Review: Searching for Always by Jennifer Probst

searchingforalwaysSearching for Always
(Searching For #4)
by Jennifer Probst
Publisher: Pocket Books
Publication Date: June 30, 2015
Genre: Romance
Rating:

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She’s an expert in helping others de-stress, but Arilyn Meadows is running on fumes. Along with her job counseling singles seeking soul mates at the Kinnections agency in Verily, New York, she’s a yoga teacher, animal shelter volunteer, anger management therapist, and helping hand to her beloved grandfather. No time to find Mr. Right—but after discovering her yogi boyfriend in a compromising asana, Arilyn would rather dog-sit for her honeymooning friend Kate than risk her heart on another downward dog. And when police officer Stone Petty—radiating masculinity and bad-boy attitude—is sent to her for mandatory lessons in cooling off when the job gets too hot, Arilyn vows to ignore his seductive glances and sexy grin. But there’s no halting their sizzling flirtation—a red-hot, high-speed chase that’s breaking all the limits.

 

 

 

My thoughts…

Arilyn is all about balance and finding zen. She eats only a plant based diet, she meditates on a daily basis, she believes that certain stones have certain properties to them when worn, and she is always looking to help others in need. Which is why she’s a yoga instructor, an anger management therapist, counsels people who are looking for that special someone, and volunteers at the local shelter. Basically, Arilyn is a very giving and calm person. However, Stone is not. Stone is a police officer who has seen some pretty horrible stuff both personally and on the job. His wife cheated on him with his partner, he lost it when he walked into a domestic dispute case and saw the husband beating his wife. Which has led him to Arilyn’s anger management sessions. In order to keep his job, he has to undergo her sessions and complete the course. Needless to say, Searching for Always is your classic case of “when opposites attract.”

I confess that I haven’t read the previous books in the series. I was worried I would feel left out since Arilyn and Stone have clearly met in one of the previous books. They didn’t hit it off back then either. However, aside from the brief mention of her run in with Stone previously, there isn’t much more to it than that. So, I was able to read this as a standalone with no problems at all.

I thought Stone was a great character. He was a mans man. He liked steak, he liked going out and shooting pool with his friends, and he liked to just sit around and bullshit with the guys. He lifted weights, ate fast food, and recently quit smoking. He definitely was not down to have a prissy uptight chick come barging into his life giving him tofu lasagna and making him do some ridiculous yoga poses for hours on end. So, yeah, they butted heads a lot. He just wanted to do his time, get the paperwork signed, and get back to his life. However, when Arilyn involves him the stealing and removing of a neglected and abused dog from a private property without any proper paperwork, he finds himself slowly sinking into her world. Pretty soon he’s taking care of the pup they rescued, trying the weird tofu concoctions she makes for dinner, and slowly integrating himself into her life as well. I thought his character was genuine and really down to earth.

Arilyn on the other hand grated on my nerves. I did not like that she pushed her lifestyle onto others. Meditating and doing yoga during your session is fine. Talking about making lifestyle choices for the better of your health and mental states is also fine. However, getting irate with your client because during lunch he went out and got a sandwich and a soda is not okay. I just felt like she pushed her beliefs too hard onto Stone. I mean, I don’t eat meat but most people don’t notice unless they take me out to a steak house and I wind up getting a side of macaroni and cheese and a side salad. *true story* All I’m saying is, she had a stick up her butt and she needed to let loose and allow others to be who they are without all the nasty judgement.

While I had a problem with Arilyn’s character, the dog they rescue, Pinky, more than made up for it. This dog was awesome and it’s not because it did anything special. The dog was used as bait for dog fights and was covered in sores and terrified of it’s own shadow. Okay, maybe that’s taking it too far. The dog wasn’t afraid of it’s own shadow because the dog had checked out of life. It was just this catatonic creature that you couldn’t help but feel bad for. Stone spent hours with this dog, just sitting in her kennel at the shelter after the rescue, just talking away about his day to her. Obviously, over time the dog started to get a little life back into her eyes but just watching where she came from and the tiny changes within her was beautiful. Watching Stone interact with her pulled on my heart strings. I mean, when the dog was about to get shipped off to a different shelter due to space issues, he fostered her. When the dog would whimper and whine when he’d leave for work, he would bring her with him. Mind you, Pinky was a hairless chihuahua with a bright pink collar and a pink sweater. I just loved the connection between Stone and Pinky.

“How had this happened? How had a half-catatonic dog suddenly become a manipulative, mushy, demanding pet? Sure, he’d spent a lot of time at the shelter talking to her. Sure, he’d given her a quiet, safe home to heal again, and finally let her sleep in his damn bed. Sure he took her with him almost everywhere because he couldn’t stand the idea of her crying. But this? Messing up his sex life?
Not gonna happen.”

While I had problems with Arilyn, I still enjoyed the story. I loved it when her friends mistook him for the hired cop themed stripper for the bachelorette party. That was a moment that definitely got some chuckles out of me. Searching for Always was predictable but it was still a sweet read.

 

 

Favorite quote…

“Imagine that. A woman who didn’t spend hours on her appearance. It was like the yetian intriguing but never-before-seen legend.”

 

 

 

4 Thoughts on “Review: Searching for Always by Jennifer Probst

  1. I wouldn’t like her pushing her lifestyle on others either, but I’m tempted to get it because I adore opposites attract reads.

  2. Argh! I know what you mean! Just because you choose a certain lifestyle, does not mean it’s for everyone else! However, it still sounds like a good read. I like that they are opposites.

  3. This story is not bad at all. Great review Kristin!

  4. I was loving the premise and how these two are obviously opposites but attracted to one another. I love the sound of Stone. I even like Arilyn – except for that whole pushing her lifestyle down others’ throats. Hmm… I giggled when you said she had a stick up her butt though! 😉 At least there was the dog to make amends. And from the looks of it, she did quite well. I’ve not read anything from Probst but I’ve always wanted to. I’ll give this one a looksie. 🙂

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