It's Always Been You

It's Always Been You

by Jessica Scott

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"The sparks of attraction lead Ben and Olivia into distinctly unprofessional situations, while Olivia has to navigate the scars of her own past...a pleasant and gratifying read." ~Publishers Weekly

She plays by the rules . . .

Army Major Olivia Hale believes in following the process for one simple reason — the rules are simple and clear. And she'll fight to the death to bring those who break those rules to justice. But when she runs straight into Army captain Ben Teague, she finds herself tempted, for the first time in her life, to break those rules.

. . . and he's about to break every one of them...

Company Commander Ben Teague has a way of getting under people's skin — he's a smart ass but no one cares more about taking care of his troops than he does. He's got a low tolerance for the bureaucratic rules that keep him from doing his job. When a trusted friend is brought up on charges, Ben is ready to risk his reputation and his career in his defense.

When everything Ben believes in is exposed to be a lie, he'll turn to the one person he last expected. And the rules she believes in just may save them both — or damn them both to hell.


"4 stars! Scott has a special way of writing a realistic, inspiring and emotional story that readers will lose themselves in. The characters are authentic and genuine."―RT Book Reviews

"Ms. Scott does a great job bringing hope in the midst of this chaotic Army life. I am always intrigued and entertained with each book she writes. Well done, Ms. Scott." ~ Under the Covers

"Book Hangover. Huge book hangover. I think it has to do with the fact that I don't have a Jessica Scott novel to look forward to, to read in the next couple of months...Ms. Scott combines the reality of military life and tempers it with incredible passion. She takes serious and current issues within the military and gives us a peek into that world and I want more. I want Gale Sorren's yesterday." ~ Mandy | Straight Shootin Book Reviews

"Jessica Scott is one author who knows how to make my emotions go haywire whenever I read her books.  She creates characters that I feel for and loves automatically because of their struggles and strengths.  She manages to put characters together that help each other in some way." ~ Franjessca | Book Lovin Mamas

"I cannot praise Jessica Scott's Coming Home series enough. I have raved about each book in this series. Jessica Scott combines military careers, civilian life, people with very real problems, and trying to build happy lives in situations that are very hard for those they love....It's Always Been You by Jessica Scott is another powerful book in the Coming Home series." ~ Smut Book Junkies

"Once again, Jessica Scott is able to deliver on the terrible effects that war has on soldiers. Only she can get inside our heads and make us feel the terrible emotions that the soldiers are subjected to. I find her writing to always be thought provoking and her storylines to be exciting. I highly recommend this amazing story and really anything by JS! Another hit!" ~ Ramblings from This Chick

Product Details

BN ID: 2940161342343
Publisher: Jessica Scott
Publication date: 03/18/2019
Series: Jessica Scott's Coming Home Series , #5
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 51,166
File size: 731 KB

About the Author

Jessica Scott is the USA Today bestselling author of stories set in the heart of America's Army. She's an active duty army officer and holds phd in sociology focusing on status and morality. She has 12 years prior service, earning the rank of SFC prior to commissioning in 2007. She commanded at Fort Hood twice and deployed as part of OIF/New Dawn in 09 with 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, First Cavalry Division.

She has written for the New York Times At War blog, War on the Rocks, Modern War Institute, PBS Point of View Women and War and has been featured in Esquire Magazine as an American of the Year in 2012. She has published multiple novels and novellas about soldiers returning from war.

She has compiled two nonfiction projects about her time in Iraq and the return home. She holds a Ph.d & Masters Degree in sociology from Duke, a Masters Degree in Telecom Management from University of Maryland University College, and a BA in Cultural Studies from State University of New York.

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It's Always Been You 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
LovinLosLibros More than 1 year ago
I just cannot get enough of this series. Jessica Scott is a master of creating rich, emotional stories whose military setting will make you really stop and appreciate everything our soldiers have gone through and the burdens they carry even after their return stateside. This installment follows Ben Teague, who has just been promoted to the rank of commander and is not so happy about it. Ben doesn't want to be in that kind of political position and he certainly doesn't want to be the one to make the hard decisions when it comes to men he's known and served with. However, the unit needs cleaning up and that means a total reorganization of command. It's time to get serious and take action against those who are not assets to the United States Army. Major Olivia Hale is brought in as well to ensure this is happening, taking care of all legal matters and advising the commanders as to the best courses of action. An especially difficult case is laid in front of Ben and Olivia, one that is extremely personal to Ben. The two clash on how to handle the situation, as Olivia is looking at it in terms of the family being affected and from a legal standpoint. Ben is deeply involved, as the soldier in question is one of the best men he knows and once saved his life. Ben is a good man and the last thing he wants to do is hurt men he's gone to war with and known. However, Ben's compassion is one of the best things about him. Sure, he came back from deployment scarred, but he hasn't taken to using drugs or drinking alcohol like some of the others have because they struggle to keep the demons at bay. It's hard for Ben to separate the men he once knew with the ones they are now. Thankfully, Ben has been assigned a good first sergeant to help shoulder some of the burden, and he also has Olivia too. I liked Olivia. She is also compassionate and having been through some deeply painful experiences of her own, she is dedicated to doing what's right. The case that her and Ben butt heads on is important to her and she refuses to let it slip through the cracks. She has seen too many commanders sit on cases before and let them slide and she will not allow that to happen again. Olivia and Ben have a very slow burning relationship and I found I really liked that. Their relationship developed so naturally and never once did I feel it was forced or overdone. It was a subtle coming together and it just worked really well. They don't beat around the bush when it comes to wanting one another either. Olivia is slow in opening up to Ben though, and that does cause a bit of a problem with them, but it didn't last for pages to cause all this unnecessary angst. I adored seeing Ben and Olivia support one another and I think they were a great match. I really liked this one because it was interesting to me to see all the politics at play, as well as everything that goes on and has to be taken care of on base. The romance is more on the subtle side, but so perfectly woven into the storyline without taking emphasis away from the bigger picture. I really hope she decides to write Galen's book, because I am totally in love with that guy and am especially interested in seeing him reconnect with his daughter.
ButtonsMom2003 More than 1 year ago
Another fantastic book by Jessica Scott. This book has everything - it made me laugh, it made me cry and there was a bit of mystery, too and, of course, romance. I have a fondness for military romance books but the Coming Home books are in a class by themselves. I have no idea if the things Ms. Scott writes about are based on real situations she's personally encountered but I would have to think that the fact that she's an officer is what makes them seem so believable. I hope there will be more to the Coming Home series and many more books to come from Ms. Scott. All of the books stand-alone but if you haven't started the Coming Home series here is the recommended reading order from the author's website: Coming Home .5: I’LL BE HOME FOR CHRISTMAS Coming Home 1: BECAUSE OF YOU Coming Home 1.5: ANYTHING FOR YOU Coming Home 2: BACK TO YOU Coming Home 3: UNTIL THERE WAS YOU Coming Home 4: ALL FOR YOU Coming Home 5: IT'S ALWAYS BEEN YOU I didn't read them in this exact order and still loved each and every one. Jessica Scott's books are on my must read list!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great story!! Love Jessica Scott's writing!!
blonde_betty More than 1 year ago
Jessica Scott has never been afraid to take on the tough topics. Her latest It’s Always Been You deals with the reality of child abuse, traumatic brain injury, bad leadership, and how good soldiers get protected even when they are bad men (or women). In the midst she brings together Ben and Olivia. Ben is a reluctant commander, newly appointed to the position. Olivia is a lawyer more focused on the legalities of justice than the reality of being human. A classic case of opposites attract. Their differing viewpoints make them interesting to watch. Trust is hard won with these two, but they clearly earn it and the payoff is worth it. I have to admit, I didn’t really like Olivia. She seemed too rigid and convinced she was the only one who knew what was right. Scott did a great job of providing her backstory so I knew why she was the way she was. However, she never quite made it over the hump to make me truly like her. That being said, I did think that she and Ben were good for each other. This book takes us in a new direction. Most of the fan favorites from previous iterations of the Coming Home novels do not appear. We do have glimpses of Reza and Emily, but Shane and Carponti never make an appearance. There are new characters that have potential, so it will be interesting to see how they grow in future books. I hope there is room for both sets of characters as we move forward as I don’t want to let the previous ones go quite yet.
booknerdDS More than 1 year ago
I’m convinced that Jessica Scott can do no wrong! This is my third novel by her and she never fails to impress and wow me! Her writing is always so intense and captivating that I find myself gripping my reading device with anxiety about what is going to happen next. She captures the raw, dirty, deep, emotions that make her characters so intriguing and complex. She has become one of my favorite authors! I loved Olivia and thought she was such a fantastic character in the previous Coming Home book and in this book as well. She is strong, and very in control. She has a tough job but she is not afraid to do it! She also carries a lot of baggage with her. But her baggage serves to motivate her and keep her focused and it does not hinder her. Ben is equally fantastic. He is a typical alpha male with a lot of heart. And I mean a lot! Ben was so sweet and compassionate. He clearly loved his fellow soldiers and took his responsibilities very, seriously. When he had to deal with hard decisions it was easy to feel his pain and his angst about what he should do versus what he wanted to do. Olivia and Ben were fantastic together. I loved how they balanced each other out and how they threw each other off balance! They both seemed to have very different ways to deal with tough decisions but both of them were equally able to stand by their decisions, even when they were not the right ones. My favorite part was their friendship. They had very strong respect for each other and they were able to appreciate their differences. Once again, Jessica Scott is able to deliver on the terrible effects that war has on soldiers. Only she can get inside our heads and make us feel the terrible emotions that the soldiers are subjected to. I find her writing to always be thought provoking and her storylines to be exciting. I highly recommend this amazing story and really anything by JS! Another hit!
ELF-thereadingaddict More than 1 year ago
Another realistic and enjoyable military romance in an impressive series. “It’s Always Been You” by Jessica Scott is part of the military romance ‘Coming Home’ series and features Ben Teague who has been thrust into the unwelcome role of command during the attempt to ‘clean house’. He must deal with both the pressures of the job and the complication of making unwelcome decisions about men he has shared life-threatening experiences with. Major Olivia Hale has been tasked with making sure that the legal requirements and appropriate paperwork are completed, no matter what resistance. It takes some patience and compassion for her to realize that her own past history and the individual biases must be overcome and that sometimes what is protocol is not necessarily what is humane but the challenge is knowing when and how to apply the rules. The allure of this series is the gritty realism that is balanced by the hope that a change can be made for the brave soldiers who are sacrificing so much. Each book is eye-opening as it reveals the challenges that are faced both on and off of the battlefield and the repercussions of decisions that are made for the masses yet impact on very distinct individuals. The heartbreaking aftereffects of military action and the long-lasting impact on soldiers and their families is again emphasized and adds to the poignancy of a story that allows the reader to learn about some of the harsh reality facing those who develop addictions or suffer from traumatic brain injuries or PTSD that go untreated. The gradual blossoming of the relationship between Ben and Olivia who each have their own past traumas to overcome is wonderful to watch and it is great to get a glimpse of Reza and Emily as well. I love the camaraderie that is displayed even as I mourn the challenges that all of these individuals must overcome and applaud their perseverance and loyalty to each other and those they are responsible for. It is wonderful the way the stories in this series integrate and I am always anxious for more of them and hope that we get to see many more tales of these charismatic individuals. I received a copy of this title as a gift and am pleased to provide my honest review.
Under_The_Covers_BookBlog More than 1 year ago
~Reviewed by ANGELA & posted at Under the Covers Book Blog Ms. Scott yet again brings up critical issues in the Army. What happens when they come back from the war with physical and emotional scars? Whose responsibility is it to decide what happens to them? Upper management aka higher ranks. Just as with any establishments, this means politics, and lots of it. In this story, it certainly makes its mark. I was taken aback to what Ms. Scott reveals as the politics side of the story pans out. It brought on good points and certainly two sides of the sty. I love that Ms. Scott laid it out and made it easy to understand. Teague takes on more responsibility and has moved up the ranks to clean up his new crew. Cleaning up in terms of weeding out the ones who do not qualify to stay and the ones who do. He knew it would be the worst kind of responsibility when some suffer from PTSD, drug and alcohol abuse and he has to decide if they can stay or get the boot. Torn between loyalty and what is right, Captain Ben Teague will need help from the very up-tight lawyer Olivia Hale. The question is, will she be on his side? I enjoyed Teague and Olivia’s story. They had issues to work out including their feelings for one another and differences when it comes to work decisions. It was funny how they equally intrigued and annoyed each other. However, Teague had the worst end of the stick. He shoulders everyone’s problems that he forgets about himself. He continues to battle sobriety and his future sort of scares me. He’s not in the clear yet and not by a long shot, but he has Olivia to keep him straight, I hope. I’m eager to see more of his progress in the next books. Ms. Scott does a great job bringing hope in the midst of this chaotic Army life. I am always intrigued and entertained with each book she writes. Well done, Ms. Scott. ARC provided by publisher
CharlotteLynnsReviews More than 1 year ago
Captain Ben Teague has gotten a promotion that he does not even want.   This promotion has him being in charge of his friends, not being able to protect them.   His job also entails getting rid of the riffraff and trouble makers in his group.   While cleaning house he has to work closely with Major Olivia Hale, a by the book lawyer hired to help him.     Olivia has to deal with the demons of her past.    Helping Ben with a mentor and colleague who has been brought up on charges, charges Ben cannot believe, puts this past front and center.  With Ben’s compassion and understanding they will work together and get what has to be done done.  My Review: I feel like I say the same thing with every review of Jessica’s books that I read.    But they are all absolutely amazing.   Everyone of them touches on hard subjects with a tenderness and understanding that not many authors are able to handle.   Each book can stand alone, but as a series they are even better. Ben, oh Ben.   He is so tough.  He has not had the easiest life and it shows.  Between the military and war, his mother being military and losing his father young, and the toughness of his new job, things are just not going the way he wants.   From the very beginning you could feel how huge his heart is.  He would go to the ends of the earth and do whatever is in his power to help his fellow soldiers.  Ben is the man who would give you the shirt off his back if that was what was needed.  Olivia is the perfect match for Ben.  She is tough and can stand her ground when Ben starts his BS, but she is also understanding of all the troubles Ben is dealing with.   She has the matching huge heart to go with Bens.   I enjoyed watching the two of them circle each other, when they finally give in to their feelings the heat is absolutely amazing.  This is probably my most favorite military series.   Jessica Scott is a great author.  I highly recommend you check out this entire series or at least this book from the Coming Home Series.
The_Book_Queen More than 1 year ago
I know that when I pick up one of Jessica Scott's novels, I will be entertained, I will feel the characters' pain, and I will crack a few smiles. It's simply a given! And while It's Always Been You did live up to those expectations, I will admit that it's probably my least favorite book in the series so far. However, that is NOT to say that I disliked the book, or that it's terrible. It's not; it's still really, really good! For some reason, I just did not connect as much with Ben and Olivia as I did previous couples. I'm not sure why, exactly, and perhaps it could be purely due to my current mood while reading this, or due to the fact that I read books 3 and 4 within the last two months. Sometimes I can get series burn out by reading the books too close together. I enjoyed the peek into Ben's new position, and how much work it entails. I'll admit that, yes, I do sometimes get lost in the line of command and who is who, but that is not Scott's fault. If anything, she makes it easier to understand compared to some military romances I have read. The simple fact is I'm not in the military, so no matter how many books I read, I will never know the inner workings of it. :) Like with every other book, Scott managed to grab my heart and twist it, more than a few times. I wondered if Ben could fit into his new role, if Olivia could begin to heal from her own past. I wanted to give them both a hug, considering everything they've been through. I was worried about Escoberra and Zittoro, too. And of course I still worried about Reza. Now I'm curious about Sorren and Foster. It's Always Been You is another solid installment in an amazing series! Even if it's not my “favorite”, it is still a damn good read; I can't stop recommending this series enough! Remember, they are best read in order, but once you start, you won't be able to stop. There's a certain crack in Scott's writing, and I'm a happy addict. 4 STARS! ~ * ~ * ~ For my full review, including favorite book quotes, please visit my blog, TBQ's Book Palace. TheBookQueen
Shellbelle1 More than 1 year ago
Jessica Scott delivers another compelling book in the Coming Home series! I cannot praise Jessica Scott’s Coming Home series enough. I have raved about each book in this series. Jessica Scott combines military careers, civilian life, people with very real problems, and trying to build happy lives in situations that are very hard for those they love. This series has brought me to tears, opened my eyes to the problems the modern army faces, made me see a soldier as an individual person, and has delivered very real relationships. Each and every story is emotional. Each book addresses difficult situations that affect these courageous men and women. In the end, there is always the underlying message of hope and true love. It’s Always Been You is Captain Ben Teague’s story. He is a stand up guy, always has your back, and has an understanding of human nature. He is a strong leader and recognizes each and every soldier under his command as an individual. This story begins where All For You left off. The battalion has cleaned house and new commands are assigned. The objective is to clean up their newly assigned companies. Captain Ben Teague does not want the new Bandit Company he has been assigned to. He does not want to be a commander. Overseeing the clean up is Major Olivia Hale, a lawyer whose sole purpose is to make sure this happens. Captain Teague is on her radar. This reluctant leader seems to want to protect his men rather than the true victims. His casual regard for the rules, his soft heart, and closed lip are not helping matters. One of his men, Escoberra, is under suspect for abuse of his child. She wants his family to be safe . Due to her past, her views, opinions, and drive are very influential in her actions. After she meets Ben, she will learn everything is not as black and white as they seem. Ben and Olivia are drawn to one another even though they are on opposing sides of the fence. Both will have to learn from the other. Both will have to open their minds and hearts to the new dilemma’s this new Company faces. They will have to learn to combine their working relationship with their personal relationship. They will have to learn how to deal with mental health issues and legal issues their battelian will face. But together they will both become stronger individuals. They will learn from each other and they will teach each other very different things about life. I loved Ben and Olivia’s relationship. It was tough, mature, compassionate, heart wrenching, and empowering. It’s Always Been You by Jessica Scott is another powerful book in the Coming Home series. It can be read as a stand alone or in series order.
SmittenWithReading More than 1 year ago
My Review: This story was filled with emotional angst and turmoil and I loved every minute of it. Jessica Scott is truly queen of writing tortured souls.  In this story we meet Captain Ben Teague and Major Olivia Hale. The entire Brigade command structure has been replaced and they are two of the people who now have to sort back out the mess left by the last group of leadership. Ben is the reluctant commander and Olivia is the determined lawyer. Throughout the story so many times they seemed to be at crossed goals, but honestly, both of them are just trying and slogging to try to do the best for their people. They both care...maybe, just a tad too much in this harsh environment where nothing is easy.  I love reading this series from Jessica Scott and this book in particular was so well-done. Ben and Olivia are both dealing with a ton...stress, ghosts of their own mental issues, not sleeping, lives on the line, and a ton of pressure to get the job done and done correctly. Many times in the military the regulations don't allow for a human grey areas...there are aspects of these soldiers lives that make things at home so difficult...most of those stem from being in the war zone. That's not something that's easy to recover from and every man deals with that stress differently. But that's a sacrifice that each of them have made for the American go over and fight and get shot at and get blown up. They deserve some second chances because of that. Sometimes the rules simply don't allow for that. In this book, that puts Ben and Olivia at a crossroads. She's the legal aspect and advises Ben on how to proceed when things get out of control...and they get out of control a lot.  As a writer and a reader, I marvel at Jessica Scott's ability to create such incredibly vulnerable, but still such strong characters. She created two of those characters in this book. I fell in love with both Olivia and Ben while my heart hurt for them. I loved getting to read their story and find their way to each other and through this really tough career that they've both found themselves in. It was an incredible book. There are truly some tough issues delved into within it, but it never felt too heavy to me. I just never wanted to stop reading it. Another great one from this incredible series by Jessica Scott.  I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.