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The Travis Family #4

Brown-Eyed Girl

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A sparkling chemistry she can't ignore.

Wedding planner Avery Crosslin may be a rising star in Houston society, but she doesn't believe in love—at least not for herself. When she meets wealthy bachelor Joe Travis and mistakes him for a wedding photographer, she has no intention of letting him sweep her off her feet. But Joe is a man who goes after what he wants, and Avery can't resist the temptation of a sexy southern charmer and a hot summer evening.

After a one night stand, however, Avery is determined to keep it from happening again. A man like Joe can only mean trouble for a woman like her, and she can't afford distractions. She's been hired to plan the wedding of the year—a make-or-break event.

But complications start piling up fast, putting the wedding in jeopardy, especially when shocking secrets of the bride come to light. And as Joe makes it clear that he's not going to give up easily, Avery is forced to confront the insecurities and beliefs that stem from a past she would do anything to forget. The situation reaches a breaking point, and Avery faces the toughest choice of her life. Only by putting her career on the line and risking everything—including her well-guarded heart--will she find out what matters most.

291 pages, Paperback

First published August 11, 2015

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About the author

Lisa Kleypas

108 books28.4k followers
LISA KLEYPAS is the RITA award-winning author of 21 novels. Her books are published in fourteen languages and are bestsellers all over the world. She lives in Washington State with her husband and two children.

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Profile Image for Baba  .
859 reviews3,873 followers
July 23, 2015
4 stars. Rating clarification see below. Review posted July 17, 2015
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"That's one of the great things about being a guy: Sometimes we fix things by deciding it was bullshit and ignoring the hell out of it."
"That's not fixing," I had protested.
"Sure it is. Like Civil War medicine: Amputate and move on." Joe had paused. "Usually you can't do that with a woman."
"Not usually," I had agreed dryly. "We like to solve problems by actually facing them and working out compromises."
"Golf's easier."

"Uncle Joe," I heard Luke ask, "is that your girlfriend?"
I turned crimson, while someone choked back a laugh.
"Not yet," Joe said easily, holding one of the French doors for me. "You have to work a little harder to get one of the good ones."

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First things first. I abso-friggin-lutely loved and adored Joe! <333 *Baba makes incoherent noise* *Baba keels over in a totally blissful state*

What's on my to-do list in the foreseeable future:

I want to nibble at the corner of Joe's lips when an amused smile is playing around his mouth.

I want to lose myself in his beautiful eyes when they sparkle with merriment or mischief.

I want to put my fingers through his hair and feel them.

I want to trail my fingernails along his sexy stubble.

Apropos trailing…I sure as heck want to trail my tongue along his treasure…well…trail.

I want to hug him and feel his strong arms around me.

I hate swimming but I want to tread water with him and be licked all over and kissed oh-so thoroughly.

I want to go down on him.

I want him to go down on me, damn it!

I want to go to his bedroom, lock the door, throw the key away and stay between the sheets for a couple days and exchange bodily fluids until we are dehydrated. Does anyone have a spare bottle of water, please?

When a man elicits that many (sexually-charged) emotions from me, I can guarantee you he must be pretty extraordinary. Joe is and then some. He's gorgeous, handsome, sexy as sin, funny and to top everything off, he's also quick-witted. What can I say, I love the Travis men and, of course, I absolutely loved Hardy. I think it's time for a re-read of my blue-eyed devil. It's holiday season, so I should clear my schedule and jump his bones…sorry, I meant jump his book. Although me thinks it's going to be a tight fit. I wonder why that sounded so…er…sexual? Baba, get your mind out of the gutter, please.

Anyway, to sum this book up in one word:


What more could a heart desire?

However, considering this is romance, it didn't hit the very best button of the ultimate feeling, at least not for me. When I whooshed past the 60% or 70% mark and relationship-wise (what relationship?), Avery was still stuck at the point of I'm-attracted-to-him-but-I-can't-risk-anything-because-I-might-get-hurt-and-bruise-my-heart-again-and-I'm-busy-with-my-wedding-business-anyhow-so-I'd-rather-ignore-him, Baba felt a slight throbbing behind her eyeballs. Frankly, I would have loved to be busy with other balls. I'm so not sorry for that pun. Right, Joe?

So. Baba takes a deep breath and starts to drool over Joe. Again.

I wouldn't go so far and say that Joe deserved someone else, someone better. I guess these two fit. And I actually liked Avery quite a bit, whenever I could get past that perpetual and tedious state of not liking her, that is.

"Are you going to answer when I call?" he asked.
That didn't seem to surprise him.
"Then I'll show up at your place."
"Don't even think about it. I've had enough of your manhandling."
I could tell from the way he chewed on his lip that he was trying to hold back a smart-ass comment. Losing the battle, he said, "If I'd manhandled you just a little longer, honey, you'd be a hell of a lot happier right now."
I reached for the car door and slammed it shut. Extending my middle finger, I flipped him off through the window. As I started the car, Joe turned away…but not before I saw the flash of his grin.

However, I would have preferred for Joe to have walked down that path of getting to his happily ever after under much less exasperating circumstances. More romance--and I really do mean romance--and less aggravation. I'm aware that I should cut Avery some slack. But, come on, mourn over that painful incident, think it through and then move on. That douche wasn't even worthy of losing any sleep over after what happened. To pull back in such a severe manner and practically refusing to enjoy life, felt like she gave her ex the power to control her private life; she actually excelled at her job, a very prosperous business that she set up not long ago together with her half-sister. She deserves my utmost respect for being so (professionally) successful. Still, living like a monk can't be the solution in order to protect her heart.

An interesting cast of secondary characters (I loved barbed and witty Steven) and the added bonus of meeting the characters of the previous books again, gave this story a well-rounded and satisfying feel. As expected, Lisa Kleypas' writing was once again pretty stellar; I loved the witty dialogue, the Chanel bag metaphor, the bicker and banter and, while the author's steam level is never off the charts, it is always very enjoyable to read because it's a sensual experience nonetheless. BTW, are there any plans for Ryan to have his own story told? I want him to meet an extraordinary and warm-hearted woman soon.

Of course I loved the epilogue which was all about...

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How can you not love Joe? It's a physical impossibility.

Bottom line
Brown-Eyed Girl is not my favorite, yet it is a great addition to an already great series all the same.

Brown-Eyed Girl can be read as a standalone.

This being said, if you decide to not read the other books in the series, you're seriously missing out. I'd say you can skip the first book (Sugar Daddy) but read the rest. I'm rather sure that most of you will gobble these guys up like fine candy.

The woman in the photo was seductive, inviting, radiant.
As I stared at the image in wonder, Joe wrapped his arms around me from behind and whispered in my ear, "Every time I look at you…this is what I see."

Rating clarification
5 stars for Joe
4 stars for the writing
2.5 to 3 stars for Avery

All quotes are taken from the pre-published copy and may be altered or omitted in the final copy

**ARC courtesy of St. Martin's Press via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review**
Profile Image for ♥ℳelody.
635 reviews662 followers
July 23, 2018
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I knew I was in trouble when I gave this to my mom to read first, who is a HUGE Lisa Kleypas fan and within the first few chapters she was giving the stink face. Her and I are usually likethis when it comes to LK books, with most (ok pretty much all) being complete hits. You can never go wrong with a Kleypas book. I love and adore her and she's always at the top of my list in all things Romance. As thrilled as I was initially that Joe was getting his book finally, the excitement wore off gradually with the low underwhelming reviews and the endless search it took me to track down one freaking copy. Gonna get straight to my problem: this didn't read at all like a full length novel. This was more a novella than anything. The super rushed thin-plot, the insane insta-lust that had no rhyme or reason to it. Did I mention this is only 290 pages? Joe immediately chasing after Avery like she's the greatest thing since slice bread made no sense to me. You share no more than 5 words with her then are dying to take her out. Really?? I wanted to know why he liked her, why he wanted her. Joe being overly familiar with her after that first night and saying it meant something to him was near comical. The momentum of this story is as graceful and gradual as a falling piano.

This is first person narration from the heroine's POV but LK has had no problem in fleshing out and developing the hero's POV through the heroine's eyes, which is not easy to do. She did it in the first 3 books effortlessly. Here it was completely remiss. And what scares and worries me more is that this did not read or feel like a LK book. I mean I saw it in a few places with Lisa's natural ability to draw you into the secondary characters, and her fluid prose. But the essential element was missing here. Another problem: 90% of this story I did not feel or buy the chemistry between Joe and Avery. Joe came off very underdeveloped and seemed to just disappear into the background. Most of the time I struggled to even picture what he looks like, which is a total rarity for a LK hero. And this is a Travis man. The Travis brothers are big, brawny, alpha to the core but so charming and sexy they can melt you like butter with their words. Joe is a mere shadow next to his brothers and Hardy who demand presence and take up the page whenever they show up in a scene.

And as much as I appreciated that LK decided to write a full figured heroine, Avery tested my patience a good portion of this book. I felt she was all over the place. I personally never found it interesting or believable for a guy to chase around a woman who keeps turning him down, especially when it takes up half the book. Her stubborn hold ups over why she doesn't want to be in a relationship were weak and so cliche. It made her come off thin-skinned and cowardly. Her jaundiced cynical views on love and handing out ill advice to her sister about love and marriage not being forever was just annoying and absurd. And the fact that she kept brushing off Joe as a rich playboy nagged me to no end. She's curvy but super insecure about her figure, to the point she dresses like a grandmother from the 80s in baggy billowy ill-fitting clothes. For a 'fashionista' who worked hard and played in the fashion world of NYC, she doesn't have a stylish bone in her body. That made no sense to me. She's this rigid, workaholic perfectionist who has to have everything be 'perfect and high end' but she can't dress herself?? Really? More like she won't and doesn't try to. With someone with this kind of deep seated insecurity I was expecting it be a slow gradual process, for Joe to break down her barriers and get her to slowly realize that she can be sexy and curvy and not be ashamed. He needed to drill that in her head. But that doesn't happen. It quickly happens near the end with a quick impromptu photoshoot and Joe telling her she's beautiful, done! I mean...that's it? Someone who's gone that long being so uncomfortable and insecure doesn't overcome it overnight.

Everything was so cut and dry and super fast that I was amazed LK even bothered. It did not feel like I was reading a Kleypas book. She's very deliberate and gradual with her characters and story build up. She's the kind of writer where you always can trust that the story and relationships play out organically with a slow burn and you never question the chemistry. All aspects of this story seemed very forced. This honestly screamed of the author being forced to spit something out and in a short amount of time. Everything was so slapstick and hallow. The only slight enjoyment I found was seeing Avery's sister Sofia get together with Steven. Their coming together was really sweet and romantic and totally LK worthy. I definitely saw it there. And I know she won't but I really wish Lisa would give Joe's cousin, brooding gruff Ryan a book. He's scrumptious and just screamed 'write me a story' right off the page. Also the timeline of this book really threw me off. I remember when the announcement of this book came out Lisa said this picks up right after Jack's book. Not so. Ella and Jack's little boy Luke is 5 here and . Luke was a newborn in diapers in Smooth Talking Stranger. That's a pretty big leap.

Overall, not bad...just not up to Kleypas's usual caliber. It really felt like I was reading a chick lit book by another author who shall not be named but all the talk of wedding planning reminded me of it. I just wasn't as into it as I was hoping to be and I did not get a good bead on Joe whatsoever which disappoints me the most. As much as I adore the Travis clan I would much rather have had Lisa stop after Jack's book then do something so fast and underwhelming as this.
Profile Image for Lady Vigilante (Feifei).
632 reviews2,704 followers
August 9, 2015
3.5-4 stars!

Lisa Kleypas is one of the very few authors where I’ve either liked or loved everything she’s written – that’s almost 50 books! The genre doesn’t matter; whenever I pick up a book from her I know I’ll get a wonderfully romantic story that’ll warm my heart, and a new book hero to add to my favorites list as well. On top of that, Lisa Kleypas writes like no other, and her words are infused with so much wit and passion it makes her stories an absolute joy to read. Not surprisingly, Brown-Eyed Girl fell into the same category and overall, I enjoyed it! It’s definitely not my favorite in the Travis Family series, though it does tie up this contemporary saga nicely.

The main highlight of this book would definitely be the hero Joe Travis. He’s just as delectable and charming as the other Travis men and I’m so glad that the baby brother of the bunch finally got his happily ever after. He truly lives up to the title of hero – it’s refreshing to read about a hero who doesn’t use his damaged past to be a complete jackass to the heroine. And I think it’s this gentlemanly honor Lisa Kleypas’s heroes have that really sets her stories apart from other romances – there’s truly nothing about her writing that exaggerates or is over the top…everything feels natural, flows well, and is easy to connect with.

Now for the heroine Avery. I. Just. Don’t. Get. Her! Her skittish behavior frustrated me a lot, and I honestly never really got what Joe saw in her. On one hand I could relate to Avery – she’d been burned by love in the past from the people who were supposed to have her back so naturally she’d be cautious and cynical. But on the other hand, she’d push and then pull Joe back like it was nothing and her indecisiveness annoyed me a lot. But on the bright side, the author wrote her character in a way where no matter how much she frustrated me, I never hated her (if you’ve read Lisa Kleypas’s books you know how hard it is to outright dislike her heroines). I just thought she wasn’t good enough for Joe ;)

Because of my lukewarm feelings for Avery, in turn I also thought the romance wasn’t developed enough. Unlike the first 3 books in this series, the attraction had zero buildup and additionally, there weren’t any conflicts or twists in the story to add some spice and healthy angst. I guess what I’m trying to say is that this is a very straightforward book, not boring at all but at the same time...eh. It’s just missing that special spark that would’ve made this story a 4.5 or 5 star read for me.

Although I didn’t totally love this book, it’s definitely more of a hit than a miss. At the very least, it reinforces the fact that Lisa Kleypas is not a one hit wonder and can still dish out the goods. I’ll be real honest though – had this book not been written by her I would’ve given it 3 stars flat and called it a day. Despite the predictable and underwhelming storyline, the writing is one of a kind and it never fails to impress me so I gave points for that. In short, I would recommend this book (and series! And basically ALL of this author’s books) but I’d wait for a price drop first as $12.99 for a slightly above average read isn’t worth it.

Series reading order: Every book in this series is a standalone. I would recommend reading at least book 3 Smooth Talking Stranger because an important incident there is connected with Joe and is a part of this book.

ARC provided by St. Martin's Press via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Wendy'sThoughts.
2,658 reviews3,256 followers
September 7, 2020
4 For Joe, Yup, Joe Travis Stars
* * * *
If you have been following my ode to Lisa Kleypas and the Holy Grail of Brown-Eyed Girl... then you have read of my deep affection for the author and her series. To say I was sort of excited to have it in my desperate little hands would be an understatement.

My love for this series was due to my introduction to this genre through Ms. Kleypas' Historical Romance series and this first contemporary one. She went out on a limb with Sugar Daddy and continued to so well with Blue Eyed Devil and Smooth Talking Stranger. It took a number of years for her to do this installment for the last Travis son, Joe....and in this writing, she allowed him to shine.

Joe Travis is the type of man Every Woman would wish for... charming, sense of humor, ability to laugh at past mistakes, and an understanding of what is important in his life and how he wants it to be.
The fact he is wonderfully good looking and is from great wealth doesn't hurt but in this particular book... it is more of a given and the quality of the Man is what comes through. His goodness... his ability to see things very clearly for himself and to understand what the issues are of the woman he is pursuing... he sees what obstacles are there better than his love interest. He is patient, kind, caring yet will take no BS.

I Loved Him. I want a Joe Travis for me. I want a Joe Travis and he doesn't even need the Travis fortune... I would just take the man...He is that wonderful.

Now there is a story...and it includes all of the past Travis clan. We have them introduced to us with their backstories woven perfectly to allow us to catch up...But...If you have the inclination to take a little time and meet them as they were meant to be...then I would advise you do it...But it is not necessary. It would just give more of a flavor and an understanding of how Lisa Kleypas writes. Her way is Romance with a Capital R. She will describe things with ways which can make you swoon...She will not, however, go into explicit detail for her sensual scenes. She will use language to let you know what is happening but with concepts and feelings. This is her way.

Our story has the main love interest, Avery Crosslin, literally saved by Joe in their first meeting. We also have a few moments when she mistakes him for a possible assistant to the photographer employed for the wedding her company has planned. Once she realizes he is not an employee but one of The Travis family...she tries to apologize for her error. Joe is laid back, enjoyable, and lets her know he is fine with all of it. She is the one with people talking in her ear through a headset, things happening in her vision, and her heart pumping from just her quick meeting with him.

Joe takes all of this in...decides he would like to know who this firecracker is and lets it be known... he will want to have a drink with her later. Avery looks at him and shuts it all down...no way... First, she is working, second, she knows men like him do not look at women like her with real interest...cannot be... so she politely says thanks but no thanks and goes off to do her job.

For you see, as accomplished as Avery may be in her work, she is equally sure about love, trust, and relationships...

They. Are. Not. For. Her.

No, she tried that years ago and it only brought her pain and humiliation. So instead, she plans and makes happen others' dreams of Happily Ever After. She knows who she is...what she is strong in and that is her focus. She is very happy to have found out about a half-sister and she is the creative side of this team. The two of them bonded during a very dark time in both of their lives and the love which blossomed took root and they are now tied together happily with this venture.

Joe waited and watched this determined woman work her magic all over the event; took his time and then offered a comfortable chair to rest her feet and a flute of Champagne. Normally Avery would never drink or sit with a guest but Joe had a way of making her want to do it...Her sister and the team also pushed her to relax and cut loose. Sitting and chatting with Joe causes Avery to feel those sparks and when he asks her to dance...she steps into his arms. This moment is something special...this is a time when bodies melt into bodies and attraction cannot be denied...

Avery does not know who this person is...and she does not know who she is either...thinking and wanting to get as close to him as she can...This is not her way...But maybe tonight it can be...

We experience everything with Joe and Avery in this book... the beginning... the inner fight Avery has to allow herself to recognize what is being offered by Joe...Her need to really see herself as others see her, not the image and person she thinks she is...and the frustration Joe must battle to stay the course and have Avery open up to him.

As I mentioned earlier, I really loved Joe. He could be a bit of this true "Texas guy", a bit pushy with Avery, though

There are other parts of this story; the sister has her own romantic challenges and we experience first hand how all the Travis clan come together during happy and difficult times. We see how the wedding industry is not all pretty dresses and venues... how Mothers of the brides can become more of the Bridezillas then the brides.

And we experience what we all know in life; in order to truly live... we must put ourselves out there... be willing to love wholeheartedly... to trust without any guarantee...for only when we trust will we receive...and the gift received is worth the risk.

So, I was finally able to get my Lisa Kleypas/Travis Men fix and I am very thankful. I believe in Happily Ever Afters and Ms. Kleypas has delivered another one.

Sugar Daddy (Travises, #1) by Lisa Kleypas Sugar Daddy (Travises, #1)
Blue-Eyed Devil (Travises, #2) by Lisa Kleypas Blue-Eyed Devil (Travises, #2)
Smooth Talking Stranger (Travises, #3) by Lisa Kleypas Smooth Talking Stranger (Travises, #3)
Brown-Eyed Girl (Travises, #4) by Lisa Kleypas Brown-Eyed Girl (Travises, #4)

The sky opened and the NetGalley Gods have graced me with this! I am so excited to start this evening.
It seems I have a Reading Comprehension issue when I am Blinded by Desire. I didn't see this was only offered to my Aussie Friends.
I shall go back to watching the calendar for this treat.

I have put my request in for this book....
Now I must wait and see...
Whatever the outcome...

pssssst...just up on Netgalley NOW!
b>omgomgomgomgomgomg stars
I. Love. Lisa Kleypas. PERIOD.
She was my introduction to wonderful storytelling combined with all of the senses...I felt her characters, I cared about who they were and how things were going to turn out. I experienced their highs and lows and I was there when they realized they loved...and wanted to be with their partner for all time.

It didn't matter I was reading her historical books, I felt all of those things. I could identify by putting myself into the woman's place.

When I picked up Smooth Talking Stranger in 2012, I didn't realize it was one of my favorite historical authors till later. The book had this amazing family of men...powerful, charming and oh so deliciously sexy...and the way it flowed was just right. After seeing it Klepas, I did a mental nod...understanding why it felt so great. I searched for the rest of the series, reading it backward and loving every single moment.

Smooth Talking Stranger was published in 2009.... readers have been waiting for this book since then...I will continue to check and see if there are any updates or hints of an earlier arrival then August 2015. The good news is it is February 2015...so at least it is coming in this year.

A gifted copy was provided by St. Martin's Press via NetGalley for an honest review.

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Profile Image for Geri Reads.
1,232 reviews2,066 followers
August 9, 2015
4 stars!

“What do you like to read?”
I glanced at the pile of candy-colored novels on the nightstand and replied with self-conscious amusement. “Love stories. The kind with happy endings.”
“Do you ever get tired of knowing how the book’s going to end?”
“No, that’s the best part. Happily-ever-afters are hard to come by in real life, even in the wedding business. But at least I can count on one in a book.”

When you have a Lisa Kleypas book in your hand, you can be sure of a couple of things. One, you’ll get a well written romance between two flawed characters. Two, you get interesting second characters, add in some humor, a bit of drama and scorching chemistry, and viola—you’ll have a winner in your hands.

Brown-Eyed Girl is the highly anticipated fourth book in her Travises series. The story follows the youngest Travis brother Joe. We met Joe in the previous books but we never knew anything substantial about him except that he’s Travis HOT and is a photographer.

Brown Eyed Girl gives as more than a glimpse of Joe. Despite not spending time in his head, we get acquainted with his character through Avery Crosslin, the heroine in the story. Avery is a wedding planner who doesn’t believe in happily ever afters for herself. She has good reasons though. She was dumped by her fiancée at the altar and her father was a lying, cheating bastard. It made her insecure and frankly, it colored her views on men and relationship.
“If it’s real,” Joe said quietly, “it doesn’t go away.”
“How do you know?”
“Because that’s what real is.”

Avery met Joe during one of the weddings she was working on. After a scorching night in the sheets, Avery was backpedaling. She doesn’t think Joe is the guy for her, and she’s done with relationships. But Joe isn’t easily deterred. He pursued Avery relentlessly. And I gotta tell you, there’s nothing hotter than a hero in pursuit, and Joe embodies those qualities to a tee. Avery didn’t stand a chance.

While Avery did frustrate me with her insistence that Joe is bad for her, etc. etc., I enjoyed her drive and her ambition. There were times though where she really tried my patience. But I can’t complain too much because…Joe is everything. He’s the perfect Lisa Kleypas hero. I really do wish we get a glimpse inside his head though. But again, what the author gave us is enough for me.

“I’m the guy who’s right for you. I may not be what you’re looking for, but I’m what you want. You’ve been alone long enough, honey. It’s time for you to wake up with a man in your bed. Time for the kind of sex that lays you out, owns you, leaves you too shaky to pour your morning coffee.”

Now here’s why this wasn't a full five star for me. The romance between Joe and Avery was just okay. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed reading about the chase and the push and pull between them. But the resolution to the conflict—which wasn’t really much, in my opinion, left me wanting more. Thankfully, there’s a secondary romance in the book between Avery’s half-sister Sofia and Steven, and it was enough to make me feel invested in the story as a reader.

Then there’s the writing. I just love Lisa Kleypas’s writing. She made it look effortless. Effortless dialogue, effortless characterization…everything. As a reader, I could get use to that kind of top-notch writing. It’s clear that she’s one of those authors who’s on a realm of her own.
He had a lazy, easy way of talking, as if every word had been simmered for hours over a low flame.

Overall, while Brown-Eyed is not my favorite in the series, that still belongs to The Blue-Eyed Devil—which I should reread again soon—but it still delivers the kind of romance that Lisa Kleypas is known for.

Recommendation Notes:To be honest I'm conflicted whether I'd recommend this or not. On the one hand, it's Lisa Kleypas. On the other, it's $12.99 for a Kindle copy. The hardback is $17.75. If you have cash to spare, better get the paperback or the hardback than spend $12.99 on the Kindle copy.

All I'm saying is: READ this book but WAIT for a good deal.

ARC provided by St. Martin's Press in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Christie«SHBBblogger».
965 reviews1,248 followers
July 19, 2015

Title: Brown-Eyed Girl
Series: Travises #4
Author: Lisa Kleypas
Release date: August 11, 2015
Cliffhanger: No

This has to be the biggest gap between books that I can remember. Six years! And I was just as excited when this landed on my Kindle as when I first heard that Brown-Eyed Girl was in the works quite a while ago. That is how much I adore this author. I realized that this is my Twenty-fifth book by her that I've read and she still has that indescribable magic in her writing that provides such vivid and flowing elegance. There really is no romance author out there like her. Admittedly, I took a little break from reading her after the Friday Harbor series. For some reason, I wasn't feeling that same excitement so it was really wonderful to have those old feelings click back into place here. It doesn't take the place as my favorite Travis book, but a really decent addition nonetheless.

Avery is a beautiful, voluptuous redhead who spends her days planning romantic and memorable weddings with her sister. She has her own business, she's intelligent, non-nonsense, and she doesn't believe in love. That's right. She knows the most romantic ways to propose, the best wedding locations, how to decorate a wedding reception with elegance and style. But when it comes to her own love life, she's completely uninterested in finding her soul mate.

Her father was a no-good philanderer and set the worst example for what love is.

Like the slam and fade of a destructive drug, the high never lasted long enough, and the low left you empty and craving more.

The only good thing that came from her father was finding her half-sister. As for her mother, she had a revolving door of marriages that left an even more permanent stain on her perception of romance. So when she runs into Joe Travis at a wedding, as devastatingly handsome as she finds him, she slams down her walls of defense immediately.

Ah, Joe. He was a sexy one. He didn't have Hardy's intensity, Jack's smooth charm, or Gage's brooding qualities. What he had was this innate warmth and tenderness, all wrapped around a core of strength. He knew at first glance that he wanted to pursue Avery and her dowdy, baggy clothing wasn't putting him off like she'd hoped. He saw through her armor and wasn't letting her push him away. I loved his persistence and patience with her. How he quickly saw her wounds underneath her attitude and gently coaxed her around.

After her moment of weakness the night they met, (a one-night stand) she knows that he's capable of making her feel passion like no one ever has before. And that scares the hell out of her.

I wanted him. Every part of me wanted him. We were alone, and the rest of the world was far away, and I knew somehow that if I slept with him, it would be extraordinary. To a woman who'd lived twenty-seven years of ordinary, one night with a man like this didn't seem too much to ask.

How does this man make her want things? Things that couldn't ever lead anywhere because even if she did believe in love, his family is in a whole other social stratosphere. It was impossible. So why couldn't she seem to stay away from him?

You could really feel the sensuality, the pull between these two characters. Joe was one determined man and he was willing to use any skill in his arsenal to get Avery to relinquish her fears.

After being jilted at the alter by her ex, she wasn't willing to trust easily and change was something foreign to her. So he had a quite a big challenge on his hands. Avery has to change her whole outlook on happily ever after. On what's important in life. The value of taking risks over the safety of solitude. Although she was a pretty closed off heroine, I never disliked her. She was tough when the situation warranted, but her vulnerabilities exposed her softer side and made her relatable. And together, she and Joe made one mesmerizing couple.

Can we talk about this author's skill with the written word for a second? I swear, the way Lisa Kleypas writes is so breathtaking at times she could make the littlest action sound like poetry. It's so graceful and flowing, it never fails to sweep me away.

In the privacy of my imagination, I had relived his kisses, I had tasted them in my dreams. But nothing was close to the reality of him, the heat and soft, searching pressure, the intense sensuality of the way he brought up the desire slowly.

My only reason for not rating it a bit higher was the fact that it lacked a certain amount of angst and intensity between the two main characters that I've experienced in the past. It just wasn't quite on that same extra-special level as some others I've read. But I enjoyed Avery and Joe's book very much. Avery's road to self-discovery, Joe's steadfast patience and sexy persistence. And the humor was really well done, it added a nice layer of lightness to the overall feel of the book.

If you're like me, and follow this author religiously, you'll be happy to know that there are definite possibilities for future connected books. Her sister had quite an interesting side story a love/hate attraction that I would love to see fleshed out in it's own full book. There was also another secondary character with huge potential, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed on that front. If you're a fan of this series, I would definitely recommend giving Brown-Eyed Girl a shot.

**Pssst...Past characters of the series DO make an appearance. If you're hoping to see some past beloved characters you won't be disappointed.**


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Profile Image for Polo.
10 reviews
October 10, 2013
why would someone give it a "1 star" without even reading it???? i am giving it a "5 star" to balance it out.. take that unknown crazy hater person......
Profile Image for ✦❋Arianna✦❋.
790 reviews2,528 followers
September 3, 2015
4 Stars!!


“Brown-Eyed Girl” is the fourth book in Lisa Kleypas’s “Travis Family” series, can be read as a standalone and fallows Joe Travis, the youngest man from Travis family. We met Joe briefly in the previous books in the series, so we know he’s the youngest, that he’s a photographer and that he’s like his brothers – hot as hell.

From the moment he laid his eyes on Avery Crosslin, a beautiful redhead who works as a wedding planner he knew not only that she’s different from other women in his past, but that he wants to have something more with her. But unfortunately there’s one problem. Avery doesn’t believe in happily ever after. Working as a wedding planner, of course she believes in marriage and love, but not for herself. Why? Because her former fiancée dumped her on their wedding day. On top of that Avery’s father was not exactly the father of the year.

At first Avery tries to stay away, but she can’t deny the scorching chemistry between her and Joe. After one night stand she decides to stay away because she’s better alone. Our hero, Joe knows what he wants and wants Avery more than anything, so he’s willing to do anything to show her he’s different, that they are good for each other and that together they can built something strong and beautiful.

While this book wasn’t my favorite book in the series I have to say I really enjoyed it. Mrs. Kleypas knows really well how to write a sweet romance with likeable characters and great writing. And "Brown-Eyed Girl" was exactly that.


My favorite character in this book was ‘of course’ Joe. Joe was the perfect hero for me. He’s gorgeous, sexy, he knows how to treat a woman right. He’s sweet and caring, considerate and attentive and always the ‘perfect’ gentleman. He was absolutely charming and I have to say I loved his personality and the way he pursued Avery. The man definitely knew what he wanted and I love a man who is willing to do anything to get the woman he wants.

Avery’s character IMO was a frustrating character. I liked her enough, but I can’t say I was a big fan of her. Honestly because she was too skittish for my liking. Needless to say I didn’t relate at all with her. I understood she was hurt in the past, but come on, in life you have to take risks, right?? I sympathize with her, of course I did, but what happened with her happened three years ago. So, IMO she should have move on - romantically along time ago. Anyway, what I didn’t like about her was the way he push and pull Joe back. While Joe knew what he wanted, Avery was indecisive from start to almost finish. I didn’t hate Avery, but obviously I didn't like her too much either. Anyway...What I admired were her professionalism and her ambition.

As for the romance aspect of the story, well I don’t know exactly what to say. Their romance was sweet and everything, but IMO this aspect of the story wasn’t developed enough. On top of that I think everything was resolved to quickly in the end, so the ending was a little rushed, at least for me.

I enjoyed meeting again the characters from the previous books in the series. They were great, engaging and unique in they own way. The writing was flawless and I loved the teasing between the two main characters and the playful dialogue between them.

Like I mentioned, I loved Joe, so I would have preferred to know him better through his own POV, not only through Avery’s eyes. (the book is written only from Avery’s POV)

Overall, a great read!

Profile Image for Duchess Nicole.
1,258 reviews1,547 followers
July 18, 2015

I was set up to love this book. I contains my favorite things. First off, the fact that the wait for Joe's story just heightened my expectations should have been a buzzkill...but it wasn't. Usually, when I expect a book to be outstanding, it inevitably disappoints. I'm thrilled to say that Kleypas really delivered with her answer to the begging and pleading of thousands of readers. Secondly, I love a good chase...when a hero sees that elusive "something" in a woman and goes for gold. When he just won't give up, no matter her stubborn refusals. Love. It. That's a big fantasy. Thirdly, the alpha male who is still a good guy...considerate, gentle, but sometimes pushy and persuasive and just a little too aggressive...give me more!
"If it's real," Joe said quietly, "it doesn't go away."
"How do you know?"
"Because that's what real is."

Kleypas nails the overtly masculine, somewhat old fashioned hero. Her contemporary heroes are reminiscent of her historical heroes. They take the lead and are strong and tough while still being respectful and allowing their woman to be her own person. Joe epitomizes that perfect balance between alpha and beta. He sees what he wants (Avery, obv) he goes for it. He also has enough tact and patience to see that Avery is going to take a little bit of gentle persuasion and...ahem...some not-so gentle persuation, if you know what I mean. **wink, wink**

Which leads me to the delicious parts. I found it really interesting after reading a slew of erotic books just how erotic a veiled sexy scene can be. I mean, you're there in the moment, you know what's going on, but she doesn't spell it out. She doesn't use explicit wording. The titillation comes from the allusions, not from the shock factor. It was hot, hot, hot!!!!!!

Another thing that Kleypas did right was regarding Avery, the heroine's reluctance to accept anything more than a one night stand from Joe. The way her past was revealed led me to truly empathize with the way she guarded her heart.
"Happily ever afters are hard to come by in real life, even in the wedding business. But al least I can count on one in a book."
"I've seen some great marriages in real life."
"They don't stay that way, though. Every marriage starts as a happy ending, and then it turns into a marriage."

So many authors try and fail to pull this off, and more often than not, it comes across as some kind of soap opera drama-fest. Not so here. Avery remained mature and true to herself while battling this overwhelming attraction to the man that is perfect for her. Of course, we all know resistance is futile when it comes to any Travis man, but especially when one so obviously wants you badly.

My reasons for not giving five stars? A couple, actually. I wanted more Joe. I wanted to spend more time with him. I felt like he and Avery had "big moments" but very little downtime to build on their attraction. I felt the connection because the author is just that good. But I wanted a little more showing, a little more time for reflection that they got. My other beef goes sort of hand in hand with that complaint, and it's that I felt like the book was cut short. I could easily have read another 50-100 pages and garnered a lot more from this relationship. I felt like the middle was cut short, and I felt like the end wrapped up way too quickly. Literally two pages between the conflict and the resolution, and I just wanted more.

There is a lot of the Travis family, and while I know it sounds cheesy, it was like coming home. There is a certain scene in this book that...after all this time away from this family...still made me choke up. That says a lot for how strongly connected I was to them all. And I think readers will be satisfied with the way things are going for this powerhouse family. Avery and Joe steal the show, but it's still a Travis book, through and through! I'm thrilled to say that I can't imagine readers having anything to be disappointed in...this was a fantastic read!!

Advance copy provided by the publisher for review
Profile Image for Amanda.
1,387 reviews319 followers
August 7, 2015
4 'modern day fairy tale' stars

It had been years since I read the last book with Jack Travis, so I'm not gonna try to compare them. My memory is a little fuzzy except that I remember loving Jack and his power tools and his chest hair.

Brown-Eyed Girl feels much like a retelling of a modern day fairy tale, an insecure, awkward heroine who caught the eye of an absolutely swoon-worthy Prince Charming. It might sounds cliche at first, but the whole reading experience just make me feels so good and the wonderful supporting characters bring a lot of warmth to the entire story. Not only I am rooting for the main hero and heroine, I am rooting for their friends as well.

Avery is a wedding planner, who ever since got ditched at the altar, grow insecure and distancing herself from relationship. She's a girl that is wary about commitment. She wants to find the most boring and reliable guy ever! When the drop dead gorgeous, charming and rich, Joe Travis showed interest on her, Avery couldn't run fast enough.

"The kind of love that flared brightest also burned out the faster."

As with the other Travis men, Joe Travis is another romantic hero that make you want to crawl into Lisa Kleypas fictional world. There is just something about their Southern charm and old school chivalry that spoke to me. I'm all for these real man, instead of those well-groomed metro-sexual gym buff.

Joe is having a hard time getting Avery to date him and he couldn't understand why. But his tenacity and understanding just make me swoon over. He just never give up no matter how many times the girl push him away. Though it may sound bad, but this story isn't angsty at all.

"You have to keep taking chances on the wrong people till you find the right one."

Seeing Avery finally came around and give both Joe and herself a chance at finding love again is a great experience. I wish I can get more of Joe, though I enjoyed the part whereby we got some of Steven and Sofia. I never been so interested in the supporting characters hooking up. The whole wedding glitch on Ryan and Bethany was also fun to read. There is just so much happening in Avery's life, including her career opportunity in New York.

For those who had been following the series, we are treated to some great Travises moment with the whole bunch of them. Oh, Jack Travis, my man. You are still my no. 1 Travis. Though now that I get to know more about Joe, he is coming a close second.

Although this might be the 4th book in the series, it still can work as a standalone. It had been years since I read the last one and I don't remember much details. Recommended for lovers of contemporary romance with minimum angst, a lot of heart and with a hero that make you swoon over.
August 11, 2015
LIVE on AMZ (for the bargain price of $12.99 for an ebook)- http://amzn.to/1IFX13J

4.25 Classic Kleypas Romance Stars!

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Brown-Eyed Girl
took me back to my early reading days. Lisa Kleypas was one of the first authors I binged on several years ago when I really ramped up my hobby of reading. Her library more historical than contemporary romance, I fell immediately for her style of writing and her ability to capture the essence of her characters so flawlessly. Since then, I've hardly read anything from her- venturing onto more erotica, suspense, or even darker themed reads. But within a few pages of this book, it was like coming home for me. I truly forgot this author's ability to capture me within a love story filled with so much more than just one romance- one love connection.

Brown-Eyed Girl is the fourth book in the Travis Family Series and I can sadly say I hardly remember any of the previous books. It's not that I didn't enjoy them, it's just so much time has passed and reading hundreds of books since then, my memory has faded. This in no way affected my ability to really enjoy this sweet love story. Sometimes it's just great to go back to where it all started. And it started with this author for me...

Avery Crosslin, with a budding career in the Wedding Planning business, is happy fading into the shadows- hiding her curvaceous figure behind boxy loose clothing. When prepping for a high-end wedding, she runs into Joe Travis, whom she thought was a wedding photographer. He was her knight in shining armour when her hair spray just wasn't doing the job of killing off a wedding crasher- a Scorpian. Apparently a boot works better than hairspray. Joe is everything Travis- hot and virile and Avery has to force herself to focus on the job at hand- relationships are the last thing she wants or needs. But the sight of Joe Travis sets her pants on fire...

The stubble on his face looked heavy enough to sand paint off a car. He was big-boned and lean, the muscles of his arms and chest as defined as cut stone beneath a worn layer of his T-shirt. A disreputable man, maybe a little dangerous.

The kind of man who made you forget to breathe.

Joe Travis is hell bent on getting to know this speed talking, red-headed wedding planner. She cuts his advances off at every turn but when a slow dance leads to two leads to a night of uninhibited passion, he didn't plan for her to run for the hills so quickly. Was it something he did? Didn't do?

I do have to say, Avery got a bit on my nerves with her hot and cold treatment of Joe. I realize her past caused her to fight against history repeating itself but gah, this is JOE TRAVIS. Luckily Joe seemed just the right person to figure out this quirky workaholic is simply scared of love...of being hurt again. But dayum, who could resist THIS Travis?

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Brown-Eyed Girl gave us so much more than this endearing love story. Were gifted with two love stories. And I almost liked the second as much as the first. A novella for Sophia and Stephen would've been great. I love the love-hate build between those two. We also get a very pathetically sweet toothless chihuahua named Coco that Avery can't help but adopt- much to her sister Sophia's dismay.

"If we get a dog, I want one that can go running with me.”
“You don’t run.”
“Because I don’t have a dog.”
“Now we do.”
“I can’t run with a Chihuahua! She would drop dead after a half mile.”
“So would you. I’ve seen you run.”

All in all, I really enjoyed everything Brown-Eyed Girl delivered. A quirky heroine, a masculine smooth talkin' hero, comical secondary characters, and, as always, a beautiful happily ever after.

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I've missed Lisa Kleypas and I just might have to dive into some of these old historicals I've got sitting on my kindle.

Advanced copy received by St Martin's Press via NetGalley on exchange for my honest review.

Profile Image for Amy | Foxy Blogs.
1,476 reviews975 followers
March 14, 2016
I've read the complete series and enjoyed each book. My favorite of the four books is Blue-Eyed Devil which is about the sister of the Travis brothers.

Check out your local library that is where I found this book (it was available via kindle version).

Sugar Daddy (Travises, #1) by Lisa Kleypas Blue-Eyed Devil (Travises, #2) by Lisa Kleypas Smooth Talking Stranger (Travises, #3) by Lisa Kleypas Brown-Eyed Girl (Travis Family, #4) by Lisa Kleypas
Continuing story where secondary characters from the first book become the main focus in subsequent books.
Book 1 - Gage Travis | Book 2 - Haven Travis | Book 3 - Jack Travis | Book 4 - Joe Travis

descriptive text here
August 12, 2015
I hated this. There is just no other way to put it. I want to tear it up and set on fire. So much of this was just rage inducing. There was more that annoyed me but I'm angry so I'm just putting what's sticking out in my head the now.

August 17, 2016
My sister and I listened to this on Playaway in the car as we did our usual car commuting. I have to say I enjoyed it a lot. I know that many fans weren't that happy with it. To my surprise, I really bonded with Avery. I got her. I understood her fears and what drove her and why she was trying so hard to avoid a relationship with Joe. It was funny how I would have a thought about the story and it would pop up either in the dialogue or Avery's thoughts.

I do also have to say that this nails some very integral aspects of Texas culture. I found that highly enjoyable. It was also interesting that Avery is a Texas woman to her core, but she connected to living in New York so much.

I loved Avery's relationship with her sister Sofia and the employees of her wedding/event planning company. Sofia and Steven's relationship definitely had me thinking that their sparks were of the romantic kind. I liked how Avery and Sofia were so close, despite meeting as adults. I'm very close to my sister, so I totally got the sister love between them. I loved the affection and loyalty they showed to each other. It felt very authentic.

As far as the romance, I wasn't 100% satisfied with it. I know that most of that is due to the 1st person POV format. It just doesn't work well for romance. I think that for me, I need to have access to both the characters to see the romance in a 360 degree view. I was forced to wonder and surmise how Joe felt based on what Avery saw or what he did in the book. I sometimes wondered what was defense mechanism or merely reacting to what Avery said or did.

I liked Joe, a lot, but he did let me down in a major way.

I think my issue with this book is the same with the Travis series. I just don't care much for 1st person romance. I will always love the books, because Lisa Kleypas is a fantastic writer, and even my least favorites by her are still well-written. I did like catching up with the Travises. I really wish this had been multiple 1st person, because I really missed Joe's POV. I don't think I got to know him nearly as well I wanted. Hardy is still my favorite. Oh, that man! I could eat him off a spoon. But Joe is dreamy, and I loved him with Avery. Avery won me over and I really felt a kinship with her. I think I would like her in real life, and hanging out with her Sofia would be a lot of fun.

This was a very Texas book, with a couple of women that I felt like could be my friends in real life, and that was nice!
August 12, 2015
It's LIVE! * Amazon US * Amazon UK *

Lisa Kleypas is an author I've seen touted by my reading friends, all of whom speak very highly about her work so I relished the opportunity to read this story and jump into the fourth book of the TRAVIS FAMILY series.

Brown-Eyed Girl is a Contemporary Romance about family, trust, discovering what you really want from life and the most important feeling of all, LOVE.

The Travis man in the spotlight in this fourth installment is Joe. He's rich, single and LOVELY; his entire family is practically Texan Royalty. I adored his direct approach in pursuing Avery, he shows charisma and personality and is very much the star of the book.

Avery Crosslin is not interested in attracting the opposite sex and is completely devoted to raising her professional profile as a Wedding Coordinator, a business that she runs with her sister. She's the consummate professional which is admirable, showing her independent and persistent qualities. In equal measure I found her to be standoffish and somewhat cold probably because her role models and examples of love have been quite negative throughout her life. This very much translates to her personality and behaviour in the story.

The wedding planning aspects felt a little too detailed and are included too many times for my personal reading tastes. I don't feel they greatly enhanced the feel of the story in relation to the amount they're included and they began to feel mundane.

I highly enjoyed the initial meeting of the protagonists where I saw the hero's interest piqued and felt a spark in their chemistry. Delightful misunderstanding ensues that felt natural and endeared me to the characters almost instantaneously. Whilst my love for the hero grew, I found myself somewhat detached from the heroine because of her described demeanour.

Running along with the main story arc, another new couple is featured and I found their relationship to be quite engaging to the point I would have liked to hear more about them. The supporting cast of the Travis family is also a great inclusion and will be loved by fans of the series.

Although this story can most definitely be enjoyed as a STANDALONE, I feel that if I'd read the entire series and experienced the stories from the supporting cast, I may have felt quite different about Avery and Joe's story as a whole, especially as certain supporting cast of the Travis family are involved in aspects of the angst driven elements.

Despite some elements of the story not suiting my reading tastes, when I felt submerged in the romantic element I liked Brown-Eyed Girl very much. When Avery and Joe are together, enjoying each other, it's romantic and beautiful and simply gorgeous. Fans of the series will surely bask in the development of their relationship.


**Note: Brown-Eyed Girl is written in the first person narrative from the heroine's perspective. It's the fourth part in the Travis Family series but can be enjoyed as a STANDALONE

Advanced copy received from St. Martin's Press, via NetGalley, in exchange for my honest review thoughts
Profile Image for Danielle (Love at First Page).
726 reviews621 followers
August 17, 2015
I honestly thought I'd die before I got to read Joe Travis' story. Seriously, that's how long the wait has felt. So thank you, Racquel, for putting me out of my misery and letting me borrow your ARC. Writing post-it notes alongside yours, Alexa's, and Miranda's was the perfect companion to this reading experience. <3


For fans of these stubborn, sexy as hell, alpha, Texas-bred heroes of Lisa's, you will be pleased to know that Joe is cut from the same cloth. He goes after what and who he wants with single-minded devotion, utterly enamored by Avery and a steadfast pursuer of her heart. I love how complex these men are - they tease and play, they charm and sometimes infuriate, but they know how to respect their women. At times they may seem a bit pushy, but at the end of the day each and every one of them has given the heroine time to think about what she wants and being patient when she's unsure. Joe, like Gage, Hardy, and Jack before him, is willing to take a step back to allow Avery to realize what's standing right in front of her. And he makes one hell of a tempting package. You can't ask for a better man than that, which is why every romantic hero - historical or contemporary - will forever be compared to Lisa's.

While Blue-Eyed Devil is still my favorite, Brown-Eyed Girl is every bit as good as Smooth Talking Stranger. It felt like coming home finally reading Lisa Kleypas' writing again. I wanted to highlight so many quotes!

The need sharpened until it seemed I would die of not having him. Nothing had ever felt like this. Nothing ever would again.
You had to run with a feeling like that, all the way to sunrise.

So beautiful!!

I've talked about Joe Travis already, who most definitely has some of the swooniest lines ever , so let's discuss Avery. If I'm being honest, I had a difficult time connecting with her. She has plenty of trust issues - for good reasons - but she makes a lot of judgments about Joe and the type of guy he is, and she constantly makes cynical remarks about falling in love. There were times when I was really frustrated with her and wanted to shake her a bit. She had the sexiest guy willing to bend over backwards for her, and she knew she had feelings for him, too, yet she put a wall up for most of the book. I was so relieved when she finally started coming to her senses!

One thing I did love about her was how fiercely she defends those who she cares about. She's got an inner fire and sass that I was totally on board with. Her relationship with her sister, Sofia, is at the heart of this. I loved all of their scenes together. They were hilarious and clearly have a strong bond. Sofia gets a side story of her own in this book, which I thought was adorable.

While Avery didn't always have the best attitude in her relationship with Joe, their romance was perfect. Very little angst and a whole lot of chemistry. How can their not be when a Travis is involved? I ate up every single scene they shared together. It's not a slow burn - again, this is the Travises we're talking about - but their (shall we say) insta-passion is a Lisa Kleypas staple. It's magical, and she makes you swoon and believe in it wholeheartedly.

I am thanking all of the book gods that Joe's story not only found its way into my hands, but that it met all of my expectations. I've missed these characters and their big family so much. It was wonderful meeting up with all of them (and their new additions). I'm super sad to say goodbye, but now my shelf will finally feel complete.

This review can also be found at Love at First Page.
Profile Image for SheReadsALot.
1,838 reviews1,205 followers
January 7, 2016
I don't think I've ever rated a Kleypas book lower than a 4...well, there's a first time for everything.

This is swimming in the 3-3.5 range. All of the stars are for Joe who I love but I don't think this book did him justice. I waited all these years and nearly quelted myself when I found out finally he was going to get a book. Because if you ever ask to name some of my favorite series, the Travis Family, is cement shoes in there. I can go on for days about Liberty/Hardy/Gage because that was something. That love was bombastic. Or Haven and her hard wrought HEA. Or Jack 'Motherfucking' Travis who is hands down one of my fave Kleypas heroes - smooth like fucking butter. ;)

And throughout all of the awesome characters who were secondary characters to main characters, they got a deserving story and HEA. And there was the youngest Travis, Joe, sort of like Jack but more arty with his photography and the tragedy. Fans (including me) wanted him to get his walk onto the HEA covered sunset.

How did the awesome secondary character from the first three books read like a secondary character in his own book? Wait, like a tertiary character in his book!

Joe's a great man - he photographs for causes, loves puppies, his family, doesn't mind a full-figured gal and can charm the drawers off his woman but he could only carry the book so far when the heroine (Avery) was unsure of what she wanted to be. The story was weak, or maybe weak when the secondary characters and the Travis family reunion outshines the main love interests.

Because...I read this version of Travis hero before, in a better version called Jack. Joe was Jack 2.0, just the lighter model. He's still a Travis...therefore the panties go BOOM:

And from the start, Joe had that Travis single-mindedness when it comes to the potential 'one'. who was dowdy, slightly shrewish, sworn-off of love Avery but there wasn't anything in the beginning to point out WHY Joe even liked her. She was seemed like she was cool: a ginger, horrible fashion sense with a I-don't-give-a-frig sense of air (or maybe it was obliviousness) because she was a woman with a purpose. She had a career, she was trying to rebuild her life from the shambles of her dysfunctional background and create happy for others with her wedding planning business.

But she changed herself. :(

Joe was attracted to the oblivious girl (though I don't know why? Her personality wasn't all there.) And I don't mind the makeover but she didn't do it for herself. She did it to please others. Joe thankfully looked passed that and saw the the woman underneath. But Avery played games which I frigging hate. Don't act like you're not going to bone when hello! One Night Stand (which wasn't all that hot to begin with-- I think this was the second misstep).

So Joe pursues Avery and is charismatic, gives her space and is patient whenever he is featured. The story is told in first person present from Avery's POV. The girl needed to make up her mind. It was annoying. She made rash decisions without really thinking and didn't vibe what seemed to be her character. She wasn't very 100% shrew or career woman or modern Cinderella...what was she?

For me, closer to meh. And one of my least favorite Kleypas heroines. Her sister, Sofia had more spunk than Avery.

And can we talk about the haphazard plot twist and family crisis? It was so meh with a side of bleh sauce. Why even include it? Why couldn't we just be left with the happy Travis family memories. Why end it at that odd note?

Who wants to be ungrateful when they get a gift? Not I.

Man... this story lacked some of the magic from the first 3 books: Sugar Daddy, Blue-Eyed Devil, and Smooth Talking Stranger.

Thank you Kleypas for the follow up on the Travis family. I wish Avery was written stronger, I think there was a spine in there, she just needed to be fleshed out more.
Profile Image for Didi.
865 reviews287 followers
September 7, 2015
I swear, this woman can't write a bad book! I love LK, love her. She's in my top 3 authors and never fails to impress me with her effortless execution of writing a beautiful romance. Her way with words is magical:

"He had a lazy, easy way of talking, as if every word had been simmered for hours over a low flame."
Is that not the most evocative sentence?!

I've been waiting a long time for Joe's story and I did love it, but was it my fave of the series? No. That honour goes to Smooth Talking Stranger and Blue-Eyed Devil. Jack, from STS is among my top heroes with his sexy swagger and presence. Seeing him in this book was like unwrapping a gift! Joe was sweet, sexy and had a more unhurried manner about him. He didn't have the smooth, sexiness of Jack, the brooding, intensity of Hardy or the quiet and caged manliness of Gage. He did however have the patience of a saint! Well, that among other things. Where he lacked intensity he made up for it with sweetness, perseverance and swoonworthiness. Honestly, how can you go wrong with a Travis?

I liked Avery for the most part. I get why some people were frustrated by her, but I completely understood. Her background and lack of any enviable models of good men or good relationships was troubling and very much explained why she was so hesitant. A hot guy like Joe Travis would intimidate many women. I loved how she came to discover what she felt for him and what was important. I just wish the last third of the book was longer. I wanted to see what happened with .

I haven't seen anywhere if LK plans another book in this series. A spinoff would be great, especially with a certain character in this book who piqued my interest. The secondary story of Sofia, Avery's sister was great as well. And of course I have to mention one thing amongst many that this author is good at. The male characterization. Not for one second do you doubt the voice of any of her male heroes. She writes the most masculine, the most sexy, the most incredibly accurate male characterizations I've ever read. I'm sad to say goodbye to these sexy Travis men, but hopefully we'll get more contemporaries in the future. Loved this, loved Joe! And Jack....<3
Profile Image for Alp.
736 reviews377 followers
May 4, 2016
As always, Lisa Kleypas delivers this pleasant, heartwarming, and delightful romantic story. Brown-Eyed Girl is a great read and I really enjoyed reading it though the whole story just seems a bit plain to me. The writing is excellent and the dialogue is spot on and so natural.

Let's talk about Joe because nothing in this book is better than him! Joe is a freelance photographer, the youngest Travis sibling. He is every woman's dream: sexy, optimistic, charming, sweet, patient, and understanding. He is a perfect hero! It was hard for me to understand why he was attracted to Avery. I didn't see what he thought he saw in her. I think she didn't deserve him. To be honest, if it weren't for Joe, I would give this book 3 stars!

Avery is a wedding coordinator who has chosen to focus on her wedding business with her sister rather than any love relationship. She was jilted at the altar by her ex-fiancé and that left a deep scar on her heart. She met Joe at one of her clients’ wedding and after the party, they had one scorching night together. Avery thought it was only one night stand but Joe didn’t think like that. He pursued her and never gave up on her. (Ooh…so sweet!) But she kept telling herself that Joe wasn’t the right man for her. (Seriously!?) She kept fighting her feelings for him and kept pushing him away, then abruptly, she pulled him back just like her stubborn refusal to give him a chance didn’t matter. (What!?) It took almost the entire book for me to warm up to her!

**Scream out of frustration**

I was a little disappointed with the romance between Joe and Avery. It was good and sweet, yet it couldn’t grab my heart. I shouldn’t expect too much…

I loved that the supporting characters were likable and they could help make the story more interesting. I loved the romance between two secondary characters, Steven and Sofia. Reading about the simple sweet things that happened between them made my heart glow.

Moreover, it was wonderful to catch up with the familiar characters from previous books in this series. I’m so surprised at how much I miss them, and Gage the most! He’s my favorite!

The ending was quite predictable but that wasn’t a problem. I wanted sweet HEA and I got what I wanted! Even though this book wasn’t my favorite by the author, I did enjoy the story and I'm happy I picked this one up.
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,869 reviews2,246 followers
December 6, 2018
3.5 stars!

5 stars for the character development and an interesting heroine... 2.5 for the actual romantic plot. I enjoyed getting to know Avery, she was so cute and I related to her a lot. But Joe.... fell flat. He was boring. I had no idea that a Travis man could be boring! How tragic.

Loved the bits with Steven and Sofia, and Coco the dog. Again, this book had all the right pieces... except for an intriguing leading man. I wish we had gotten more out of Joe. I still love Lisa Kleypas!! Would gladly read more from the Travis series.

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Profile Image for Jonetta.
2,245 reviews970 followers
August 6, 2015
Originally posted on The Book Nympho

Almost everyone who's read this series wanted Joe's story. It's not necessarily because of what we knew about him but the last story ended with him barely surviving the boat accident. We just needed to know...more. He was a blank page so I didn't have any expectations.

Avery Crosslin meets Joe Travis at one of her weddings she's managing, mistaking him for one of the photographer's minions. Something about the brown-eyed redhead appeals to Joe and so begins his pursuit. She's not interested, having barely survived her last relationship but...he's a Travis so he doesn't go away easily.

This story is told from Avery's point of view but I still got a clear picture of Joe and how he fit into his family. She's an interesting woman with a challenging background who's created her own unique family. I loved this woman and Joe saw the same things I did from the onset. She's smart, talented, loyal and quick thinking. Her one failing is how long she's allowed her last relationship dictate her future. Though she put up some strong defenses, Joe was relentless in defining and decimating her walls and barriers. You'd expect nothing less from a Travis.

One of the delights of the story was the inclusion of the other characters from the series. There's also a secondary storyline that dovetails nicely with Avery's.

This was one of my more pleasurable reading experiences as I liked not only the main characters but the superb storytelling about and around them. You don't always need high drama to keep things interesting and I finished with such a good feeling. My only regret was not knowing how one situation affected Avery's career in the end. I guess I'll just rely on Joe's foreboding about it and consider this being the proverbial bow on the end of a lovely series.

(I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review)
Profile Image for Susana.
988 reviews247 followers
August 10, 2015

Arc provided by St. Martin's Press through Netgalley

Release Date: August 11 th

The first two books in this series are absolute favourites of mine, unfortunately things started going downhill (for me at least) with the third book... and now this one.

I absolutely loved the way this story started: the humour, the character's sass. All the things I like in a romance, they were all there...

But things got strange and more than that, they became downright uncomfortable, after the two main characters _ this is not a spoiler, since it appears on the synopsis _ have a one night stand.

Avery is not someone who is looking for a romance. She has reasons to behave in a cautious way, and all of a sudden she has Joe texting and calling her after their one night stand...

Thing is, the guy gets his feelings hurt because she doesn't act as interested as he is.

I thought this was problematic, because he had no claim on the girl to suddenly act all hurt and shit.

Also, Lisa Kleypas had to give me more in terms of what made the two of them suddenly so interested in one another: As a result I found their romance really week and merely serendipity like.

Yes, it's great that the author choose a girl who doesn't wear a small size _ although as a woman who wears 34 I have to say that we are women as well, and no that doesn't automatically turn us into bitches _ and that Joe loves her body the way it is. But besides that, what has made them fall in love?

More interesting that the main characters romance was Avery's sister, Sofia and Stephen's troublesome relationship.

Sofia is Avery's partner and Stephen works for them. They have this "I hate you" vibe going on between them which made things very interesting to read, but then all of a sudden the guy started making comments _depreciative ones _about the way the girl was dressed, and what she liked to watch on tv, and that just made me want to smack his obnoxious head against a rock.

Also, just because the girl likes to watch Spanish soap operas the author didn't had to turn her life into one!
The ridiculousness of the whole thing reached high levels when Sophia's

(That made me throw a little in my mouth)
I hate soap operas, okay people?

Then this being a Lisa Kleypas, Travis book there's the usual trip to the ER made by one of the characters.
-_- Hello? Again???

Sorry, but Joe was too cardboard like for me to fan over : One of the famous Travis. He's a handsome devil (aren't they all), and he takes photos.
And that is all there is to know about the guy.

Avery was much more developed, which once again made the whole romance between the two of them really hard to buy into it.

At the fifty percent mark she was still claiming not wanting to have a relationship with Joe. When you hear over and over how a character doesn't want a relationship... you believe her.

Sorry but I needed way more for their relationship to convince me... well, theirs alongside Sophia's and Stephen's who all of the sudden found themselves together.

As with all things Lisa Kleypas, this is a well written story, but the romance _ romances, plural _ were disappointments to read.
Profile Image for WhiskeyintheJar.
1,321 reviews542 followers
July 31, 2015
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Avery is a wedding coordinator whose business she runs with her sister is up and coming. At one of her more affluent weddings she gets the attention of a mother, whose family is basically Texas royalty, who wants her to organize her daughter's wedding; it would be a huge boost for her business. Avery also meets Joe Travis, another member of a Texas royalty family, who just plain wants her. However, after being left at the altar a couple years ago, Avery is gun shy of getting involved again. So with her professional life on the rise and Joe and her friends trying to get her to allow her personal life to flourish too, Avery is being pushed and pulled in many directions.
Brown-eyed Girl is the long awaited fourth book in the Travis family series by Lisa Kleypas. Readers of the series have been chomping at the bit to read about little brother Joe getting his happily ever after. The character of Joe did not disappoint, he oozes so much charm you'd gladly sacrifice your last breathe to drown in it. The story is all from Avery's view point, so I did find myself missing Joe's internal thoughts and feelings; especially, the thinking behind wanting Avery so much. Avery allows the chip on her shoulder from being left at the altar to create a wall between her and Joe. She is at turns dismissive, cold, and hardheaded with not giving Joe a chance. Joe actively pursues her with calling, texting, and approaching her whenever he sees her. He never crosses the line into stalking but I very frequently found myself wondering just what in the world immediately drew him to her and why he kept trying. This is the land of romance, so I'm sure her inner beauty and all was the draw but seriously, Avery gave him no incentive to keep trying.
If Avery's reluctance had lasted for only the beginning of the book, I could have rolled with it but it lasts for over half. A relationship where one person is dragged along kicking and screaming, which basically describes Joe and Avery's, is just not that fun to read about. Quite frankly, I was more interested in Avery's sister Sofia and their employee Steven's relationship. They had the push/pull, feisty banter, and chemistry that made their romance interesting, investing, and believable. I felt their connection much more than Avery and Joe.
There were a couple storyline's swirling around, Joe trying to get Avery to give him a chance, Avery organizing the biggest wedding of her career (the groom is Joe's cousin Ryan and I hope we get his story next), Avery getting the chance to host a TV show in New York, and Sofia and Steven's drama. As you can see, Avery had a lot piled on her professional plate and it tended to steal the spotlight from her and Joe as they didn't get to spend as much time together as I typically like my couples to. It's Kleypas writing, so of course, it is overall good but while the meat of the story felt like it was there, I felt like the heart wasn't.
If you liked the previous books and characters of the series, you'll delight in knowing they make frequent appearances in this. We get updates on their lives; including the good and the bad, which I absolutely loved; Haven and Hardy fans better have tissues nearby. Brown-eyed Girl may not be the best of the series but Joe's charming, sweet, and sexy ways will seduce the pants right off you and should not be missed.
Profile Image for Carole (Carole's Random Life).
1,800 reviews488 followers
August 7, 2015
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life.

I really enjoyed this book. It seems like I have been waiting forever to get my hands on this book. Okay, I know that it has only been six years but it has felt like forever to me. I read Sugar Daddy right after its release and immediately fell in love with Lisa Kleypas's storytelling. I was at the book store to buy the next two books in the series on the day they were released. When I found out that there was going to be a fourth book after all these years, I was thrilled. I am so happy that this book turned out to be worth the wait.

This book focuses on Joe and Avery. Joe is a part of the Travis family, a wealthy yet down to earth family living in Texas. Joe is really just a nice guy doing a job that he loves who happens to be a part of a wealthy family. Joe is a wonderful Hero. He is kind, sexy, and seems to understand Avery better than she understands herself. He knows exactly what he wants and is not afraid to take chances to achieve his goals.

Avery is a wedding planner who does not have the close family ties that Joe has but she does have a sister that means the world to her. Avery along with her sister run a wedding planning business that is just starting to take off. Avery is a no nonsense kind of person who is focused on work and getting things done. She isn't able to see herself the way that other people do and hides in loose unflattering clothes. She has had a very difficult past that has tore her self esteem apart.

I liked Joe and Avery together. They seem to really fit together nicely. There was a lot of chemistry and sexual tension between the pair. I liked that Avery, who was very guarded, seemed to open up to Joe very easily. Joe was able to understand Avery and not put any pressure on her. He was really the man that Avery needed him to be. He didn't push anything and was more than willing to be a patient as necessary. He was also very honest with Avery and let her know what to expect without trying to change her mind. He was willing to support her and wanted her to be happy even if her choices were not what he would want.

I was so excited to see the Travis family again. Hardy, Gage, Liberty, and the whole gang do make a couple of appearances in this book but this story stands on its own. This book can be read as a stand alone but I would encourage anyone who has not read the earlier books to go ahead and pick those up as well...not because you need them to understand this story. I just think that the earlier books in the series are excellent books that should not be missed. This book is a solid installment in the series but I have to admit that the first two books are still my favorite.

I would highly recommend this book to fans of contemporary romance. Lisa Kleypas is one of those romance authors that stand out. All of her historical and contemporary romance novels are wonderful stories with characters that find a way into your heart and leave a smile on your face. I can't wait to see what she comes up with next.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from St. Martin's Press via NetGalley for the purpose of providing an honest review.

Initial Thoughts
Woo Hoo! I got approved for this book!
Profile Image for NinaReader.
545 reviews82 followers
January 18, 2016
4.5 "Because I had a big ol' smile on my face the whole time" Stars!

The whole time I was reading this, I had the goofiest hugest smile on my face giggling like a deranged girl. That's right - a girl - as in not mature as my age would normally call for.

I was just so happy to be reading about the Travises again after all these years.
It's such a throwback to the Lisa Kleypas I've loved for years. Her writing is as smooth and as effortless as it was for the 3 other books of this series.

Joe Travis may come from a wealthy family, and his drawl may be slower, and his swagger may be overtly masculine but his hugs(!!!) are protective and caring. He knows what he wants, goes for it slowly and confidently and Lisa Kleypas bestowed values and integrity on all her men.

It's low on angst, high on classic sweet romance, wrapped up in the nostalgic wonderment that is the Travis family.

It's the perfect kind of light hearted, lovely and sweet, classic romance.

If you haven't read the Travis' series and you want something sweet and romantic in the classic sense then I suggest these.

Sugar Daddy Sugar Daddy (Travises, #1) by Lisa Kleypas
Blue-Eyed Devil Blue-Eyed Devil (Travises, #2) by Lisa Kleypas
Smooth Talking Stranger Smooth Talking Stranger (Travises, #3) by Lisa Kleypas
Profile Image for Irene Sim.
743 reviews83 followers
March 14, 2018
This was a sweet story, though I was realy sad to read that . Unfortunately I don't remember much about the plot, it's been a while since I read it. Maybe I'll a write a better review in the future since it's almost certain I'll reread it at some point.
Profile Image for Yodamom.
2,003 reviews196 followers
September 11, 2015
I love the Travis family. They are Houston royalty, rich, sexy powerful and the sweetest people you'd ever meet. Shadows have followed them, their past has not been a bunch of yellow roses. I've enjoyed watching them all find the light that chases those dark bits back in the corner where they belong, and I will miss them now that they are done.
Joe, the young rebel Travis, who set his own path, one that Daddy didn't approve of has finally found his match. Avery, the red headed spit fire wedding planner with her own troop of shadows tumbles into his life. Together these two are fire and ice. She has issues, Daddy issues, past relationship issues, and self esteem issues. While he has come to terms with many of his in the last few books, Avery will be a challenge while she works through hers. She wants him she doesn't believe he wants her, doesn't believe it could works......Joe the dream guy never falters, never turns his back, never manipulates, and he helps out at and animal rescue. Damn Hot is what he is !
There are several side stories going on. Her sister will have to deal with her Mommy issues and find that that guy who is all vinegar may be sweet after all. There are clients with secrets that are just ugly. There is the cutest little rescue that has a dry tongue. Let us not forget about her business, it goes through some crazy adventures too. The final few pages where filled with puppies, this brought tears to my eyes. He used puppies !
I really liked the book although it was more of an Avery book than a Joe book. I admit I did want more Joe, who wouldn't he's perfection in boots.
I didn't love it as much as previous books in the series. Avery was a great character but I didn't get the feeling of their first connection. I didn't get the emotional connection that drew him to her. It was just there suddenly and his character took on an accessory to Avery approach to me. I would have love to hear his point of view to connect the two personalities.
Profile Image for Jacqueline J.
3,478 reviews325 followers
September 16, 2015
I was pretty disappointed in this book. It wasn't a romance, it was chick lit. And it wasn't even amusing chick lit like some of them can be. The conflict was all about the heroine deciding what to do with her life rather than any conflict with the hero. This was not Joe's story AT ALL. He was basically a nonentity. He was really just some guy that Avery sorta dated. The scenes with them actually together were maybe a third of the book, maybe. Because it was written in 1st person from Avery's POV, you knew almost nothing about Joe. A lot of stuff happened but almost none of it was about them as a couple. I generally like 3rd person POV best and this was a clear example of why. Avery told the reader what she was experiencing but in sort of an offhand way so you never felt it viscerally. Once she decided to date Joe the book went rapidly downhill. It was all other stuff that was happening and oh BTW, me and Joe were sleeping together. I don't know why Joe liked Avery, I certainly didn't. The book lacked world building. I think it took place in Texas but you couldn't really tell that from anything in the book. There was zero description. There was almost no observation to give you a hint of what was going on in Joe's mind. Just a disappointment all around. And I liked the stories in the rest of the series, especially Blue Eyed Devil. Sigh. I suppose this is really a one star for me. The second star is because it is competently written and because I have a lingering fondness for the rest of the series.
Profile Image for Eilonwy.
826 reviews207 followers
May 6, 2018
When Houston-based wedding planner Avery Crosslin meets wedding guest Joe Travis, sparks fly. But Avery doesn't really want a serious relationship with a super-rich guy when she's happy living with her sister and running her own successful business -- or does she?
I don't have a ton to say about this book. It was a perfectly enjoyable, perfectly forgettable confection of a romance. I enjoyed the side plots -- there was enough going on in Avery's world beyond Joe to keep the book interesting -- and found the characters engaging. I was definitely rooting for Avery and Joe as a pair (not so much for Avery's sister Sofia and her love interest, though).

This was a quick read which made for a great palate-cleanser between the grim-dark fantasies I've been working on. There's plenty of Texas sunshine and optimism lighting up the pages of this book.
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