Title: Running Away
Author: Jen Andrews
Series: Just Say Yes #4
Release Date: August 26, 2015
Nearing age thirty, Jeremy James is cruising along in life, doing as he pleases. No girlfriend, no wife, no drama. Women go as easily as they come, but inside, he feels something’s missing. After the birth of his niece, Hannah, and a not so gentle nudge from his sister, Zoey, Jeremy decides to make a change in his life and settle down.
Then he meets Teagan Donnelly. And she wants nothing to do with him. Teagan has recently come out of a three year relationship with a man who cheated, shamed her, and berated her for her weight and life choices. The once secure yet spirited woman cannot figure out what Jeremy wants with her. For Jeremy, it’s plain and simple. He wants Teagan to stop running away and give him a chance. But for Teagan, taking a chance with Jeremy means she could lose herself all over again.
Author’s note: While this is book four of the Just Say Yes series, it can be read as a standalone. This book is a spin-off from Andy and Zoey’s story, which takes place in books 1-3. Characters from the first three books will be mentioned throughout, but Running Away is written in such a way that there are no questions as to who everyone is. If you’d like to delve deeper into the James family dynamic and the wonderful characters, I recommend reading the first three books. Thank you! ~Jen
Jen Andrews had me absolutely giddy with this book. Jeremy and Teagan’s story was completely different from Zoey and Andy’s, and a perfect reflection of these two characters. I had a feeling I was really going to enjoy getting to know Jeremy, but I had no idea what to expect from Teagan. It didn’t take long before I was completely immersed in Running Away, enjoying the genuine emotion, unexpected moments, and delightful humor of Teagan and Jeremy’s journey. I’m so glad we got to see more of Zoey and Andy. It felt like coming home to old friends. Knowing that Zoey and Jeremy had a special relationship, I enjoyed getting to really see them together. Jen Andrews did a great job with giving both Teagan and Jeremy their own, distinctive voices, not allowing them to get lost in the comfortable mindset that comes from having known Zoey and Andy for three books already. Running Away was unquestionably Teagan and Jeremy’s story with the added bonus of being set within a family I already loved.
“I just say yes. It doesn’t get any easier than that.”
Poor Teagan was really put through the ringer in this book. Her character was tormented by both old fears and new foes, ensuring that her personal journey would be anything but easy. I loved the growth that Jen Andrew nurtured in this character. Her development was done in a way that felt raw and authentic. The insecurities, self-doubt, and hesitancy to be vulnerable that she experienced made her someone who was tangible, someone the readers could easily relate to. Each and every moment of jealousy or naïveté strengthened the connection I felt with Teagan. Jeremy proved to be serious book boyfriend material in his own right. Despite the many times I had the urge to slap him for his past mistakes, Jeremy quickly won my heart with his transformation over the course of the story. I adored watching him stumble and repeatedly embarrass himself as he tried to figure out what an adult relationship required and what it really meant to settle down and plan a future. Seeing him with Hannah was just icing on the cake, giving him that edge that made him totally swoon worthy.
“Life is so much better when you’re not running away from it…”
Running Away threw me for a loop several times, surprising me with the events that unfolded. Jen Andrews paced this story so as to simultaneously allow the reader to soak in the emotionally significant moments and remain entirely engaged in the story. Jen stirred up a rollercoaster of emotions with this story. Running Away had me laughing at the flirty banter and silly moments between Jeremy and Teagan one minute and nervous with anticipation the next. Jen Andrews made me feel Teagan’s incredible vulnerability at times and conjured up absolute outrage at certain devious characters in others. This story was a very visceral experience, my connection to the characters making me feel this story all the way through. Jen Andrews continues to impress me with her growth as a writer and creativity as a storyteller. In Running Away she hooked me once again with her charming characters, witty dialogue, and heartfelt emotion. I can’t wait to see what Jen Andrews plans on writing next!
Add to Goodreads
Check out the rest of the Just Say Yes series:
The Reason (Just Say Yes #1)
Just Say Yes (Just Say Yes #2)
Beautiful With You (Just Say Yes #3)