by Samantha Ann King
Series: Lovers and Friends #3
Genre: Contemporary Erotic Romance
Categories: Menage, M/F, M/F/M, M/M
Published: June 9th, 2014
Publisher: Carina Press
Length: 90,000 words
Source: ARC via publisher
Astrophysicist Meredith Burke’s professional life is perfect. Her personal life is another story. Years ago, a ménage with the man she loved and his roommate left her with a broken heart and a secret. She hasn’t trusted anyone since, but when she meets rugged hunting guide Charlie Connor she figures she doesn’t need to. He’s got “one night stand” written all over him.
After one night with Meredith, Charlie needs more. She’s intoxicating, and shockingly willing to give him total control of her body. When she agrees to spend an entire week with him at the lodge where he works, it’s more than he’d hoped for. But Blaine Bridges, Charlie’s best friend and boss, has his own secrets.
Blaine hasn’t seen Meredith since that disastrous encounter eight years ago, but he still has feelings for her. Now she’s dating his best friend, the man he wants for himself. When Meredith invites him to join in their naughty play, his pleasure is all-consuming. But will the secrets they all hold close destroy a beautiful beginning or bring these three lovers closer than they ever imagined?
Read an excerpt from the first chapter on the author's website, here.
Read June 22nd-June 22nd
The blurb sounded so promising. Who could resist a story about a broken-hearted heroine, a secret and a blast from the past? I couldn't, but in hindsight, I probably should have. A few pages into chapter two, I began skimming past the rather bland and boring conversation and descriptions at the gun club where Meredith met Charlie. From the very beginning, Meredith sounded bored and boring or like a woman running on autopilot. There was hardly any emotion or passion behind anything she said or did. Whenever she broke down thinking about her "big secret", I didn't feel it or buy into it. As for Charlie, he always took charge of their sexual encounters. He was good at giving orders and he sounded convincing, but it was the times outside of his dominating persona that threw me. He seemed almost boyish in his behavior and dialogues, and he was often unsure of himself and his actions to move the budding relationship with Meredith forward.
I nearly stopped reading at 39% when Meredith said "She‘d been so young and so stupid, and they‘d taken advantage and left her to deal with the consequences. A life lesson. One she‘d never recover from." Perhaps it was a poor choice of words, but Dylan and Blaine didn't take advantage of her. She was a willing participant in that threesome. In the beginning she was characterized as being desperate to gain Dylan's attention and interest, and she was surprised that he'd picked her to be his girlfriend. I think, in accordance with her stupidity as she put it, she would have done anything to please him. As an adult, she should have owned that decision. What did keep me reading was my inane curiosity and the sex scenes which were well written and very hot.
The story did pick up from that point on, but in the end, I still wasn't sympathetic towards Meredith or Charlie. The way Meredith acted, I often questioned whether she was really falling for him. Blaine, on the other hand, was a more accommodating character. I never saw him as being as bad as Dylan because even with his confession of what was really behind that night, I couldn't really fault him for it. To be honest, I enjoyed the scenes between Charlie and Blaine more than any of those with Meredith in them. The ending redeemed the story, but not enough to have made this special. I haven't read any of the other books in this series and after this, I don't think I will.
**I received an ARC from the publisher for the purpose of an honest review.**