*I received a free copy of Taking the Heat from Harlequin HQN via Netgalley. This has in no way influenced my voluntary review, which is honest and unbiased *
Warning: This book includes mature content such as: sexual content, and/or drug and/or alcohol use, and/or violence.
Published by Harlequin HQN on 28 July 2015
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Passion this hot can't be faked…
All revved up for bright lights and steamy nights, writer Veronica Chandler chased her dreams to New York City. When she hit a dead end, reality sent her back home to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Saving her pride and her new gig—writing a relationship advice column!—requires some faking. No one can know the truth about her big-city flop or her nonexistent sex life. But the town's irresistibly rugged librarian is determined to figure her out… and give her hands-on lessons in every wicked thing she wants to know.
Gabe MacKenzie's heart might be in Wyoming, but secretly his future's tied up in his family's Manhattan legacy. Getting down and dirty with Veronica is supposed to give him a few memorable nights—not complicate his plans. But the thing about heat this scorching is there's just no going back… and it might be too hot for either of them to take.
When I chatted with Victoria at RT15, she told me that her Taking the Heat story featured a 26 year-old virgin, and I slightly winced at that… however, she totally pulled it off! Veronica was an amazing heroine, and Gabe of the hot oral-sex made me fluttery, and all hot and bothered just by reading about him!
My Taking the Heat review:
Holy fuckballs (yeah, this is totally stolen from Victoria Dahl’s newsletter!!) Gabe and Veronica made my kindle fume, and Victoria’s words made me miss my husband so much!! Like, I would have totally jumped him (several times) during that read. Scorching hot, with amazing characters, Taking the Heat was the perfect ending to the Jackson: Girls Night Out series. And the fact that Veronica was a virgin didn’t bother me at all, because she wasn’t some timid unknowing flower anyway. She just hadn’t found the right guy to do the deed with before she met Gabe 🙂
I thought Veronica’s Dear Veronica gig in the newspaper was fun, but having her answer questions live every Thursday night at the local bar made things even more interesting. Apart form the fact that Veronica suffered from stage fright just made her more likable to me, as well. And of course, Gabe… the sexy, male librarian who had come to Jackson so he could climb in his free time was definitely worth getting to know! Taking the Heat had all the ingredients needed for a great story, the friendships between Veronica and the women from the prior books in the series were still important, and I loved that Gabe managed to bring Veronica out of her stiff shell that she had built around herself, and her heart, as protection.
The chemistry and tension between Gabe and Veronica was palpable, even if Gabe thought at first that Veronica wasn’t ‘his kind of woman’ – which shows that looks can deceive, and that first impressions aren’t always right. The slow build-up towards the deflowering of Veronica was so well done, and Gabe always put her wants and needs first – which was both cute and hot. And just reading about them going climbing together, which was the first time for Veronica made me feel the vertigo I feel when I’m somewhere up high myself. I don’t think I could ever do that, but the views sounded amazing!
Written in third person point of view, mostly from Veronica’s perspective but also from Gabe’s, Taking the Heat is a hot romance with great characters that are worth the detour to Jackson.
Some of my favorite Taking the Heat quotes:
Nope. She was going to be cool, ignore the way his wavy black hair flopped onto his forehead when he laughed at Lauren and pretend his trimmed beard didn’t make Veronica want to pet his face.
If she wrote in to her own column, the answer would be easy. If you feel like you’re faking your way through life, then stop faking it. Let people see the real you. Take a chance. If you don’t open yourself up to others, then they won’t be open to you.
He’d tried to figure out how he felt about it. He’d imagined what it would be like to sleep with her. Tat had felt a little wrong since he hardly knew her and she was… kind of innocent?
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: