Saturday, July 30, 2011

When He Was Bad

When He Was Bad... (Harlequin Presents Extra: Maverick Millionaires)Author: Anne Oliver
ISBN: 978-0-373-52803-5
Publisher: Harlequin
Purchase Link: When He Was Bad
Source: Reviewed for The Season for Romance

Ellie’s been alone for years.  Her mom and grandparents were killed in a car accident while Ellie was young.  Though her absent father came back to take care of her, he only kept her around long enough to gamble all of the insurance money and the left her on her own.  Ellie has worked hard to fight her way, each relationship leaving her with nothing but pain.  For this reason she refuses to be involved with anyone.  Life is simpler when you’re not setting yourself up for hurt.  Or is it?

Playboy Matt McGregor has skeletons in his closet.  Past hurts and secrets have made him a perpetual bachelor.  This doesn’t mean he can’t have fun, as long as the relationships are casual.  No commitments, no marriage, no kids.  Matt has never had a problem getting who he wants until Ellie.  A talented architect, Matt is a millionaire that has quite a way with women.  He’s sure he will never settle down, or will he?

When Ellie and Matt meet sparks fly and their outlooks are challenged.  The two have far more in common than they ever dreamed possible.  Love is theirs for the taking if they don’t let their past get in the way.
“When He Was Bad” was deliciously enticing.  I was immediately drawn to the characters.  Matt was the perfect man of romance.  He was kind, respectful, chivalrous, sexy, demanding and heavy handed.  He knew what he wanted in Ellie and he got it.  He had an overwhelming desire to take care of her and keep her safe even thought it went against his nature.  Though the passion was on fire between them, Matt saw more in Ellie than a piece of tail to conquer.  Ellie is beautiful, smart, and underappreciated.  Matt stirs up feelings in Ellie that she can’t deny, as much as she wants too.  The sparks between them are hot.  These carry over to the reader, enabling you to feel the passion and intensity between the two.

The authors writing style is fluid and smooth.  I breezed through this novel and was saddened when it ended.  I would love to read more about Ellie and Matt at a later date.  Their story is one that could be continued if the author wanted to explore their relationship further.  There are definite parts of the story in regards to Ellie’s charity work that I would have liked to read more of.  An example of the authors writing style is below.

Ellie’s body still throbbed with the aftermath of great sex.  Her skin still tingled; her breathing was still shallow.  In the dimness, with only the moon’s glow casting an oblique path across the carpet, they lay close, but not touching.  Not speaking.  Her mind was overflowing with jumbled thoughts. The space Matt had put between them was subtle, but not lost on Ellie.  A reminder that what they shared was simple lust, nothing more. A diversion.  Ride till you come to the end of the road. They’d reached that point.  She’d prepared for that, been ready for it.  She’d even initiated it.  Yet somewhere along that journey she’d lost a part of herself.  To him.  Had he noticed?  She listened to his breathing become slow and regular as he drifted towards sleep.  She hoped not.  Good Lord, the last thing she needed was for him to think she expected more than what they’d shared. Sex. Good Sex. Very good sex.That was all.…..Matt stared up at the low-beamed ceiling, resisting the urge to scoop Ellie closer.  Already his sex stirred to life.  He wanted to tuck her bottom against him and take her from behind—slowly this time, while he—No.  Deep slow breaths.  He needed to clear the confusion of thoughts and feelings from his mind before he did. He’d thought once he’d had her, this attraction between them would settle.  He’d get on with his life, she with hers.  Instead, his response had been…unnerving.

I enjoyed this novel immensely.  While it wasn’t long, it was satisfying and had a fair amount of steamy scenes though not all were sex scenes.  Mixed with the hot stuff was a good story of two people, hurt in the past, trying to heal and move on with their future.  I would suggest this novel if you haven’t already decided to pick it up based on the excerpt above.  Readers will definitely want to find out more about these two characters.  If I don’t ever get to read a sequel I will still be satisfied with the story as is, passionate sex never goes out of style.

Heat level: 3

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