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Thursday, April 20, 2017

ARC Review: Grounds For Seduction by Shelli Stevens

This is my first book by this author and it's an ok read. This is not a book that you are going to remember for long after you read it and there isn't much about it to distinguish it from most other "little sister" romances but it's a solid 'ok.'

This book is about Madison (Maddie) and Gabriel (Gabe). Maddie is the little sister of Gabe's best friend Eric (and by little sister I mean the 25 year old adult sister of Eric). Gabe and Eric are tough cops who have been best friends since they were kids. Gabe is known as a no strings attached bed hopper. Maddie has always had a crush on him.  When Maddie finds herself fresh off a break up, she turns to Gabe for some of his notorious no strings attached fun. Maddie doesn't want a relationship, she just wants to feel good about herself. Of course, Gabe is all 'I can't, you're my friend's sister' blah blah blah. But the entire time he is "resisting" he is also wildly attracted to Maddie and wants her badly.

The author throws the two characters together after Maddie's Espresso cafe gets robbed by the "espresso bandit." Maddie is the only bandit victim to see the robber's face so Gabe and Eric figure she has to be protected or the bandit will come after her. This was kind of the beginning of a lot of things that I didn't love about this book. First, the espresso bandit is just a stupid name and I couldn't take the threat seriously. Second, from the time that Gabe barges in to save Maddie from the bandit he's popping erections left and right. Ok, we get it, he's attracted to her but dammit, have a little restraint. The woman was almost murdered. Third, Eric doesn't want to keep Maddie with him because he's worried about exposing his wife to danger. That made me feel like, damn, you'd just leave your sister? So Eric ask Gabe protect Maddie and Gabe agrees but he treats her kinda rude. Gabe is mad at himself for being attracted to Maddie and often takes it out by snapping at her. Maddie realizes Gabe's struggles so she is ok with being snapped at and continues throwing herself at him.

I mean, really, this isn't a bad book but I just wasn't rooting for these characters to be together. Maddie comes off way desperate and Gabe comes across as somewhat of an a-hole. This just isn't what I'm looking for in a romance.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

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