"But there's this fear inside me. A fear of taking risks. I've never been a risk-taker. I've always played it safe." No doubt J.A. Huss doesn't share Ivy's fears, because MR. ROMANTIC is anything but safe. Don't let that stop you, though - it's sexy, dirty and totally satisfying. Read on for my review, and enter to win a $25 Amazon gift card and a signed copy of Mr. Romantic.
Mr. Romantic (The Misters #2), by J.A. Huss
Publish Date: June 22, 2016
Format: e-ARC, provided by the author
Genre: adult contemporary romance
To Buy: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Rating: 5 STARS
(Synopsis) Charm is the key to the world.
Charisma, magnetism, sex appeal—that ‘it’ factor that can’t be described.
Nolan Delany has it is spades.
The infamous Mr. Romantic.
And maybe he is out of my league… But I’m going to give it the old college try anyway. Because I didn’t travel two thousand miles for a job interview at his request just to be put out like trash.
Don’t underestimate me, Mr. Delaney.
I’m really not as innocent as I look.
What would you do if you had a Ivy league degree, no job prospects, and only a short time left before your savings ran out? Would you take an interview in another state? Would it matter if the interview was presented to you in a less-than-traditional fashion? Or if it was being offered at a desert resort owned by a renowned womanizer once accused of a horrible crime?
All good questions that Ivy asks herself, and yet, her humdrum life as a PK (or, Preacher's Kid) seems to be a worse thing to her. I can't really blame her. Ivy finally has the chance to go after something big being offered by someone interesting and sexy, and she's ready to take her life to the next level.
I need to put myself out there and take risks. Welcome to Opposite Ivy Weekend. Where every time I get the urge to say no to unfamiliar things, I will say yes. And every time I get the urge to say yes to familiar things, I will say no.
Nolan - for all his money and connections and unwanted notoriety - is also stuck in a rut, just like Ivy. His just looks a little different. He's chasing a dream he's not sure is attainable anymore, given his past. He wants people to take him seriously in his businesses. He wants his father's approval again. He wants a woman to want him and believe in him, despite his transgressions.
I promise you - Nolan Delaney will not be your favorite person at first. He's used to women falling at his feet, and when Ivy exhibits a backbone and the ability to think for herself, he responds with epic douchebaggery flair. He uses Ivy's attraction to him to try and wear her down, and yet, somewhere along the way, he realizes that perhaps he should slow down a bit and see what he might be missing. And what he could have, as long as she will give him the time of day now.
"Defiance is defined as open resistance. But, a seductive man knows how to turn resistance into reluctance into acceptance."
Without a doubt, Nolan's sexual proclivities will probably be the one thing most talked about in regards to Mr. Romantic. They definitely push the line, and when we get to see them in practice, it's a bit shocking and startling.
But, please know - this is NOT a book about an erotic relationship that tests the boundaries of propriety. THIS is a book about trust. And loyalty. And love. It punctuates the fact that these things don't always have to take a traditional shape in order to exist. It's also about exorcising the past, by whatever means necessary, in order to move on with your future, and how that is absolutely possible with the right people by your side.
For those of you familiar with J.A. Huss' books, be on the lookout for a few Easter eggs that will most definitely bring out your inner fangirl. Characters from another of her series are mentioned, and it's clear that we will see much more of them later on in the Misters series.
Remember how I said that Nolan wasn't my favorite person in the beginning of the book? By the very end, I was very solidly on Team Nolan. I love how J.A. Huss can win me over, and she does it time and time again. I'm looking forward to more of that in Mr. Corporate, due out in just a few short weeks.
“What do you think so far? Do I live up to the hype?”
“No?” He chuckles as we walk past the pool. “Why not?”
The whole thing becomes surreal for me in that moment. The emptiness of the resort. The heat and the sun. I am two thousand miles from home and I’m clutching Mr. Romantic’s elbow like we are lovers taking an evening stroll.
“You’re a little bit quiet so far.”
“Is that right?”
“Your sister is the bigger personality. I’m surprised she wasn’t accused of something inappropriate in college. I think she has it in her.”
Nolan laughs. “That’s kind of true. She’s a handful to most, but she’s been good to me. She’s very protective.”
“She called you dangerous.”
“What?” He stops walking and looks down at me. “When?”
“Today. She told me to stay away from you. Didn’t you know that?”
“What exactly did she tell you?” His mood has changed. Not a lot, but there’s an edge to his words.
“She said something like…” I struggle to remember her exact words, but can’t. I shouldn’t have said anything. He’ll probably confront her and use me as an example.
“Like?” Nolan pushes.
“You’re not romantic. Something like that. They called you Mr. Romantic when all that stuff happened because it was a joke.”
“And the dangerous part?” His words are low and when I look up at him, the easygoing expression has changed into something else.
“I don’t know why she said it. She was telling me to stay away from you all day. And I was angry that she was so dismissive of me. She said I was here by mistake. So I told her I was going to do my best to get the job anyway. And while I agree those men you hired are far more qualified, it was not fair of her to dismiss me so quickly. I’m not as innocent and inexperienced as I look, Mr. Delaney. I have ideas and I’m smart. Hiring everyone in the applicant pool but me was about the most humiliating thing I’ve ever experienced.”
Nolan continues our walk, silent for a few seconds. “You’re lucky.”
“I am?” I ask, a small laugh escaping. “How so?”
“You’re lucky that you’ve never been humiliated the way I have.”
Oh, shit. Way to go, Ivy.
“Do you think I’m dangerous?” Nolan asks, staring down at me in that way he does.
It makes me uneasy. “Maybe.”
“You’re willing to take that chance?”
“Well, good,” Nolan says. “Let’s have a nice dinner and I’ll tell you why I sent Claudette away and kept you here against her wishes.”
He did what?
My heart starts to beat faster. Why would he do that? Maybe Claudette was right to warn me? There’s hardly anyone here at the resort. Especially now that all the construction people have left for the day. The main pool is empty when we pass, and even the desk clerks are missing when we enter the lobby.
The dining room has two couples eating dinner and Nolan greets them by name as he leads me to the rear part of the restaurant. Back into a dimly lit room with a single table, white linen tablecloth flowing over the sides. Candle glowing in the center. Set for two.
“This is… unexpected.” My mind is filled with possibilities. And even though I came here with the intention of getting his full attention, possibly losing my virginity to him—and even though I’ve talked myself into feeling ready to take on a man like him, both professionally and personally—I am not excited. I am suddenly scared.
There’s not enough people. There’s not enough noise. There’s not enough of anything to make me forget just who I’m having dinner with.
Mr. Romantic. A man accused of raping a woman ten years ago. A man who was not prosecuted for that crime because the woman died before she could testify. A man who might be guilty.
Nolan pulls out a chair and waits for me to sit, sliding it in perfectly the way a gentleman does, before taking his seat across from me. “I like the unexpected, Miss Rockwell. Get used to it.”
I am in way over my head.
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