The Dawn of Darkness (The Supernaturals #2)

Dawn of Darkness
Elle Chardou
Supernaturals, book two
Kindle Edition, 130 pages
Published July 3rd 2012

The Pureblood Lycan...
Jolie Gasquet and her brother, Julien "Jules" Gasquet, share more in common than they would ever admit. A female version of her brother, she is strong, tough and determined to prove she is no man's prize to win over. Not even Desmond Augustin, her supposed mate and the Lycan she is destined to make a life with despite their lack of a bond or love.

The Sidhe Vampire...
Sasha Galloway works as an enforcer for the International Vampire Council. He also happens to be the son of a very powerful Council member, William Galloway, however his heritage is far from from unblemished due to a Sidhe mother who hides dangerous secrets that makes him the perfect tool for the Council but inadequate as he is of mixed blood.

Jolie and Sasha meet at The Vamp Blood Bar in Baton Rouge. The attraction is instant but their connection is so much more than skin deep. How can a werewolf and a vampire bond so deeply and are they to be mates for life? The power and passion of their feelings has no boundaries and soon, they find out, neither do they...not when it comes to one another.

WARNING: This is paranormal romance novella with sexy good times, smokin' hot werewolves, ultra cool vampires, blood and explicit language. Gore and closed door sex scenes? Not this time.

This world is one I'm having a bit of trouble getting a grasp on. True mates have meaning and value, unless its someone tainted or below your status then grandma has no qualms about cutting the claim right out of your flesh.

Jolie found her mate years ago, but, according to her grandmother, he's an abomination and she's never to be near him again. She was then paired to Desmond whom she feels nothing for. They're not mated, and if Jolie has her way they never will be.

This story starts off in a time before the first book as her brother Jules is with another girl and if you ask me, this should have been book one. Much better flow. And they're certainly more informative. Would have saved me a hell of a lot of confusion with the whole Lycans are not shifters debacle.

But then... Sasha gave me his own moment of "huh?" when he explained that a virgin woman once turned vampire will remain a virgin forever. And then there was the pink pre-cum. Things were spiraling quickly.

Jolie is a virgin. A dirty one anyway. And she's also bisexual, which appears all women of this series have the tendency toward exploring homosexuality. And they smoke.

Gah. By the end I really couldn't find anything worth recommending about this read.

1 out of 5 stars.

Previously in this series:


Neon Chaos: End of Days #2

Neon Chaos
Karen Erickson
End of Days, book two
Published (first published November 1st 2011)

A one-night stand turns into a partnership for survival…

Party girl Samantha Sanders is celebrating her thirtieth birthday in style—a road trip to Las Vegas for a long weekend with her girlfriends. Staying in the swankiest hotel on the strip, she’s naked and in bed with the sexiest guy she’s ever laid eyes on when the clock strikes twelve. Who knew the world would really end December 21, 2012? Those Mayans, they weren’t lyin’…

Russ Weaver is above all else a soldier. Looking for a little fun before spending Christmas with his crazy family, a weekend on leave in Vegas unexpectedly turns into his newest mission——protecting the sweet, scared woman he happens to be in bed with when the world as they know it is over.

Wandering throughout the virtually abandoned streets of Vegas, the fine city has turned into a war zone. Their only hope to get out alive is to stick together—and fight those who wish to cease their endeavors. Permanently.

Warning: It’s not all doom and gloom. A sexy man who’s a fierce protector, a sassy woman with fortitude of steel, these two stick together through it all. Watch the sparks fly—true love does endure. I promise.

Oh yeah. Insult my alcoholic beverage of choice. That'll get you laid.

Guys think it's charming to insult women's tropical drinks. And apparently, most women think it's cute. I don't. And I can't figure out why they do. Oh, sure, you're a big strong man for drinking *beer*.

Aliens aren't exactly how I expect the world to go, and if absolutely nothing happens on December 21st, I'm going to be pissed. That's how things go down here, and Samantha and Russ find themselves, inexplicably, the only people still roaming around now that most of Las Vegas is in mass destruction and strange aircrafts are stalking the skies.

This story plays shamelessly into the cliche of alien invasion and the whole plot of impregnating our females to save their dying superior race. It didn't help that Erickson's own characters had to constantly throw in how badly this sounded like an awful science fiction movie. And I do mean *constantly*.

I'm typically a fan of Erickson's and this certainly doesn't damper that, but... Damn, this was so not a great read. The teaser at the end, for Brighid's Cross (book three), however, was. Despite its poor reviews on Goodreads, I liked what I saw and plan to be reading it soon.

2 out of 5 stars.

Previously in this series:

Reaper: End of Days #1

Mina Carter
End of Days, book one
ebook, 120 pages
Published November 1st 2011 by Samhain Publishing
ISBN 9781609286309

The World after the End of the World will never be the same again…

Sanctuary. Clichéd name, but the sentiment is still the same. Ten years after the end of the world, ex-soldier Mason and a small group of humans defend their fortified town against creatures of myth and legend made real. But with dwindling game to hunt and a lycan pack in the area looking for an easy meal, just surviving is getting harder every day.

Andy has a few screws loose, and she knows it. She’s been on the road since the bombs fell and changed humanity forever. Driven by inhuman instincts, she tracks the newly and soon-to-be dead and dispatches their souls to the afterlife. Sometimes they go quietly, most put up a fight. She doesn’t care either way. Her ambition in life is to find her next hit of coffee and one day, maybe, sleep in a real bed again.

Then Andy’s instincts bring her to Sanctuary and its enigmatic leader, Mason, and even the world after the end of the world will never be the same again…

Warning: Contains a snarky female Reaper with a hair-trigger temper and a caffeine addiction, a hot ex-commando with an attitude and a twisted sense of humour and a happily ever after that defies death itself.

The Walking Dead, season three, kicked off two weeks ago so I'm in a let-the-world-end kind of mood.

The bombs have dropped and the majority of the population have been changed. Werewolves, vampires, ghouls, banshees and more now walk what's left of the Earth.

Andy is a reaper of souls. After Armageddon, she found herself to be immortal... after trying to commit suicide three times and since then, ten years ago, she's been on the move and her travels have finally brought her to Sanctuary.

And she's impressed by all she finds. From the many sigils and wards set up to protect the town from Lycans, Vamps, and so on to the lead defender himself, Mason.

A former soldier (and no, not one of ours), Mason is capable of seeing a person's soul-and yet he claims to be a mere human through and through. When he first meets Andy as she makes a stop in their town, he's confounded. He doesn't know what she is. Only that her soul is black. He and the other town guards send her on her way, and long into the night he regrets it.

And he doesn't let her go just once. After the second time, truly convinced he's an idiot, he finally seeks her out. Easily rising to her dare of a kiss.

Mason is yummy. From the moment they met, Andy wanted him. In that 'what the hell has gotten into me' way and the man does not disappoint. Nor does he fail what has become a necessary test in my book. What's the first thing a guy should do once lying atop his woman?

Score one for Mase!

But then... The guy spends one damn night away from town and the morons get attacked. Their children are taken by a psychotic alpha werewolf and to get them back, he wants Mason's head on a stake. And they shoot him! With multiple shotguns!!

And get this, the dude does not die.

And he's still convinced he's human.

I still don't know what he his. Even after he comes back from the dead. Another slap on the face was the giant leap at the end. Six months! And no one burned his body? WHAT?!

I had to re-read. Had to try that again. Surely I missed something. But sadly, the words didn't change the second time I read them.Did Amazon send me a defected copy perhaps?

3 out of 5 stars.


Darkness Rising: The Supernaturals #1

Darkness Rising
Elle Chardou
Kindle Edition, 106 pages
Published June 21st 2012 by Midnight Engel Press

A Pureblood...
Julien Gasquet belongs to the notorious Lycan clan, the Gasquet Pack based in New Orleans. After a vicious argument, he storms out of the compound and decides to spend the night with his sister, Jolie, in Baton Rouge.

A Half-breed...
Martina Beauchamp is considered an abomination to the Lycans as she isn't a pureblood and doesn't have a pack to call her own. She meets Julien after a horrifying incident forces her to flee her home and her car breaks down in the parking lot next to his truck.

The attraction Julien and Martina experience from the moment they meet isn't about lust or a one night stand. However, when the pack is involved in every decision a werewolf makes, is a happy ending at all possible?

WARNING: This is paranormal romance novella with sexy good times, smokin' hot werewolves, toned bodies and explicit language. Blood, gore and closed door sex scenes? Not this time.

Color me a bright neon CONFUSED. Lycans that hate shape shifters? Say what??

So yeah, I hear "shape shifters" and my mind instantly goes Wolf Shifter. As if there should be any other kind? But no, shifters here are just that. They can take any animal form.

Jules and Martina meet on a plain awful night. Jules is tired of professionally fighting for his stepfather and Martina nearly gets raped by her own stepfather. A testament to step parents this book is definitely not.

Anyway, Jules plays the hero, or as he calls it 'a proper southern gentlemen' and offers Martina a place to stay for the night at his sister's apartment which he is en route to.

Another detour- southern gentlemen are mythical creatures. Just FYI.

Things get, for lack of a better word, *whack* from there. We get a quick history lesson. Jules claims he'd rather go mateless than ever bond to a shifter or a vamp but goes completely one eighty when he proclaims he's been fighting her scent all night, she's the one, and he's claiming her right now.

Martina wasn't the only one caught off guard. Flabbergasted is more like it on my end. She's half shifter-half lycan. And as Jules' sister tells it, Jules can stop her aging (since there's Lycan blood in her) and complete her transformation. The latter of which he does immediately. Then there's a completely uncalled for argument and the two are at odds for the night. Sheesh. Drah-muh!

She runs away from him more than once and he never chases. He also tells her if she wants to go, he'd let her. Not a very possessive mate is he.

2 out of 5 stars.


Melt With You: Fated #4

Melt With You
Karen Erickson
Fated, book four
Published September 29th 2011 by Karen Erickson
ISBN 2940013350717

Dragging a man into a supply closet at work so she can maul him—that’s so not Lanie’s style. But there’s something about Wes, the sexy paramedic with the bad reputation, that she can’t resist. After a terrible breakup, a move and a job change, Lanie’s ready to indulge in some new and exciting adventures. But Wes wants more…

From the moment he meets Lanie under um, stressful circumstances, Wes is a goner. Yeah, he has a reputation around the hospital as a serial dater but lately he’s thought about settling down. And he believes the petite nurse with the curvy body might be the one. Too bad she only wants a quick affair.

Lanie can’t deny the chemistry between them is strong but will she take a chance on fate? Or will she let Wes go?

There's something about this Fated series. It's done so right. So romantic. So innocent. And now we're throwing a player into the mix and suddenly things don't seem so innocent anymore.

Err... former player. Ever since Evan fell for Morgan, Wes has followed his buddy's example and thrown himself into his work. It's been months since he's been with a woman. And yet, his reputation precedes him and it almost costs him his chance with Lanie.

Luckily for him, and despite her better judgment, Lanie doesn't fight her attraction and drags Wes off the first chance she gets.

And yea for Wes, he shoots her down. From the very beginning, Wes wants more than just a quickie and he doesn't give in for anything less. So refreshing.

Six months later, at Evan's wedding, Wes gets himself engaged. And that's just one more happy ever after.

3 out of 5 stars.

Previously in the series:


A Warrior's Betrayal: Brotherhood, #2

A Warrior's Betrayal
Brandi Salazar
Brotherhood, book two
Kindle Edition, First
Published October 6th 2012 by Brandi Salazar

Forbidden desires...

Being a Brother and a caretaker isn't an easy job, especially when you find yourself coveting the one person you were meant to protect but never have- your brother's woman. That is exactly where Behr finds himself- in love and out of luck. Nothing a little killing can't remedy. While looking for a little trouble to take his mind off what's brewing at home, Behr finds the perfect distraction: hunting down the mythical Rage demon prowling his city's streets.

Lost and alone...

Cheyenne doesn't know what to do with herself. Weeks have passed with no sign of Erias, and as far as she knows, he's dead. Just when she resigns herself to the difficult task of moving on with her life, he reappears, but the Erias she knew no longer exists. He's a demon, the very thing he and his brother's hunt each night. Can Erias overcome this transformation and find the strength to make it back to Cheyenne and the Brotherhood, and if he does, will they accept him? In a world plagued with uncertainty, only one thing is definite: no matter how it ends, someone's heart is bound to get ripped to shreds

I was originally rooting for Cheyenne to hook up with Behr. I shouldn't be the only one getting screwed with afterall. To hell with Erias. But that changed quickly.

Oh, don't misunderstand. I still loathe Erias. And Cheyenne. But Behr is now under my protection.

Erias stayed behind in Tarturus after the rescue mission for Cheyenne as part of his deal with the devil. I can't tell you how weird it is to hear Lucifer's name mixed in with all of these Greek gods. If he's suppose to be Hades then why not just call him Hades? I'm not going religious with this. For one, there's a whole argument out there about referring to Satan as Lucifer being a no no now that he's fallen. I don't subscribe to that and I'm not subscribing to this either. The equivalency game is just an annoying thing here, especially when you're playing accuracy with the whole Persephone tale (who used her Kore alias here). But I'll digress.

But seriously, am I *suppose* to like these people???? I hated Cheyenne in book one and my disgust only grew deeper as I read the sequel. The woman is unquestionably a user. She takes from any-and every-one what she needs without any consideration for what they may need, or grow to desire, from her. To put it plainly, I found her a spoiled, self indulgent bitch and I didn't want her anywhere near Behr.

I also wanted Behr to get what he wanted. So I was screwed on both ends.

Behr's affection for Cheyenne was pure. That guy was enamored of her. And besotted with the idea of sharing a life with someone. Just the fantasy of having her there when he returned home from demon hunting with arms wide and face smiling set his insides to warming. What was this witch doing to our men?

Erias has been reduced to living as a demon hybrid. Behr is a lovesick sap. Alastair is braiding hair for mercy's sake! They're rough housing like middle schoolers and watching daytime soaps!

She's got the nerve to respond to Behr's kisses and seek out his comfort and appeal, then run for the hills when he tries to press further. Enough with the teasing game. She did it to Kris for over a year and now Behr's serving as victim. Just kill the bitch.

Aiming for no less than brutal honesty, I will admit that there managed to be one scene I was totally engrossed by. The moment Erias voiced his suspicions that Cheyenne was the one responsible for his missing memories. From there, until and including his recollection of everything in his past, even Behr's intentions toward Cheyenne, I found true enjoyment in my reading.

Then Chy had to go screw it all up with her 'I always knew it was you' talk. Gah!

I pray Lena has it in her to straighten Behr out. The guy needs a female with fight. Chy wasn't it, no matter what their delusions told them about that schizophrenic whore.

And I honestly have no idea what to rate this. 3?

Author Site 

Previously in this series:


Darkness & Lies: A Brotherhood Novel

Darkness & Lies
A Brotherhood Novel, book one
Brandi Salazar
ebook, 256 pages
Published September 20th 2011 by Brandi Salazar (first published September 16th 2011)
Amazon Free Read

Explorer Cheyenne Oppenello lives for adventure and has made it her life’s work to seek out the world’s most notorious myths and legends, and she’s determined to make sure that nothing stands in her way. Accompanied by a colorful band of teammates and friends, their most recent hunt has brought them to Iceland where, up on a mountaintop lies a legend so great that, if true, could thrust them into the spotlight making all of their wildest dreams come true. Unfortunately they have no idea that this mission could very well be their last.

Erias is on a mission of his own. And this includes keeping Cheyenne and her teammates from sticking their noses where they don’t belong. Part of The Brotherhood, guardians to The Gate, Erias is charged with protecting the world from creatures bent on death and destruction and he will do whatever it takes to ensure they never see the light of day.

Can Cheyenne’s determination go up against a fierce man like Erias to get what she wants? Or will Erias prove to be the one adventure she wasn’t prepared for

  • No man, unless they were a fictional character dreamed up by a woman, would ever be that incredibly devoted, loving, attentive and sexy.

Why does truth have to be so sad?

When we first meet Erias, he's a devoted husband and father. Then hell rains down and he loses everything, including his mortality. Centuries upon centuries later, in present day, he's become an alcoholic ass who uses women for the moment and casts them away with a "Get the fuck away from me" send off. Oh yeah, this guy's a real prince. His dreams are filled with his loss, of his wife to whom his marriage had been arranged but nevertheless with whom he'd grown to love on their very wedding night. He feels like he's cheating on her. Doesn't stop the son of a bitch, though. Not even for a second.

So yeah, the urge to console our dear Elias battled greatly with the overpowering compulsion to stab his still beating heart into oblivion.

Behr and Alastair... less infuriating. Actually, Alastair just wanted to kill the bitch so he didn't piss me off at all. Behr's only crime against my moral code was phone sexing a married woman. Tattling on Erias and Cheyenne didn't bother me so much.

Not sure how much logic made the foundation of this tale. No sane woman, after enduring the first few days Cheyenne did in meeting Elias, would still consider him a viable love interest. He'll, I doubt even an insane woman would.

I was about halfway through with this book when I decided to go ahead an add book two to my shopping list. WHY OH WHY didn't I read the blurb for that one before I jumped into this one? Just after I ranted about renegade writers swapping love interests, too. I'm so screwed.

A Warrior's Betrayal: A Brotherhood Novel, book two

Being a Brother and a caretaker isn't an easy job, especially when you find yourself coveting the one person you were meant to protect but never have- your brother's woman. That is exactly where Behr finds himself- in love and out of luck. Nothing a little killing can't remedy. While looking for a little trouble to take his mind off what's brewing at home, Behr finds the perfect distraction: hunting down the mythical Rage demon prowling his city's streets.

Lost and alone...

Cheyenne doesn't know what to do with herself. Weeks have passed with no sign of Erias, and as far as she knows, he's dead. Just when she resigns herself to the difficult task of moving on with her life, he reappears, but the Erias she knew no longer exists. He's a demon, the very thing he and his brother's hunt each night. Can Erias overcome this transformation and find the strength to make it back to Cheyenne and the Brotherhood, and if he does, will they accept him? In a world plagued with uncertainty, only one thing is definite: no matter how it ends, someone's heart is bound to get ripped to shreds.

What is it about Cheyenne!? First, Kris falls for her (after he cheats on her). Then Sebastian. Elias falls hard within seconds. Now I have Behr's dumbass self to look forward to! Ugh. Pickin's must be slim up in this world...

And oh look, a teaser: A Warrior's Betrayal Chapter One ... Somebody shoot me.

First she thinks him a serial killer, then a rapist. He tells her he's a guardian of the gates of hell then, flip the page, and she thinks she's in love. What the capital F-Fuck is wrong with this woman???? The one and I do mean ONE good thing Erias ever did was save her from choking, and he was the one that made her choke in the first place!

But no, he's the one because for the first time the little voice that tells her to hold onto her virginity didn't say a damn thing. Incredulous doesn't begin to cover it. I wanted to gut them both and I wasn't even done yet. Salazar definitely has talent as a writer but her characters are schizophrenic.

Go ahead and mark it down. This was the book that drove me to madness, because despite my rantings I'm going now to buy book two. But let me say first that I'm giving Behr the benefit of doubt. He doesn't love her. He just wants what Erias has and the dumbass is taking it far too literally.

Don't let me down, Behr.

3 out of 5 stars.


Darkest Knight: Knight's Curse #2

Darkest Knight
Karen Duvall
Knight's Curse, book two
ebook, 336 pages
Published March 20th 2012 by Luna
ISBN 9780373803446

Betray your sisters or your lover. You choose.

After the warrior she loves saved her from a murderous gargoyle, Chalice watched helplessly as Aydin turned into a gargoyle himself. Now, free from the curse that enslaved her, Chalice pledges to join her sister knights in The Order of the Hatchet—and do whatever it takes to regain Aydin's humanity…and his love. What she encounters within their hallowed sanctuary is pure intrigue.

Someone—or something—is murdering her sisters in their sleep, provoking fear and suspicion among the order. Meanwhile, Aydin, unable to stay away, starts haunting Chalice's dreams, urging her onward. Ultimately, Chalice will be faced with an agonizing choice—one that will tear away at her newfound identity and force her to choose between duty and desire.

I knew it. I knew he'd be trouble.

Of course, they would want Chalice with Rafe. He's a guardian angel and its their family tradition. Want to hear the crazy part? I could easily see her with Rafe. And that's not me at all. I'm very territorial once I pick my mated pairs. He's hers. She's his. And it usually works out great, if I don't manage to wander into the realm of some renegade writer who thinks its epic to change love interests from book to book.

Rafe is such a hard ass... but he's a likeable one. I love Aydin but he's got the boyish charm while Rafe is definitely all man. *sigh* Too bad, so sad. She belongs to Aydin.

They were some things you just knew while reading this story, others... I didn't know where to begin my guessing. I knew Rafe had the heart. Duh. No clue Maria had a second identity.

The biggest mindfuck to this book was the blurb. Who wrote it? Because it doesn't really match the facts. Chalice didn't watch Aydin go gargoyle. I wish she had. And he doesn't "haunt" her dreams. He just steps into them. That's not *haunting*.

There's really no choice for Chalice. She loves Aydin. Rafe isn't an option, even though it's the only way she'll have a child and the only way Rafe can become human, which he yearns to be. The fool.

4 out of 5 stars.

Previously in this series:

Knight's Curse: Knight's Curse #1

Knight's Curse
Karen Duvall
Knight's Curse, book one
ebook, 315 pages
Published August 23rd 2011 by Luna
ISBN 9780373803408

A skilled knife fighter since the age of nine, Chalice knows what it's like to live life on the edge--precariously balanced between the dark and the light. But the time has come to choose. The evil sorcerer who kidnapped her over a decade ago requires her superhuman senses to steal a precious magical artifact...or she must suffer the consequences. Desperate to break the curse that enslaves her, Chalice agrees. But it is only with the help of Aydin--her noble warrior-protector--that she will risk venturing beyond the veil to discover the origins of her power. Only for him will she dare to fully embrace her awesome talents. For a deadly duel is at hand, and Chalice alone will have to decide between freedom...and the love of her life.

Another book shelved as urban fantasy, and again I'm oblivious as to why...

I wasn't going to read this one but an advertisement for its sequel was featured at the end of Michelle Sagara's Cast in Peril, and it sounded good. So I thought what the hell... and I'm so glad I did.

Raised by monks for the first thirteen years of her life, Chalice is an exceptional female with senses so heightened, werewolves and vampires alike would be jealous. Abducted by a man who claimed to be her father, she was taken from her old world home and brought to a thriving America and trained as a thief of magical relics. Oh yes, magic runs abundant in this paranormal world.

After failing to collect the mummified hand of Saint Geraldine, Chalice is sent to the Fatherhouse with Gavin following shortly behind. It is here she meets Aydin, a nine hundred sixty-seven year old fellow thief and kindred spirit who doesn't look beyond thirty (and barely manages to act even *that*). He, too, is bonded to a living gargoyle. Ah, the gargoyle.

Both Chalice and Aydin have been been tattooed at the base of their skull with a mark that bonds them to a gargoyle. Chalice's is Shui. And he's one homicidal bastard. Every seventy-two hours, Chalice must make contact with Shui, specifically his saliva, to keep her from transforming into a gargoyle as well and losing her humanity forever. Another symptom of the bond? It feeds an attraction between she and Aydin, making for a fine dose of tension. Especially after Gavin introduces him as his spy.

While Chalice's world is filled a vicious bondmate and people just waiting for a chance to betray her, Aydin's is not. His gargoyle, Shojin, actually likes him, and the guy's got friends. Caffeine addicted ones with pets that coo like babies and shapeshift with every facial alteration. Ah, Ling-Ling.

Finally a writer that gets it. She thrusts Chalice and Aydin together and there they stay. Even move in together. From Aydin, Chalice begins to learn just how much she doesn't know. How to lie being only the beginning.

The guy is truly a force not to be trifled with and has a number of powers at his disposal, which made the complete and total neglect of the scene where he gave up his humanity to save Chalice from her curse a serious WTF moment. I wanted that scene! How does one just skip over something like that?

So Aydin was the true star of the show for me. Gavin was a reasonable villain. Quin, eh. Rafael.... I've got a feeling he's going to be trouble. Geraldine could take a flying leap and Chalice, I actually liked. She's a simple girl with ordinary wants and dreams. And that works for this reader.

4 out of 5 stars.

  • Throughout this exchange, Aydin hung out in the science-fiction and fantasy section. He wasn’t close enough to hear us talking, but I’m sure he must have caught the gist of our conversation from our facial expressions and body language. I’d giggled in all the right places, touched my hair and gazed up at Quin through my eyelashes. I slid a look in Aydin’s direction to see if he still watched, and he did. Outright. It made him look like a stalker. I scowled at him and he seemed to catch himself, returning his attention to the book in his hand.



Cari Quinn
ebook, 254 pages
Published February 15th 2011 by Loose Id
ISBN 9781607379515

Having all of her is the only thing that will satisfy him.

Shawn Griffin and Rachel Cooper have been best friends practically since birth, thanks to their families' close relationship. But for the past few years, Shawn has been fantasizing about getting his best pal in his bed. When she announces she's taking a trip to reconnect with an old lover, Shawn knows the time has come to put up or shut up. If she wants to go to New York City, fine. But he's coming with her.

Rachel doesn't know what to think of Shawn's sudden interest. Determined to live life on her own terms, she refuses to fall right in line with her wealthy family's wish that they get married and have perfect little babies. She just didn't count on how determined her seemingly laid back -- and extremely sexy -- best friend would become after setting his sights on what he wants. Her, over and over again.

But when tragedy strikes, Rachel begins to wonder if she'll lose not only her lover but her best friend too.

Publisher's Note: This book contains explicit sexual content, graphic language, and situations that some readers may find objectionable: Anal play/intercourse, exhibitionism/sex in public.

  • “What are you looking for then?”
    “What I've already found.” He took a breath. Let it out again. “I love you, Rachel.” When her expression didn't change, he let out a self-deprecating laugh. “Capital L, Rach. The big kahuna. Not best-pal love, but the I-want-to-eat-tropical-fruit-drizzled-with-honey-off-your-breasts-and-make-love-to-you-all-night kind. Get my drift?”


I'll never get enough of the friends becoming lovers theme. I want them all!

And this one had surprisingly more drama than many I have encountered. Shawn and Rachel have been friends since practically forever. They've shared everything-except their bodies.

When Rachel decides to visit her ex, the one that left her for a dream career in New York and fathered her miscarried child so many years ago, Shawn can't take it anymore. She's never even imagined he could want anything but a friendship from her until he kisses her. Tongue, passion, and all.

Except, she doesn't kiss back.

And then, suddenly she's gone. Away from him and away from the west coast, on a flight for New York. What's a guy whose been madly in love with his best friend all of his adult life to do but finish what he started.

My heart went out to Shawn. After more than a decade of unrequited love, he's reduced to take her however he can get her and gives it however she'll take it. I didn't agree with it at all. But hell, I could empathize.Except for that advice he took from his father, which sadly, was his last. Does that crap actually work on women. It would never on me. I'd sooner kill the sonofabitch.

On the flipped side of the perspective, I could relate to Rachel, too. Way back when sex was something she was only curious about, she asked Shawn to be her first and was outright rejected. Since then, she's blocked every impure thought about the guy and packed him away into the best friend box which became the foundation of her life. And now, without warning, he's breaking down each and every wall that committed him to the friend zone and it's forcing her world to crumble.

She tries to come up with any kind of explanation to his sudden turnabout, but nothing fits. She continues to fight. He continues to pull.

Eventually Rachel agrees to give them a chance but it's not before she breaks him. And breaks him baaaaad! Hell, I felt an all out assault on my emotions as Rach put Shawn through the wringer. His pain. His joy. His ache. His hope. His grief...

In his desperation to win her, Shawn cuts off all communication with his family to spare their "it's meant to be" pressure on Rachel. And it costs him dearly. Oh, the trauma!

I can't in good conscience give this anything less than five stars. It's just too *real*. So many friends-to-lovers books have an air of incredulous about them, but this, this could happen. And it just wrecks me.

  • “You gave me a mind-blowing fuck in an elevator.” His laughter rumbled against her ear as he wrapped his arms around her waist. “And I gave you candles and rose petals on the bed.”

Some girls get rings with a proposal. Shawn gets birth control pills.