Friction by Sapphire Knight
At the powerhouse law firm of Knight & Payne, winning comes first and ethics a distant second. Leary Michaels uses her female charms to daze opponents, and it’s always worked well—until now. On her most personal case yet, she finds herself going up against a defense attorney just as skilled, shameless, and seductive as she is.
Reeve Holloway has never met a woman as sure of her own sexuality, or as ruthless in wielding it, as Leary is. But he won’t be toyed with. What Leary starts, he’ll finish—in the courtroom, the bedroom, or any-damn-place he wants. The sex is uninhibited, electrifying, and absolutely against the rules. Reeve’s job is to ruin Leary’s case…even if it destroys her in the process and costs him the woman he’s come to love.
Whoa–this book was H.O.T. Even more than I was expecting–and in the best way!
It’s actually 8th in the series, which I didn’t realize going in (so far, I’ve only read and loved Ms. Bennett’s Cold Fury hockey series). It worked just fine as a standalone, though, and now I’m totally inspired to read the rest of the series.
Leary Michaels and Reeve Holloway are opposing counsel in a medical malpractice case, one that Leary is personally invested in for several reasons. Leary starts their relationship off with a bang when she orchestrates an elevator encounter with her unsuspecting opponent–so much fun to read, but oh my goodness, she had my mouth hanging open in shock the whole time! Soon the two of them can barely keep their hands off each other and do many, many things in places they probably shouldn’t be doing them…wowza.
Besides some absolutely off-the-charts scenes, though, there’s a story here that you can really sink your teeth into. Leary’s case is very important to her, and the scenes that deal with the court case get to be pretty intense. The two of them do a decent job keeping their personal relationship and the courtroom controversy separate until the later part of the trial, when Reeve does something that Leary finds unforgivable. Reeve’s been torn for a long time over what to do, though, and ultimately decides he has to do his job even though he no longer believes in the side he’s on.
Can this relationship be saved? Should it be?
Of course! And Ms. Bennet does a marvelous job of bringing the two of them back together–it’s absolutely believable and realistic for them both. Dual narrators were used for the audio version–Sebastian York (narrator of the Tangled series) did a stellar job–I love his voice and the ‘tude he brings to his characters! Kendall Taylor was okay; most of the time she did a decent job, but there were parts when she just seemed off. It wasn’t enough to put me off the story, though, because then Reeve/Sebastian would come back on… 😉
Rating: 4 stars / A-
A new Sandra Brown romantic suspense–yessss!
by Sandra Brown
Published by: Grand Central
Publication date: August 18th 2015
Genres: Adult, Romance, Suspense
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Sandra Brown comes a gripping story of family ties and forbidden attraction.
A Texas Ranger, relegated to deskwork due to past recklessness, petitions to regain custody of his five-year-old daughter, and his case is assigned to a family court judge who is as attractive as she is ambitious. When a masked gunman barges in during the custody hearing with his sights on the judge, the Ranger reacts instinctually and goes after him. But authorities apprehend the wrong man, and the real gunman remains unknown, at large, and a threat. Will this take-charge lawman jeopardize his chances of custody by going after the would-be assassin? And will this unlikely pair be able to deny the forbidden attraction building between them?
Sandra Brown does a fantastic job of writing flawed characters that suck you right into their intense, suspense-driven world from the very first page, and Friction is no exception. Crawford Hunt has a tendency to act first, think later–a quality that can be good in law enforcement but also can lead to trouble, and for him it does both. He’s got a self-proclaimed “caveman mentality” and a tendency to go alone and believe he’s always right. But he also is fiercely loyal, fights for justice, and loves his little girl Georgia like no one’s business…
And is a cowboy hat- and boot-wearing Texas Ranger–“tall, blond, and badass” as one character puts it. So, yeah. He had me from the second he stood in the doorway of the pink-on-pink bedroom he’d had set up for his five-year-old daughter in anticipation of her finally moving in with him full-time.
I was a goner.
And so was Judge Holly Spencer, though not quite so quickly–it took her a few hours, at least. 😉
Even though the actions of the book take place over only five days–five days!–so much happens, the plot take so many surprising twists and turns that it feels like a much longer time span. Technically one could look at Crawford and Holly’s relationship and argue it has an element of insta-lust if not insta-love, but it really didn’t feel like it. I totally bought into their relationship 100%, regardless of the time involved. Given what they went through and the relatively slow build-up of their relationship (I know, five days! But somehow it still felt like a slow, steady build-up. I can’t explain it–Sandra Brown has some powerful writing mojo), it felt completely realistic.
Once again Ms. Brown has also done a stellar job with the suspense part of the plot. The main antagonist became clear somewhat early on, though his motivation remained a mystery until he himself revealed it. Suspense stories are all about the surprise twists and turns, and Friction has them in spades. I love going into a Sandra Brown book, knowing that I’m going to be in for one heck of a non-stop ride; Friction definitely did not disappoint.
Friction has earned its place on my keeper shelf for sure–I’ll be reading this one again. And again. And probably again…
Rating: 4 1/2 stars / A
I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
Sandra Brown is the author of more than sixty New York Times bestsellers, including DEADLINE(2013), LOW PRESSURE (2012), LETHAL (2011), TOUGH CUSTOMER (2010), SMASH CUT (2009), SMOKE SCREEN (2008), PLAY DIRTY (2007), RICOCHET (2006), CHILL FACTOR (2005), WHITE HOT (2004), & HELLO, DARKNESS (2003).
Brown began her writing career in 1981 and since then has published over seventy novels, bringing the number of copies of her books in print worldwide to upwards of eighty million. Her work has been translated into over thirty languages.
A lifelong Texan, Sandra Brown was born in Waco, grew up in Fort Worth and attended Texas Christian University, majoring in English. Before embarking on her writing career, she worked as a model at the Dallas Apparel Mart, and in television, including weathercasting for WFAA-TV in Dallas, and feature reporting on the nationally syndicated program “PM Magazine.”
In 2009 Brown detoured from her thrillers to write, Rainwater, a much acclaimed, powerfully moving story about honor and sacrifice during the Great Depression.
Brown recently was given an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Texas Christian University. She was named Thriller Master for 2008, the top award given by the International Thriller Writer’s Association. Other awards and commendations include the 2007 Texas Medal of Arts Award for Literature and the Romance Writers of America’s Lifetime Achievement Award.