Read First Crush, Last Love by Elizabeth McKenna Online

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Back in high school, Lee Archer had the power to make Jessie Baxter’s cheeks flush and her heart race. But the popular athlete never wanted to be more than just friends. Ten years later, after a failed marriage and with her journalism career on shaky ground, Jessie’s come home for her high school reunion—and Lee still has the power to make her knees weak and her pulse pounBack in high school, Lee Archer had the power to make Jessie Baxter’s cheeks flush and her heart race. But the popular athlete never wanted to be more than just friends. Ten years later, after a failed marriage and with her journalism career on shaky ground, Jessie’s come home for her high school reunion—and Lee still has the power to make her knees weak and her pulse pound.Lee's teenage years were filled with more trauma and drama than anyone guessed. Though his damaged past has helped make him a successful police detective, it's hurt every relationship he's tried. But seeing the grown-up, stunning Jessie might just change his commitment-phobic mind.Jessie’s psycho ex-husband had her convinced no one would ever love her, but Lee is ready to step out of the friend zone and into her heart. Can she learn to trust again before she loses her chance to turn her first crush into her last love?Elizabeth McKenna’s novel will have you remembering the angst of high school, the grief of a failed relationship, and the joy of finding true love at last....

Title : First Crush, Last Love
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 36687835
Format Type : ebook
Number of Pages : 314 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

First Crush, Last Love Reviews

  • Natalie The Biblioholic
    2018-11-19 19:25

    Remember your first crush? How your heart raced and your cheeks flushed whenever you saw him? Jessie Baxter does, and it’s happening again. Ten years ago, despite her best efforts, Lee Archer wanted to be just friends. Now, he wants more, but Jessie's still recovering from a psycho ex-husband. Can she learn to trust again and make her first crush into her last love?I’ve had so many crushes over the years and I honestly can’t remember who my first one was. However, I do remember all of the feelings that went along with it, such as the nervous excitement, the blazing inferno of every encounter, the youthful joy of it all. Each look, each touch, each whisper was life-altering. At least that’s what it felt like at the time. While Jessie was pining over Lee, I kept waiting for her to stop being so pathetic. Were we all like that? While I like that Jessie finally got her chance with Lee, I was disappointed with the lack of its authenticity. So much time was spent on Lee with other women and his love for them, and not enough on his thoughts and feelings towards Jessie. Although we get an inkling that he had some sort of feelings for her in high school, they weren’t strong enough for him to ever put her or her heart first. On more than one occasion we saw him neglect and hurt her. So I wanted to see more of how deep his newfound love for her really ran and I wanted to see more of their relationship’s development.Overall, First Crush, Last Love was sweet and heartwarming. There was an added element of suspense with Jessie’s ex-husband that gave this story its dramatic edge. This story was a touch nostalgic with its ‘80s and ‘90s theme and its charming happy ending. It was easy to read and hard to put down.Release Date: August 1, 2017Genre: Contemporary RomancePOV: Dual - 3rd personHeat: 1.5 out of 5Type: Standalone

  • Dianne
    2018-12-09 14:44

    My rating: 4.5 Stars! That first time your heart says “this is forever,” is huge, especially when your teenage hormones are running wild and suddenly there is a noticeable difference between boys and girls. Lee was Jessie’s first crush, but they remained friends only, good friends, but still…sigh…Years have passed, Jessie has grown up, found herself a husband who didn’t quite live up to her high school fantasy, but he was a good man…or was he? A freshly minted divorcee, Jessie has come home for a family visit and a high school reunion. Meanwhile, Lee had his own secrets growing up, secrets that sent him running as far as possible from home, friends and Jessie. He did come back home and is now a law enforcement officer, stable, sadder, but wiser.Little did Jessie know that seeing Lee again would spark those old teenage hormones, nor did she realize she would become the object of a stalker who would shadow her every move. Lee may be the only one who can keep her physically safe, but what about her heart? Will he finally see what he could have had all those years ago? Will the woman version of Jessie and the man version of Lee finally connect the dots that lead to intertwining hearts?FIRST CRUSH, LAST LOVE by Elizabeth McKenna is a sweet second chance romance, even though there never was a first romance to begin with! Adding the touch of danger and mystery was brilliant! There is nothing over the top, but still the sinister air is there, as well as a soft romance that is gently and tentatively blossoming. I enjoyed not having my insides twisted in knots throughout, being able to sit back and enjoy a well-told story that could bring two realistic characters together after a long journey filled with false starts and dead ends. Closure comes in many ways, and Jessie may find that more than one door will close on her past, only to find her future full of doors waiting to be opened on love!I received a complimentary copy from Elizabeth McKenna!Publication Date: August 1, 2017Publisher: Elizabeth McKennaGenre: Contemporary RomancePrint Length: 316 pagesAvailable from: Amazon | Barnes & NobleFor Reviews & More: http://tometender.blogspot.com

  • Romi || Romi Reads
    2018-11-18 18:45

    Judging on the cover and the title I was a bit sceptical of this novel: I thought it was going to be a super cheesy romance. And it was. But definitely in a good way!The book is divided into three parts: the high school years, the years where Jessie and Lee have lost contact and the year of the 10-year high school reunion. Because of these three different time periods, you get to know the main characters really well!Like the blurb says: “[this] novel will have you remembering the angst of high school” and oh my, it did. I was thrown right back into my days of high school and my first crush(es, I had several). Because I was reading this novel as a 22-year-old in a steady relationship, and my high school days are about five years ago, it was kind of hard to identify myself with the lovestruck Jessie. At the start my inner feminist was shouting and screaming inside my mind: “stop waiting around for that loserguy who clearly isn’t going to date you any time soon and isn’t worth your time! Go look for someone who will actually make time for you!” But then I remembered that I have also hoped for a guy to break up with his on-and-off girlfriend so he would actually see me as a potential girlfriend (we ended up dating, but … let’s just say that he looked better from a distance and well … he was a sloppy kisser). But let’s get back to First Crush. After the feminist voice in my head had backed off, because Jessie actually tried to forget Lee, I really enjoyed this romance novel! It had romance, it made me feel nostalgic and it contained a right amount of suspense. Perfect, right?!If you love romance novels set in the 80’s-90’s this book is absolutely perfect! The pacing is really good: not too fast, but also not too slow. There aren’t actually any steamy scenes (not like the scenes I’m used to in the New Adults/Romance novels I have read lately), but that didn’t bother me at all. Because of this the focus actually lay on the personality (developments) of the characters and on the events happening!*I received a paper copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*

  • Cheryl
    2018-11-19 13:37

    I really enjoyed this book. The author infused lots of life into the characters, which in turn made the storyline come alive. This book is broken out into three sections...Senior Year, Marriage Interrupted, and 10-Year Reunion. Not a lot of time is spent in the first section. Yet, the story starts out fine. It was frustrating that Jessie was all about Lee and he did not reciprocate the feelings. Well maybe a little but he did not act on them.The second half of the story was hard to read. This is because while Jessie saw some of the signs that Billy was the jealous type and she was warned by her friend; yet, she still proceeded to marry him. This is when the abuse got worse. While the scenes were few and far between and not very graphic, it is still hard to read about anyone...woman or man being abused by another. Jessie may have been married to an abuser but Lee did date one as well with his old high school girlfriend. The final act was short as well but it felt as if Jessie and Lee had been interacting with one another for a long time and not just reconnecting for the first time in ten years. I am glad that Lee and Jessie found their happy ending.

  • Hannah Symonds
    2018-11-16 19:49

    This is the first book I have read of Elizabeth's and it certainly wont be the last. I really felt as though I wanted to reach out and help Jessie especially with what she has to go through with her psycho husband. The book is set out in three sections: when they are in high school, after college and the reunions. I did think Jessie and Lee were one of those couples that were destined to be together. A story that I really got involved in and couldn't put down.

  • Bailey Ember
    2018-11-14 16:54

    Elizabeth McKenna has great attention to detail and makes everything from the setting, to the characters feel very real. It makes for a wonderfully written and very authentic novel. McKenna manages to take the reader through a barrage of other emotions besides the typical and they will find themselves submerged in the world and feeling every single things that happens toLee and Jessie. The characters were charismatic and drew the reader in.

  • Kameron
    2018-12-06 20:46

    (review request submitted by the author for an honest critique) First Crush, Last Love is divided up into three sections: Part I, Senior Year (1983-1094), Part II, Marriage Interrupted (1998-1991), and Part III, 10-Year Reunion (October 1994). In each of these sections, the reader will find characters and/or their circumstances that are very relatable.Section I: If you’ve attended high school, it’s inevitable you’ve seen or been a part of the drama accompanied with it. For most, there’s that one special friend who’s stood by your side, had your back, or lent an ear when the drama gets to be too much. Break-ups, unrequited love, crushes, fights, dances, and parties are common happenings in all high schools so these topic areas will touch home with many, if not all, readers. A few sensitive areas are briefly discussed as well. Depression, abusive parent, drunken parents, and suicide attempts are never subjects people wish would mark their homes because these things occur. Elizabeth McKenna wanted us to see every aspect of a teenager’s life, the good and the bad. Realistically, everything she wrote about is part of many young adult’s lives. These real life concerns are what connects a reader to a character(s), plot, and/or story. Section II: In this area, Elizabeth McKenna focused on the relationships of the Lee and Jessie after they graduated. Jessie married a man (Billy) who became unstable, abusive. He was already an ass before they married but things only tuned more volatile. Thankfully, she got the courage to divorce him. For those living in her situation, I hope you will find the courage to distance yourself from the combustible and unhealthy relationship. Jessie suffered through unnecessary mental and physical abuse but she also showed it’s never too late to take back your life. Section III: High school reunions…. they have a way of bringing out the worst in people. However, sometimes, you might find yourself rekindling a lost friendship or something more. Like with the other sections, there was drama, abuse, and most importantly… love. Elizabeth McKenna showed us that we must never give up and when real love stands before you…. fight for it, embrace it and never accept anything less because everyone deserves the best in life. Elizabeth McKenna thank you for showing people they don’t have to stand by and allow themselves to be victimized. Men, women, children, straight, or gay…. we all deserve love and a happily ever after.(Find more reviews/ratings at www.superkambrook.com)

  • Carla
    2018-12-06 17:43

    Do you remember your first crush? The way you felt and how you blushed and stammered? The way you felt that this person was going to be your forever love and that you couldn't imagine your life without them. It truly is a magical and special feeling. Sometimes though that person can be your forever love and even when time separates you, when you meet them again - those feelings come rushing back.This book touches on the crush and growing love that Jessie has for Lee. She loves and admires him but he is stuck in an unhealthy relationship with the most popular girl at school. He doesn't allow himself to have a healthy relationship and I honestly feel this stems from his upbringing and childhood. Life was not easy for him growing up and I truly feel this is what causes him to make the decisions he does, to not have healthy relationships and to be afraid of one who would be healthy and positive for him. Instead he keeps Jessie as a best friend, close enough that he can count on her and have her in his life but never altering their dynamics.Jessie on the other hand tries to move on from Lee but instead allows herself to enter into a hateful marriage. She wants so much to be love and doesn't feel like she deserves it and doesn't know what love feels like, that she accepts being treated awfully, physically, mentally and emotionally abused. Your heart breaks for her throughout the novel.When the two have the chance to make things right between them, you can see them struggle with their own feelings of inadequacy, distrust and self-confidence. You want to make them give their heads a shake but also understand this is years of damage done to their esteem and self-love, that they need to move slowly and re-learn how to trust and have faith in another person. This is a truly beautiful story of hope, love and a second chance at first love again.

  • Scarlett Ian
    2018-11-26 13:33

    This was my first read from author Elizabeth McKenna but I was so excited about reading this book because it reminded me of mine & my husband’s story 🙂This book follows Jessie and Lee, who have been good friends for years even though Jessie has always longed for more from their friendship. Every time either of them works up the courage something else interrupts. These two go through other relationships throughout the years but always feel like there is a piece missing. When they reconnect at their high school reunion, neither of them can deny their connection is still present. But so much has happened in their lives that risking their hearts may not be as simple anymore..Based on the title alone I was pretty sure I knew how this book was going to go, but the journey the author took us on to get there was quite the ride. The book was broken into three parts: when they’re in high school, after college, and their ten year reunion. This is probably one of the sweetest second chance romances I’ve ever read – Jessie and Lee are one of those couples that are destined for each other. The author wrote both of these characters so well that you could understand their hesitation and almost relate to their personal walls they constructed. The author captured my attention right at the beginning and I was so engrossed in the story I didn’t realize I had been reading for a few hours! If you enjoy second chance romances then you should read this one.

  • yorkshirebooknerd
    2018-11-20 17:28

    Do you remember being a teenager with a huge crush - the sweaty palms, the racing heart and the butterflies in the stomach sensation that left you feeling equal parts excited and nauseous - that’s how Jessie feels about Lee. Unfortunately for Jessie, Lee just wants to be friends. First Crush Last Love follows the story of Jessie and Lee and is a perfect mix of romance and angst.It’s a story about a second chance at love that is so beautifully written I couldn’t put it down. It is cheesy in parts but I liked that, it reminded me of a great chick flick.The story is set in the 80’s and 90’s and was very nostalgic of that era. It spans a 16 year period and follows Jessie and Lee’s final years at high school, through college and right up to their 10 year reunion. The story was captivating and drew me in from the start. I loved the character development that both Jessie and Lee went through as they grew up and discovered what they wanted from life. The struggles they went through were extremely well written and kept me, as a reader, invested in their story.The tension caused by the undertones of violence and abuse provided an edge to counteract the sweet romantic elements.Overall I loved the story and will definitely be looking out for more books by Elizabeth McKenna. Well worth my 5 stars!The author kindly provided a copy in exchange for an honest review.

  • Marilyn R.
    2018-11-18 14:48

    First Crush, Last Love offer the classic romance storyline - lost opportunity and the journey back to see if it can ever be captured. Within that category this book falls under the list without sexual content warnings which is my preference. I like my romance book with just a hint of sexual tension rather that having it all laid out in great detail.Here you have Jessie who is madly enamored of a high school male friend - Lee. While he seems to enjoy her company as a friend, his romantic endeavors are focused on a high-maintenance, mean girl classmate. Finally a new boyfriend comes into her life and she revels in being wanted. This romance leads to marriage, but the relationship is unhealthy and in the long run doomed.The story line through the book follows 2 paths - that of Jessie and that of her high school crush, Lee, as they move through separate lives that do not offer perfection. When they finally both end up back in their home town - he has returned to live and work, she is only there for their high school reunion - Jessie finds those strong feelings for Lee long buried again rising to torment her.And here it is that the classic romance story dilemma comes into play. Does Lee now hare the same romantic feelings as Jessie or is he still just interested in friendship? Will they find love this time around or is romance just not in the cards for this pair?

  • Amie's Book Reviews
    2018-11-19 13:34

    Have you ever been in an abusive relationship? If so, how horrible did you feel after the relationship finally ended? And, how did that relationship color your view of other possible mates? Now go back further in time. Back to your very first crush. Do you remember how ot felt? Jessie Baxter does. Her first crush was Lee Archer and ten years earlier he told her that he just wanted to be friends. Now, Lee wants Jessie's heart, but her psychotic ex-husband has really messed up her head. You will have to read this book to find out if Jessie and Lee will have a second chance at love. Author Elizabeth McKenna has done a great job of character development and by the end of the book, you can't help but feel invested in the character's lives. Readers will also find themselves looking back at their own high school experiences and waxing nostalgic about their own first crush. This feel good, second chance romance will put a smile on the face of even the most stoic, jaded reader. It is for this reason that I rate FIRST CRUSH, LAST LOVE as 4 out of 5 Stars. 🌟🌟🌟🌟To read my full review and to enter the Giveaway go to http://bit.ly/firstcrushlastlove

  • Jessica
    2018-12-08 12:24

    I really enjoyed reading this book. Fate played the biggest role of this story. If a person is meant to be for you, whatever happened, your lives will rekindle again. This story is beautiful, emotional and some times I feel like I need to throw my Kindle to Jessie. She is beautiful but she is so weak especially fighting her husband Billy. He is such a jerk and hope that all men are not like him. He is such a manipulative and a piece of sh*t. I hate his character but I loved Jessie and Lee. The setting is very nice especially the beach. It is my favorite. This book is so inspirational. I am sure that many women can relate to Jessie's character. We just need to defend ourselves and fight what is right for us as an individual or a wife. Abused women can relate from this story and a beautiful lesson to learn. Love is so powerful. You cannot stop your feelings when the right person comes along. You might forget but if destiny is yours, you cannot stop but to fall-in love all over again. This is a very sweet story, you will fall-in love but at the same time gets hurt and those high school memories of you were being crazy will makes you laugh out loud.

  • Margaret Tidwell
    2018-12-11 17:48

    FTC: I received a free copy of this book from iRead Book Tours in exchange for my honest review. I received no other compensation and the opinions expressed in this review are one hundred percent true and my own.First Crush, Last Love by Elizabeth McKenna was a fantastic book. I loved that you meet the characters when they are in their senior year in high school, and you follow along as they grow up. I loved this because it felt like I was growing up with them and it also helped me understand their lives. I wasn’t a massive fan of Lee throughout most of the book, but I didn’t hate him either. I really liked Jessie, but I got annoyed when she stayed with her ex-husband because no one deserves to be treated like she was. This author did a great job of making the story come to life for me, and I know that I will be reading more of her books in the future. If you love romance books that I know you will love this book just as much as I did.

  • Jo
    2018-11-21 12:51

    This book is told in three phases, and each has a different tone to the others.In the first phase, High School, the author has done a good job of capturing the drama and angst inherent in teen life and does a good job of setting the scene for the balance of the book.The second phase is more difficult to read, and rightly so, given the issues dealt with.  The author skillfully crafts a scenario which allows the reader to develop a deeper connection with Jessie and to want more for her.And that "more" comes in the final phase.  And whilst this was perhaps the bit that I felt was over too quickly. Not rushed, because that would imply that the author didn't give the reunion sufficient focus; but for my personal tastes, I was engaged enough with the relationship that I simply wasn't quite ready for it to end.I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader copy of this book.

  • Debbie Hughes
    2018-12-12 15:40

    This book was just a wonderful read for me! I was in high school in the 80’s so I felt like I was reliving part of my youth. Just a great love story. This story is proof that no one should ever get married before they turn 25! I would like to get Jessie to be a bit tougher but if we’re all a little honest with ourselves none of us were as strong in high school as we are now that we have life experiences. And that’s what happens to Jessie. It’s a nice story to take you away from real life and give you pleasant dreams.

  • Haddie Harper
    2018-12-04 16:34

    Amazing, sweet and touchingThis was a really great read. It was really touching and heart tugging. I've read many books, but I don't think any quite like this. Elizabeth McKenna has a way of making the characters so real. And the fact the story takes place before the 2000's is amazing. I love reading books that take place before my time, which was not that far from the 80's, but even so I love that time. (80's music is bomb!) So good and so worth the read, plus more. *Originally, I received an ARC for a blog tour, but I had to buy the book, I loved it so much!*

  • C. Gonzales
    2018-11-13 14:52

    I enjoyed the characters immensely. I felt like the Romance was well balanced because of their respective personalities. I liked that Elizabeth McKenna does not shy away from real topics. She takes the issues head on and brings them to life for the reader. This is an emotional novel. There are ups and downs for these characters individually and as a couple. You will find yourself right in the rollercoaster of emotions with them.

  • Sherry Lynn
    2018-12-03 20:54

    I had to think a lot about this one. How do you say in a few sentences all the emotions you feel? I have difficulty making a firm decision how to rate(stars) First Crush, Last Love.There are things about the book I really loved, There are things I kind of liked. And honestly a little that I really didn't like. Let's get it out there. What I didn't like was that the first 3/4's of the book was about the high school years. Which wasn't necessarily negative. The story was good. The characters were great and reading this back story overall made a good plot. But based on the covers synopsis I just expected more about Jessie's and Lee's budding love and ultimate happy ending and less about their high school years. There are a lot of high school parties described. Lots of drinking. A little partner switching (as happens in high school). Lee's relationship with his high school girlfriend is on again of again. Although Lee is the football quarterback he is a down to earth guy. He is dependable and doesn't mess around. Unlike Tina who on an 'off again' period goes out with Lee's best friend Dale. There are no bedroom scenes but Lee finds out that the two have been together. On a bit of a side note. I couldn't help but wonder if the authorwas telling her own high school romance. The high school era just flowed together seamlessly and took up alot of the book. As the story progressed and everyone graduates the story picks up with Lee and his new life. He leaves town and becomes a police officer. While Jessie stays home and ends up marrying the boy she dates at the end of high school. Things aren't rosy for them as his domineering qualities turns full throttle possessive and abusive. Things do end well and Jessie manages to get divorced and move on and then things finally come together for Jessie and Lee as the are reacquainted at their high school reunion. Jessie and Lee end happily ever after. There are many life issues touched on and included in this story. Marital abuse, and stalking, homosexuality (Jessie brother is gay), under age drinking and child abuse making First Crush, Last Love not a book I would want my young teenager to read. I question the PG 13 rating. (But I am not a fan of the ratings system.)I enjoyed the characters and the story. I would be interested in reading about some of the other characters. More of Dean's story (Lee's best friend). Jessica's best friend Sarah. And even Tina (Lee's high school girl friend.)The group of people that Lee met and worked with while he lived in another city were interesting and I would love to read more about them. Overall I enjoyed the book. I received a complimentary copy from I Read Book Tours

  • Ishita
    2018-11-20 15:27

    Actual rating : 3.5/5True to its title (that I wasn’t exactly a fan of the first time I saw it..), this is Jessie’s story of unrequited love slash high school crush which never blossomed into something deeper. Why? Well, because this is also the story of Lee’s unresolved insecurities stemming from his troubled family life. Cut to a decade later, when Lee finally is in a better place but Jessie, unfortunately, doesn’t have it in her to reciprocate the same trust to start a new relationship.I am quite picky reader when it comes to romance, but I really liked a lot of aspects about the book. The high school phase is done quite well – especially Jessie mooning over Lee. Sure, I wondered why she was so hung up over someone who already has an on-and-off girlfriend, but hey.. she is a high-school teen.. and well.. this book doesn’t really “justify” that into something “epic” . Both Jessie and Lee have their independent stories, go on to have relationships with others over the brief years after high school. They have their heartbreaks, they grieve, and they grow.My favorite “heartbreak” quote is actually from one of Jessie’s, though it has nothing specifically to do with her or Lee:“It’s hard to grow a relationship to the point of love when you run into hatred everyday”I liked how, despite the bleak nature of her marriage, Jessie still saw some good things that came out of it – like her decent in-laws. I also appreciated that the “violence” in their relationship was shown subtly, and something that, though currently simmering below the surface,, would eventually bubble out into something dangerous if Jessie doesn’t do anything about her situation. It was one of those classic cases of passive-abusive marriages with a spouse/partner not seeing the signs.I guess what didn’t work for me much is the “Last Love” part of the book. Sure, it was sweet and predictable, but with the only “suspenseful” conflict being the “ex-husband” who doesn’t want to let go, you just kind of want to get done with it.But , the book , in its entirety did work for me – It was sweet, with a pleasing conclusion.*Note: I received a print copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review for iRead book tour*

  • Rachel
    2018-12-09 19:42

    Original review posted on my blog From Ink to Paper I received this book as an ARC in exchange for an honest review.3.5 out of 5 starsI must admit that at first I was a little worried, I figured this was going to be a very typical they will want to get together but things will keep breaking them up and she will question it and not want to be with him and annoyance will insue with me sitting there reading and saying don’t be an idiot to her! However I was pleasantly surprised and that isn’t how this book went, it had a little but not a lot so I was pleased.I thought it was cool how it was broken up into three sections and so you got a good background of each period and then you moved on to the present and the story still made sense and flowed well. I am glad too that the relationship between Billy and Jessie did not carry on too long and that even though she didn’t stick up for herself in the beginning she did in the end. I thought the characters were pretty well developed, the supporting characters not as much but they still played a part in the book but really no background on them much besides they are just friends of the main characters so I didn't really care about them as much. I thought the writing was well done, no mistakes and it was clear. For a romance novel there wasn't a ton of graphic sexy scenes which is alright it let more of the story be told. I thought overall this was a fun and quick read. 

  • Laura
    2018-12-05 19:39

    First Crush, Last Love was a fun book to escape with. The first part of the book is set in 1984 when both Jessie and Lee are seniors in high school. I graduated in 1986 so this was my teen era. It actually brought me back to those awkward teen years when I also experienced my first love and dated my first boyfriend.The story follows two teens, Jessie and Lee, who are friends. But Jessie has a serious crush on Lee who only reciprocates with friendship. Once they graduate, the story follows their lives as they move to different cities until they meet again at a 10-year high school reunion in their hometown. They have both experienced life-changing paths and although their meeting again is bittersweet, it also brings them back to their friendship.I enjoyed the author's writing style. She can skillfully move the story forward with great dialogue and emotions that are felt through the scenes. Although this seems to be primarily Jesse's story, at one point the chapters alternate between both Jessie and Lee's point of view so that we get to know him better. I liked this and enjoyed both their stories.As for content, there are a lot of scenes with drinking, getting drunk and partying. The sex scenes aren't too graphic and there is language with a few f-bombs and some marital abuse.If you enjoy books set in the 80s with a solid all-American romance story, then you will enjoy First Crush. Last Love.

  • Lilly
    2018-11-27 20:24

    This book was given to me in exchange for an honest reviewThis is the first book I have read of Elizabeth's and i'm glad i did.There are some serious subjects covered in this book including drinking, homosexuality, AIDS and abuse.The book is devided into three parts:Jessie's senior year of high schoolJessie's engagement and marriage after collegeJessie's 10-year high school reunionThe first part shows Jessi and Lee as friends in high school. Although Jess is pinning for something more than just friendship, sadly her feelings arent returned.The second  part of the story, got me mad at Jessie as Billy was taking advantage, disrespecting and belittling her while all she thought is "she can make her marriage work", not to forget he's a cheater.Are you serious, woman? really? Clear signs on abuse were shoved right into her face and despite her friends and family warning her about it she still went on with it.The final part was short yet cute and sweet. So glad Lee and Jessi finally made it together and found their long lost happiness.The characters were charismatic and explained in great details. This a beautiful story of second chance at love.

  • Charlotte Lynn
    2018-12-08 12:24

    A romance novel set in the 80’s & 90’s is right up my alley. I grew up in this time and loved flashing back to my high school years. The clicks, the attitudes, and the crushes were all perfect for the setting and the characters. While in high school who hasn’t hoped that a couple would break up so that she could jump into the open spot in the relationship? That is exactly what Jessie spent her entire high school hoping would happen with Lee. It was refreshing to see a friendship between Lee and Jessie. There was more than just hormones and lust. Their friendship was true to their age, with the witchy girlfriend being jealous and the other friends looking at them like they were hiding something. At some points in the story I was hoping Jessie could move on, forget Lee, and just get on with her life. Until she did… then I was screaming for her to find Lee and get back to the good things in life. I really enjoyed First Crush, Last Love. It was fun to reminisce about the high school years.

  • Erin Cataldi
    2018-11-20 20:34

    The premise of this book can be easily summarized by the title alone. Told from alternating perspectives and over the course of a decade, this romance novel tackles a variety of topics, childhood abuse, suicide, AIDS, and domestic abuse. Those themes are threaded throughout the novel as Jessie and Lee grow apart and live separate lives after high school. After her teenage crush went nowhere and Lee disappeared after high school graduation Jesse married the next guy that gave her the time of day even though there were warning signs that the relationship was anything but healthy. Lee on the other hand escaped his abusive stepfather and became a cop in Chicago. While their lives couldn't be anymore different, they are about to align again at their ten year high school reunion. Is that spark still there? Have the two changed too much in their time apart? A pretty standard romance novel with a few "romantic" scenes (nothing too steamy), a damsel in distress, and a hot troubled lover. Romance fans will eat this up.

  • Elizabeth McKenna
    2018-11-16 18:32

    Actually, I would give it 4.5 - because there is always room to improve - right? So, as the author of this book, I'm obviously not going to review it, but I thought I would tell you how it came to being.FIRST CRUSH, LAST LOVE started out as a fictional memoir. Throughout the various crises I have faced, I often mumbled, “This will make a great book someday.” I wrote this story to exorcise the demons in my head. It took four long years to finish, and there were times that I thought I wouldn’t reach the end, but then a lucky thing happened – the characters took on their own identities and their storylines evolved away from my life. Some scenes are still true to my past, though it is not important which ones. I will tell you that I did obsess over a boy throughout high school. I did move on and marry someone else, which ended in failure. And, just like Jessie, I did marry that high school crush and we are living happily ever after.I hope you enjoy my story.Take care,Elizabeth

  • Tracey
    2018-12-07 18:39

    *This ARC was received in exchange for an honest review*This is the story of Jessie Baxter and Lee Archer and it spans over ten years from high school, to marriage upheavels and then the ten year reunion.During high school Jessie is crushing on Lee but he does not seem to reciprocate the feelings that they could have between each other. There wasn’t much about their high school time together here.Then on to the next section where we see Jessie has now married Billy, and is trying to survive his abuse and jealousy. Although Jessie’s best friend did warn her about him, she still went ahead and married him anyway. Well we see that you have to learn from your own mistakes even if it takes you through the worst times.Then on to the re-union where we see Jessie and Lee reconnect, and this time will they act on their feelings now, these two are so destined to be together, that they both need there happy ending.This was a great story by Elizabeth McKenna and can’t wait to see what comes next.

  • Kristin's Novel Cafe
    2018-11-15 19:53

    My Review: 4/5The story of a girl’s crush. Jess is in love with Lee and has been all throughout high school. When they go their separate ways, will they ever find each other, and will he ever love her like she loves him?This is a super fast read that I really enjoyed. While I enjoyed the chemistry between Jess and Lee, the supporting characters and their relationships is what I liked the most.The book touches on all kinds of relationships, but the one that touched my heart the most was between Jess and her brother. Set in the late 80’s, we get a glimpse of what it’s like to live in a small Wisconsin town as a gay male. I’m not going to give anything away, but his story was so heartfelt.The friendships in the book were also fun to read. Throughout all of her trials and tribulations, Jess’ best friend Sarah was by her side to offer support.This is a warm, heartfelt book that I recommend.

  • Julie Barrett
    2018-11-30 20:33

    First Crush, Last Love by Elizabeth McKennaStory starts out with her finding Martin, pill bottle on the floor. He had overdosed but she got to him in time.Jessie doesn't understand the pain he is in. She is attracted to Lee and follows him around year after year as he dates others.Story also follows Lee as he leaves home the day of graduation and starts a new life. Like his choice and why.Turmoil on the engagement day but she goes ahead with the wedding despite Sarah's point of view.Up to date circumstances and occur in everyday lives.Class reunion and misundertandings and fear, stalking. Love the dog and German used and locations described.Excerpts from other works are included the end. Would love to read more from this author-really enjoyed.Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest opinion.

  • Laura
    2018-11-12 15:43

    This book was given to me by the author to read. There was parts of this book that really captured my attention however there were also parts that were hard me for me to comprehend. Not being from an abusive family or relationship, it is hard for me to understand how women won't report this type of abuse. The author did a great job of putting out a timeline in a journal type format and I liked this. It pulled the whole thing together. It was a good read but was a little long in some aspects and kind of not enough detail in others. Elizabeth McKenna