If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. - Oscar Wilde
We shouldn't teach great books; we should teach a love of reading. - B. F. Skinner
No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. - Mary Wortley Montagu

Monday, May 9, 2016

Review: Pushing Her Luck by Audra North / @TastyBookTours @AudraNorthAuthor

Title: Pushing Her Luck
Series: Lucky in Love, Book 1
Author: Audra North
Publisher: Self-Published
Release Date: May 9, 2016
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
ARC Received From & Reviewed For: Tasty Book Tours

He says she’s a nuisance. She thinks he’s a jerk. Together they might be the perfect match.

Riordan Faraday is about to reach his breaking point. He’s got art classes to teach, a needy mum to care for, and most importantly, a painting to finish. But without time or inspiration, he hasn’t been able to paint a thing and it’s driving him mad. So when a silly American girl shows up on his doorstep with a wild proposal, he shoots her down perhaps a bit more harshly than she deserves…but it’s for the best. He can’t afford any more distractions at the moment, especially not beautiful brown-eyed ones.

Samantha Meyer—Sam, to her friends—is on a mission to find her late grandmother’s necklace. The long-lost piece of jewelry is the only thing she has left of Gram and Sam is determined to see that dream fulfilled before she returns home to New Jersey and takes up the reins of the family business. But she wasn’t counting on a sexy, surly painter to stand in her way.

I enjoyed this story, a lot. Riordan and Sam go from enemies to friends to lovers--the journey from one to the other is filled with lots of banter and heat--but the lessons Riordan learned along the way are what made this story so enjoyable.

Unlike Riordan, Sam knows what love is, how to give it, how to accept it. Riordan doesn't really know what true and unconditional love is. He's kind of a loner. He's stretched thin between his job and home. And he's got artist's block. (Is that even a real term?) He wants inspiration for a painting he's trying to finish but, so far, nothing. And, to be honest, he was insanely grouchy.

Sam's timing couldn't have been worse. Digging up his garden, disrupting his life, invading his thoughts. Not that it was Sam's fault. Nope. See, she was everything he'd never experienced, everything he'd never believed existed. Seeing what selflessness and giving and love look like in action stunned him. And it called to him too. She offered so much without knowing a lot, gave a lot without demanding recompense.

Friendship and love don't require much except honesty, willingness, and trust. Riordan probably wouldn't have learned (or wanted to try) those things if Sam hadn't come along. She became more than the pesky American digging up his garden. She became his love, his inspiration, his life.

This was, surprisingly, achingly sweet. There were moments when the chemistry between Riordan and Sam just exploded from the pages but they didn't act on it for a long time. Now, in my world where attraction is usually acted on within the first one-third of a book, it was really nice to have characters wait...and wait...and wait until... Boom! They acted, reacted, and just erupted. It was awesome. And, yet, it didn't lessen the sweetness of their romance either.

If you're looking for something sweet and a little bit slow with lots of amusing interactions and dialogue, I hope you give Pushing Her Luck a go. It's a tad different than what I'm used to having in a contemporary romance, but different can be a good thing.

Audra North is the contemporary romance author of the Pushing the Boundaries series from Samhain and the Hard Driving series from St. Martin’s. Sign up for Audra North’s newsletter to get free books, extra scenes, and exclusive subscriber giveaways.

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