Review: A Fine Mess by Kelly Siskind

Posted August 2, 2016 by Shannon in Reviews / 2 Comments

Review: A Fine Mess by Kelly SiskindA Fine Mess by Kelly Siskind
Series: Over The Top #2
Published by Forever Yours on August 2, 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 340
Buy on Amazon

Some guys should come with a warning label . . .

Sawyer West is Mr. One Night Stand. He doesn’t do relationships or promises or "feelings." He’s never cared enough to get involved. Until Lily Roberts. She's sweet and shy and sexy as sin, and resisting her is testing his self-control. She believes Sawyer can be a better man, and for the first time in his life, he wants to be. But change isn’t easy, and Sawyer would do anything to protect Lily from his past self. Even break his own heart . . .



Buy it here: Amazon US | Amazon CA | Amazon UK |


A Fine Mess is a passionate romance written with flirty dialogue and complex characters. Throw in some fun in the sun, a touch of angst and real life situations, and you’ve found yourself a winner! Kelly Siskind is a fresh new voice in the romance genre and is not an author that you’ll want to miss.

I love RomComs, I really do, but my heart cannot lie. I’m an angst and sexual tension whore. So when we mix all of the above together, I’m a little firecracker bursting with joy. A Fine Mess is the type of story I love because it mixes all of these elements together. Sawyer’s humour made me snort, while during the angsty times I thought my heart might explode. Then there are highs when your heart is so full it could burst and lows when you have no idea how everything could possibly work out. This book has everything a reader could want.

The slapping waves punctuate the moment, then she leans in to kiss my cheek.
I move so she hits my lips.
I kiss her hard, not caring who’s here. Buy a ticket. Take a picture. Videotape the moment. As far as I’m concerned, the people around us don’t exist.
“I’m not sure how I’ll survive you.”

Oh Sawyer, where do I even start with you? How about here: Mine, mine, mine. If you need something to give you a quick understanding of this hero, it’s this quote exactly.

“But enough about my first-world problems, why was Sawyer dancing like an extra from High School Musical?”
I unleash my sleep apnea snorting sound. “He was trying to make things less weird between us.”
I nod.

I LOVED this guy. Yes he’s immature, yes he’s hot and he knows it, yes he’s cocky. But you know what else? He’s sincere, selfless, supportive, and has a much bigger heart than he originally lets on. And he quotes Monty Python! His struggle isn’t something that you’d normally see in books, which was fantastic. It also runs so much deeper than you can first imagine. Plus, he calls Lily, Lil, which is the cutest thing ever.

A fine mess

When I was reading this book, one day after work I plugged my iPod into my car for the drive home. One song in particular came on and it hit me like a ton of bricks, I got chills. It’s perfect for Sawyer and it’s perfect for the story. Be sure when you’re reading to have a listen to Beneath Your Beautiful by Labrinth and Emeli Sande. More specifically, Emeli’s verse. I could imagine this as Lily singing it about Sawyer.

You let all the girls go
Makes you feel good, don’t it?
Behind your Broadway show
I heard a boy say, “Please, don’t hurt me”

You’ve carried on so long
You couldn’t stop if you tried it.
You’ve built your wall so high
That no one could climb it,
But I’m gonna try

Would you let me see beneath your beautiful?
Would you let me see beneath your perfect?
Take it off now, boy, take it off now, boy
I wanna see inside
Would you let me see beneath your beautiful tonight, oh, tonight?

I’m gonna climb on top your ivory tower
I’ll hold your hand and then we’ll jump right out
We’ll be falling, falling but that’s OK
‘Cause I’ll be right here
I just wanna know

Lily is a lot different than I could have possibly imagined after reading the first book in the series. She has a lot that’s she’s dealing with on the inside and it was incredible being inside of her brain. I actually felt a lot of similarities with her character while reading. She’s quite relatable, down to earth and humble, but also can be shy and has some insecurities just like every other woman and girl in this world. It’s how she deals with and overcomes these things, all while sticking up for herself and demanding the respect and treatment that she deserves that not only make her a fantastic character, but really shows her development throughout the story.

A fine mess

Something I love about Kelly’s stories is that she takes normal issues and faces them head on. She doesn’t exaggerate. There’s no extra bullshit just to fill space or build plot. She delves deep into each issue and explores the route of the conflict. Why might the characters act this way, what are their reservations and how can they be overcome, etc. The reader gets to experience it all.

Another fantastic point relating to this really has to deal with how deep these issues go. I loved the depth in the first book in the series, My Perfect Mistake, but A Fine Mess felt so much more personal. In some books, you’re told about a MC’s problem and the significant other helps them work through it. But what happens when each character has reservations about an impending relationship? Clearly, from the synopsis, you know Sawyer is a playboy. But why? His thought process goes so much farther than you might expect, and the exploration of this is so needed. Then what about Lily? Sweet, humble Lily who we met in My Perfect Mistake? She dealt with things that I would have never expected but it was eye opening to read about. I’ve never read another story even close to something like this. Kelly doesn’t do cookie cutter, Kelly does awesome.

Brakes screech, horns honk, and we collide as he grabs me by my ribs and lifts me up, up, up. We’re every ending to every romantic comedy. We’re glitter and roses. We’re love finding its way home.

Belize. The characters go in a freaking trip to Belize. Need I say more? No, I don’t, but I will. Who doesn’t love a little fun in the sun? And besides, when the temperature rises, so does the steam level! These two are on fire, their chemistry is undeniable. On top of this, were gifted with ‘the pact’. There’s a deal that whatever you feel like saying, doing or touching (wink wink) you do so without reservations. Um… This is… I guess, kind of freaking genius! I loved it. Not only did it help these two become more comfortable with each other but also with the situation they had found themselves in.

A fine mess

How could I possibly forget the secondary characters? The gang is all back together at different points throughout this story, and trust me, they’re still as perfect as before! Every one of them deserves high fives for how fantastic they all are.

Raven slides over, her hip pressed to mine as we squeeze together, and she leans toward the screen. “I’m not talking to you.”
When she doesn’t embellish, Shay says, “If this is about the time I was drunk and mistook your shoes for the toilet, I’m done apologizing. It was an accident. It could’ve happened to anyone.”

I have a big love affair with endings. That last chapter, those last few paragraphs tying everything together, and especially with last lines. I have a serious hard on for last lines, just saying. So it’s with the utmost grace and composure that I can say THAT ENDING THOUGH!
Damn Saywer! You know how it’s done! I’ll be honest, I figured out what he was planning and started internally cringing. I kept thinking it’s not the right time and doesn’t make sense with everything that has happened so far, but then the explanation, the setting, the absolute perfection of dialogue, and I just about died right then and there. Talk about melting in a puddle of swooniness. Even if you’re the grinch and don’t like puppies, dessert or Kelly’s books (see where I’m going with this?) you have to admit that she does endings right. Seriously. First Kolton, now Sawyer. We’ve been warned that Nico is a big mushy romantic guy so I know that he’ll top these two, but I don’t know if my little swoon and angst loving heart can take it! Just give me all of the boys.

A fine mess

At its basics, love is a transaction—every kiss and touch a deposit, mutual support a down payment. If you invest wisely, the payoff is tenfold. I plan on going all in and scoring big.

Kelly continues to impress with the newest instalment in the Over The Top series! I have also since decided that I want her to write my life, cause that could be pretty cool, right? Right! But also because she just gets it. She gets what the reader wants, what the characters struggle with, and weaves it all into a tangible piece of art. I don’t have many auto buy authors but she is quickly becoming one of them. Congrats Kelly, A Fine Mess is another winner! Mark my words, this is an author to watch.


*An ARC was received from the author and publisher in exchange for an honest review.



About Kelly Siskind

A small-town girl at heart, Kelly moved from the city to open a cheese shop with her husband in Northern Ontario. When she’s not neck deep in cheese or out hiking, you can find her, notepad in hand, scribbling down one of the many plot bunnies bouncing around in her head.
She laughs at her own jokes and has been known to eat her feelings—Gummy Bears heal all. She’s also an incurable romantic, devouring romance novels into the wee hours of the morning.
She is represented by Stacey Donaghy of the Donaghy Literary Group.

2015 Golden Heart® Finalist

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