Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Sea Glass Winter - JoAnn Ross (Signet - Jan 2013)

Series: Shelter Bay (Book 5)

He was used to getting what he wanted. And what he wanted was her.

As an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Specialist, Dillon Slater had one of the most dangerous jobs in the military. Now, he’s enjoying the pace of life in Shelter Bay, where he teaches high school physics. He still gets to blow things up, but as the school basketball coach he also gets to impart leadership skills. His latest minefield: fifteen-year-old Matt Templeton -- and Matt’s irresistible mother…

Claire Templeton moved her troubled teenage son to the small town of Shelter Bay to escape the bad influences at his school in L.A. But when his attitude earns her a visit from the handsome basketball coach, she wonders if this role model might be too much of a temptation -- for her. Because though she isn’t looking for a relationship, she can’t seem to resist Dillon’s playful charm. But what she doesn’t realize is that Dillon isn’t playing games -- he’s playing for keeps… 

I loved this book just as much as I have loved the others in this series.  The main focus of the book is the developing relationship between Claire and Dillon.  Dillon left the military and took part in the Troops to Teachers program which landed him in Shelter Bay where he is the physics teacher and basketball coach.  Thanks to his time in the military he is big on teamwork and is very good at getting the kids in his classes and on his team to cooperate.  He knows about Matt's problems when he transfers to Shelter Bay and seems to have a handle on how to deal with him.  Dillon is immediately attracted to Claire but realizes that he will have his work cut out for him to convince her to give him a chance.  One thing EOD taught him was patience and he is determined to win her over.  I really loved the way that he understood her concerns and also her art.  Claire had moved to Shelter Bay to get Matt away from the temptations of LA.  She was trying hard to deal with his bad attitude over the move and was glad that Matt had basketball to help ease the transition.  She didn't expect to be attracted to his basketball coach and wasn't happy about it.  She has no interest in a relationship as she focuses on Matt and his issues and on her art.  But Dillon is persistent and as she finds herself more and more in his company she sees what a great guy he is.  She is amazed at how completely he understands her feelings about her glass art.  His attention to Matt and the effect he has on Matt's attitude creates even more feelings for him.  I loved the slow, easy developing of their feelings.  The passion was still there but it wasn't an overwhelming heat that ignored everything else.  I loved the proposal at the end - it was great. Matt's character was accurately portrayed as a teenage boy dealing with his own issues.  I liked his admitting of his own mistakes and the way he worked to live up to Dillon's expectations. He appears to have done some real maturing by the end of the book.  I really enjoyed seeing the other characters from previous books.  Their presence and stories were seamlessly included, not forced like some others seem to be.  

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