Four hearts – just sooo good

Design Rating:

Four stars – i wish i designed it


February 22, 2022

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Built To Last

by Eden Rayna

Reviewed March 23, 2022

The more you push me away, the more I want to chase you. And I will catch you.” I sweep some flyaway hairs behind her ear and pinch the lobe between my fingers, giving her an idea of what it will feel like once I have her. “What you have in speed, I make up for in power.” Her pupils dilate and the pulse in her neck ticks. I want to seal my lips over it and feel her heart on my tongue.

Design: 4.9/5

I loooooove the cover design of this series! It is most often near impossible to pull black off successfully like this, but this sets the standard! Want to see how to do it successfully? Look at this cover. The black background, the brightness of the cover models as well as their body language and facial expression, with the gold font and the actual font choice… it is total perfection. I don’t even have to go into the book’s interior design – it is perfect – and of course I wished that I designed this book! But the reason that I don’t give this book a perfect 5 out of 5 is totally biased and personal and even superficial – the cover model depicting Scott just isn’t quite how Scott is described, in my opinion. I just feel that he should be taller and more built and friendlier- and better looking because Scott is described as all that. Scott is literally described as pure perfection, and so when I look at this cover model, I just don’t see Scott in him. Kelsey is totally there – this cover model is so beautiful and fierce and confident, I can totally see that… but ugh, Scott. Like I said, I’m totally biased about this… I’m so invested in this story and in Scott… but aside from this totally personal feeling and connection, this book’s design is perfect!

Review: 4.9/5

Eden Rayna has quickly become one of my favorite Canadian writers – and with “Built To Last” she makes me want to go to Canada – ASAP. If Canada is full of guys like the Black Ladder crew, get me on the next plane! And let’s not leave the badass girls out – Eden Rayna’s heroines are fierce, smart, strong, and completely capable – and amazingly beautiful, witty, funny, and sexy. I love the combo! This book is the second in the series, but can be read as a stand-alone, however “Not For Sale” was incredible as well so if you’re like me and love a good series, start there then go to this. You can thank me later.

“Built To Last” focuses on Kelsey and Scott and they are just the most incredible match. Kelsey is strong and independent, incredibly fierce, yet kind and smart – but she has built her life in a certain way that protects her from ever experiencing a hurt like she endured earlier in her life. Her walls are high and she is mostly conscious of her lifestyle choices and decisions – and is unapologetic about them – and honestly, you (as the reader) completely understand her perspective and back her decisions – you may not agree, but you get it. She’s a complete badass in every way though, whether it comes to her CrossFit fitness, her work as a badass business-owner, or how she looks out for her family. Enter Scott, a former bodybuilder who is described as an incredibly sexy hottie – let’s just start right there and be 100% superficial. I’m owning it, no shame, no judgment. The dude is built and he’s hot… let’s take a moment… Rayna describes him as the entire effing package and it’ll have the reader swooning at every turn. So aside from being this incredible piece-of-man-meat that you wouldn’t mind taking a (not so) little bite of, the guy is smart! And kind… and loyal… and sweet… and hot… and everything. Ugh, he’s everything. His persistence and reassurances are just what Kelsey needs – but what’s more is that their back-and-forths are so incredible to “watch” – the volley between them is sexy, hot, humorous, and will have you wanting so much more.

Kelsey and Scott are so different, yet so similar in all the ways that matter, and that combo is what really makes their connection so fun to watch develop. Their chemistry is just off the charts, and the “game” that they play makes for one incredible story. This one will have you holding your breath at times, it’ll have you upset at- and for the characters at other times, and you’ll even find yourself quite frustrated with the characters and some of the turn of events. It’s just everything. And it is all due to Rayna’s writing – which is top notch. I love the level of detail and how well she frames the story and scenes – making it effortless to get lost in a Canadian wonderland with two incredible characters. And her character development is perhaps the best part of her writing and these two books – the intertwining of the stories with time and space is not just entertaining but steamy and sexy as hell. Rayna seamlessly has you lost in her world, in the world of these amazing characters – and when it ends you feel a pang of loss. You desperately want more – you need it! Although it seems hard that she could top the characters and story – I felt that way when I read the first book in this “Black Ladder” series and had doubts that this second book could top the first… well, it did on its own merit – merits? There was more than one merit. I didn’t think I could like Scott and Kelsey more than book #1’s character but I DID! (Good luck Eden Rayna on making me love the characters in book three more than Scott and Kelsey… although that’ll probably be a losing bet thanks to your creativity and writing).

One of my favorite things about this series is the interconnected stories that I briefly mentioned above. Book #1 told us the story of Owen and Isabella and when we dive into Scott and Kelsey’s story, it is (more or less) happening simultaneously to Owen and Isabella’s story. So it was so fun to already know what’s happening with them – having little mini flashbacks from reading the first book – but it’s like a behind the scenes type of feel. I really loved that about these two stories, and Rayna is totally setting us up for two more books! You see, there are FOUR Black Ladder guys and we’ve just gotten to know two of them – and I loved getting the little glimpses of the other two – making you wonder what’s up with them – how are their characters and what’s happening in their lives going to be revealed when their stories come out? I know, these are big questions! But that night at the bar, when Kelsey and Scott first met (which BTW, the chemistry was off the hook!!!!) what was with Black Ladder eligible bachelor # 4 who barely looked up from his phone – who was so engrossed in something… what’s the story there? Who will his love interest be? How will his story intertwine with the others? I know, I know – these are big questions. But now we enter the waiting game… how many more months until the next story? Eden – I have pre-ordered – I am anxiously awaiting release date – do you need some help proofreading?! Call me, girl! In the meantime, you dear reader should pick up a copy and prepare to get lost in a Canadian wonderland… maybe one should book a flight and actually go – experience this Canadian-based story while in Canada? There’s a thought! I’ll be on the lookout for Black Ladder Construction signs and CrossFit gyms on my next trip to “Ohhhhhh Canada…..”

Amazon excerpt:


My friends think I only find love when it’s attached to a crippled heart that needs fixing. Having one failed relationship after another, it’s hard to prove them wrong. Until I meet Kelsey Reid—a sexy CrossFit guru, business owner, and philanthropist. She’s perfect, with one exception—my best friend says she’s off-limits.

We still find ways to spend time together because Kelsey says she’s never met a challenge she can’t handle. But when I ask for commitment, I learn that my best friend isn’t the only thing in our way.


My life is perfect. I love my job, my friends, and most of all, my active after-hours life.

Scott Preston could fit so easily into my routine because, on paper, he’s my ideal man. His bodybuilder’s muscles and dimples put my libido into overdrive. Too bad he’s all about a long-term relationship.

Convincing Scott to leave commitment off the table for our mutual satisfaction isn’t easy. And when things surface that I’ve kept buried for a very long time, I have to decide if I can trust him with my past, or if he’s not worth the pain.

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