As the oldest O’Donnell, Ronan took on the responsibility of caring for his younger brothers after their mother left and their father drowned his pain in alcohol. After his brothers were old enough to fend for themselves, he got out, got married, and set himself up for a great life. Or so he thought. Next thing he knew, Mandy had turned him into someone he didn’t recognize, and he hated what he’d become.
Back at The Buoys, his family’s fishing resort, for the filming of the reality tv series Hooked, Ronan would be happy to stay in the background. He’d prefer it if the cameras and Hope, Hooked’s beautiful producer, would just leave him alone. He has no desire for fame or fortune. He just wants to get back the parts of himself that he lost.
Since his painful divorce, Ronan has been a proud member of the “catch and release” club, never staying with one woman long enough to develop any real feelings. But there’s something so honest and unassuming about Hope that makes him let down his guard, and soon he’s falling hard. Maybe Hope could be the woman to finally convince Ronan to give love another shot.
Laura Drewry’s Fishing for Trouble series was a highlight of 2016. Both Off the Hook and Lured In were amazing, and I loved getting to know the two younger O’Donnell siblings. While Ronan was mentioned in both of these books, the glimpses we got of him were far from flattering. He came across as angry, gruff, surly. Not the kind of guy to do emotional heart-to-hearts. Not really the romance novel lead, if you get what I’m saying.
And yes, that’s how he appears. That’s certainly the first impression that Hope gets. But that’s not really who Ronan is. The real Ronan, once you strip away the heartbreak and pain of his divorce, is a sweetheart. He’s the kind of guy that finds out what your favorite dessert is and surprises you with it after dinner. The kind of guy to bring you a mug of tea when you’re working overtime. The kind of guy that would protect those he loves at all costs.
Going into this book, I was sure that Ronan would be my least favorite of the O’Donnell brothers. Turns out he’s actually the best. Anybody would be lucky to find someone like him.
And let’s not forget Hope. Hope, who is always prepared for any situation. Who regularly keeps safety goggles and bungee cords in her purse. Hope, who spouts off random facts when she gets nervous. Who is honest and warm and loving and still a grown woman who can handle herself. Hope, who makes the first move, because she knows that Ronan won’t.
I loved these characters. I know I say that about every book that Laura Drewry writes, but I just absolutely adore her characters. Can I move to The Buoys? Can I be friends with them?
Catch and Release was an amazing ending to a great series. All three books are fast-paced, engaging reads that will easily keep you up all night. The first two books were good, but Catch and Release is in a league of its own. If you haven’t yet started this series, I can guarantee you that it won’t disappoint.
Final rating: ★★★★★
Thanks to Netgalley and Loveswept for the ARC!