I actually started this series backwards, and read the last book a while ago thanks to receiving a copy of it through netgalley! So I thought I should catch up on the series from the beginning.
In the first book of a delightful new series from Lauren Layne, the star columnist of Stiletto magazine will do anything for a story. Anything… except fall in love.
Julie Greene loves flings. Loves steamy first dates, sizzling first kisses, and every now and then, that first sexy romp between the sheets. Comfy pants, sleepy Sundays, movie nights on the couch? Shudder. But when Julie gets assigned the hardest story of her career—a first-person account of that magical shift between dating and “I do”—she’ll need a man brave enough to give a total commitment-phobe a chance at more.
Normally, Mitchell Forbes would be exactly that man. A devastatingly hot workaholic who tends to stay in relationships for far too long, he should be the perfect subject for Julie’s “research.” But what Julie doesn’t know is that Mitchell is looking to cut loose for once in his life. And the leggy journalist notorious for avoiding love is exactly the type of no-strings fling he’s looking for. In other words, Mitchell is the polar opposite of what Julie needs right now. And, at the same time, he’s exactly what she wants.
Find it on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18802930-after-the-kiss
Order it on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1KXKnkW
3.5 stars — Solid Lauren Layne book, filled with amazing steamy moments and some deeper stuff nearer to the end. I was undecided on the chemistry between Julie and Mitchell…they had such a bizarre relationship, and I really didn’t feel it at first…but then again, that might have been by design. But once I did feel it, it was amazing. And Julie was hard for me to figure out…I think I just couldn’t relate to her, and so this story didn’t resonate with me as much as others did. Plus, I’m not so good with hateful words, and there was a bit of that. Basically the first half of this book was a 3 star for me, and once things got going the last bit was a 4 star read… Loved it when we got to see a bit deeper into who Julie was, I just wish it had been more present earlier I guess. And LOVED it when Julie and Mitchell were on together, but was a little lost on them at the beginning. I think I’m just being repetitive now. *rolls eyes*
As a leading columnist for Stiletto, Grace Brighton has built a career warning women about rotten, cheating liars. She just never suspected her fiancé would be one of them. After Grace takes a heart-mending hiatus, her first assignment is to go on a couple of dates with a counterpart from the men’s magazine Oxford and report her impressions. Grace 1.0 may have been instantly smitten with the gorgeous correspondent, but Grace 2.0 has sworn off relationships for six months, and she’s not falling for his outstanding bod and trophy-winning kisses… or is she?
Jake Malone wants to get back to the fly-by-night, who-knows-what’s-next guy he used to be, and he knows exactly how to do it. Oxford is adding a travel section, and Jake—with no wife and no kids and a willingness to live anywhere, eat anything, do everything—is perfect for the job… except that his playboy reputation makes his new editor nervous. To get the gig, he must agree to a fluffy joint article with Stiletto.
But after just one date with snooty, sumptuous, sensational Grace Brighton, Jake starts taking this assignment a whole lot more seriously…
Find it on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18078029-love-the-one-you-re-with
Order it on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1KXKmh1
3.5 stars — Great chemistry with a pair of interesting characters. Actually enjoyed the 2.0 vs 1.0 Grace thoughts. Another book where I think it took me awhile to really get to know the characters… LOVED the bantering between them, but actually would have liked more of that. And I sincerely wish there had been more from Jake’s POV. This book was at least 2/3 Grace POV, and I felt like that made it really hard to know who Jake was, b/c couldn’t see what he was thinking. I suppose it would have been different if it was all Grace POV, but once I was given a taste, I kind of wanted more. It was strange going into this one after having read book 4, then Oxford book 1, then back to book 1, and then this one — b/c I had a very different idea of what I was expecting this book to look like (particularly the dynamic within the Oxford offices). But I did really enjoy the concept of the dating challenge, and how they dealt with their lives being more up for public consumption. So after all that? I enjoyed the book, I just wanted a bit more of some stuff.
In Lauren Layne’s sizzling Sex, Love & Stiletto series, New York’s hottest “sexpert” has been living a lie—and it’s up to one man to keep her honest…all night long.
Riley McKenna knows sex—good sex, bad sex, kinky sex…Her articles in Stiletto magazine are consistently the publication’s most scandalous—and the most read. But Riley has a secret…all that sexy talk? Not an ounce of it comes from personal experience. Her own bedroom escapades are more limited than even her best friends know. When her editor requests that all columnists write something more personal for Stiletto’s anniversary issue, Riley turns to the one man she’s always been able to count on and calls in the favor of a lifetime.
Sam Compton would do anything for Riley McKenna. Anything except be her experimental sex toy. He refuses her request. At least until she tells him that it’ll either be him or she’ll go to someone else. And that, Sam can’t accept. Reluctantly he agrees to her terms—one night of completely meaningless sex in the name of research. Riley thinks she’s prepared for what awaits her in Sam’s bed. After ten years of writing about sex, actually doing it shouldn’t be that different, right? So wrong. What starts as “one time only” becomes “just one more time.” And then one more. And before they know it, Riley and Sam learn first-hand that when it comes to love, there’s no such thing as just one night.
Find it on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18359904-just-one-night
Order it on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1MQYBpY
4.5 stars — Oh yeah, this one hit all the Lenore buttons. In love with the big brother’s best friend? And he’s secretly lusty over you?? YES PLEASE!!! Add to that Riley’s hilariously sarcastic nature, their epic bantering, and some seriously hot chemistry, and I was in love. Definitely my favourite of the four books. I always knew I was going to like Riley, her smart mouth in the other books always made me laugh. And she totally lived up to her own hype — she was everything I wanted in a heroine. Secretly inexperienced. Sassy and boisterous, but vulnerable too. And Sam….the only thing that would have made this book better would be more of Sam’s POV. He was so broken, and my heart broke with him. Seriously. And I loved how much he struggled with his desire for Riley. Even the climax and resolution worked perfectly for me — gave me some tears, and then some happy smiles. So yes, winner winner chicken dinner. 😉
As Lauren Layne’s salacious Sex, Love & Stiletto series returns, a jaded columnist discovers a steamy way to get over an old flame: falling for him all over again.
As Stiletto magazine’s authority on all things breakup-and-heartache, Emma Sinclair writes from personal experience. Five years ago, Emma was Charlotte, North Carolina’s darling debutante and a blushing bride-to-be. Now she’s the ice queen of the Manhattan dating scene. Emma left her sultry Southern drawl behind, but not even her closest friends know that with it she left her heart. Now Emma’s latest article forces her to face her demons—namely, the devilishly sexy guy who ditched her at the altar.
After giving up everything for a pro-soccer career, Alex Cassidy watches his dreams crumble as a knee injury sidelines him for good. Now he’s hanging up his cleats and giving journalism a shot. It’s just a coincidence that he happens to pick a job in the same field, and the same city, as his former fiancée . . . right? But when Emma moves in next door, it’s no accident. It’s research. And Alex can’t help wondering what might have been. Unlike the innocent girl he remembers, this Emma is chic, sophisticated, and assertive—and she wants absolutely nothing to do with him. The trouble is, Alex has never wanted her more.
Find it on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23256188-the-trouble-with-love
Order it on Amazon: http://amzn.to/1G9Uc9T
4.5 stars — I received a copy of this book through netgalley!
Everything I was looking for — characters with wit and humour, great chemistry, delicious steamy scenes, issues that don’t get in the way of my enjoyment of the book…. The stand out was definitely the humour of the characters….I LOVED the playful banter, and especially loved the side character relationships — the friendship of the girls, the guys, and the couples together. The writing is just effortless, and it makes reading it a treat. It’s so nice to just get lost in a world, and spend your time reading with a smile on.
Why round down instead of up? I wanted the steam SOONER! 😉 I guess I just wanted to see more of their sexual tension earlier on….especially since once we did get it, it was fantastic.