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That's What I'm Talking About

I generally review romance, paranormal and urban fantasy. I tend to pick review books that I want to read, so generally my reviews will be positive. I always give my honest opinion: good, bad, and indifferent. 

 

Note: on my blog I use a letter grading system. I've listed the ratings below. For sites with stars, I have listed the equivalent rating. If I didn't finish the book, I will not rate it with stars.

 

A+  Personal Favorite (5 stars)
A    Loved It (4.5 or 5 stars)
A-   Enjoyed A Lot (4 or 4.5 stars)
B+  Liked It A Lot (4 stars)
B    Liked It -- Recommend (4 stars)
B-   Liked It -- But I had a few small issues (3 or 3.5 stars)
C+  Liked It -- But I had issues (3 or 3.5 stars)
C    Finished It -- Liked some, didn't like some (3 stars)
C-   Finished It -- Liked a little, didn't like a lot (2 or 2.5 stars)
D    Not A Big Fan (2 stars)
E    Don’t Waste Your Time (1 star)
----
TW: Reading this book was like watching a Train Wreck
DNF: Did Not Finish

 

updated July 9, 2015

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Progress: 27 %

Review: Over Exposed

Over Exposed - Stephanie Julian

My Rating:  B+ Liked It A Lot

Review originally posted at That's What I'm Talking About

Review copy provided by publisher

 

Greg Hicks, famous Hollywood producer, is back in the Philadelphia area to finish writing a screen play. He’s staying at his friend, Tyler Golden’s not-yet-opened retreat, where Sabrina “Bree” Rodriquez is also working for the Goldens.  Bree and Greg met briefly (in the previous book, No Reservations) when he photographed her as a favor to Tyler’s fiancee, Kate. With the heavy weight of an undeniable mutual attraction hanging over the pair, they must decide if giving into their lust is worth the potential head and heart aches that will certainly follow.

 

I am a huge fan of Ms. Julian’s Salon Games series. The first two titles are emotionally gripping, full of interesting characters and sizzling romance, and thankfully, Over Exposed is no exception. I was immediately drawn into Bree and Greg’s story. Ms. Julian creates an air of desire that is so powerful, I could feel it deep in my own being. The story, while full of sensual scenes, is driven by the character’s emotions, both positive and negative. Finding their way through the onslaught of desire, fear, and doubt kept me reading late into the night.

 

I genuinely like and care about the characters. It was easy to get wrapped up in the emotions of both Sabrina and Greg; they have undeniable chemistry that translates into an engrossing read. I was left hanging on every thought and encounter, hoping and waiting for the pair to find their way to a happily-ever-after. However, there is a lot of second guessing on the part of both characters. Overall, it didn’t bother me and fit into the story, but towards the end, I wanted more confidence, especially on the part of Sabrina. I felt like for most of the story she never really wanted to give Greg a chance because she was convinced he would leave her.

 

Side characters, such as Sabrina’s new friend, Sabastian, and Greg’s ex, Daisy, add some stress to the couple’s situation, but the conflicts did not come across contrived. I found that both characters added a lot to the tale without overwhelming the already tenuous relationship. In addition, Greg’s work schedule and career add an appropriate amount of non-sexual tension.

 

While I really enjoyed Over Exposed, there was a definite lack of visits to The Salon, making this the least erotic book of the series. I did find the pair’s romantic encounters extremely well written and swoon-worthy; however, this story does not live up to the eroticism of the first two books. 

 

Also, I was disappointed with how quickly the story ended. While I was happy with the direction of the conclusion, I was not satisfied with the execution. I felt the h/h were cheated out of a really good and necessary conversion, which I had anticipated throughout the story. Instead, things just sort of fell into place, and the characters each made decisions about their mutual future independently and without dialogue. Unfortunately, his left me feeling a little bit unsatisfied after finishing the book.

 

Despite the way the story ended, I still enjoyed Over Exposed quite a lot. I came to care about Greg and Sabrina and the direction of their relationship. I found that even after the book was over, I was still thinking about the pair and wondering how things are working out for the couple. I look forward to catching glimpses of Greg and Sabrina in future installments of the Salon Games.