I'd hoped to go out with a bang - a big name author that others have raved about but I haven't read yet but alas, I got caught off guard and only remembered yesterday that today was the day. I knew that wouldn't give me enough time to read a mass market book but thankfully I have hundreds of series books I've bought over the years. So I have to confess I went looking for a smaller one that I could speed read. Luckily I'm good at that. Standing outside on my breaks at work I got a few pages in. Then some more at lunch. And I gave up blog hopping and TV tonight to read it. Thank Goodness SYTYCD wasn't on - otherwise I would have missed December for sure.
Wicked Hot by Leslie Kelly.
So, while not a book I planned, still I did enjoy this one. I've read and enjoyed a few other books by her so she wasn't an entirely new-to-me author. I was surprised though when I pulled this one out of the pile. Published in 2004, I apparently bought this one new and never even cracked it open as it looked brand new!
First of all, it's a Harlequin Temptation and reading it, I was once again saddened that Harlequin dropped this line.
Back Cover Blurb:
Wicked Games, Wicked LiesNew Yorker Ryan Stoddard can describe Savannah, Georgia in two words: wickedly hot. But the dark, mysterious woman he's gone there to find is even hotter. Though Jade Maguire turns him on to no end, he can't be distracted from his mission - to prove the sultry siren is a conniving thier! But as he charms her into letting down her guard, he never dreams the wicked game he's playing is about to backfire.....
Wicked LustJade is surprised - and secretly thrilled - when Ryan Stoddard finds her. His blatant come-on provides a perfect opening for her revenge. As Ryan's payback for breaking her sister's heart, Jade plans to tempt him, tease him...and seduce him out of his clothes, leaving him high and dry. Only, as she gets to know oh-so-sexy Ryan better, she soon fears she'll be the one left desperate for more...
It took me a bit of time to warm up to this one. Both the hero and heroine were playing games and the premise was built on misunderstandings on both sides. The back cover blurb describes it pretty well. In an effort to play matchmaker, Ryan's grandmother had met Jade and decided she would be the perfect wife for her playboy, not-ready-to-settle down grandson so she lies to him, telling him Jade stole a portrait. Ryan heads to Savannah loaded for bear, ready to confront this swindling thief. But he is torn when he meets her and instead is very attracted to her.
For her part, Jade thinks that Ryan broke her younger sister's heart back in New York where she works as a waitress, so she is ready to make Ryan pay by getting him hot and bothered and then 'exposing' him. But just as he is attracted to her, so is she attracted to him.
After each has played their tie-em-up tricks on each other, the book settles down as we get to know the 'real' Ryan and Jade behind their masks of revenge and they are both pretty nice people especially Jade. She's the older sister and caretaker of a rather eccentric family and Ryan slowly begins to see this side of her and the fall in love. I'd say slowly, but this is a series book and nothing ever happens slowly in them *g*.
I don't read as many Harlequins as I used to - they got rid of my favourite line. But I must confess it feels good to read a book in a day. I used to do that a lot and when I closed the cover, I gave myself a smug grin; knowing I made the challenge and can add another read book to my spreadsheet - see I have personal goal of 80 this year and now I'm only 3 away from that.
And Wickedly Hot was a nice little book.
Grade: 3.5 out of 5.
If you are curious about the previous books
March - Saint or Sinner - Cheryl St. John - 4 out of 5
April - Rayvn's Flight by Patti O'Shea - 4 out of 5
May - (good one - I had 3) The Sword and The Wolf by Jean Johnson - both 4.5. Gabriel Hawk's Lady by Beverly Barton - 3.5
June - Rock Star by Roslyn Holcomb - 4 out of 5
July - Time's Captive by Kate Lyon - 4.5 out of 5
August - The Sins of His Past by Roxanne St. Clair - 3.5 out of 5
September - The Private Eye by Jayne Ann Krentz - 4.5 out of 5
October - Highlander Unchained by Monica McCarty - 3.5 out of 5
November - The Sea Wife by Holly Cook - 3 out of 5
So you can see by the grades that this challenge has been quite a success. I've enjoyed them all to one extent or another. For example, I enjoyed the Jean Johnson books so much I've continued with the series. I read a Cheryl St. John book I didn't even realize I had until I went looking for a book.
I got to read books I might never have gotten around to - books that I enjoyed.
But best of all, because I signed up for Keishon's challenge -- I challenged myself -- and I did it!
Thank you for this Keishon!!! It's a good feeling.
Next year I have two of them. Keishon is continuing the TBR challenge and Nath has a Reread Challenge started. I look forward to new older books and older well loved books!