Monday, February 25, 2013

Blog Tour Review: Second Rate Chances by Holly Stephens (and Giveaway)

Second Rate Chances 

Second Rate Chances by Holly Stephens
Publication Date: January 10, 2013
Rating: 3 stars
Source: Ecopy provided by the author

Summary (from Goodreads):

Sam wakes up in the hospital expecting to find his girlfriend by his bedside. Instead, he finds a bleached-blond diva, claiming to be his fiancée, hovering over him. When he learns that he's just woken up from a coma and has lost the last three years of his life, any semblance of stability he thought he had falls down around him. All he wants – all he needs – is Lil.

After countless visits with her shrink and too many sleepless nights waiting for the one man she loves to walk back through the door, Lil wants nothing more than to separate herself from the life she used to have. But the moment Sam smiles at her, Lil knows it's going to take more than self-restraint to stay away.

Second-Rate Chances is about a young man fighting to regain his memory, and the one thing in his life that felt real. A modern-day Samson and Delilah, it's a look at what it means to love and be loved, and to fight though it seems hopeless.

What I Liked:

I truly enjoyed this book when I read it. The love story was kind of nice, and the steamy tension definitely made the book worth the read. I liked how Sam struggled to recall his past, and I liked seeing how Lil stood up for herself when things got too painful for her to handle.

This book has a wonderful happily-ever-after, and everything wraps up every well. There is no real, serious love triangle, although there are interests on both sides of the pair. I am glad that things worked out for the pair. No one really loses much in this book, except for the people that we as readers want to lose out.

I will definitely be reading any other books related to this one (sequels, companion novels, novellas, etc.).

What I Did Not Like:

Honestly, at several times during this story, I was bored. That in itself is a red flag for me, because I usually do not get bored that quickly or easily. But I felt like I could not follow the story as easily as I wanted to, because there was so much unnecessary fluff that may have contributed to the detail of the story, but was not presented in an engaging manner.

 I was extremely frustrated with the pacing of the story. I felt like one things happens (Sam has his accident and memory problems), and then Sam and Lil need to take a trip down memory lane, and things get rekindled, etc. It felt too predictable. There were some scenes, like the Christmas tree scene, that were unique. But honestly, I feel like I could have plotted this book out from page one. This can be a good thing, and a bad thing, but in this case, I did not really like it.

The writing style definitely was not the best. It was easy to follow, but as I said, I got bored at times. I feel like the writing style has the potential to get more developed, and I would like to see that in this author's writing.

I really did not buy into Lil and Sam's crazy past and weird mood swings. One minute they totally want each other, the next, Lil is so mad at him, and he is the one who has to beg her to forgive him, or whatever. What a strange and asymmetrical relationship. I did not really like it.

Would I Recommend It:

I would recommend this book to those that love New Adult or Adult books. This is nto the most amazing or memorable book, but it is definitely a light yet complex read that will hold your attention to the very end.


3 stars. It just felt more of a 3-star. I enjoyed this book while I was reading it, but I really do not think it is one of those that I will remember for a very long time. I definitely would read any sequels or companion novels that the author may have planned!

Was this review helpful? Please let me know in the comments section!

About the Author

Holly Stephens

People have often told me that I live in a fantasy world. Little did they know, I was building an empire of stories in my head to one day share.

I'm a mother first, a wife second, and a writer third. I'm so thankful to have been given this chance to get my stories out of my head and onto paper.

When I'm not writing, I sell plumbing (no I'm not kidding) and read romances that leave my heart a flutter. I know a ridiculous amount of pop culture information and can quote certain movies word for word. Music drives me to write and to also sing off key.

The Giveaway (tour-wide):


  1. The cover is gorgeous, but this doesn't seem like the book for me. I, unfortunately, can get bored quickly with romance books. I am very interested in the New Adult genre, though, but ... I'll put this on my 'maybe' list. Thanks for the great review :)

    1. Thank YOU, KK! I hope that if you do read this book, you enjoy it :)

  2. Sorry you were bored through some of it, but sounds like a great HEA and wrapped up ending.
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

    1. It ended very well! That made the book better ^_^

  3. The premise of the book sounds really good and different. But being bored during a story usually doesn't bode well for me or the book. And neither is something that it predictable.

    1. The synopsiss definitely drew me in - but yes, I was a little bored. But I still enjoyed it overall :)

  4. The blurb is one that would definitely have me picking it up so I hate that it was boring.

  5. This sounds cute. The synopsis reminds me a little of While You Were Sleeping (though obviously a little opposite from that, but the bleach-blonde fiancee, etc...). I dunno, though. I do tend to get bored sometimes. I'd read it if I got my hands on a free/library copy, but I don't think I'd splurge to buy this one.

    1. I've never heard of that one! But it sounds similar. I think your reasoning is sound :)


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