Published by Forever on August 8th 2017
Also by this author: The Protector, All I Am: Drew's Story
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A new story of dangerous temptations from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the This Man trilogy.
Annie has never experienced the 'spark' with a guy-that instant chemistry that renders you weak in the knees. That is, until a night out brings her face to face with the dangerously sexy and mysterious Jack. It's not just a spark that ignites between them. It's an explosion. Jack promises to consume Annie, and he fully delivers on that promise.
Overwhelmed by the intensity of their one night together, Annie slips out of their hotel room. She is certain that a man who's had such a powerful impact on her must be dangerous. She has no idea that he belongs to another. That he's forbidden.
Cocktails and Books received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect our opinion of the book or the content of our review.
I will admit, the premise of this book will turn some people off. The author even admits that some may run the other direction when they find out. But I have to say, this was an angsty, gut-wrenching read that was undeniably hard to put down and to deny this couple wasn’t meant for each other.
Annie was determined to make a name for herself as an architect. She had no time for romantic entanglements. She had her business and her best friends…in her mind that was all she needed. Until the night she met Jack at a bar. He was charming, made her laugh and she was unbelievably attracted to him. That attraction led to an unbelievable night and Annie’s world turning upside down.
When we first meet Annie in the book, she came across as a little cold. She was happy with how life and putting it into the little boxes she had carved out for it. But when she met Jack, she came alive. She flirted and laughed, I enjoyed this Annie. And when she met Jack outside the pub and had that explosive night, there was not denying the chemistry they had. I didn’t want Annie to let go of Jack or what she felt when she was with him. And I was devastated right there with her when she found out Jack’s secret.
I have never, nor would I ever, condone someone cheating. In my opinion, if you feel the need to be with someone else you should leave the person you’re with. And when Jack’s marriage came out, I was a little betrayed. But as the story unfolded and we saw more into Jack’s married life I could understand why he chased after Annie when he wasn’t truly free.
Love doesn’t always come at the most convenient time and I imagine the desperation and the need to hold onto something good could make you do something you normally wouldn’t do. Jack’s desperation was almost a secondary character at times. He was stuck and was blinded as to how to get out of the mess he was in (given the state of his wife, maybe he knew she was walking a thin line).
I think of all the JEM books I’ve read, this one is one of my favorites. Jack and Annie don’t have an easy road. They are sometimes their own worst enemies. But their love was one you couldn’t deny and I was desperate for them to some way, shape or form, find they’re happily ever after.
“Annie,” he breathes. “I’m struggling so badly.”
“I’m not doing this.” I swallow, pushing my way past him. He grabs me by the top of my arm and holds me in place. “Let me go, Jack.”
“I’ve already told you I can’t do that. Annie, I’m drowning here. I’m going out of my mind, and the more time I spend with you the fucking worse it’s getting. Listening to you, talking to you, sharing a passion with you that goes way beyond the amazing time we had in bed together.”
“You have to forget!” I yell, knowing anger is the only way forward. Be angry with him. Let it dominate me and rule me, because the alternative scares me to fucking death.
He pushes me into the hall and slams the door behind us, forcing me to back up. “No,” he says, straight and even. “No,” he repeats, moving one more step forward, except this time I don’t retreat. Because I can’t. Because he has me locked in place with those grey eyes, and now they’re back to their full glory. Sparkling, even if it’s with anger. He reaches for his shirt and starts unbuttoning it before shrugging it off and throwing it to the floor, revealing the chest that’s haunting me.
I quickly look down at the pile of material, my mind reeling. His chest. His perfect damn chest. “What are you doing?”
“I have no fucking idea.” He reaches for me and slides a hand around my neck, pulling me to him. Our chests meet, and my determination to repel him vanishes under our connection. Wrongs turn into rights. Conflict turns into craving.
“I can’t get you out of my head, Annie.” His forehead meets mine, his palm massaging away the tightness in my neck muscles, softening me up until I relax in his hold. “I want you all over again, and I can’t even find the will to worry about how much more that’ll make me want you.” He breathes down on me. “I’ve played that night on repeat. I’ve dreamed of holding you in my arms again. I’ve craved the sound of your voice, the feel of your touch, the softness of your lips on mine. I know I shouldn’t want you. But I do. Nothing has ever made me feel this insane with need. Nothing has taken up so much space in my head. I can’t fucking help it, Annie.” His grey gaze sinks into me, my heart steadying to an even thrum. His head starts to shake mildly, his splayed hand moving up to the back of my head and fisting my hair. “I don’t want to help it,” he growls. “I want you. I don’t care how wrong it is.” His clenched fist tightens, gripping my hair harshly. “I know I’ve been on your mind since I fucked you every which way in that hotel room. Stop denying it. Don’t insult me and tell me you don’t crave that amazing feeling all over again. I can see it in your eyes every damn time I look into them. You. Want. Me.”
It’s me who moves in first. All me. I lunge forward and smash my lips to his, the magnetic force winning. His words winning. Jack winning. My heart winning. I coax his mouth open with hard, hungry kisses. I’ve lost my mind to a craving too powerful to fight off. And, like Jack, I don’t care how wrong it is.
Yet as he walks me backward until my back slams into the wall, I feel found again.
I cry out, and Jack moans. We’re clumsy and desperate. He’s pushing me up the wall with the force of his kiss, then he’s rolling away, taking me with him until it’s his back slamming into the wall. It’s the elevator all over again. The atmosphere is sizzling. I’m on fire. He scoops me up, pinning me to him, and carries me into my bedroom. I focus on him. Only him and the return of feelings that I’ve fantasized about since that unforgettable night. All the guilt is abandoning me, and I let it, unprepared to let anything stop me from taking the forbidden.
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