Tuesday, January 9, 2018

# 4 cups # adult romance # ARC # Book Review # contemporary romance # erotic romance # InkSlinger PR # Lexi Blake # over 18

Book Review: Small Town Siren by Lexi Blake



Author: Lexi Blake, writing as Sophie Oak
Series: Texas Sirens #1
Audience: +18
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance
Publisher: DLZ Entertainment, LLC
Release Date: January 9th 2018 (2nd edition)
My Rating: 4 cups
Source: InkSlinger PR
Blurb (from Goodreads):

Re-released in a second edition with a prologue and three new chapters.

Two cowboys looking for love…

Jack Barnes and Sam Fleetwood met in foster care. Over the years, they’ve become best friends and partners. They share a business as cattle ranchers and a house. There’s only one thing missing: a woman to share. The men are sure they’ve found that woman when Abigail Moore arrives in their small town, Willow Fork, TX.

A woman trying to find her place in the world…

Abby left her hometown twenty years before under a cloud of scandal. She’s raised a daughter, forged a new life for herself, and is ready for the next phase when she meets the handsome cowboys.

One small town that’s ready to explode…

They’re a dream come true—Jack is the sexy Dom, and Sam the playful lover. It’s everything she’s ever fantasized about. There’s only one problem. She’s still not welcome in Willow Fork, and someone is willing to kill to keep her away.
*Disclaimer: I received an eARC of this book from InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review. This does not influence my rating or the content of my review in any way.

Just when I think I can't be surprised by Lexi Blake, she blows my mind. I had no idea she was writing as Sophie Oak as well. Had I known this, I probably would have bumped this series up on my TBR list a long, long time ago.

The story is focused on Abby's journey to reaching that point within herself to fight back, to defend herself from people who want to harm her for one reason or another, and to reach out for what she wants most. I enjoyed reading about her journey of self-discovery, really. She goes from the scared, terrified pregnant teenager, to being a strong, brave woman. I liked that she turned something vile, like being run out of town, into something good, like getting a proper education and raising a daughter. There were a lot of tragic outcomes that were possible in this story, yet Abby fought with everything in her to take advantage of the blessing in disguise that it was, and I was really impressed by that. I respect Abby for her strength and bravery. At the same time, it seems inevitable that old insecurities would completely stay away, so I kind of understood her reluctance to stay with Jack and Sam, once her old enemy threatens to make their lives miserable if she stayed in Willow Fork. I liked Abby a lot, to be honest.

Jack and Sam are two very different men, yet they are such a powerful team in this book, there's really no way for me to think about one without having the other one popping into my head. While Jack is all serious, dark and broody, Sam is all about having fun, making jokes and being just a tiny little bit immature. While Jack is demanding, dominating, Sam is the giver, the one who likes to serve. Jack seems to have perfected the art of patience, while Sam kind of reminded me of an overeager puppy at times. It was fun to see them work together, and to discover a little bit about their pasts. It was also heartbreaking to realize why they are the way they are, why Jack is the serious, scary one, while Sam is the fun, immature one. Maybe immature is a strong word, but Sam definitely doesn't behave like you'd expect a man of his age to act. I love how they really are a team, how they defend and protect Abby from the people who want to harm her. I also liked the fact that Sam understood that Abby needed to fight her own battles and discover her own inner strength to fight back.

Reading about small towns is always an interesting experience. Having grown up in a big city, where you can meet a new person each day and still not know everyone in that town, I find it refreshing to read about the calmness of small towns. I liked that there was also a little bit of drama sprinkled here and there, because while it may seem fun at times that everybody knows just about everybody, I do imagine that at times it can be stifling to know that you don't have any secrets. Blake also did a great job at portraying the way power and money corrupts even the so-called righteous people, and the lengths they would go to in order to defend what they perceive to be right and proper, as well as their fortune.

The book is pretty fast paced and I read it in one sitting. As already expected from a Lexi Blake book, this one is full of hot, steamy sex. I enjoyed seeing Abby getting her happy ending, and I thought this book was a great series starter. I do however want to see Sam get his happy ending. I didn't expect him to acknowledge what he truly wanted, because he's been so good at denying it, that he doesn't even realize there's a need and a want to begin with. It's going to be interesting to see that aspect of Sam being explored in the next book in the series.

All in all, a pretty good story and I can't wait to return to Willow Fork as soon as possible.

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      The door to the women’s room slammed open. Abby practically jumped, ready to beg whoever was walking through to give her some privacy. Jack filled the doorway with his presence.

“You can’t come in here, Jack.” She smoothed down her uniform and swept back her hair, trying to retain as much dignity as she could.

“Why not, darlin’? I am going to admit that I’m not a man who tends to let things like social conventions keep me out of a place I really want to be in.” Jack walked right up to her. The man really wasn’t big on personal space.

Sam walked in and closed the door. He leaned with his back against it. One boot rested negligently against the painted pink door.

“Sam, tell him he can’t come into the women’s room.”

“You’re the one who chose the venue for this particular conversation, Abigail.” There was nothing vaguely resembling a joke in Jack’s voice now. Abby looked to Sam for help.

Sam shook his head. He was grinning like an idiot. “Hell no, honey. You’re gonna have to learn that when Jack gets that hard edge to his voice, he means business. Besides, I’m happy with the way things went. Thank you, baby. You made this so much easier. Jack was talking about dating you and treating you like a lady. That was gonna take forever. It’s much simpler this way.”

“What’s simpler?” Abby was unable to keep the trepidation out of her voice.

“Taking you home, taking you to bed, and showing you where you belong,” Sam replied with a wink.

“Where do I belong?” Abby couldn’t take her eyes off Jack. There was a simple smile on his face that held a wealth of arrogance. He’d been serious. He really had been playing the gentleman. Abby got the feeling she was about to get a full dose of Jack Barnes, and damned if she wasn’t looking forward to it.

“Always between me and Sam.” Jack reached out and put his hands on her shoulders, his expression intense. “Tell me you don’t want us, Abby, and I’ll walk away right now. I won’t bother you again.”

“Don’t give her ultimatums.” Sam sounded a bit desperate. “I thought we’d give her a taste before we forced her to make a decision. Baby, why don’t you let us play around a little? I promise you’ll want us.”

She looked up into Jack’s forest-green eyes. They were very serious as he stared at her. His hand came up to cup her face. He forced her to look at him and Abby felt his will. It should scare the crap out of her, but she found it amazingly sexy. This was a man who would always keep his promises, no matter what it cost him.

“She already wants us.” Jack brushed his thumb across her mouth. It was all she could do to not open her mouth and suck his thumb in. “She just needs to admit it. Can you tell me you haven’t spent the last few weeks thinking about this? Thinking about you and me and Sam coming together in bed?”

“No,” she said. Jack’s eyes flared, and she felt compelled to continue. “I have thought about it, but I’m scared.”

The time for honesty was here. She could run, and they would probably accept her decision. She could give in and enjoy the sex and walk away. Or she could ask for what she wanted. She could be brave and tell them what she needed and what she was scared of. If she did that and it all fell apart, then she would have to forgive herself. She’d learned that one of the great joys of maturing was learning how to forgive herself.

“What are you scared of?” A deep crease appeared in Sam’s forehead. He walked up to her and leaned forward. “Honey, we want to take care of you. We don’t want to hurt you.”

She felt tears pricking at the edge of her eyes. Everything in her was screaming for that to be true. She wanted them. She craved them.

“You could be lying to me. You could want to make me look bad.” She could hear her teenaged self in the statement. She felt every bit as vulnerable as she had then. The last month she’d spent with these two disparately different men had been one of the best of her life. Every evening they’d spent together over the last month had made her want them more. More than once, she’d fantasized about them sweeping into the diner and carrying her away. Lately, when things went wrong, her first thought was to call Jack. Now that her fantasy seemed to be coming true, she didn’t trust fate.

Jack’s hands came out and soothingly rubbed the back of her neck. He hadn’t stopped touching her once. “Sweetheart, why would you say something like that? Why would we want to make you look bad?”

“Because the Echols family wants me out of town.” Her heart soared when she saw the complete confusion on their faces. They couldn’t make that up.

“Are you talking about that crazy old biddy who runs the church socials?” Jack seemed to struggle to place a name with a face. “She always looks at me funny.”

“Ruby. That’s her name.” Sam frowned. “She’s real unpleasant to me. Why would we do anything for her? For that matter, why would she care that you’re in town?”

Hope swelled inside her. They really weren’t gay, and they really weren’t working for Ruby Echols. If that was true, then she had to assume they wanted her. It suddenly didn’t matter that they were in a bathroom in a public place. She couldn’t wait to feel their mouths pressed to hers. It wasn’t forever. The universe didn’t work that way, but she could have this moment. She could have a few weeks with them.

“It doesn’t matter. Kiss me.”

“Which one?” Sam asked.

Abby continued to smile, looking from gorgeous man to gorgeous man. “It doesn’t matter, but one of you should kiss me.”

Jack’s eyes never left her face. “Sam, take care of that door. We wouldn’t want anyone walking in.”

Sam cursed and bemoaned his fate, but he walked back and took his previous position.

Jack took Abby’s face in both his hands. “I’m completely crazy about you, Abigail Moore.” He leaned over and finally, after what seemed to Abby like a lifetime of wanting, pressed his mouth to hers.

Abby felt helpless against the onslaught of desire that rocketed through her as Jack took her mouth. He plundered it, his tongue gently forcing its way in and dancing strongly around hers. She held on to his lean waist for dear life as he slanted over her mouth again and again. He poured his will into her and everything inside her responded. She felt that kiss in her pussy and already she was slick and warm. Jack’s hands reached up and pulled at the band that held up her hair. He set it free and pulled back to look at the mane of auburn locks he’d unleashed.

“You’re so fucking gorgeous,” Jack breathed almost reverently as he stroked her hair. In that moment, with Jack’s green eyes looking at her like she was some goddess he was worshipping, Abby felt gorgeous.

“Why don’t we take this home, people?” Sam’s voice was tight. Abby looked back at Sam, and his blue eyes were dark with passion.

He wanted to go home so he could join in. He wanted to have his turn. The thought should have turned her off, but all it did was get her hotter.

Jack’s lips turned up in a lazy smile. “You’ll have to forgive Sam, darlin’. He’s always so impatient. Always has been.” Jack suddenly lifted her up and set her on the counter. He looked back at his friend with great affection. “Do you have any idea how many times I’ve told him that anticipation is the best part?”

Jack’s hands pushed up the skirt of her uniform.

“Anticipation is damn frustrating, Jack. And I’ve been anticipating for weeks,” Sam complained.



NY Times and USA Today bestselling author Lexi Blake lives in North Texas with her husband, three kids, and the laziest rescue dog in the world. She began writing at a young age, concentrating on plays and journalism. It wasn’t until she started writing romance and urban fantasy that she found the stories of her heart. She likes to find humor in the strangest places and believes in happy endings no matter how odd the couple, threesome, or foursome may seem.



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4 comments:

  1. If you read this in on sitting then it must be a really great book! I am glad you managed to discover this new series by an author you really love as well. It sounds so good, and kind of like the ideal romance. I don't read too many small town romances, so maybe I will give this one a go ;)

    My recent post: http://oliviascatastrophe.com/2018/01/solitude-the-change-of-heart-book-review/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Personally, I enjoyed it. This one is VERY explicit though, so keep that in mind lol. It was a chance for me to go back to my first love, romance books, which is always nice.

      Thank you for stopping by!

      Delete
  2. Seems like it is a hot steamy book. And Congrats on your new design.

    Gayathri @ Elgee Writes

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a very steamy book. My favorite kind, really LOL. Thank you! And thank you for helping me pick it :D

      Delete

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