Sunday, April 12, 2015

ARC BOOK REVIEW: "Blush" by Cherry Adair

by Cherry Adair

Sex with a stranger. Learn to drive. Learn to cook. Learn to pole dance. Sex under the stars. Buy a truck. These are just a few of the things on Amelia Wentworth’s bucket list, but as the CEO and face of a multi-billion-dollar cosmetic empire, she’s never quite found the time to do them.

Until, after a series of accidents, Amelia discovers that someone wants her dead. But who? And why? She has no time for questions as she changes her name to Mia, buys a secluded fixer-upper near the Louisiana bayou where no one will recognize her, and starts checking things off her bucket list like there’s no tomorrow—which there might not be.

Meanwhile, Cruz Barcelona is a hit man who’s promised himself this will be his last job. Then he’ll take the money and move to a warm, sunny place where he doesn’t have to hide anymore. But when Cruz goes undercover to Mia’s ramshackle house, he starts to realize there’s far more to this poor-little-rich-girl than he thought—and he starts to fall for her. Which is going to make his job a whole lot harder…

What an unexpected surprise!  I’ve liked Cherry Adair’s books in the past, but this one surpassed my expectations. I really enjoyed these characters. They made me laugh and they made me pant. I especially like Cruz Barcelona.  He’s a premier assassin hired to kill heiress and CEO Amelia Wentworth. After an almost comical, yet off-the-charts steamy first encounter, he decides to investigate her further before completing his assignment. He is dark, dangerous, possessive, protective with a sense of humor.  And major bonus: he’s a first rate HANDYMAN! Something about a man and his tools….  (In my head I’m visualizing the Diet Coke commercial with the hunky construction guy taking a Diet Coke break.)

The sexual tension between the two characters is not only taut, but also rich. The pheromones virtually ooze off the pages. From the circumstances surrounding their first encounter to the last, this story is exciting and feels almost experiential. 

The story is erotica with a strong, suspenseful storyline. Who is behind the assassination attempts on Amelia? What will Cruz ultimately do with Amelia? Will he kill her? Will he let her live?  Will he let her go? I also appreciated the side storyline involving a domestic violence victim and her son.  It added a great dimension to the larger storyline. 

My one small critique is that the mystery seems to resolve itself too quickly and off the pages. Neither Amelia or Cruz had much to do with the actual investigation and the resolution felt just a little anti-climatic. 

Having said that, I loved the ending.  Just right with a cherry on top. 

I could read this book again and probably will.  Yes!  I highly recommend this book for fun and sexual frolicking. 

Always an adventurer in life as well as writing, New York Times best-selling author Cherry Adair moved halfway across the globe from Cape Town, South Africa to the United States in her early years to become a interior designer. Now a resident of the Pacific Northwest she shares the award- winning adventures of her fictional T-FLAC counter terrorism operatives with her readers.

Cherry settled in beautiful San Francisco, where she started what eventually became a thriving interior design business. "I loved being a designer because it was varied and creative, and I enjoyed working with the public." A voracious reader when she was able to carve out the time, Cherry found her brain crowded with characters and stories of her own. "Eventually," she says, "the stories demanded to be told."

When asked why she chooses to write romantic action adventure, she says, "Who says you can’t have adventure and a great love life? Of course if you’re talking about an adventurous love life, that’s another thing altogether. I write romantic suspense coupled heart-pounding adventure because I like to entertain, and nothing keeps readers happier than a rollercoaster read, followed by a happy ending."

Popular on the workshop circuit, Cherry gives lively classes on writing and the writing life. Pulling no punches when asked how to become a published writer, Cherry insists, "Sit your butt in the chair and write. There's no magic to it. Writing is hard work. It isn't for sissies or whiners."

Cherry loves to spend time at home. A corner desk keeps her focused on writing, but the windows behind her, with a panoramic view of the front gardens, are always calling her to come outside and play. Her office has nine-foot ceilings, a fireplace, a television and built-in bookcases that will house approximately 3,500 paperback books.

"What can I say? My keeper shelf has been breeding in the middle of the night, rather like drycleaners' wire clothes hangers.”

Thank you to the author, publisher, and Netgalley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

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