I LOVE LOVE LOVED THIS BOOK!!!!
I can’t stop thinking about it!!! Just BEAUTIFUL!!
Dean and Liv are officially one of my all-time favorite book couples. Their passion, love, heartache and healing hit me right in the heart.
“Our relationship, our love, cannot and will never be perfect. It will, however, always belong only to us in all its flawed, intense beauty. Perfect in its very imperfection.”
Allure is the sequel to Arouse and follows the same couple, Dean and Liv, in a direct continuation of where the first book left off. If you are new to this series, Arouse should absolutely be read first (see my review). Arouse was one of those special books that connected me deeply with the characters and made want to know more of their story. I loved the uniqueness of the plot because, contrary to most romance books, this one tells the story of an already-married couple.
This is the story of a marriage – the struggles, the triumphs, the highlights and absolutely rock bottom moments. It’s beautifully crafted, deeply thoughtful and perfectly detailed. Sensual, honest, and unpredictable.
If there was ever a book that highlighted how a true relationship works – how everything is needed in balance, this is the one. And it takes you through that journey with Dean and Liv as they strive to find their happiness. It took the time to work through each of their issues and to strongly connect you to both of them both individually and as a couple. I just could feel every one of their thoughts, insecurities, fears, delights… everything was projected right out from the page and into my heart.
I think one of the reasons that people are loving this story SO much is that the issues that Dean and Liv face are just so REAL. They are heart-wrenching and utterly believable.
I loved that the book took the time to acquaint you with all the different little details of their lives. And I also loved that despite it being a deep heart-felt story, it still had these little lines that just made me burst right out laughing.
I loved that Dean called her “beauty”. Each time he did that, my heart melted just a little bit more. I loved that she called him “Professor”. I loved the way they loved each each other. I loved that it was impossible not to FEEL the depths of that love. That sweeping, passionate, bottom-of-your-heart, forever kind of love.
“He tightens his arm around me and brushes his mouth against my temple. “Right now I want you naked against me. I want to wake up cold because you’ve hogged all the blankets. I want to feel your leg between mine, your hair in my face, your arm flung across my chest… I want to sleep with you.”
I loved how protective they were of each other. I loved watching Olivia heal and grow stronger. I loved how Dean cherished her. I loved that, no matter what, they didn’t give up on each other. I loved the message they gave out about marriage.
I really felt like everything that happened, even the mistakes and misunderstandings was understandable. And most importantly, you could see them both learning from their mistakes even if they still continued to make them. They were just trying to make things work. I really didn’t feel anyone was ever specifically at fault, but sometimes while trying to do the right thing, people make the wrong decisions and that’s just part of the (sometimes painful) learning curve of life.
“We both want this so badly. I can feel it resonating between us like the hot pull of our first attraction, tangible and intense.”
But Dean and Liv were always just one of those couples who no part of you could ever doubt that they were just meant for each others. They were soul mates.
“He is imprinted in my bones, my soul. He has marked me in ways more permanent than time.”
I finished the story at 4:30AM and just sat there with tears streaming down my face. Not sad tears, just an overflow of emotion. It is a true tribute to the strength of the story and writing that this ending was as powerful as it was because the only way it could have been this powerful was if you had truly LIVED their story with them – so that each moment from their lives became precious and meaningful to you.
“The allure, huh?”
“I’ve learned a few things about castle architecture over the years.” Liv wraps one arm around my waist. “The allure is a passage behind the parapet of a castle wall. Great for defense when the enemy is approaching. You know you’re safe on the allure.” She tucks her head beneath my chin, twining her hand with mine. “Like we’re safe with each other.”
“No doubt about it, beauty.” I press my face against her sweet-smelling hair. “You’ll always be my allure.”
Nina Lane is one hell of an author and tells the story seamlessly from alternating POVs. Her descriptions, writing style and imagery are vivid, powerful and captivating. I could not put this book down even for a moment.
The ending took me by surprise and while there isn’t a direct cliffhanger, there is a bit of an external one. I’d say it was a similar style to the way to Crossfire books end – so that you feel they’ll make it but there still is a lot more of their story to tell. I definitely would say it’s safe to start the stories now though and not wait for the 3rd book.
Dean and Liv were not perfect people. And they did not have a perfect relationship. But they had true love. It was real. It was believable. It was beautiful.
I highly recommend this series. It’s one of those stories that I know I will be rereading.
If you are looking for an emotionally charged, sensual romance that will touch your heart, this is it!!
“Thanks for waiting,” I whispered.
“My beauty,” he said. “I’d wait for you forever.”