Sugar Rush #1
I have read one Nina Lane book, Arouse, and I loved it hard. She swept me away into Prof. Dean's and Liv's world and left such an impression that I still remember their names, which doesn't happen very often. I intend to read all the other Spiral of Bliss books and judging from the reviews they have received the series only gets better. But I digress, since this is not supposed to be a rave about this author's previous works.
Luke Stone is the well known, good looking and workaholic CEO of Sugar Rush Candy Company who likes to spend his nights in a dive bar when he wants to stay anonymous. He is driven, controlling and there is no room for long lasting relationships. Work is all he lives for. When he goes into a relationship, he has a set of rules ready. One night at the bar he locks eyes with a pretty bohemian and drunk girl. She proposes a night of fun...but this one doesn't end as expected.
When Polly's mom died she asked her daughter to live her life. Her mother left her and her sister the bakery and in her memory she wants to continue running it. Part of her plan to do this is taking confectionary and pastry classes. She has lived her life pleasing other people, always putting other people's needs before her. Breaking up with her boyfriend is the first step into her new life. Introducing more fun the second. When she wakes up after the night of her twenty third birthday and remembers how it ended her embarrassment knows no bounds. Things get even more awkward when she runs into the object of her desire on the evening of her birthday after leaving such a terrible impression.
Luke was everything I look for in a male lead. Strong, dominant, sexy, protective. The way he treats Polly in the beginning is sweet and you watch him fall for her, despite him repeatedly reminding her that he can't offer anything long lasting. I really liked how he took care of his girl but he was also stubborn and unreasonable and towards the end the jerk came out to play which was one of the things that brought my rating down. They had a discussion in the last 15% of the book which had me scratching my head in confusion.
"Our affair has a deadline"
Irritation speared through him. "Who said it has a deadline?"
"I never said that."
"You said your relationships have parameters and deadlines."
"I meant my relationships with other women. Not with you"
How was Polly to know when he kept insisting that this wasn't long lasting. Sounds to me like a deadline. So where did that come from? Sorry, beats me. At no point, however, I doubted his devotion to this heroine.
Polly was as sweet, open and friendly as they come with a good dose of strong will. She stands up for herself and doesn't let people walk over her. She is set on making her life better and enjoying it. Polly accepts Luke the way he is without wanting to change him and that includes accepting that their relationship will end at some point.
I love a well written sex scene as much as the next girl. I love the slow build up and the tension. This book had really good ones...until Polly opened her mouth. What came out sounded to me artificial and not in character. Polly is sweet and not very experienced in the men/sex department so her getting it on like a pornstar was a little bit irritating.
You will find sweet and funny moments in this story:
"Luke" she whispered. "Are you asleep?""No", he mumbled.
"You can turn around now."
"No, I can't."
"Because I have a boner the size of a redwood tree."
I really loved most of the secondary cast, especially aunt Julia, who had hysterical conversations with Polly.
Overall this story was cute, low in the angst department and with a healthy dose of steam. The characters were likable and there were some wonderful and sweet parts I really adored. While this wasn't a complete winner for me, I would like to urge you to read this book to form your own opinion. There are a lot of people who loved this story so who knows, you'll probably love it too! I loved it enough to see the potential in this series and will definitely read the next installment!