Genre: Adult/Erotic Romance
Publication Date: November 11th 2013
Series: Cannon Cousins #2
Source: provided by author for review
[While His to Lose stands alone, readers will benefit from reading Hers to Choose first. The following synopsis includes spoiler information about Hers to Choose.]
Dan Cannon hasn't really recovered from his experience with Bryn McClure. Except now she's Bryn Cannon, wife of his cousin Alex. At first, the three participated in an earth-shaking threesome. He still wakes from dreams of touching Bryn, being next to Alex, all of them naked, sweating, panting.
Now nothing but him in his silent condo staring out over the skyline of St. Louis. Work at Cannon Company. Daily contact with men who fucked his former wife, the lovely Cathleen. Bitch.
If he could just focus on work. But there is no peace, not even in the multiple building projects under construction or the daily furor of calculating, supervising, promotion that streams across his desk. That would be Dan Cannon, CEO.
Barely hanging on.
Now he confronts the worst experience of his life when he discovers money, and lots of it, is missing from company accounts. He blames himself for being distracted so much that Cannon Company has suffered. When he hires CPA Riley Montgomery to track down the money, the last thing he expects is to find himself completely distracted by the woman.
Riley can’t afford to venture off into unethical dalliance with a client, even if the client is the devastatingly handsome Dan Cannon. She tries to stay focused on the pact she’s made with her old friend and current lover Lucy Duncan after failed marriages caused both women to swear off men. But Lucy decides Dan is too good to pass up, especially after he makes good on his threat to spank her. Is there anything left for Riley?
For anyone who read my review of Hers To Choose, book one in the Cannon Cousins series, you know I held serious disdain for Dan Cannon. In that book he was bossy, pushy, domineering and unpleasant. Most of his personality in that book could be blamed on his lingering anger over the infidelity of his ex wife Cathleen. There was not a single thing about Dan that I liked in the first book so I had zero plans to read this one. When the author asked me to give it a shot I couldn't help myself. The first one gave me quite a laugh with it's oddly worded sex scenes so I couldn't pass on more from this one.
His To Lose had a little bit more of a serious feel to it. Where in the first one Dan was working out his aggression towards his ex wife with BDSM role playing, in this one he's dealing with the emotional aftermath. It's been months since his encounter with Bryn opened up and released his anger and while he still holds residual feelings for her he knows his cousin Alex is happy with her. He buries himself in his work to keep busy when he discovers funds are missing from his company so he hires Riley Montgomery, a certified CPA to dig through and find the problem.
Riley adds a bit of drama to the story when both she and Dan become attracted to each other. Although Riley finds herself strongly drawn to Dan she's sworn off men after a bad divorce. So where does the problem come in you ask? Well after swearing off men she made a year long pact with her best friend Lucy. A pact that sees the two women embracing their inner "Muff Diver" as they only have sex with each other. They do have rules for the pact that if either of them chooses to sleep with a man they must discuss it with each other first. I have to say that for me, the roles reversed in this one. Where I found myself hating Dan in the first one, I liked him in this book. He was struck stupid by Riley and I liked the softer side he showed. The character I ended up hating was Lucy. After noticing Riley was carrying a torch for Dan, Lucy initiates a BDSM session with Dan that really pissed me off. It honestly felt like betrayal to me even though Riley and Dan weren't together. Lucy knew how her friend felt yet she slept with Dan anyway. I felt this way because I wanted Riley to be with him first and I know that's juvenile but kiss my ass! I get protective of the couples I want together, especially when someone else poses a threat, which is exactly how I saw Lucy.
I never understood the dynamic between the two women but I did understand Riley's motivation. Wanting to keep firm control over her life, Love and relationships would only add a variable she couldn't manage. I really felt bad for both Riley and Dan. They were both dealing with feelings neither were familiar with. I was impressed with Dan in this one because he really opened himself up and showed a more deeply personal side to himself that changed my entire opinion about him. Watching him fall for Riley was a huge treat for me. Riley's struggle to accept her feelings for Dan was aggravating at times. It became a game of "Oh he doesn't want me like I want him." or "She's too good for me." I wanted to slap them both countless times. Then you have Lucy in the middle stirring the pot and my blood began to boil. There were times when I thought she was deliberately trying to get between Riley and Dan but eventually I saw the reasons behind her method. I still wasn't fond of her by the end but I no longer hated her. That's one thing this author seems to excel at. Playing up the angst of a supposed triangle. You never question whether or not the couple will work out, otherwise what the hell would be the purpose of the book? Right? No, What she does is throw in people and situations that pose a small threat the two people have to overcome.
What the author doesn't excel at though, is wording her sex scenes. If you follow my reviews and/or twitter account (@Luvmyhootie) you know I have been referring to this book as "The Book Of Crotch: Part Duex". Once again I found myself counting the uses of the word crotch throughout the story. The way she words her sex scenes at times grossed me out, made me scratch my head or just made me crack up laughing. Not really something you want when you are getting to a particularly erotic scene huh?
The first book gave me the best laugh I have seriously ever experienced but with this one I was a little bit more invested in the actual story. There are some absolutely ridiculously written scenes and my friends keep asking me how can I read something so goofy? In all honesty, the story! The characters and trials were compelling enough to keep me hooked enough to overlook the circus sideshow sex. Plus I wanted to see how Dan's story played out. Every asshole deserves a happy ending. Well...almost everyone. There are still a few I would like to see pushed into a wood chipper.
Even though the sex was laughable at best I still found myself oddly turned on. I can't explain why or even how but it happened. Possibly because it involved two pseudo lesbians and a hot guy with a dominating side. Then in that case it's no wonder I sprung a leak occasionally. Despite the fact that Lucy got on my nerves and made me want to put her in a sleeper hold, this book really worked for me. I ended up liking it way better than the first. That surprises me because Alex and Bryn's story was so sweet and well played out. I was happy to see the way everything worked out for each character. Yes! Even Lucy gets herself a happy ending too. The bitch. I think it wrapped up much like it began, with a lot of passion and a little bit of naughty. You wouldn't think I would recommend either book based on my dislikes but I absolutely believe these books have an amazing backbone that proves to be a strong foundation. The romance and love are wonderful if you can slog through the crazy sex. SO, put on your polka-dot galoshes and get to reading!
About The Author:
I love to write! Which is a good thing, because no matter what I'm doing, my brain edits sentences, selects or discards words, equivocates over paragraph formation. My file cabinet is stuffed with folders full of ideas, scenes, and half-finished work. My favorite part of writing is description. I want my readers to see, smell, hear, and feel what is going on in the story as if they are there. I can't think of many things as wonderful as those hours when words are pouring through my head and spilling out onto the page, creating a physical world full of passionate people! Other pursuits have taken up parts of my life--a technical profession for a career, children, questionable progress in learning to watercolor. I enjoy cooking, gardening, and time at the Pacific coast. Sunrise and sunset create special moods for me, the twilight between two worlds--fully of creative energy. I love snuggling up with a good book most of all.