Almost 4 stars (3.5-4)
“My dad once told me that one day I’d meet someone who drives me so crazy I want to strangle her and yet never would because I can’t bear for her to be gone. Well, that’s when I’ll know I’ve met a woman worth keeping.”
I felt a little torn about this book. I did really like the story, I was into it and I did care about the characters but I wish it had made me feel more emotionally connected to it.. If I could, I’d give the first half of the book 4-4.5 stars, and the second half of the book 3 stars.
I really liked the beginning of this book. It had a bit of a sad background so a serious enough mood was set but as soon as the hero and heroine met (first chapter), I was smiling and grinning. They really didn’t have the smoothest of introductions and pretty much started out disliking each other. He found her uptight and abrasive and she thought he was an annoying womanizer. But despite that, neither of them could get the other off their mind and so they set about exploring what might be happening between them.
Lena was an interesting character. Deeply hurt and scarred by an accident she was involved in nine years ago in which her sister died, she cut herself off emotionally from relationships and came off as abrasive on the surface in an effort to guard her heart from losing someone else that she might establish a connection to. Consequently, when she first met our hero, Mason, she did her best to push him away… but luckily, he’d have none of it.
“I don’t know why, Lena, but you’ve done something to me. I can’t get you out of my mind.”
Lena shook her head slowly, even though he couldn’t see her, and whispered softly, “I’m truly sorry for that. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.”
So softly she almost missed it, he whispered, “Let me in, Magdalena O’Donnell. I want to know all of you.”
Mason was a local-celebrity chef. As the owner of a popular restaurant, Exquisite, and one of Chicago’s most eligible bachelors with a bit of a Casanova reputation, he was used to women tripping over themselves to be with him and was very intrigued by this woman who seemed genuinely unaffected by his charms.
“You’re so button-ed up, professional. You make me want to unbutton things.”
I did love that they didn’t just fall into each other’s beds right at the start. In fact they almost had some sort of “anti-attraction” thing going for a while… but once they started to actually started dating a little, ho boy did it get hot for a while!! Kissing, talking, touching, petting. I needed a cold shower.
And speaking of showers. Holy shower scene. I mean, really! This scene is proof that something can be panty-melting hot without one single bit of touching in it!
Overall though, I liked seeing them fall in love, their bedroom scenes were hot!!, there were few moments that made me squint skeptically and go hmmmmmm, and one serious WTF moment (I mean, really, that whole hair/cock thing was just plain weird! … haha I’ll let you guys wonder about that one 😛 ), I didn’t like that in the middle of the book the story skipped forward 6 months because I felt that further disconnected me from them both individually and as a couple, and then towards the last 25% there was a big misunderstanding that was really both their faults and although it was an understandable and believable human error at first, I felt it became far to drawn out and then after that, the book ended so soon that it just felt a little rushed.
I did however like what that misunderstanding did for them as a couple. It gave it a great turn around because neither of them were perfect and each had qualities that ended up helping each other out. Mason saved her in the first half of the book, and then in the second half, it was Lena’s turn to save him.
“Let me be what you need… Let me save you from yourself.”
It was a good book, but I just wish I felt more connected to it.