I was so pleasantly surprised by this book and strongly urge all romance lovers to read it.
Today, you will find several things: my review (of course), a book trailer, an excerpt from one of my favourite parts of the book and an amazing giveaway. The author has decided to gift one lucky reader with a $50 Amazon Gift Card! So be sure to enter it!
Author: Nicole Reed
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: August 2013
Would you be willing to make a mess of your life to get exactly what you want?
Kylie Lord has known Trent Moss and Dray Savage since college. Trent, the smart and kind-hearted humanitarian has had her heart from the moment they met, but someone else always has his. Dray is an arrogant professional football player who happens to be Trent’s best friend and Kylie’s nemesis “with benefits.”
Five years after graduation, Kylie is commanding the world with a new image and a successful business; however, she lacks the one thing she wants and the one thing she can never have. That is, until one fateful night when Kylie decides to go after all of her forbidden fantasies and risk everything.
Two men, completely different and poles apart, but together they are her idea of perfection. One can only offer her tonight and the other forever, but can Kylie settle for just one man, or can she have her cake and eat it too?
ARC received by the author in exchange for an honest review
Unrequited love is one of the worst feelings ever, is it not? Many of us have probably experienced it at some point in our lives (I know that I have) and let me start this review by saying that Nicole Reed really excels at portraying the feelings of hurt, longing and despair of being hopelessly in love in this book.
Meet Kylie: she is a very successful businesswoman, and even though she is only 25 years old, she believes that she has already met the love of her life. His name is Trent and she met him and his foster brother, Dray, when they were all in college. She has been in love with Trent for seven years, and Dray has been her arch nemesis for just as long.
“My choice of men is summed up in two words: Trent Moss, a kind, caring, loyal, humanitarian with a tortured past that gives him depth and understanding. Okay, so his looks caught my attention first, as I’m sure it does every female.” (Kylie)
Her best friend, Madison (Mads) keeps trying to persuade Kylie to let Trent go, but she cannot do it: he is IT for her even though her feelings are not reciprocated and he spends his time away from home, making the world “a better place”.
Dray, however, IS a constant fixture in Kylie’s life, even though she would rather that he was not. I must say that I do not blame her! His crude remarks, his jabs at her self esteem made me want to punch him on more than one occasion. But I could not help but wonder why he kept antagonizing her and I could not help but looking forward to getting to know him better.
“God, he gets off on our verbal sparring. He’s sick and needs professional help. And why does he have to be so damn good looking? It infuriates me to no end to notice this.” (Kylie)
As fate would have it, Dray suffers a terrible injury while playing a game for the NFL and somehow, Kylie finds herself being persuaded – AGAIN – by Trent to visit him in hospital and suddenly she finds herself extremely attracted to Dray. And what is worse, in her opinion, is the fact that Dray seems to feel the same attraction! Imagine the confusion Kylie feels now: she loves Trent but feels a really strong connection to Dray, the man who has always made sure to treat her like crap.
“Do you feel that, Kylie?” He continues to caress my arm with his hand. “That’s power running between you and me. I never imagined it would be so strong, so intense.” (Dray)
Besides this being a love story, it is a story about facing the consequences of the choices you make in your life and about finding out who you truly are – Kylie must do a lot of soul searching and find out what – and who – she wants in life.
This is also a book that shows you the true meaning of how illness makes a huge impact on your life: very early on in the book, we meet Kylie’s Aunt Leigh who for years has struggled with breast cancer – and the cancer, sadly, wins out. I confess that I was balling my eyes out at this point in the story because I could truly relate to it. She is a remarkably wise character and seems to know just what to say when Kylie seeks her guidance.
“It’s not the circumstances we find ourselves in that define us, it’s how we overcome them.” (Aunt Leigh)
While I was reading this book, I found myself amused, frustrated and angry many times: amused by Kylie’s inner monologues and her confusion; frustrated by Dray and his arrogance; angry with Trent for, seemingly, being such a douche towards Kylie and always taking advantage of her feelings towards him. But the more I got to know all the characters, I found myself really liking them all – yes, even Trent – and I love it when an author makes me feel that way about the characters. After all, real people have many facets to them, both positive and negative ones, and I applaud Miss Reed for letting those shine through in her story.
I would also like to say that at no point did Kylie’s indecision about Trent and Dray annoy me. Yes, she is confused and does not seem to know what she wants for a long time, BUT let me remind you that she is only 25. Your twenties are about making mistakes, owning up to them and learning to go after the things you want, and THAT is what Kylie does: she is, in my opinion, so real and you know how important that is to me in a story.
I cannot end this review without saying a bit more about Mads, Kylie’s friend: she is hilarious! Honestly, in my opinion, she is rather crazy, temperamental and honest to a fault. Actually, she is a wonderful friend to Kylie who speaks her mind – always – and I really hope that we will get her story from the author at some point.
All in all, I fell in love with this book: all the characters felt believable to me, the storyline was both fun and serious, and I could really feel every emotion Kylie went through. That is why I am giving this book my highest rating and I cannot wait to see what the author concocts for us in the future.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
I love angst….I thrive on it, but only the fictional kind. I adore a story that grips the reader from the beginning and doesn’t let go…EVER. I’m an avid reader WHO just recently discovered my love of writing. My favorite things in life include my three wild & crazy kids, Reese’s Pieces, and every genre of music.
I reside in the Deep South
Check out the book trailer on YouTube:
Enjoy the excerpt, everyone.
“Do you feel that, Kylie?” He continues to caress my arm with his hand. “That’s power running between you and me. I never imagined it would be so strong, so intense. Can you even conceive what my body rubbing against yours well feel like? Please unlike either one of us has ever experienced. Sex in its greatest form.”
His words hypnotize me, seduce me, and demolish my inhibitions so that even my common sense agrees with what he is saying. I’ve never wanted sex as much as I want it with Dray at this moment. In my head, I can see images of us entwined together, his dark against my light skin. The sight, in my mind’s eye, so clear, so erotic, that my breathing becomes erratic just with the thought. Closing my eyes, I feel his fingers glide to my breasts, circling the tip through my clothes. My clit throbs in tune with his movements almost as if he is touching me there. Dray grasps my nipple tightly as he pulls and squeezes. The dual motion overwhelms my senses, and an orgasm overcomes me, rippling up and through my body. Clenching my legs together, I moan as I ride it out. My body shakes, tingling with the aftermath of what just happened, and what I need to be happening again; however, sanity returns with me still sitting on the side of the couch. Opening my eyes, Dray stares at me like he knows my every thought. At least now, he has a supreme satisfied smile on his mouth and his shorts are in a superior tent out front.
“Damn girl. That is about the hottest sight I’ve ever seen. Had you been butt-naked, I think I would have exploded right along with you.”
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