Title – Up in Flames
Author – Abbi Glines
Publication Date – June 28, 2016
Series – Rosemary Beach, #14
As the Prada-clad bad girl of Rosemary Beach, Nan Dillon has been called every vile name under the hot summer sun. Some of her reputation is deserved—she’s never had to worry about anything but maintaining her perfect figure and splitting Daddy’s private jet with her brother, Rush.
But Nan is far from happy. Rush has another kid on the way and doesn’t have time to catch up with his sister. Grant, the last guy she truly cared about, chose to be with her half-sister, Harlow, instead of her. And Harlow, who has never gotten over the way Nan treated her when she first moved to town, remains distant.
So when Major asks her out, she jumps at the chance to date the gorgeous charmer. Though she doesn’t know much about the sweet-talking Texan, and though it’s clear he doesn’t want to be exclusive, dating him beats hanging out with vapid socialites or watching Netflix alone at home.
For a while, Nan deals with Major’s playboy ways, but after he burns her one too many times, she takes off for an impromptu wild weekend in Vegas. There, she meets Gannon, a darkly seductive and oh-so-dangerous businessman who knows exactly how to handle her.
With Major asking for a second chance and Gannon haunting her dreams, Nan has to decide who to give her heart to. But what she doesn’t realize is that these players are involved in a much bigger game—and they’re already two moves ahead of her.
Time and time again, Abbi Glines shocks and surprises me with the stories she has developed for each of the characters in the Rosemary Beach series. While I went into Up in Flames a bit hesitantly given that it was Nan’s story, I could not be happier that I didn’t let that deter me. This final book in the series was so unlike any of the previous novels, yet contained the signature Abbi Glines style, and even a bit of a more mature twist.
“Why was it that when men thought they’d lost you, they suddenly wanted you? It was a game to them, and I was done with games.”
If you’ve been a fan of the Rosemary Beach clan from the beginning like myself, you’d know that Nan created quite the reputation. She had become the “villain”, the one who seemed so aloof that readers weren’t even sure they wanted her story. I tend to like the broken and battered heroes and heroines so I fell into the anxious camp. I needed to connect with her to figure out where her selfish, nasty tendencies came from. I needed to get that nitty gritty, raw deep pull that was beyond having parents who didn’t give her the attention she wanted. Needless to say, Glines met, and exceeded, my very high bar of expectations. I tried to really disconnect with all of my previous notions of the character so that I wouldn’t go into the story already jaded. However, I was pleasantly surprised when the author didn’t necessarily try to redeem her. Instead, I felt like we were on a path to understanding, to embracing, Nan for the woman she was, rather than witnessing a sudden one-eighty in her personality. By doing that, I think Glines stuck to her creative vision, while also giving Nan the ending she deserved.
“For that kind of beauty, I’d accept the darkness. Because to me, it was its own kind of beautiful.”
My biggest drawback was that I had a hard time investing in the gentlemen of this installment. Due to the nature of the job and the situation everyone was in, it was hard to get inside anyone’s head. Even with the chapters from different points of view, I really craved more of what they were thinking and feeling. Furthermore, that ending sort of threw me for a loop. It wasn’t necessarily a good or bad thing, it just felt out of left field in some ways. Finally, since it was the last book of the series, I do wish that we had gotten a tad bit more of the gang – despite the aversion they have to Nan.
“We all had a void. We were born with it. Finding the filler for that void wasn’t easy. Sometimes it came to us and we missed it, sometimes we lost it, sometimes we didn’t know how to search for it.”
In the end, Up in Flames was so much more than what I had expected. Abbi Glines has turned up the steam, increased the intrigue, and even upped the angst with this release. It allowed me to see a whole other side to what this author is capable of, and I have to say that I really loved it! Up in Flames may not have made me a #NanLover, but I can definitely say I’m no longer a #NanHater!
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Don’t miss the rest of the Rosemary Beach series:
Fallen Too Far (Rosemary Beach #1)
Never Too Far (Rosemary Beach #2)
Forever Too Far (Rosemary Beach #3)
Rush Too Far (Rosemary Beach #4)
Twisted Perfection (Rosemary Beach #5)
Simple Perfection (Rosemary Beach #6)
Take a Chance (Rosemary Beach #7)
One More Chance (Rosemary Beach #8)
You Were Mine (Rosemary Beach #9)
Kiro’s Emily (Rosemary Beach #10) – FREE!
When I’m Gone (Rosemary Beach #11)
When You’re Back (Rosemary Beach #12)
The Best Goodbye (Rosemary Beach #13)
Abbi Glines is the New York Times, USA TODAY, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Rosemary Beach, Field Party, Sea Breeze, Vincent Boys, and Existence series. A devoted book lover, Abbi lives with her family in Alabama. She maintains a Twitter addiction at @AbbiGlines and can also be found at Facebook.com/AbbiGlinesAuthor and AbbiGlines.com.