Our first meeting as neighbors was screwed from the start.
He was hot. I was naked. And we had no chance in hell at ever being platonic.
I’ll be the first to admit that I live at extremes. After going ten years locked in what felt like a dysfunctional marriage, I’m now decidedly boy-free. In nearly three years I’ve had no boyfriends, no flings, no dates and no sex. For the sake of my dream career, the sacrifice has been easy.
At least it was.
Until Lukas came along.
He’s rude, gorgeous, arrogant – a stone-carved wall of muscle and distraction. He’s everything I know to avoid but there’s no avoiding your next-door neighbor. Oh yeah. The man now lives three steps from me and to make matters worse, he crashed into my life while I was soaked in the tub. Mortifying to say the least and it went something like this: I ran out exposed. He looked. He laughed.
And then I locked myself out.
In short, Lukas Hendricks was smirking, swaggering trouble from the start. And me?
I was – for the first time in years – about to be screwed.
4.5 stars! I LOVED IT!!
Epic banter, sensational chemistry, SOOOOO much hotness and gorgeously romantic – and functional for the win! This book is lots of fun with a lot of heart, and is such a great read. I absolutely loved it!
Lia Pope has been intentionally celibate for three years. After a vicious break up she moved to NYC to start over and to work towards fulfilling her dream of opening her own store for the gourmet chocolates that she makes. She is on the cusp of achieving the success she has worked so hard for when Lukas Hendricks comes along.
Lukas is moving into the apartment across the hall from Lia. Gorgeous, confident, arrogant and infinitely sexy, Lukas is the epitome of everything that Lia has tried to avoid. Their first meeting is surprising, and all sorts of awkward – seeing as Lia is practically naked and then proceeds to lock herself out of her apartment – but it creates a spark of attraction and Lia’s plan for a life uncomplicated by men is about to fall to pieces.
Lukas is just as anti-relationship as Lia is, but unlike her he isn’t prepared to ignore the raging lust between them. She uses hostility to push him away, and he pushes back with his own brand of (highly sexually charged) aggression, and every interaction is simmering with snark and sexual tension.
“You haven’t fucked anyone in three years, Lia, and your plan is to fuck someone else so you don’t give into your temptation to fuck me. And if we’re being blunt here, that kind of fucking pisses me off.”
… “So what?” she huffed. “I still reserve the right to sleep with whoever else I want.”
“No.” I stepped forward. “That’s not how it’s going to work.”
“Shut up! Are you really going to be that person who’s known me a week and tries to tell me who I’m allowed to fuck?”
“No, I’m going to be that person who fucks you and gives you want you need because you know you don’t actually want anyone else,” I muttered, walking into her despite her hands pushing my chest. “You’re attracted to me, aren’t you? You haven’t been this attracted to anyone in a while. I woke up your need to fuck, so if you’re planning on fucking someone, why isn’t it the person you actually want?” I removed her hands from my chest and held them at her sides. “Why go for your second choice when your first wants you just as bad?”
Along with all of the hotness and teasing, there is a wonderful sense of fun between Lia and Lukas, and I absolutely loved their playfulness. Their constant banter is fantastically entertaining, and the flirting and innuendo creates a wonderful dynamic.
“So, this is a date.”
“No. It’s not a date,” she corrected hastily. “It’s just…foreplay.”
I could feel the dirtiness in my smirk. “I can work with that.”
And of course when all of that UST finally reaches breaking point, it’s explosive, and so, so freaking hot! Lia and Lukas are both confident in the bedroom, and they both like a bit of dirty talk. It’s steamy and passionate, and their connection is undeniable. And soon enough, they find themselves falling into something that is so much more than what they had originally planned.
I didn’t know what we were or what we were doing and I was sure it was a bad idea.
But I didn’t know when I was going to meet another Lia.
And everything felt too damned good to stop.
OH.MY.GOD, I loved EVERYTHING about this relationship! It’s fun, it’s hot, it’s emotional, and the pacing is perfect! It’s easy and natural, and it’s SO freaking functional! Lia and Lukas are fantastic characters, they both have issues in their pasts which impact on their romantic lives, how they relate to each other and the way that they see their futures, and the full extent of it all is slowly revealed, adding a heartbreakingly emotional aspect to the story and deepening their feelings as they truly start to open up to each other. I could feel them growing closer and falling for each other, and I loved every moment of it!
“This is all I need,” he breathed. “All I need is you. No one makes me feel like this. You make me feel so fucking good, Lia. So. Fucking. Good.”
As everything starts to change, there is minimal drama and very little angst, and I really appreciated that. The opportunity was there for stupid behaviour, and I held my breath while reading to see how it would all play out, but all hail Stella Rhys for keeping things sensible and not devolving the story into unnecessary angst. The story is strong enough to not need any of that, and I love that she kept these two intelligent characters true to themselves as they figure out what they mean to each other and what it is they want without allowing anything to interfere with that.
It all ends beautifully with an epilogue that left me with a huge cheesy grin on my face, and with a great (and varied) bunch of side characters introduced, I’m hoping for more soon!
I loved it – 4.5 stars!
An Advanced Review Copy was generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.
The Irresistible series
Dirty Deeds (#3) – (Emmett & Aly)
Releasing December 17, 2017
The author is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card!
The Escapist Book Blog is not responsible for this giveaway
About the Author
Stella Rhys is an author of contemporary romance and can’t help but write it hot, steamy and borderline filthy (just kidding, it’s flat-out filthy). Writing aside, she lives for coffee, the Yankees and cooking recipes way out of her league. She was born and raised in New York and now lives there with her husband and charmingly entitled fur baby.