This couple is FIRE together, and the first half is all sugar, spice, and everything not-so-nice. I loved their initial meeting, and the forbidden element felt fresh, new, and very intriguing. They didn’t know about the connection until they’d already crossed all sorts of lines, so there was no forgetting the way they felt together. It was such a strong start, and I was confident that this would be an easy 5-star read for me. However… however, the plentiful spicy scenes and constant reminders about the way they can “never be together” soon became repetitive, and it became pretty clear that this couple only connected in the bedroom. I really needed more focus on the emotional connection, because we saw several red flags about how incompatible they probably were out of the bedroom. It’s definitely a lust-focused relationship, which means this was fan-worthy and spicy for a long while, but didn’t leave me feeling overly confident in their love.
The story follows Millie (32), a woman who finds herself planning her ex’s wedding. They ended on good terms and she even introduced him to his soon-to-be bride, but that doesn’t mean that the situation doesn’t sting a bit. So when she meets a sexy stranger in a bar, Millie does something out of character – she spends one hot night with an older man (47). The night was perfect, but Millie and Zach live on opposite sides of the country, and their lives are going in different directions. Just as Millie starts to think she’s put the night behind her, she meets her ex’s long lost father… and discovers that it’s Zach. Zach never knew that he had a child, and he never planned to be a father, so suddenly being thrown into family events is a shock to the system. As is running into the woman he can’t stop thinking about, only to realize that she’s also slept with his son. There are countless reasons why Zach and Millie could never work, but they can’t seem to keep their hands off each other – and that’s sure to be a problem.
There’s a whole lot that I liked about this, especially the obvious chemistry between Zach and Millie. The age gap isn’t extreme enough that it felt uncomfortable, nor did the father/son situation, actually. Zach didn’t even know that he was a father, and they slept together before the taboo situation came to light. So that was all fine with me, and it was clear that Zach and Millie had a very different relationship than she ever had with her ex. I think I would’ve really loved this with a few tweaks, because Harlow’s writing shines in so many ways. Zach and Millie both have compelling backstories, and the scenario is one that I’ve never read before. I just think certain things were skimmed over in favor of more time in the bedroom. This is one of those rare books that I think would’ve benefited from a longer length, which (strangely) would’ve made their “we can’t keep doing this” situation more palatable. There were so many spicy scenes that several ended up fading to black, and other elements of the story (Zach’s age, Millie’s plus size, their incompatibilities) could’ve been expanded to make the plot stronger. But I had no trouble bingeing this in one sitting, and I sincerely enjoyed a very significant portion of it, so there are definitely more pros than cons.
You’ve heard the story about the wedding planner who falls for the groom?
Well, this is the one where she falls for his father.
And that groom? He’s my ex.
I didn’t realize who the gruff, gorgeous older man was the night he rescued me from a creep in a Manhattan hotel bar. All I knew was that a hot, bearded stranger with a protective streak showed up right when I needed a reminder that real gentlemen still exist.
(Although he left his manners behind after asking me up to his room.)
It was the hottest night of my life, but I never thought I’d see the former Navy SEAL again.
Imagine my surprise at the rehearsal dinner one week later, when my sexy one-night stand is introduced as the father of the groom. Even more surprising? That temptation we felt in New York was no fluke.
In public, we pretend there’s nothing between us.
In private, we can’t keep our hands off each other.
The situation is beyond complicated. Zach never even knew he’d fathered a child until recently, and he wants to earn his son’s trust and respect. As for me, I’m looking for a man who wants to start a family, and Zach has made it clear he’s not that man. He’s fifteen years older, newly divorced, and he lives across the country.
But no matter how many times we draw the line, we keep crossing it.
Nothing so wrong should ever feel so right.
Start the series today!
This particular series has not been my favorite from Harlow, but I really enjoyed Taste. Of course, Harlow’s writing is always excellent, so the tropes in the other books might be more of a win for you, and they do easily read as standalones.
My new neighbor is a firefighter–and a scorching hot single dad–but I swear I didn’t set off that smoke alarm on purpose.
(And I was beyond mortified when he rushed in and saw me naked.)
Nothing happened, of course–because I, Winnie MacAllister, romance junkie and owner of a constantly broken heart, have sworn off men for one solid year.
Even protective men with chiseled jaws, bulging biceps, and deep brown eyes that make my breath come faster. Even former SEALs with broad chests and strong hands that make my skin sizzle. Even gorgeous, grumpy guys who have their hands full raising two adorable little girls and claim they don’t believe in love.
Until Dex kisses me one night, and I drop all my defenses.
(Also my underwear.)
He says he’s not gentle, and he’s right. He says I should take the dream job I’m offered in another state, and he’s right. He says he’s too old for me and could never be the man I deserve.
Dex and I might be twelve years apart, but the fire between us is the kind that will never burn out.
How can I convince him to give happily-ever-after with me a chance?
Read the 3-star review here
More from the series!
The last person on earth I want to be stranded with is Gianni Lupo.
But thanks to the blizzard of the century, I’m trapped in a roadside motel room with that cocky bastard for two straight days.
With one small bed.
Some women might thank Mother Nature for delivering a polar vortex that maroons them with six feet of solid muscle, those deep blue eyes, that sexy grin–but not me. I’ve known Gianni Lupo all my life, and he’s never brought me anything but bad luck and trouble.
So when the tension between us explodes with enough fiery heat to melt my icy defenses, I should have known what the disastrous end result would be–
A big fat plus sign.
After the snow melts, I’m left with more than just memories of the night we spent keeping each other warm. And he might be a rising star on the culinary scene, but he’s got no idea how to handle this bun in the oven.
He says he wants to do the right thing, but I’m not about to spend the rest of my life feeling like someone settled for me.
But just when I think I’ve got Gianni Lupo all figured out, he gives me a taste of the man he could be, of the family we could become, of the way he could love me if I let him.
I’m terrified of falling for him.
But one taste might be all it takes.
Read the audiobook review here
About the Author:
USA Today bestselling author Melanie Harlow likes her martinis dry, her heels high, and her history with the naughty bits left in. When she’s not writing or reading, she gets her kicks from TV series like Ted, Lasso, Schitt’s Creek, and Fleabag. She occasionally runs three miles, but only so she can have more gin and steak.
Melanie is the author of the BELLAMY CREEK series, the CLOVERLEIGH FARMS series, the ONE & ONLY series, AFTER WE FALL series, the HAPPY CRAZY LOVE series, and the FRENCHED series. She lifts her glass to romance readers and writers from her home near Detroit, MI, where she lives with her husband, two daughters, and pet rabbit.
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