ARC Book Review: The Hot One

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Synopsis:

At first glance, stripping naked at my ex-girlfriend’s place of work might not seem like the brightest way to win her back. 
But trust me on this count – she always liked me best without any clothes on. And sometimes you’ve got to play to your strengths when you’re fighting an uphill battle. As a lawyer, I know how to fight, and I’m prepared to fight hard for her. I might have let her slip through my fingers the last time, but no way will that happen twice.
He’s the one who got away…
The nerve of Tyler Nichols to reappear like that, stripping at my job, showing off his rock hard body that drove me wild far too many nights. That man with his knowing grin and mischievous eyes is nothing but a cocky, arrogant jerk to saunter back into my life. Except, what if he’s not…?
He’s the one I’ve tried like hell to forget but just can’t. Maybe I’m cursed to remember him. My money is on him being the same guy he always was, but what’s the harm in giving him a week to prove he’s a new man? I won’t fall for him again.
But how do you resist the hot one…

Purchase From:

Amazon, Barnes & NobleiBooks

Review

*I received a free digital advanced reader’s copy of this book from Lauren Blakely Books. This did not influence my review of this book in anyway. This is an honest review of the novel as I saw it. This novel will be released on February 27, 2017.*

Honestly, when I first read the synopsis of The Hot One I wasn’t totally sold on it. Tyler just sounded too cocky and not my kind of guy at all. However, because I’ve loved almost every single one of Lauren Blakely’s books that I’ve read I still wanted to give this book a try and I’m so glad I did.

While Tyler was definitely just as cocky as I expected him to be he was also really funny and totally sweet. I absolutely loved his chemistry with Delaney and I also just loved Delaney as a person as well. The story is told in their alternating POVs, which I really liked because it was interesting to see how they viewed their past break-up in different ways. For Tyler, it was something he felt had to happen, whereas for Delaney it was devastating but also a major turning point in her life that turned out to be for the better.

What I loved most about this book was that the relationship between Tyler and Delaney was a slow burn. Not like really slow (this is an erotic novel after all) but unlike other Blakely books I’ve read, Tyler and Delaney didn’t just jump into bed right away. This was mainly because of their past relationship and the fact that they hadn’t seen each other since they broke up. These two had to get to know each other again and it was fun seeing them figure each other out as if it was the first time, not the second. Plus, when they finally did get in bed it was totally worth the build up.

My only issue in the book was Delaney had another love interest, Trevor, who seemed pretty pointless. Obviously I knew Tyler and Delaney were end game but still, we literally only see Trevor once and then he pretty much disappears after that. I kind wanted some drama there, especially because I feel like Tyler wouldn’t have taken the competition well and that could’ve been funny. But alas, it wasn’t so.

Still, Trevor aside, I really liked this book and read it in the span of day. I just couldn’t put it down. Definitely check this book out once it’s released. It’s a must read.

Stars:

4 stars

 

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Book Review: Decidedly Off Limits

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Synopsis:

Best Friend Rule #1: never want the guy’s sister.
Oops.

Trent Salway is one of San Francisco’s hot up-and-coming-under-thirty bachelors. A highly successful mutual fund portfolio manager, a workaholic, and a ladies’ man, he’s got everything he could possibly want…except one thing.

Physical therapist Kelsey Quaid dumped her ex-fiancé six months ago because she was tired of not even being a distant second to his career. Which is why despite secretly crushing on her big brother’s best friend for as long as she can remember, there’s no way Kelsey can go there. One workaholic in her life is more than enough, thank you very much.

Before Kelsey’s brother leaves on his Navy SEAL mission, he asks Trent one simple request: make sure Kelsey isn’t dating any assholes while he’s away. As Trent does his best to do just this, he and Kelsey spend more and more time together. Sparks fly, as do a few items of clothing, and the next thing they know things are getting physical between them. Now, Trent has to decide what to do about the woman he’s falling for—the one whose brother would take him down faster than he takes down the enemy. And Kelsey will have to decide if Trent is just another workaholic or if he’s decidedly off limits.

Purchase From:

Amazon, Barnes & NobleChapters

Review

I’m typically a fan of the “best friend’s sibling” trope but the writing style of this novel really ruined it for me. Told in alternating POVs between Kelsey and Trent, both of their narrations are written as if they’re having a conversation with you and expecting you to respond. For example, at one point in Kelsey’s narration we get this:

Did you see who was third in line? That’s right. The Viking.

Then later in Trent’s POV we get a similar thing:

Did you recognize the woman who tried to outbid Kelsey?  She was Beatrice Peterson, or Reese, as she preferred to go by.

Also, I still I have no idea who Beatrice is and why she’s so terrible, besides the obvious reasons, so no Trent, I did not recognize her. This was literally so frustrating. It was as if the author, Stina Lindenblatt, was attempting to do a breaking down of the fourth wall, like in House of Cards, but with a book and it just didn’t work well here. At least not for me. The thing is I know I’ve read other books that are kind of written like this that I loved but I think Lindenblatt just tried too hard with this, especially because we got it in both POVs so the voices started to sound a little similar.

Additionally, there were just too many points where the narrators kept asking me to “imagine” things or “remember when” something. This seemed to happen at the start of a lot of chapters and in both POVs and it was so irritating. Still, despite how infuriating I found the writing style to be I did push through and finished the novel and it wasn’t totally terrible. The plot itself was fine, in that it was exactly what I expected it to be. Boy likes girl, girl likes boy, both think they can’t be together, they hook-up anyway, keep it a secret, there’s some kind of conflict, they go their separate ways, only to realize they’re perfect for each other. One major issue I did have with the plot was the “break-up” scene. It just felt so anticlimatic to me and completely out of nowhere. There was no build up and it was so abrupt that I had to go back and read it over to make sure that was the break-up scene. Seriously, the whole moment only took like two pages.

Still, I did really like Trent and Kelsey as people though. I thought their dialogue was great and their chemistry was good. Even so, overall I wasn’t all that impressed with this novel and I’m glad I only spent 99 cents on it.

Stars:

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Favorite Line:

“I love everything about you. Your love for your job and the kids you help. Your love of life. Your love of those funny little owls. Your amazing photographs. Your heart. I love it all.”

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After This Night Book Review

Book Review: After This Night

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Synopsis:

Their world was passion, pleasure and secrets.

Far too many secrets. But Clay Nichols can’t get Julia Bell out of his mind. He’s so drawn to her, and to the nights they shared, that he can’t focus on work or business. Only her. And she’s pissing him off with her hot and cold act. She has her reasons though–she’s trying to stay one step ahead of the trouble that’s been chasing her for months now, thanks to the criminal world her ex dragged her into. If only she can get out of this mess, then maybe she can invite the man who ignites her back in her life, so she can have him–heart, mind and body.

He won’t take less than all of her, and the full truth too. When he runs into her again at her sister’s wedding, they have a second chance but she’ll have to let him all the way in. And they’ll learn just how much more there is to the intense sexual chemistry they share, and whether love can carry them well past the danger of her past and into a new future, after this night…

Purchase From:

Amazon, Goodreads

Review

As promised here’s my review of the second book in Lauren Blakely’s Seductive Nights series. I bought After This Night immediately after I finished Night After Night because I absolutely needed to know what happened next. If you don’t want to be spoiled for Night After Night stop reading here!

At the end of book one we saw Clay and Julia go their separate ways. After being confronted by “Skunk”, the security guy, outside of Julia’s apartment, Clay decides he can’t trust Julia without an explanation. Unfortunately, Julia couldn’t trust him enough to give him one. Thus they broke up and Clay went home to New York, leaving Julia behind in San Francisco, seemingly for good. Until they started emailing again. A day later. Talk about lack of self-control.

From there it quickly got more intense and needless to say they don’t stay apart for very long. Even so, Julia still needs to pay back her debt and she’s determined to do it on her own, without Clay’s help.

This book was even better than the first one. I liked that Clay and Julia already knew each other at this point and they seemed more in love than before, which was super cute. Clay made me swoon and I just love his relationship with Julia. Plus, I really loved the use of the emails and phone conversations in this book. They were playful and steamy and added to the romance. This series is a case where the sequel is even better than the first one. Definitely pick this up if you haven’t already.

Stars:

5 stars

Favorite Line:

“Every woman should be jealous of you because of how I feel for you. “

Other Reviews

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Mister O by Lauren Blakely Book Review

Book Review: Mister O

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Synopsis from Amazon:

Making a woman feel ‘oh-god-that’s-good’ is the name of the game, and if a man can’t get the job done, he should get the hell out of the bedroom. I’m talking toe-curling, mind-blowing, sheet-grabbing ecstasy. Like I provide every time.

I suppose that makes me a superhero of pleasure, and my mission is to always deliver.

But then I’m thrown for a loop when a certain woman asks me to teach her everything about how to win a man. The only problem? She’s my best friend’s sister, but she’s far too tempting to resist–especially when I learn that sweet, sexy Harper has a dirty mind too and wants to put it to good use. What could possibly go wrong as I give the woman I’ve secretly wanted some no-strings-attached lessons in seduction?

No one will know, even if we send a few dirty sexts. Okay, a few hundred. Or if the zipper on her dress gets stuck. Not on that! Or if she gives me those f*&k-me-eyes on the train in front of her whole family.

The trouble is the more nights I spend with her in bed, the more days I want to spend with her out of bed. And for the first time ever, I’m not only thinking about how to make a woman cry out in pleasure –I’m thinking about how to keep her in my arms for a long time to come.

Looks like the real Adventures of Mister Orgasm have only just begun….

*This book is part of my POPSUGAR 2016 Reading Challenge.*

Erotic romances aren’t my go to reading material but after reading Big Rock I knew I could trust Lauren Blakely’s writing. Plus I loved Harper and Nick in Big Rock and was excited they were getting their own story. If you haven’t read Big Rock you could totally read Mister O as a standalone but I’d recommend reading Big Rock first. It’s really good too.

Nick is a cartoonist that makes a dirty cartoon show that kind of falls along the lines of Family Guy in terms of humor. His favorite activity is pleasuring woman, which is why his best friend’s little sister, Harper, approaches Nick for dating and then sex advice. One thing leads to another and Nick becomes Harper’s teacher in everything that happens in the bedroom. However, as the two spend more time together in bed, Nick finds himself wanting to spend more time with Harper outside of it. Cue romance!

This book was the perfect fun and quick, while admittedly somewhat cliche, book I needed. It was steamy and fast paced and Nick and Harper played off each other really well. I loved their quips and jokes and how they really got each other in this cute way.

Also, I really loved when Blakely put in these little quips about writing that were like little inside jokes between her as the author and us readers. For example, at one point Nick, when comparing what he and Harper are doing to what the love interests in Big Rock did, says, “No, that’d be lame if we did the same thing. That would be like if a romance writer used the same trope in the very next novel.” I thought that was hilarious because obviously that would be exactly what Blakely would be doing but thankfully she did not.

All in all, if you’re looking for a cute, erotic romance novel I highly recommend Mister O. Although there were definitely some scenes I found unrealistic, it was overall fun and playful, and honestly, it’s kind of fun to get sucked into the fantasy. Plus it’s not expensive so why not buy it? I did.

Also, Blakely has a few more books coming out about the supporting characters in this novel. The next one will be about Nick’s brother, Wyatt, and it definitely sounds interesting. I’ll probably try to resist falling into another one of these novels but my willpower is weak. These have definitely become my guilty pleasure reads for sure. Love them!

Borrow or Buy: Buy!

Stars:

4 stars

Favorite Line:

“I want to look into someone’s eyes and feel like he knows me, gets me, understand me. I want him to see my quirks and accept them, not try to change them. I want to know what that’s like.”

Other Reviews

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Book Review: Making Her His

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Synopsis from Amazon:

For almost five years, Alex has had one obsession. Her name is Elynn.

Alex Hanas couldn’t believe that after so many years as a widower, his father was getting remarried. To make matters worse, the American gold digger had a kid—a daughter named Elynn. After months of avoiding it, Alex goes to brunch with every intention of giving his father’s new family the deep freeze. But he can’t pull it off with Elynn’s anxious green-grey eyes locked on him.

That was the day his life changed.

Four years later, Alex is as close to Elynn as a stepbrother can be. But that’s not enough for him. He wants more…and he’s done waiting.

I blame BookBub for my dive back into erotica.

Making Her His by Lucy Leroux was in my daily deals email from BookBub and ordinarily I may not have purchased it if it wasn’t for the fact that the Kindle version was free that day. Intrigued by the low low price of zero dollars and zero cents I took the bite and “bought” it.

And let me just say that was a great decision. This relatively short novel follows Alex, a 31-year-old control freak business man, and his stepsister Elynn, a quiet, shy 21-year-old. I’m never sure how to feel about the step siblings thing but in this novel it worked since Alex and Elynn’s parents didn’t get together until Elynn was 17 so Alex and Elynn never even lived together.

Alex reminded me a little bit of the infamous Christian Grey from Fifty Shades. Alex is a successful business man who likes to be in control and often tells Elynn what to do. What makes Alex a more likable character to me, however, is his controlling tendencies are just enough to be considered pushy and not abusive. When Elynn puts her foot down Alex respects that and always makes sure Elynn’s comfortable in their relationship, no matter what they were doing. He doesn’t push her to do anything she’s not ready for and is very conscious of keeping her safe, which I liked a lot.

I also really liked Elynn’s character. She has this interesting fascination with mushrooms that I thought was a little weird but also such a funny and quirky trait, especially in comparison to Alex. Elynn and Alex are the definition of opposites attract. I do think they get over the step siblings issue way too easily. The fact that Alex doesn’t see any issue with it at all and Elynn is easily persuaded seems a bit unrealistic.

Even so, I thought Alex and Elynn were really cute together and the erotica aspects were very steamy. The novel is very fast paced, which made their relationship seem a bit rushed but overall I really enjoyed this novel. It was a quick read and has now made be curious about Leroux’s other novels.

Borrow or Buy: Buy!

Stars:

4 stars

Favorite Line:

“I already got what I wanted. What I’ve always wanted.”

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Reader’s Favorite

 

POLL: Should erotica be considered literature?

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Ever since Fifty Shade of Grey blew up there’s been many questions about erotica. Can it really be considered literature? Are they really romance novels or are they just women’s version of porn? Is it appropriate to read erotica? The list goes on and on. So what’s your opinion? Are erotic novels real books or just pleasurable reads that should be stopped. Vote in the poll and leave your thoughts in the comments. I’m excited to see where this conversation goes.

 

Result’s of last week’s poll:

Should books be adapted into movies?

This poll was a landslide with 100% of you agreeing it depends on the book. I agree, 100%.