Tripped by Love, LJ Evans

“You showed me a grace I hadn’t thought I deserved…”

Sometimes you meet someone that you know something is there from the very start. But life, with its baggage and hurts, can stand in the way, stopping you from doing things that could enrich it. Cassidy has spent her life under the careful eye of her family. Every misstep could spell disaster for her. She wants nothing more than to spread her wings and fly, and this cafe can mean just that. She’s serving foods to the masses that are whole and healthy. But she feels she owes her brother for helping her get the cafe. Until that debt is settled, she needs to put her head down, work, and worry about raising her son, Chevelle. There’s no room in her life right now for romance. 

Especially not with Marco, her brother’s bodyguard. Marco is carrying a lot of wounds, and he’s so busy beating himself up and trying to atone for his mistakes that he keeps the light at bay, never letting it near. 

I might be partial to LJ’s books, but this one is pretty special. One of the hardest things to do in our lives is forgiving, even more so when forgiving yourself. I am a firm believer that we make our families. So as I watch not just our main characters but new and old come together in each book, this is what I think of when I think of family. Tripped by Love is a touching novel about letting go, about forgiveness of yourself and your mistakes, and about opening yourself up to let love and light into your life. 

A randomly related final note: This is not a religious novel. But I will tie in a quote that I feel applies to this book, so please bear with me. Many years ago, as I was studying religion in college, I read Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsch. One quote in the book goes, “relationships work best when you do what is best for you.” In Marco’s case, he doesn’t know what’s best because he’s too caught up in a cycle of reliving his regrets. That would make for an incredibly unhealthy relationship. But sometimes, the right person can come along and help us alter our perspectives. They can help you be a better you, thus allowing you to give yourself entirely to another. I think Tripped by Love encapsulates this quote and all of its intentions wholly. 

Tripped by Love is available for purchase on Amazon,, it’s enrolled in KU.

Read and like this review on Amazon, Goodreads, and Bookbub.

About the Book:
He’s a broody bodyguard with secrets he can’t share.

She’s a busy single mom with a restaurant to run.
They’re just friends until a little white lie changes everything.

Marco Hernandez is the somber trainer here only to bend my body into shape, but when the perfectly sculpted man holds my son in his arms and smiles, I’m a goner. Weak legs. Pounding veins. Too bad as my brother’s bodyguard, he’ll never look at me the way I crave. Too bad I don’t have the time between the café and my baby boy to persuade him otherwise.

Cassidy O’Neil has looked like an angel from the moment I met her…an angel I can’t touch. Not only because she’s my boss’s sister but because I’m still trying to redeem myself for the sins of my past. The tantalizing mirage of “family” she represents will remain just that―a dream-like apparition.

Until her ex returns trying to claim the son he never wanted, and I’m the one who shows him the door. The lie that falls from my lips while trying to protect her threatens the tenacious balance we’ve established.

Once it’s Cassidy’s heart on the line, how will I defend her? Especially if I’m the one putting it at risk.

Inspired by Ingrid Andress’s “We’re Not Friends,” this achingly tender, slow-burn, small-town romance from award-winning author LJ Evans has loveable characters, deep emotions, and a windy path to creating a family.

Follow along with the music as you read and open the Spotify Playlist for Tripped by Love.


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