Monday, August 31, 2020

Blog Tour Book Review: Bayou Baby by Lexi Blake

Author: Lexi Blake
Series: Butterfly Bayou #2
Audience:  +18
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: August 25th 2020
My Rating: 5 Cups
Source: Social Butterfly PR
Blurb (from Goodreads):
A heartwarming contemporary romance set in Louisiana's Butterfly Bayou from New York Times bestselling author Lexi Blake.

Seraphina Guidry loves Butterfly Bayou. A young, single mom, she’s trying to find a place for herself in the town she cherishes, but past mistakes have made her wary. She adores her son but has sworn off men. She's dedicated herself to restoring an historic house and building her own business. A quiet life is all she wants.

Harrison Jefferys never expected to find himself in small-town Louisiana, but he has a job to do and a family to reconnect with. After years in the Army, he’s happy to spend time with his Aunt Celeste and his cousins in such an idyllic spot. When he meets Seraphina, he starts to think Papillion might be a great place to call home. But a secret from Sera’s past rears its head and threatens to tear the community apart.

Caught between the woman he’s coming to love and the only family he has left, Harry knows he has to follow his heart and with the help of the crazy, loving, meddling locals find a way to keep them both.
*Disclaimer: I received an e-ARC of this book from Social Butterfly PR in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my rating or the content of my review in any way.

**Disclaimer: This book contains mature content. As a result, my review may contain references to content intended for mature audiences only.

We're back in Papillon, baby! I've been so excited for a new book in the Butterfly Bayou series, and I'm very happy to end my summer reading with this book. It's one of the most heartwarming books I've read lately. Yes, I did cry, because this is a Lexi Blake book. Are you really shocked by that? No? Okay then. Really though, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Let me tell you all about it!

Bayou Baby is the story of Seraphina Guidry, Remy and Zep's sister, and Harry Jefferys, Celeste Beaumont's nephew. I don't even know where to start expressing my feelings about Sera and Harry, honestly. I have a lot of them, and most of them have me wanting to either swoon or cry. Or both at the same time.

Sera is a girl who hasn't had a lot of luck in her life. She's young, she's pretty, and unfortunately she's hated by the scariest woman in town: Celeste Beaumont. I liked Sera's story. She is a strong woman, one who loves her son deeply and wants what's best for him. And she's a good person in general, and her great-aunt saw that, which is why she left her everything she had. The transformation Sera goes through in this book is just wonderful. She goes from being scared of making waves, because of Celeste, to standing up for herself and not bow in front of that woman. Strangely, her strength also came from Celeste.

I could tell reading this book that Sera fell for Harry way before she admitted it to herself or to him. She was afraid to lose her son, which is why she hid certain things from Harry, but she fell in love with him and she fell hard. I loved how she allowed herself to be vulnerable around Harry. We see a little of her relationship with her brothers, and even though so far we've seen Zep as the wild, irresponsible one, he adores his sister and his nephew. But I don't think Sera was ever as vulnerable with him as she was with Harry, and I liked that she allowed herself to do that with Harry. She needed a shoulder to cry on, and that was Harry in the beginning. Then as things progressed, Harry started teaching Sera how to fix the house, and slowly, it felt to me as if Sera was not only fixing her great-aunt's house, but she was also fixing herself.

Harry was such a delightful hero. I loved him. I don't really remember if he made an appearance in the Topped series, but it's hinted at that he worked at Sean Taggart's restaurant before coming to Papillon. When he sees that Sera needs a hand fixing the house, and also keeping it from being condemned, he jumps in and offers his help. He is an honorable man that is willing to fight everyone, including the aunt he's just getting to know properly, in order to be with Sera.

What I loved about this book is that, for once, we get to see the perspective of the scary woman in this relationship. Yes, we get a few scenes from Celeste's point of view, and I absolutely adored them. We get to understand why Celeste is the way she is, and while I wouldn't go as far as to say I loved her, I did end up understanding her and what made her the way she was. She's certainly not the perfect woman she wants everyone to believe she is, and her journey throughout this book is one I really enjoyed experiencing.

I wouldn't be me if I didn't wish we'd get Cal Beaumont's story soon. He deserves his story told, and I feel like his journey will be a difficult one. Or at least I hope we'll get to see what happens with him in the next book in the series (which I hope won't be the last, because I love this series *throws the biggest puppy eyes at Lexi Blake*).

All in all, I really loved this story. From the house that Sera wanted to fix, to Shep, the very cute and very gentle German Shepherd, everything about this book was wonderful and I'm happy I got to read it. And now as always, I can't wait for more, because I truly enjoy everything Lexi Blake writes. She could probably write a grocery list and I'd find it fascinating, guys. Anyway....

If you like small towns, a good love story, and seeing characters growing up (both older and younger characters) then this is your book! Make sure you read the first one in the series first though, Butterfly Bayou. Bayou Baby can totally be read as a standalone, but it would be sad to not start from the beginning.


New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog in the world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance that she found success. She likes to find humor in the strangest places. Lexi believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome or foursome may seem.

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