Thursday, March 24, 2011

Thrice the Sexy Times

The Guy Next Door (Anthology)

Released: March 1, 2011 by HQN Books

Summary: Three sexy new spring-fling novellas from three of today's hottest contemporary romance authors!

Ready, Set, Jett by Lori Foster

A vacation from her no-strings romance with her sexy next-door neighbor. That's what Natalie Alexander needs to get her head—and heart—together. But her solo trip south turns into a disaster when gorgeous Jett Sutter turns up with another challenge.

Gail's Gone Wild by Susan Donovan

Single mom Gail Chapman insists on chaperoning her teenage daughter's spring-break trip to Key West. But she never expects to face temptation—in the hunky form of Jesse Batista, the mysterious man in the cottage next door.

Just One Taste by Victoria Dahl

All-work-and-no-play businessman Eric Donovan won't be distracted by a "businesswoman" who's all wrong for him. Beth Cantrell owns a women's erotica shop! And she has a juicy little secret. Can she tempt him to put pleasure before business for once?

Is it sad that as soon as I read this I forgot all about it and I almost forgot to write a review? Thankfully (sort of) I went through my list of recently read books and realized that this one was missing a write-up. So, as I sit in my room half watching Chicago on DVD, I’m going to give my honest opinion.

Let’s start with the first of the three novellas. This was the one that really captivated my attention. It started hot and just kept simmering until it bubbled over... and then it sort of fizzled out. I thought that the bits with the dog were cute and the tension of driving in crap weather was very believable, but it just wasn’t all there. I think that it was a little too rushed. And every so often little previously unknown facts would slip in, like about a case that Jett had worked, which really had absolutely nothing to do with anything and could have been left out. Really, had this of been more of an actual novel and not a short story, had it of been able to fully mature and spread out, it would have worked out a lot better. Left as is, I would have to pass to ever read again. And I hated how it was just a ploy to get the readers to buy the ‘companion’ novel that’s coming out soon about the main female character’s sister.

The second story was boring. It was sort of weird to see a ‘hermit type’ mother tag along on her daughter’s spring break in order to chaperone only to have her own fling and completely defeat the purpose of being there in the first place. I mean, she’s all uptight about her daughter and her daughter’s friend getting into trouble and then never even seems to check up on them. Once again, it’s a story were it was sweet to see a woman finding some love, but the entire bit was just too much (or maybe that’s too little) and underdeveloped.

And last but not least, the third little tale in this novel. This one is meant to drill up interest in the continuing adventures of the two main characters and their semi-blooming romance. This was the one that I liked the least out of the three. Beth needed to grow a pair and say ‘screw it’ to everyone about how they thought to perceive her and Eric/Jamie just needed to plain old suck it up and tell the truth about who he was so that the poor little sex shop worker (adult toys and such, not sins of the flesh) didn’t carry around ideas about the wrong person. However, seeing as this was a precursor to the upcoming trilogy, one would assume that eventually that’s what will happen. I, for one, will not be reading to find out. I just didn’t connect with the characters or the situation. I spent the entire time rather bored and yet wanting to know if anything would actually happen. Still, my intrigue isn’t that great.

Personally, this type of novel isn’t for me. I like a beginning, middle and end with what I read. However, if you want to get a taste of what there is to offer with these authors and their characters, I would suggest picking this up. Though it comes off as incomplete in this review, it does offer a nice sampling and in that way it’s really well done. I’m giving it a 4/10.

Thank you netGalley and Harlequin for allowing me to read this advanced copy.

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