By: Stacy Eaton

Series: Heal Me

Book Number: 1

Star Rating:

Sensuality Rating:



Spoiler Disclaimer


Colt Barnes is a plastic surgeon dedicated to giving people, especially children, a better quality of life. He and his friends frequent the bar, Shot Therapy, and on several occasions, he's noted the same beautiful woman leaving with a different man each time. Sensing there might be something deeper driving all her casual hookups and feeling that she deserves better, he asks her out on a date, during which he makes her a proposition. If she'll agree to not sleep around for one month, he'll show her how a man should treat a lady. Ember reluctantly agrees, and Colt immediately begins to woo her in the most romantic ways possible, even coming to her rescue during a medical emergency and showing her lots of TLC afterward. Colt started their relationship as an experiment, but soon he's falling head over heels for Ember and knows that he wants her in his life. But when she finally reveals the darkest part of her past, will he be able to accept her, or will Ember return to her old ways?

Ever since a traumatic event in the past, Ember Greene doesn't feel like she deserves a happily-ever-after. Instead she engages in meaningless, no-strings hookups nearly every weekend. On one such night, while propositioning a guy, another man at the bar heckles her a little. Although the second man is hot as sin, she brushes him off as being far too wealthy for the likes of her. Then she literally runs into him a few days later at a medical complex. Colt asks her out, saying he has a proposition for her. Ember is about to say no, but finds herself intrigued enough to bite. When he declares his proposition, she's a little offended, but having just had an epiphany about the sheer number of guys she's been sleeping with, she decides to take him up on the offer. Things are going great between them, and Ember begins genuinely falling for a man for the first time in years, but she fears that if she tells Colt the truth about her past, he may not understand. Then a jealous friend of Colt's who wants him for herself, misleads Ember about Colt's intentions, which could ruin their relationship for good.


Cured is the first book in Stacy Eaton's Heal Me contemporary romance series that follows a group of friends who are medical professionals. Colt is a plastic surgeon who often meets his friends for drinks at the bar, Shot Therapy. The last several times, they've been there, he's noticed a beautiful woman who always leaves with a different man each time. Sensing that there might be something deeper driving her casual hookups and feeling she deserves better, he decides to make her a proposition: Don't sleep around or date anyone else but him for one month and he'll show her how a man should treat a lady. At first Ember is slightly offended by Colt's proposal, but having just had a wake-up call, she thinks maybe it might be time to try something different. She agrees, and for the next few weeks, they share some of the best times of her life. Colt gradually begins to chip away at the ice that's formed around her frozen heart, and she starts to really fall for him. But if she tells him the truth about why she's only been living half a life for so long, she fears what he might think of her. Also, he never promised her forever, only one month, and when a jealous friend who wants Cold for herself stirs up trouble, it could mean the end of Colt and Ember's relationship.

Because of a traumatic event, Ember has been mired in pain and grief for the past six years. Feeling she's undeserving of love, she's walled off her heart and only engages in meaningless hookups as a way to try to feel something. One night, while reconnecting with an old friend at Shot Therapy, she picks up yet another strange man, only to be heckled by a different guy sitting nearby who is even hotter than the one she chose. Recognizing the second man as being too wealthy for her blood, she brushes him off and sticks with her original choice, but their time together ends up being nothing special. After injuring herself twice in clumsy accidents and needing to update her regular STD tests anyway, Ember heads for the doctor's office, where she finally has an epiphany about the sheer number of guys she's been sleeping with and wonders if it might be time for a change. Then she literally runs into hot guy number two as she's leaving the medical complex. Colt invites her to dinner and says he has a proposition for her. She's intrigued enough to accept, but after hearing his proposal, she's at first irritated and thinks he's judging her for her lifestyle choices. However, he turns out to be very persuasive and Ember has never been one to back down from a challenge. Over the next few weeks, the way Colt romances her really starts to melt her heart, but she still blames herself for things that happened in the past and thinks Colt will, too. Then there's Colt's friend who makes Ember believe that this was all nothing but a game to him. Alone in the world, Ember has barely been living while trying to cover up the pain of the past, but Colt makes her feel alive again in a way she didn't think was possible. All she really needed was for someone to show her they cared and to show her what she was truly worth and Colt really stepped up to the plate to be that person for her.

The last several times, he's been out to Shot Therapy with his friends, Colt has seen the beautiful blond woman who always leaves with a different guy. Being a little old-fashioned when it comes to love and romance, he can't help giving her a hard time when she offers to buy some strange man a drink. She brushes Colt off, but he can't stop thinking about her. Feeling a beautiful woman like her deserves far more than all the meaningless hookups she appears to be engaging in week after week, he comes up with his proposal, and when he chances to run into her at the medical complex where he works, it offers the perfect opportunity to ask her out. From night one, Colt plays the perfect gentleman, treating Ember like a real lady, and even comes to her rescue during a medical emergency, tenderly caring for her afterward. Although he didn't initially intend for their relationship to be anything other than an experiment, he slowly starts to fall for her until he knows he wants her in his life always. But when Ember disappears on him and he finds her in a compromising position, his heart is broken as he fears that she's gone back to her old ways. Colt is a confident, but beta-leaning hero who is sweet, generous, and compassionate. He's not the usual plastic surgeon who caters to vain, wealthy people, and when I found out the true nature of his work, it was utterly heartwarming. He's a man who genuinely wants to help people, and although perhaps a tad meddlesome, that's all he really wants to do for Ember when he makes his proposal to her. He turns out to be a swoon-worthy hero who treats her in the most romantic ways without going over the top, instead just paying attention and listening. Colt isn't perfect, though, and must find a way to trust Ember and get over his own hangups about her past in order to find an HEA.

Overall, Cured was a lovely read about a woman who'd been through a lot and has finally found the one man who could make her feel loved and cherished again. I thought that Colt and Ember made a great couple and were well-suited to one another. Their romance is sweet and tender with a little steam on the side, but it's mostly about them getting to know one another and Colt showing Ember her true value. That said, I thought that perhaps their characterizations could have gone a bit deeper. Ember has been mired in six years of grief that was perhaps overcome a little too quickly and magically, but when she was finally able to open up to Colt, it was a sweet moment, nonetheless. While I loved Colt's plastic surgeon persona, we don't learn a lot about his background. We do get to meet his mom, who's engaged to a much younger man, but both are very nice people. Otherwise, there's not much else about Colt's life. Colt's friend/nurse who decides to interject herself into his personal space could have used a little stronger motivations, too. I understood that she wanted Colt for herself, but after several years of him saying no, one might think she'd have gotten a clue. She also seemed a little too willing to blow up a long-term friendship and jeopardize her own job just for spite, but I guess there are people out there like that. The one other thing that I thought could have been better is the editing, mainly because the dialogue was too stilted and needed a lot more contractions and there was an overabundance of winking. Otherwise, though, I really enjoyed Cured and it's left me very interested in continuing the series to see Colt's other friends get their HEAs, too. It definitely hit me in the feels, so much so that I came close to giving it keeper status. There were just those few little things that kept it from getting over that hump, but it was a strong 4-star read for me. Anyone who loves a gentlemanly hero who knows how to romance a lady paired with a heroine who has a little healing to do will probably enjoy it as much as I did.


Stacy Eaton


Beta Heroes
Doctors, Nurses, & Medical Professionals
Opposite Sides of the Track
Tortured Heroines