Published by Macmillan on 2014-04-14
A new adult novel from Entangled's Embrace imprint...
He’s the last thing she wants…but the only thing she needs.
Willa Peet isn’t interested in love. She’s been there, done that, and has the shattered heart to prove it. Ready to shake the breakup, she heads to Dublin, Ireland. But there’s a problem. A dark-haired, blue-eyed problem with a bad attitude that rivals her own. And he’s not doling out friendly Irish welcomes.
Shane Claymore just wants to race. The death of his father forced him off the Formula One circuit, but he’s only staying in Dublin long enough to sell the Claymore Inn and get things in order for his mother and younger sister. He never expected the sarcastic American girl staying at the inn to make him question everything.
But even as Willa and Shane’s fiery natures draw them together, their pasts threaten to rip them apart. Can Shane give up racing to be with the woman he loves, or will Willa’s quest to resurrect the tough-talking, no-shit-taking girl she used to be destroy any hope of a future together?
FTC : I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher for an honest review. The author has been on the blog for events but my opinion of her as an author has had no baring on the overall review.
OK, confession number one. I accepted this book without reading the blurb on the basis of the author name. Yes, I do rate her that highly as an Erotic author. Confession number two, I have not accepted a NA for review all year as I struggle with the age of the lead characters. If I’d have bothered to read the blurb before accepting would I have accepted? I don’t know… I did, I loved it but I’m not sure it has made me change my stance on NA.
This book is written from First POV. I like first POV but it is a risky strategy for authors as, if your character is annoying, it can pull a reader out of scenes and, eventually, out of their book altogether. For the bulk of this book, I actually quite liked Willa and the hidden teenaged girl in me could relate to her. She is running away from a relationship where the man who professed to love her wanted to “fix her”. Yeah, I hated him and I never even met him.
Willa is not broken; she is a product of her upbringing. A snarky girl who uses sarcasm to keep people at bay, the overall impression I had of her was that she didn’t really care about herself, but she damn well cared about others. Over and over I saw examples of Willa helping others and, in the process, letting them inside her walls even when she didn’t want to. She didn’t go into this book expecting love but she found it in the shape of Shane. From the first moment she sees him when he picks her up at the airport, she is attracted to him and their story starts from chapter one. It was fascinating to see the extremes that she would go to to protect herself, and her heart, from him. I didn’t understand it until much later as she starts to open up to him and it, at some points, came across as a little bit petulant. The teenaged girl in me approved, the adult wanted her to grow up and communicate properly.
Shane is an Irish racing driver who is forced into life behind a bar when his Father dies. Here’s where the first POV bugged me slightly; I wanted to know more about Shane. This story is told entirely from Willa’s POV, who spends the majority of the book either keeping Shane at bay or trying to keep her relationship with Shane temporary, so I didn’t learn much about Shane. He had loads of stuff I wanted to know about; what happened to make his Father eventually kick him out? How did he feel about having to give up on the racing? How did he feel about watching his mother deteriorate? I learned very little about any of these questions as I only learned what very little Willa asked him and Willa’s priority was not getting to know him more. He was older than Willa (I never learned how old he actually was) and that did come across in his actions and in the way he responded to her. He was a nice balance to Willa and I found that what I enjoyed the most, was the impact he had on the development of her character.
Tessa Bailey actually won the Sex Scene championship last August and this book is another fantastic example of how well she writes sex scenes that develop the characters and are fabulously filthy. The sex starts much later in the book than in the other books I’ve read from her (probably due to it being an NA) but they are just as sexy (a scene in the car … phew! *fans*). As I’ve come to expect, the Hero is a very verbal participant in all of the scenes <g>
Overall, if you like erotic tales written in first POV involving a sexy hero with a deliciously dirty month, give this a go! If you have read Ms Bailey’s work before (and if not, do so!) this one will definitely hit the spot.