when he was sick either…because it benefited her…

        I hope the new nanny could cook dinner…Lol…The Hunter men were getting tired of takeout…Logan is going to want his woman to stay home and cook too…Lol

        • Ann says:

          OMG, can you see a grown up Logan with traits of Phil. Logan was such a softie compared to Phil. However, a hurt Logan could be one stubborn guy.
          I know some of you guys on this blog may still not be able to fully forgive Phil, but I think Phil and Lina were stronger, and Phil was more humble after everything.
          Laura, how his Mr. Lucas aka hunky quarterback doing?

          • Laura says:

            Lucas is a moody alpha. He’s beautiful

          • Tracie says:

            Can’t wait for Beautiful Lucas…You write the best Hero’s….I can’t wait to see him and Kevin having a little talk….

            Yes Ann my Phil’s was redeemable and sexy as hell….He was such such a Hot Love Muffin!

  22. janet says:

    Ann, have you read Two’s Company by Jill Mansell? It came up on my goodreads feed. Cheating husband with HEA. Thought of you. Don’t know if it’s any good but you can read the amazon reviews. Also did you say the hero from Leaving Haven is redeemable? I finally finished it last week and hated him. Phil deserves a huminatarian award compared to the husband in Leaving Haven. The texts he sent the OW made my stomach queasy.

    • Ann says:

      Thanks Janet I’ll definitely check that one out. I never read leaving Haven (I think).

    • Ann says:

      Janet, twos company doesn’t come in kindle. I think I looked at this before and that’s why I didn’t but the paperback. I’m ok with reading hard books if print size is decent. I’ll check libraries

      • janet says:

        Oh I didn’t know that. I just read the reviews and it sounds ok. Yes check the library. I will do the same. You can also check out Leaving Haven at the same time. I bought it long ago when Deighj recommended and never finished till a week or 2 ago. It just made me appreciate Phil that much more.

  23. Tracie says:

    Laura after Phil got full custody of Liam, do you still believe that Phil felt like Liam wasn’t Lina’s responsibility? I think he would have relaxed with that way of thinking, since Lina took over mothering Liam.

    • Laura says:

      I think Lina would have taken over as the primary caregiver for Liam. She’s the nurturer.

      • Clare says:

        I really hope you write a book for Logan or Liam, so we can look into their lives after a couple of decades and see if their family dynamics are still the same or changed over time.
        Really liked Swimming Naked after White Picket Fence 🙂

        • Laura says:

          Thanks, Clare!
          I will — I’ll definitely come back to the Hunters after finishing the two I’m working on. A story about Liam in particular really appeals to me. I’ll probably do one with Logan first, though. It will be fun to see Liam as a teenager in that one.

  24. Tracie says:

    Girls do you think Phil will be as strict on Liam as he was on his older children? I do…

    Also, do you think once they got custody of Liam, that Phil still found ways to have quality time with Logan? I do…Phil knew Logan would be leaving in two years….I also think that since Lina took over as primary caregiver that gave Phil and Logan plenty of time together in the evenings…

    • Tara says:

      I think Phil is Phil, and his parenting style isn’t going to change. But, I also think after everything they’ve been through he appreciates the time he has with his children and Lina, and won’t waste a second.

      • Ann says:

        That’s a good point. I agree that his parenting methods won’t change but after everything he went through with the whole affair, separation from his wife and kids, I think he appreciates everything so much more. Until Liam he never did the things most mom’s usually do with kids, like the feedings and bathing. He admitted that Lina did all of that with their children. I’m sure he continued to share some of these duties with Lina after he gained full custody.

        • Ann says:

          I think Phil would have given Logan some extra attention, realizing how sensitive and hurt he was. I do think that Logan eventually let his wall down and became one of Liam’s biggest fans.

          • Laura says:

            I agree with this too. Phil understands how hard this has been on Logan. He’ll make sure to carve out time for him. And in return Logan will get closer and closer to Liam.

          • Tracie says:

            Phil and Logan sure went through some hard times those five months adjusting to Liam coming to their home.I also wondered if Logan had a hard time accepting Liam, because he felt like it would be disloyal to Lina?

      • Laura says:

        I agree Phil is Phil. His parenting style won’t change, but he will continue to help Lina more than he did with the other children. She’s working now too. When she’s travelling he’ll have to take care of him on his own.

  25. Katie says:

    J, I thought you might find this interesting or at least funny. I started An LOL Doll Education with H (my title). Did you know you can predict which doll you’ll get by color of the ball (you can see the colors through the plastic zippers)? We are learning about scientific method and odds to predict which dolls she gets and avoid buying duplicates. 🤪

    • janet says:

      So funny! I must tell my nieces to do the same. I swear this company is robbing us!!

      • Katie says:

        We watch YouTube videos about hacks to figure out which ones are in which color containers, etc.; and then based on what she already has and how rare they are, we determine odds. It’s kind of fun. We’ve been correct 3 times in a row now.

        It’s a genius business model. It’s the only product I’ve seen where kids can be repeatedly disappointed yet want more and more.

  26. Ann says:

    Hi girls. I love the boards too!! It just adds to the book. Laura you are right, Maryland is so damn cold and windy today.
    Well Tom Brady does it again, damn! I was rooting for the Chiefs and the Saints.

  27. Laura says:

    I love Katie’s boards! I can’t stop looking at them.
    Shifting gears to Lucas for a few hours.
    Bitterly cold in Maryland today. Chandler even allowed me to put a coat on him. He only lasted 15 minutes at the dog park — thank God!
    Have a great day, everyone!

  28. Tracie says:

    Ann I hate the Patriots won.last night..ugh! Rice teeth heading back to the Super Bowl…

    • janet says:

      Rice teeth and rat face! I despise him. What’s going on today ladies?

      • Tracie says:

        I’m off work today so I’m going to start gathering all our tax stuff for our accountant….Is the condo on the market? Be sure and tell me where I can see the pictures online…I bet you guys did a beautiful job…

      • Katie says:

        My daughter is feigning injury today to get out of her dance camp. She did hurt her knee last night (dog took her feet out from under her) but she sure can walk OK to her toy room and the kitchen.

        • janet says:

          H cracks me up. Yes on vinyl planks. I had no idea but you are right. Super popular right now.

        • Tara says:

          That age is the best, they think their pulling one over on you. So cute! Back when my son was her age I had a combo reading/mommy blog. There were days I only shared Junior stories—he was so entertaining!

    • Laura says:

      me too!!! I wanted Kansas City and New Orleans!

  29. Laura says:

    Girls! Katie outdid herself! This board made me feel the emotions of the novel. It’s soooooo good! https://www.pinterest.com/laurabranchflower/swimming-naked-novel-by-laura-branchflower/

  30. Tracie says:

    Ok girls got a story…so tonight we had a business meeting at church and we were doing a little Bible study in Micah….Well the preacher had us read this scripture and then tell the group want it meant….It was about drinking wine and preaching, but it had a deeper meaning…No body would answer so he looked straight at me and said what do you think Tracie….I said well it means I can’t get drunk on wine and go share the gospel, even though I might be a little more loquacious in that state!!!….one lady busted out laughing as she said at least she’s honest and my husband fell away from the table, right after he kicked me under it…LOL…Me and several others were busting….My preacher was laughing and just said OH ME!!!

  31. Tracie says:

    Hi Girls, Kbabe can’t wait to see the board…You girls are making me a bit tech savvy than what I was before…I’m not going anywhere either Ann…I love all my virtual girlfriends…you girls are like my extended family….

    • Ann says:

      Tracie how is the hip? Are you feeling better? I hope so. Don’t you miss Phil? He is the best Alpha male character out there! I start other books but the writing can’t compare to Laura.

      • Tracie says:

        My hip is doing great it will be 5 weeks Tuesday and I’m moving right along…I do miss Phil, but I still go back to SN when I get to missing him to much…I can’t find one to compare to Laura’s writing either…I’m glad she was so far along with Lucas…so we can have a fix in the near future….

  32. Ann says:

    Hi Ladies, I miss all of you! It seems like things have really wound down since SN was released.
    Katie, I applaud you for doing all the things you do to promote Laura. You are so good with technical stuff. Just wanted to let you all know that I’m new to goodreads, but I did manage to vote for WPF and SN. I had set up an account about 2 years ago and never really used it. Once SN was published I went back into my goodreads account. Amazon is what I’m used to. Ladies, lets keep in touch through the blog.

    • Katie says:

      Thanks Ann, I’m not that tech-savvy, I just don’t give up until I figure it out. Janet is the one who told me to get into Goodreads, so I’m slowly figuring that out. I used exclusively amazon and “customers also bought” lists until like 2 weeks ago. The GR lists are pretty awesome. Hello, older heroes! 🤣🤣🤣

      I’m not going anywhere…

      • Ann says:

        Love you Katie. I’m hoping with all of our support that Laura’s SN will be getting more popular. Last year I just stumbled across Sense of Belonging and then I read all of her books. She writes like no other!

  33. Katie says:

    Ok my last post really sounded like an ad. Shit. I promise it’s not!

    • Tara says:

      It’s all good. I like your page, we have very similar reading taste. I went to all of SN’s lists and voted. Hopefully this will move them up.

      • Katie says:

        It will. Already is.
        I think I added you as a friend on GR…
        I only add decent stuff to my GR account. I read hundreds and hundreds of books. I don’t like to put negative energy into the world by giving low ratings to a book. Regardless of what I think, someone put a ton of work into writing a book- I’d rather stay silent. I’m that way with everything. Not sure why I just said that. Long story short, the rated books on my GR are good ones IMHO. 😘😘

        • Tara says:

          I could see that both SN and WPF have moved up the lists.

          I don’t use Goodreads correctly. I should start to track what I read better, as I too read hundreds of books a year and I really can’t keep track of everything in my head—lol.

    • janet says:

      You rock Kbabe! haha, I’m such a dork. I will go back and re read your comments on how to vote for these two books tonight. What you do on pinterest is beyond awesome. I appreciate the beautiful boards you’ve created for us!!

    • Tracie says:

      It didn’t sound like an ad…Even if it did I would buy what you were selling Kbabe….😘

  34. Katie says:

    If you don’t know me already, I contacted Laura a few months ago and forced my Pinterest board for WPF on her. She kind of liked it, so, now, I make photo boards for all of her books. I’ll be done with Swimming Naked tonight. Maybe some of you are more visual like me, and will appreciate the photo stories. Today, I figured out how to add the boards to my reviews. I’m so excited. You can see the boards on Pinterest @laurabranchflowerfan
    Or, here’s my goodreads profile: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/85712224-katie-l
    You can access the pinterest boards via the website link.
    (this is not an ad for a business…just my hobby…insert laughing/crying face)

  35. Tracie says:

    Thought of something else…I wonder if Phil was more comfortable with Lina traveling and commuting after William became his brother-in-law and knowing he was at the office with her and sometimes traveled with her?

    • Laura says:

      Yes, most likely. Also time would take care of it. He has an unreasonable fear something will happen to her. When he starts realizing it want, he’ll settle down. He’ll never like her traveling though.

      • Tracie says:

        I loved how Phil checked his phone every night why they were separated to ensure she was safe at home….Gah I can’t imagine how he suffered without his family, but just like the Christmas scene you shared with us, he couldn’t feel sorry for his self, because he did it to himself …Poor Phil

  36. Tracie says:

    Do you girls think that if Liam grew up to be a high profile attorney or business man, would Kim with her narcissistic tendencies try to step into her roll as Mommy Dearest? I think if it added a feather to her cap, should would in a heartbeat…

    • Kayberla says:

      Unless she can find a way to have his upbringing away from her reflect her in a forgiving light, no. Kim is all about Kim, so unless she finds a way for it to not make her look like a bad mom, she will leave him in the background. That may make Liam all the more desperate to be successful. I wonder where I’ve read a character like that before… 😉

    • janet says:

      I got it! Liam should fall in love with nick and kathy’s gorgeous blonde daughter. Think about the forbidden and the angst factor. Hahaha. Imagine that engagement dinner party. Kim and her investment banker hubby are there and Liam addresses her as Kim and calls Lina mom. Here’s the kicker, Liam calls Nick Dad out of mutual respect. Phil would die. Hahahahaha

  37. Laura says:

    Two things I was thinking.

    #1 Liam will be a great Hero. As much as Lina will try to protect and love him, Kim’s rejection will have a negative effect on him. I don’t think it can be avoided.

    #2 The Prossi’s will make an appearance in the Lucas Roe book

  38. Katie says:

    I’ve been thinking about this- what game was Kim playing with moving back to NY? Do you think she thought Phil might follow her there, or at least that it might cause more issues for Phil’s marriage because she didn’t know Lina loved Liam that much?
    Lina had total power in those simple words at court. End Game for Kim.

    • janet says:

      Yes to all. She wanted the upper hand. Lina had the total power but even in the end Kim never once looked at Lina.

      • Tracie says:

        Kim knew Phil wasn’t going to fall at her feet…and Lina was here to stay…Adele told Lina that in the breakfast scene…She came here for Phil and since that’s not happening she cutting her loses, but she needs to throw one last cut punch with the moving out of state order…Kim felt Phil put several times on custody and he never confirmed or denied…His guilt was so much, he couldn’t make Lina raise him and Lina told him she didn’t want to be a stay at home anymore…Poor Phil….

        • Katie says:

          So do you think it was a split second decision by the women- Kim to say have him then and Lina to say yes?
          Funny how the one in the usual control position, Phil, had no control in that scene.

          • Tracie says:

            He would of took control though if Kim would of took one little bitty step out of line with Lina….

          • Laura says:

            Good point. And yes — Kim didn’t know she was going to offer until she did and Lina answered without thought.

      • Laura says:

        Right — she didn’t want to acknowledge Lina — basically she was trying to convey that Lina was insignificant to her

    • Laura says:

      I think city girl Kim was sick and tired of living alone in suburbia.

      • Katie says:

        Does she tell people in NY she has a son?

        • Laura says:

          I think if she was directly asked, but she wouldn’t have a picture of him on her desk.

          • Katie says:

            This just pisses me off. I don’t understand people. How could you feel good about yourself trying to break up a marriage and then discarding your kid? And Kim really thought Phil would want her. Jesus. Narcissism is so foreign to how I think, it’s unbelievable to me that people really exist like that.

          • janet says:

            This made me laugh so hard! God she’s so perfect.

          • Tracie says:

            My husbands ex is just like her Kbabe, but those people lose out, they usually end up old and alone..Her giving him up was my gain. I got the privilege to love and raise an awesome kid…

          • Tara says:

            Katie, she didn’t really want a child, she wanted Phil and thought this would get what she wanted. She really is a pyscho. A normal person could never relate to her thought process.

  39. janet says:

    Just finished Noelle Adams Second Best. Not about cheating but good. Love plain girls getting the hot guy.

  40. Tracie says:

    What do you girls think passed between Kim and Phil in the court scene when Lina said he agrees? After she said that Kim continued to look directly at Phil without words, what passed between them?

    • Tara says:

      I don’t think words were necessary. How insulting to Kim that Lina spoke for him? It’s a drop the mic moment. Boom!

      • Laura says:

        Yes! And another significant moment and maybe the final straw for Kim was when Lina called her after the snowstorm and said Phil wasn’t going to help her.

        • Tracie says:

          That was so awesome…I could see Lina making that call then going back to a hot cup of tea and flipping back through her magazine….I bet Phil’s mouth was hanging open…Lol

    • janet says:

      Tracie, I love this question because so much was said in that silent moment. Do you think Phil felt bad for Kim for a minute? No? Remorse? Relief? In that final moment Kim let Phil go. She let Phil have Liam. You think she was demanding a thank you with the stare? She still considers Lina beneath her. Loved that final scene. Your Lifetime moment for sure.

      • Tracie says:

        I wondered what Phil was thinking when Lina answered immediately for him…In my romantic mind, I would think he thought I love you so much baby! I also thought Kim was baiting him like the last stand at the OK Corral….Thinkinf he wouldn’t accept the offer and she would waltz out of town with his son…I don’t think she ever expected Lina to answer for him….can you imagine J-Girl the talk on the way home between Lina and Phil…

        • Tracie says:

          Phil couldn’t stand her…I don’t think he felt sorry for her or had any remorse…He probably thought she was a dog..Phil probably felt relief by Lina words and knowing Liam would be nurtured by Lina and protected by him….Loved that Scene

          Maryland girls it’s snowing in Oklahoma today…Yay!

        • janet says:

          Right! He was thinking I want to dirty up the car on the way home. Lol. She was so bating him. For sure. Waltz out and make him suffer. Last stand at Ok corral. Bahahaha. That’s so good!

    • Laura says:

      she was simply snubbing Lina.

      • Tracie says:

        You know what is so funny about her snubbing Lina, Kim didn’t deserve to even be in the same room with our classy Lina

  41. Liz says:

    Wow, such an amazing honest story.
    No shying away from difficult scenes.
    I liked that even though some scenes were really emotional there were also really funny parts that lightened the mood of the book.
    It was so realistic, scenes that you wanted more exploration of, like the photos from book 1 were examined. I loved it.
    I have recommended it in a couple of reading groups I am in that are looking for reconciliation marriage books.
    Well done. Such amazing writing.

    • Ann says:

      Hi Liz I liked your comments. I love the way Laura writes and yes there were some funny scenes too. Like the vegan restaurant, that was so damn funny.
      If you have any similar books to share, I would appreciate it if you could list a few. I have read a lot of similar books since reading White Picket Fence a year ago, but I’m always looking for more. Thanks.

      • Tara says:

        I’m pretty sure Liz and I are in many of the same Facebook groups. I’d love more lists to pick through!

      • Tara says:

        Ann, have you read The Girl in Seat 24B by Jennifer Peel. Not a cheating story, it’s a marriage in crisis story.

        • Ann says:

          Tara, I loved The Girl in Seat 24B. He was so hung up on his career and thought she (the wife) always held him back. It was so good.

      • Laura says:

        When Adele said (and I wrote) something like — you can order a slab of tofu — I laughed out loud. Yes, I entertain myself. These characters seriously have a life of their own.

        • Tracie says:

          That’s called cracking yourself up Laura…I do that all the time…Sometimes people stand around and look at me while I laugh at myself, but I don’t care! Loved when Logan called and Lina said your son wants a double cheeseburger…..that should of cracked you up too! I almost busted when poor Mike wanted half of Jeanie’s hen, but would of got stabbed by her fork…Poor Mike

    • Laura says:

      Thank you so much, Liz!

  42. Katie says:

    Inspired by Tara…Earlier today I added Laura’s books to various lists on goodreads (Sense of Belonging on older hero lists, WPF and SN on cheating lists, etc). Find the book page on goodreads and scroll down to see the lists the book is on. Vote for her books!! That’ll move them up on the lists. Woot woot!

  43. Tara says:

    I’ve shared the Amazon link on 3 different Facebook pages for readers!! Got to get the word out!

  44. Tracie says:

    When do you girls think Kim realized Phil was never going to be hers and she needed to move on? I think she still had a little hope after the Thanksgiving ordeal…But after Christmas, she knew she didn’t stand a chance…Every scene after that he was way colder to me than he was before the bite scene…She started planning her escape….

    • Kayberla says:

      Truthfully, I dont think she ever realized she couldn’t win him. I think she got tired of trying to pretend to be a good mom for Phil. It was obvious she sucked at it and she doesnt strike me as someone who persists at something she can’t master.

      • Tracie says:

        I think she honestly knew he wasn’t going to pick her…Her sister even said she’s not use to being broken up with and I loved Phil’s reply to that statement…Also, when he said My wife would of never allowed this to happen to one of our children or when he told Kim she’s my wife and I like having her with me…I think she knew she lost and one way to slam him was moving. She never thought Lina would say fight her for custody…Thank goodness she did and I loved the way Laura wrote it to seem that Kim way underestimated Lina…He Agrees for only a two word statement was one of the most powerful moments in SN to me…

        • janet says:

          Remember Kim thinks she’s the best thing in the world so she’ll make herself believe it was her choice to move on from Phil. I don’t think she would let herself believe Phil chose Lina over her. In the end, he wasn’t worth the trouble anymore. Also, Kim didn’t care about Liam nor wanted him because he was always just her means to an end. Her ball and chain that she would have fobbed off to others in NY anyway so that custody meneuver was completely out of spite. She wanted Phil to suffer. You know I really think I know Kim inside out. Lol
          She is so happy in New York. Laura, who is she dating now?

    • Ann says:

      I think the light bulb went off in Kim’s head when Phil stormed over to her house after the Yoga Studio incident when Kim talked to Megan. That’s when Phil really got into her face and said she was an easy fuck. After that point, she seemed to back off from texting him and sending him pictures of Liam.

    • Tara says:

      Kim wanted Phil. She thought Liam would be a means to an end. She had to have been thinking… If I have his baby, he’ll leave his wife. When that didn’t happen she walked away.

    • Katie says:

      Ditto to what so many of you said- she didn’t ever accept that Phil didn’t want her. She likely still
      believes he wants her. But she didn’t want to be a mom more than she did want to get Phil.

  45. Tracie says:

    Good Morning Girls, based on the Epilogue do you believe that Logan was Liam’s pick during his last two years in HS, even though Katy might of lived at home while going to college?

    Also, I’m hoping that Lina became the primary caregiver in the evening when she was home. I think that would of come natural to Lina she was a loving mother…I loved how Phil noticed her fussing over Liam, like she use to do their own children in the New Years Day scene…

    • Laura says:

      I think Liam would naturally be most drawn to Logan — want to follow him around, etc. But he would maintain his close bond to Katie.

      Lina was definitely the primary caregiver — no doubt in my mind.

      • Ann says:

        Yes Liam loves his Lo Lo!

      • Tracie says:

        I’m so happy you said that…that sweet baby Liam deserved to have a wonderful mother like her…..

        Logan was such a good brother to his sisters…I also noticed at times he seemed closer to Megan or maybe Megan was closer to him…In the scenes with the kids Megan was always on the couch next to Logan….I bet Phil’s heart expanded with love knowing Logan and Liam where building a relationship….Chapter 37 rocked for me and I absolutely loved Phil’s reaction to Logan holding Liam…

        • Ann says:

          Kim was such a piece of crap. How could anyone, especially a mother, be so cold hearted towards their child.
          I think when Lina saw Kim’s true colors towards Liam she also went into momma bear mode. Remember what she said to Adele, that if she had to quit work she would for Liam and that there was no way the weren’t getting him!

        • Tara says:

          For me it was chapter 35 that opened the door to Logan accepting Liam.

          Phil and Logan desperately needed to deal with their relationship before Logan would accept Liam. It was so emotional hearing Logan’s thoughts and feelings and Phil knowing that no matter how much he demanded respect as a parent, he would now have to earn it. I think the discussion during their walk started that healing.

          Logan’s only 15, his world is still very black and white and Phil was expecting him to accept that life is really lived in the grey area in between.

          • Laura says:

            I agree — and Logan definitely saw the world in black and white.

          • Tara says:

            Laura, you did an amazing creating Phil and Logan’s relationship. It’s such a tough age for boys and their dads, and you really captured it.

            Cat Steven’s has an amazing song called Father and Son. It captures that struggle boys go through at that age. My son plays it and I tear up every time he performs it. If I could figure out how to post a Facebook link, I’d share it.

  46. Laura says:

    I tried to make this story as realistic as I could. I have lived and breathed the Hunters for almost 800 pages and two years. I know them. I know Lina and I know Phil — I created them. I tried to convey Phil’s remorse because that is what he truly felt. There are dozens examples throughout SN where Phil put Lina before himself. I understand there are readers who will never forgive him. Ultimately, Lina is the only one who had to and she did.

    • Kayberla says:

      Tough subject and a hard line for many readers. I suspect you need some pretty thick skin when you write the kind of stories that evoke ugly emotions. On the plus side, I’ve read hundreds of books where I could not care less about the characters the second I close the cover so, kudos to you for making them feel so real.

      • Laura says:

        Thank you, Kayberla!

        Yes, I’m working on the thick skin part — some days are better than others, but at the end of the day, I’m happy readers are connecting with the characters.

    • Tracie says:

      You did an absolutely wonderful job with the Hunter’s and their story Laura….I don’t care what you write about as long as you write…I’ve lived the Hunter’s with you for a year and can honestly say I’m thrilled with their HEA!

      • Ann says:

        Laura you are a true talent. I lived and breathed these characters in my mind and with you fellow bloggers. I know cheating is not a popular romance genre but for some reason I can read these types of books. However I need the cheater to redeem him or herself! Great story on the Hunters.

    • janet says:

      I really want to say this….I really appreciate everyone’s views here and can understand where Kay is coming from. I think Laura asked us here before if we can forgive a cheater and everyone had different answers. Maybe it still comes down to that question and our personal views on the subject. For that reason, I tried very hard not to personalize this book when I read SN. Truth be told, I honestly could not relate to any of the characters. Would I forgive a cheater? No. How about my kids? You are kidding me right? Could I accept somebody else’s baby as my own? Only through an adoption agency. However, I still loved SN because it was all about Phil’s journey to redemption. NOT my husband’s! The affair was an integral part of WPF but not in SN. Laura addressed Phil’s transgression in SN and that wasn’t glossed over. Then she went on to show over and over again how Phil put Lina first and kept his promise to her. SN may not be my version of happily ever after but it is Phil and Lina’s version. Only theirs and Laura conveyed it beautifully. I should know because if Laura wrote 800 pages, I bothered her for every single of those 800! Laura, you know Phil isn’t my favorite character but you wrote him superbly to the point where I will keep a lookout for him for Tracie and Ann in the future.

      • Laura says:

        the adoption agency line made me LOL. Thanks, Janet

      • Tracie says:

        I love you J-Girl….Phil is so hot isn’t he??? I’m also happy Nick got his HEA…you and him both deserved it….I didn’t even throw up in my mouth a little when I typed that about Nick LOL….She how you are influencing me for the better my Salt…

  47. kay says:

    Laura, very satisfying sequel. Bravo. While I appreciated discovering Phil’s POV, I found him less sympathetic in SN than WPF. If Kim was just an easy fuck, he still made the effort to be with her at the very least several times a week if not almost daily AND on the weekends. Still cannot wrap my head around that, if he sooo loved Lina and his family. I don’t care what body part he was thinking with, it just doesn’t compute for me. I sure would have liked to hear his POV on coming home from Kim’s bed to his own house. Just how did that disconnect work for him?
    Especially considering that he and Lina were still being intimate during this time “Did you know it’s been three weeks?”(since Lina and Phil had made love) in the first chapter of WPF. I understand he is very sorry for what he did…I just can’t understand how he could do what he did consistently for FOUR months. He says it could have been anyone, Kim was just convenient. So was he trolling already?
    Steamboat explanation is certainly not as awful as I first thought, but he allowed KIM to convince him that it would be okay even when he realized what a mistake it was. Seriously, Phil?
    And finally how could he not realize that Kim had a bigger agenda for the two of them? She is not exactly a subtle person. His put down of Kim that she could have been anyone speaks as badly of himself as it does of her. He risked his family for this? What a jerk. Sorry, Tracie…

    • Laura says:

      Kay — thanks for your comments. When Phil said ‘you could have been anyone — you were convenient’ he was trying to get her to leave him alone. I’m sorry I couldn’t redeem him for you. He had a very bad four months because of failing at home — the book was about an affair and I think in the end he took responsibility for it. He certainly can’t undo it. Laura

      • Kay says:

        And still I really liked him and was pulling for him to reconcile with his family completely. So I would say you did a great job of redeeming him, even for me. I guess I just can’t understand how he could do what he did. I have been reading earlier portions of the blog (obsessive much?)and saw where you pointed out that it was more than just sex, it was a “fling” which to me indicates there was more emotion involved that Phil might have wanted to believe. There were so many insightful comments from your readers that helped me understand various scenes so I will continue to catch up on earlier postings.

        I am so looking forward to reading your other books but know I will be revisiting the Hunter family.

        I saw where you mentioned you might be able to email and/or post deleted and extra scenes from this series. I would love to add my name to the list to see those if possible.

        Thank you for both of these books and for so generously sharing your thoughts with your readers.

        • Laura says:

          Hi Kay —
          Thanks for your words.
          One final point on the office scene (because I can’t seem to help myself in my defense of Phil). Kim showed up to a meeting with his dry cleaning — clearly trying to convey that she was involved in an intimate relationship with him (a married man) in front of his clients, associates, and other lawyers in the Baltimore community. He knew this information would get out and possibly create more gossip and pain for his family. At that point his only focus was to get Kim to stop — he was intentionally crude and dismissive. Did he mean it literally? No. She was beautiful, and a sharp attorney — she wasn’t just anyone. But he wanted her to believe she was so she would leave his family alone.

          As far as going back and digging up extra scenes — that would take more work than I’m wiling to do right now. And maybe I need some time away from this family. My mind is moving on to the next novel. If I decide to do this at a later date, I will definitely include you in the distribution.

          Thanks Laura

    • Ann says:

      Kay, I know we all have our opinions of Phil, and I for one got upset with his actions in WPF. I went back and forth on him. However, in SN I think Phil did redeem himself. Yes he did cheat, but I think he deserved a second chance. I’m not making excuses for his past, but he did everything he could to make it up to Lina and his family. In my opinion, I think he was more sympathetic in SN than WPF.
      That’s what is so nice about these comments, we get to read each other’s POVs and discuss.
      However, it was still a great book. I love the way Laura writes. For some reason I am into these books about cheating now. Don’t know why!

    • Katie says:

      Hey Kay, valid points. But I’m not sure anything in SN could’ve changed how you feel. He cheated and lied for too long, and some can never get past that. And that’s ok!

    • Kayberla says:

      I think the most important fact here is that there IS no excuse. No reason given can excuse what Phil did and he’s not entirely certain why he did at all. That’s why the book isnt really about the affair, but how a family can heal and come together and how amazing true love can really be. There’s no excuse, but Lina could love him enough to forgive. And Phil could love her enough to accept blame without trying to justify his stupidity and spend the rest of his life showing her how important she is, despite his 4 month hiatus from common sense.

      • Tara says:

        Well said. If this was Facebook, I’d be hitting the like button.

      • Tracie says:

        Phil was the most redeemable man I’ve ever had the opportunity to read about…We each have our opinions and jerk would never cross my mind in regards to Phil! He was a man who made mistakes, but loved his family enough to make them right…TeamPhil now and forever….

    • Tara says:

      Kay, I totally agree the 4 months is something that is very hard to reconcile, but I felt this book was about them choosing to let go of the past and move forward.

    • janet says:

      Waaaah, Laura will never write another cheating book. You just can’t win with this subject. I just like Laura’s writing. I wish you could have forgiven him for your sake.

  48. Katie says:

    I finally read through all of the comments. I agree with everything! Laura brought us together in so many ways with this family and their story. 🥰🥰🥰

    Tara, I’m super mellow, and I probably won’t be hard enough on my daughter, but I’d be livid if she decided to just not turn in a final paper! Bad, bad boy!

    • Tara says:

      He’s a pistol, the scary thing is he’s exactly like my husband was at that age. He turned it in after the English teacher called me—it was so late the best grade he could get was 50, and he somehow managed an 87 for the marking period. This would have been tame behavior for my hubby at that age.

  49. Tracie says:

    Good Morning Girls, I can’t help it…I have to check in and hope you all are doing well…Deighj where are you???

    Loved your comments Tara…

  50. janet says:

    Deighj, you ok?

  51. Deb says:

    Hi Laura, congrats on the release of SN! It was an all-nighter for me – thank goodness I’m on holiday at the moment! I kept telling myself “just one more chapter” and then gave in and kept going to the end! You’ve done an amazing job with it and definitely tied up the loose ends for me, particularly with Phil’s POV – I felt a lot less violent towards him lol. Thanks for another fantastic read, bring on the next one! ☺️

    • janet says:

      Debs! I’m so sad to let this family go! We all had a great time though didn’t we? I too felt a lot less violent towards Phil. I’ll even go a step further and say if Phil lets me I would give him a big kiss on his neck if I ever come across him somewhere in this world. This is definitely from Tracie and Katie’s influence. haha. Take care..till Lucas makes an appearance. Let’s spread the word and give a thumbs up on Amazon for our Laura. She wrote this for non Philivers like us.

      • Deb says:

        Hi Janet, yep the blog has kept me going while waiting for this book! I’ve never cared about a book release so much before which is all credit to Laura and her talent…will spread the word down in my corner of the world…

    • Tara says:

      Deb, you’re right, it does tie up the loose ends; and yet it could stand alone. His POV was so vital to the overall telling of their story. It’s hard to move on and read something else.

      • Deb says:

        Hi Tara, yes indeed, think I’m suffering from reader’s hangover at the moment lol – nothing else quite cuts it like Laura’s books!

    • Tracie says:

      I pulled an all-nighter to Deb…I just couldn’t put it down…Have fun on your holiday….

    • Laura says:

      Thanks, Deb! It was a long road. I look forward to Liam growing up — I think he’d make an interesting H

  52. Tara says:

    Some thoughts…

    Phil… Phil had me with the scene in the church when he was thanking God for answering his prayers. He’s so thankful he has Lina and his family back. We needed his thoughts to better understand him, being such a strong alpha kept him from communicating. His love for Lina was beautiful.

    Lina… I loved that Lina continued to grow and loved that she found a career that made her so happy. We already knew how difficult it was for her when Liam first came to the house and it was still brutal.

    Liam… he’s delicious and I want him to come live with me. His bond with Phil is beautiful. When they found him at that horrible house abused and with bite marks, it was heartbreaking and I was surprised that Lina didn’t tell Phil then that the weren’t giving him back to Kim.

    Kim… OMG she actually was bunny boiling crazy. She stalked him, she truly thought he was going to be hers and used that poor baby as weapon against him. Crazy and sad, not love your own child. And, my god, did she really need him to basically call her a whore before she realized he was long done with her.

    Logan… I love Logan—his feelings and emotions were spot on for a 15 year old boy. His father broke his heart and he wasn’t going to let go of his hurt feelings, and he needed to confront him and we as readers needed to hear what he had to say, particularly on their walk.

    Katie… You can’t help but love Katie, she’s so open and accepting of Liam. You knew she’d still be with Matt.

    Megan… even after finally showing empathy and understanding towards her mother, she’s still frustrating. So condescending about her mother’s career and not thinking of Liam as her real brother, and asking about her father’s money.

    The pictures… the explanations worked. But, he really was a moron about Steamboat.

    Nightmares… Phil’s nightmares were so telling of his fears and emotions.

    Thanksgiving… in WPF I found Lina being alone so sad, but I think Phil was so heartbroken and alone—heartbreaking!

    The church… it was the perfect place for Phil to go when he was heartbroken about losing Liam. Father Matthew had such faith in Lina’s ability to love. And, Lina finding Phil there, just perfect.

    So honestly, there were times during the story that I felt like Laura must have been sitting on my couch listen to the goings on in my home. I think my husband and I have had the same conversations about our son and how I babied him and how frustrating it is to deal with the control and over protectiveness. Phil’s interactions with Logan over his report card and sports and expecting respect could have been verbatim out of my husband’s mouth.

    • Ann says:

      I feel the same way Tara.

    • Laura says:

      Tara — beautiful! Thank you! Jordan said she cringed during the History grade scene — she felt like she was Logan. LOL

      • Tara says:

        Jordan I was cringing with you—lol.

        Totally my son, over the years he’s lost his DS, Xbox, and iPod. Never over a history grade, always over math. And honest to god, last year when he actually thought his English grade could hold up to not turning in his final term paper for the year, I thought my husband’s head was going to explode. He threatened to take away all of his guitars. I had to talk him down from that one.

    • Katie says:

      Tara, does your husband look the part of Phil?

      • Tara says:

        My husband is 60 years old and was a wrestler.

        So no, he doesn’t look the part of Phil. But, my god, the personalities are so similar. A couple of times I laughed out loud, not because something was funny but because the conversations and arguing could have really been my family. Some of what Phil says I’ve heard come out of my husband’s mouth—lol!

        I think I love Logan so much because he really reminds me of my son, and I totally understand Lina’s wanting to protect Logan.

    • janet says:

      check, check, ditto! We agree!

  53. Tracie says:

    I loved the scene where Adele took William back to his office…cracked me up…..I could just see those two standing at Liam’s graduation looking worn out holding their little tornado…

  54. Ann says:

    Hi ladies. Just got a chance to catch up on all of your posts. All good points. Kayberla, I think a lot of us felt like we needed more on Phil’s thoughts after WPF and you did an excellent job of conveying those thoughts.
    Some of the things I loved and picked up on were:
    1. The empty plate at Thanksgiving and Phil didn’t even eat!! That’s heartbreak! Having us hear his thoughts really helped me to understand that he really loved Lina so so much.
    2. I think Phil had more appreciation of what it’s like to be a mom with mommy duties. As Phil stated, he never ever changed diapers, fed, or made trips to doctor appointments for his other children. Lina always handled it all. When he had Liam, he did everything.
    3. In WPF I never realized how much of a role that Phil played in the lives of Lina’s sisters and her mom. He did step up to be the male figure in their lives as pointed out by Susan Hunter. It may have come across as controlling, but Phil was just a teenager himself when that horrible night happened and he appointed himself as Lina’s protector, etc. It made me understand his issues with Drew better.
    4. Katie, the middle child with all the problems in WPF, seemed to be the most grounded Hunter child in SN. She accepted Liam right a way as her brother. Plus she had no problem taking care of him; of course she had to get some bucks out of Phil. lol
    5. Kim being psycho. I knew she was an evil bitch, but never thought she was truly touched in the head. She becomes infatuated with Phil and moves to Baltimore and takes a lesser salary to be near him before she even knows him. Tells her parents that Phil is divorced. Jesus, that’s scary. Plus the way she treated Liam was horrible. It just made her look pathetic and disgusting.
    6. Loved how Lina actually grows with confidence with a career that she loves. She had no problem standing up to Phil. She’s a softie when it comes to Logan and I loved that. Loved how she had to take a night alone so she could mourn the loss of her baby boy when she found out that Logan and Tiffany were burning up the sheets.
    7. The church scene with Phil sobbing, brokenhearted about Liam leaving with Kim. We all know he was struggling about asking Lina to help raise him because of all the crap that he had put her through. He felt that he could not do that to Lina and he was torn up about it.
    8. When Lina says regarding Liam, he’s a Hunter and belongs with us!
    9. Oh, and the visit to the vegan restaurant for Katie’s birthday. I loved Phil getting the hamburgers at Wendys. I laughed out loud when Drew was explaining the meat processing plant and Phil says something like, I don’t want to hear about that plant while eating a God damn hamburger!!!

    I just loved everything, Laura.

  55. janet says:

    Lord have mercy! Nick had like two scenes! lol Give him a break. I don’t think I’m bashing Phil when I say Phil did his thinking/non thinking with his Dick while Nick with his heart. So what if he likes his flowery poetry of Rumi? Doesn’t make him any less of an alpha just a different one. I still believe he genuinely was in love with Lina even knowing it was wrong. Also, I actually loved the exchange between Phil and Nick at the lax game when he uses Lina to cut into Phil’s insecurity. He knew exactly what he was doing to Phil’s psyche by telling him that story. And strictly from an ethical standpoint, if Phil could get Nick’s license revoked then so can Kim with Phil. A partner at a law firm having an affair with a lowly associate? Sure it happens all the time but with the me too movement going on, Kim could have had a field day with getting Phil disbarred. I think most companies have gotten rid of the no fraternizing policy but that wouldn’t have stopped our psycho.

  56. Tracie says:

    How did Alice feel about Kim’s parents being added to the mix? I knew how she felt about Susan and Bruce, so I wondered about her feelings toward Kim’s parents.

    • Laura says:

      Alice was fine sharing Liam — she was his favorite, after all. She was also the only grandparent that lived close enough to see him regularly.

      Her bitterness toward the Hunters was 100 percent because they took Lina from her when she was still a teenager. As laissez-faire as she was about everything else, that was personal and she was hurt deeply

  57. Laura says:

    Oh and in answer to the question about text messages — yes, at some point it can read as unrealistic. He had an affair and we can’t undo it. What I tried to convey with the text messages in WPF is that it was only about sex — no endearments, nothing flowery, just meet up times.

    • Kayberla says:

      dang it. Now I’m mad at him again.

      • Laura says:

        Kayberla — what I meant to say was the text message were a hoax😉

      • janet says:

        Lol. I read a historical recently called Woman of Iron. A total bodice ripper so I can’t recommend. You know what the anti hero said to the the heroine after she confronts him? “When I’m hungry, I eat. If there’s only dry bread, I still eat it.” I thought this must have been Phil with Kim…

  58. Laura says:

    The hardest scene for me to write was Phil telling the priest that he was basically leaving Liam with Kim. Not protecting that little guy from the witch was against every feeling inside me.

    • Laura says:

      of course, those were the feeling of a mother. Phil wasn’t going to leave his family again.

    • Tracie says:

      He was keeping his word to Lina, about putting her first…broke my heart. The connection scene you wrote to bring Lina to his side in the church was amazing Laura…It tied together so beautifully

    • Kayberla says:

      That made my stomach hurt. To know he is so blinded by his guilt and needing to keep his promise to Lina that he sees that as his only option.

      • Laura says:

        He didn’t want to make Lina have to choose, because if she didn’t want Liam full time it would be her fault that he was with Kim

  59. Laura says:

    Did anyone like Drew? I know way too many Drews — LOL

    • Kayberla says:

      Drew was hilarious. I suspect everyone has had to sit next to a “Drew” at a party at some point.

    • Tracie says:

      Drew was interesting to say the least, but I can see how his talks would get a little irritating…I have a guy that works with me and if you ask him what time it is, he wants to tell you had to build a watch…He kind of reminds me of Drew…LOL

    • janet says:

      1/5 of my mom’s side is like Drew. Reciting the encyclopedia. The only redeeming thing is after the Drews leave, the rest of us can rip them apart. My uncle in law once made a “documentary.” A black and white at that. He made us sit through the 30 min of his crap and stopped at every opportunity to explain the meaning behind the scenes. Sheer torture. But my aunt critiqued it right along with him so they fit. Loved every single Drew scene!

    • Tara says:

      I found him rather harmless and gave great comedic relief without trying—so clueless.

  60. Kayberla says:

    Additionally, I like Nick less now. In his few scenes, it seems like hes trying to put a wedge between Lina and Phil just like Kim did. It made him feel more sleazy.

    • Tara says:

      I loved the tie in with Kathy Paige from When I Saw Her. Such a clever Easter Egg!

    • Tracie says:

      I told you girls about Nick a long time ago. He’s not Alpha enough for Lina and breaking her confidence and telling Phil he knew about the rape was pretty shitty too! I felt like he was trying to put himself on the same playing field as Phil, because he knew a few intimate details regarding their life…That would be NO!!!

      • Tara says:

        Agree, and I still think her connection to him was too tied his treating Katie and her thinking he saved her child. He was her personal shrink, helping her through parenting and life issues. It could never have been a real relationship.

        • Laura says:

          exactly, Tara. She was so grateful to him. He should have known better — attracted to her or not, he should have stayed away. It never would have worked.

  61. Kayberla says:

    My rambling thoughts after my first read through:

    Kim is a freaking psycho. When her parents were all grilling Phil as if they had a relationship? I could not believe how dishonest she was. I mean, I know she went to great lengths to get Phil, but the scenario she had created in her mind should have scared him witless. This woman could be dangerous in the right conditions. Yikes. Poor Phil, when he finally realizes how manipulative she has been and what an idiot he is for falling for it so many times.

    Text messages? I SO wanted to hear an explanation for those. I wanted them to have been doctored so it only looked like Phil was the pursuer. I’d have forgiven much faster, but Phil is an idiot. I already know this. I want neat and tidy and perfect explanations for behavior and yet, when I read books that offer those, it feels forced and fake. Real life isn’t like that.

    Again…Kim is a psycho who can’t take a hint.

    Phil, Phil, Phil…you didn’t realize Steamboat was a mistake until you walked in the door? I would like to meet you and punch you in the face. I don’t blame Lina for never wanting to get in that bed again, Coitus interruptus or not. I appreciated the explanation for being there and am happy it was not during the skipped spring break. However, Kim made her insanity perfectly clear and stupid, stupid, stupid Phil still took 2 more weeks to come to his senses. Grrrrrrr.

    Thanksgiving? Yeah, that was my moment. When he’s thinking about how being handed an empty plate the year before ruined the day, I wanted to hug him. I know I just punched him in the face, but this is how my roller coaster went. I doubt my poor husband will ever ask again how a book is going until I’m done with it. 🙂

    I loved watching Lina grow in confidence in her new job. Loved that she didn’t assume her usual role and let Phil be the head of the household.

    Ummmm…how sexy is it that Phil can’t get enough of Lina? I’m surprised she could still walk.

    Kim is lucky that Phil is not the sort of man to hit a woman. Her approaching Megan could have ended quite differently if he were capable of violence against women. One of these days, someone is going to hurt her and it will be because she taunted the wrong man. Even after Phil called her “easy” (gross) she still keeps going. Have some self respect. She’s so awful! I didn’t have any sympathy and I was glad to see the back of her. Poor Liam though. Wonder how old he will be when he realizes he was just a means to an end and I hope Lina is able to soften that for him.

    Megan was not my favorite character in WPF. She irritated me and she was so unkind to Lina so many times in the first half of this book. I very much liked that her run-in with Kim made her think about what her mom has been going through and made her reach out and apologize. Hard to believe that Phil’s affair could help that relationship between Lina and Megan, but it looks like it did.

    Katie is awesome. I love how she just rolls with everything. Being the child that Phil and Lina should be most worried about because of her past issues, I loved that she just kept popping up with wisdom.

    Logan made me so sad. To both want to hug him and smack him made him possibly the most genuine character in the whole book. Anyone who has parented a child through the age of 15, you’ll know exactly what I mean. Liam’s single minded pursuit of his Lo Lo cracked me up. You knew Logan couldn’t hold up against all that cute.

    I wish there was a law that allowed for the arrest and incarceration of Kim for being a straight up asshole. Her behavior toward Liam, his birthday, Christmas, the bite marks, etc, makes me think that she wouldn’t have given a rip about Liam even if he had been able to anchor Phil to her.

    I wanted to punch Phil when he lectured Logan about condoms. If you’d taken your own advice, we wouldn’t be in this mess!!! But then there’d be no book and I would have had to do something else last night.

    I liked hearing Phil’s voice. Without his voice in WPF, he often came off as dismissive about his affair. Hearing his inner dialogue really underscored that he was really just desperate to be the protector he used to be and save Lina from having those things in her head. It’s bad enough that it’s in HIS head. While I want a nice tidy reason for the affair, I liked that Phil doesn’t try to reason his way to forgiveness. He already knows it’s unforgivable and is always right there to say, “no excuses” and “I’m sorry”. Watching him fall in Love with Lina ever day over little things he missed was lovely.

    Lina rocks. New job, new outlook, new confidence and finally not feeling like less in front of Kim. Finally seeing her for the disgusting creature she is and taking charge of Liam was great. If Kim were less of a selfish cow, she’d have been taking notes because Lina is the woman. Loved Lina standing up in court and not even letting Phil think on it.

    100% believe in this HEA. Without question. When people talk about infidelity actually strengthening a relationship, this is exactly what they’re talking about. Each relationship in this family has been tested, broken, and then put back together and I firmly believe they all have a greater appreciation for each other. Especially Phil and Lina.

    Laura, you’re amazing.

    • Tracie says:

      Loved your comments Kayberla…you are so spot on with the roller coaster of emotion through SN….When Alice told Lina that her and Liam had the same overlapping aurora’s that she had with Logan, I knew right then that Phil would be out of the spotlight if they got full custody and Lina would become the main caregiver. That would be by choice too! You also see the dynamics between Lina and Liam in the Epilogue as well.

      Here we go Laura….What was Phil’s thoughts when Lina said “He Agrees”???? I wondered if he was thinking..”I love you so fucking much baby” or “Challenge her bitch, I dare you.”

      • Kayberla says:

        Awww, I loved that with Alice. I liked that hearing that made Lina thaw just a touch about her mother’s astrology stuff. Like, she WANTED to have a connection to Liam but was afraid to believe she could really have one, and needed to keep separate somehow.

        • Tracie says:

          When Lina bonded with Liam over that bottle, there was no way Kim was taking that baby from her. Perfect example of how a mother will fight for her child. I can only imagine how relieved Phil was when Lina took over nurturing Liam…Wow…

    • Laura says:

      Kayberla — thank you!

      I didn’t know until I started writing Swimming Naked that a sequel was necessary. When I first started, I figured it would be a novella. There were so many issues that needed to be resolved that it went on and one. And realistically, Logan was at the absolute worse age to deal with something like this. I wanted to strangle him myself at times!

  62. Tracie says:

    I also have to comment on my Logan….I was worried to death about him and how he would react to Liam. I can honestly say, I wanted to paddle his butt a time or two. But knowing how hurt he was over the affair and integration of Liam into the family, like Lina I overlooked his behavior. I think Phil handled him well with the walk scene. The scene with Tiffany was pivotal in moving Logan toward building a relationship with Liam. Chapter 37, when Logan was carrying Liam downstairs sealed the deal. I’m sure Logan started building a relationship with Liam from the moment on, based on the Epilogue and the “High Five” which I loved…….I love my Hunter men…LOL

    • Tara says:

      Logan was so real in this story. Not a perfect child, but a very typical teenager. He needed to work through everything and he needed to do it in his own time and process.

  63. Tracie says:

    My first comment didn’t show…but what I said was… I loved how Phil said “May I” when he took Liam from Kim…he wanted to make sure he didn’t touch any of her scorched flesh…..LOL

    I used scorched for you Deighj

  64. janet says:

    Guys! How much did you all laugh when Phil visits Kim at the hospital after Liam’s birth and there she is feeding the baby a bottle and wanting to call him Phillip Jr.? I worried a bit when Laura told us Phil can’t be mean to Kim right after she gave birth. What she should have said instead was it was one of the funniest scene (for me)in the book. Laughed so hard! Definitely needed that comic relief moment in that heavy scnene.

    • Kayberla says:

      She’s so crazy! How could Phil not see how crazy she is? Her little dream world was so sad.

      • Tracie says:

        What did you girls think about the scene where Kim said she deserved some respect???? That cracked me up…

      • Tara says:

        She was beyond crazy, she completely stalked him. He really did need a restraining order.

      • Laura says:

        I don’t think he was paying very much attention to her personality. She was a talented attorney and was beautiful (on the outside). He never looked deeper than that.

        • Kayberla says:

          I did like that Phil mentions how little they know each other. He doesn’t even know her family lives in NY! Obviously no talking was happening so it’s actually even creepier that Kim convinced herself this was love. Discovery has a whole channel dedicated to that kind of crazy, and it always ends in blood.

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