From New York Times bestselling author, Shayla Black…
After being framed for a crime he didn’t commit, former private eye Nick Navarro has nothing but revenge on his mind—until a woman from his past returns to beg for his help.
Beautiful widow Sasha Porter has been hunted by his enemies. Desperate, she offers him anything to keep her young daughter safe, even agreeing to become his mistress. The last thing either of them want are emotional entanglements but as they entrap the ruthless politician who arranged Nick’s downfall and passion sizzles between them, danger closes in.
Will he choose love over vengeance before it’s too late?
Shock knocked the air from her lungs. “You’d want someone giving you whatever just because you commanded it?”
“The commands are for your psyche, sweetheart. That way, you can tell yourself that you didn’t have a choice, that of course you didn’t like bedding down with a rapist. But honestly, I’m not going to do a damn thing to you until your body is good and wet and ready.”
She digested his words in a panic and shook her head. “That may never happen.”
His jaw tightened. “If I can’t get you hot, I don’t have any business between your legs. If you can’t let go because you’re afraid I’ll hurt you, I’ll persuade your body otherwise. That’s a promise.”
How was she supposed to respond to that? “Um, I’m sure you’re perfectly capable of…arousing a woman. I meant that I may disappoint you if you’re expecting some vixen. I—I’m not very sexual.”
Nick stilled, then a smile quirked up the side of his mouth. “You will be.”
Those words filled her with part dread—and if she was honest—part anticipation. Always, she’d been the good girl. She’d been a virgin on her wedding night, done her best to be a lady, even in the bedroom. Somehow, she didn’t think Nick would appreciate her circumspect nature or accept her lying back and sorting through her mental to-do list during sex.
Then again, what choice did she have? Faking a few moans would be much easier than actually orgasming with a virtual—and very dangerous—stranger.
Sasha thought back to his touch on her breast, the way he’d rocked his hips against her. She’d felt something, far more than she expected. Maybe it would be enough to see her through.
“I—I’ll do my best not to disappoint you,” she murmured finally.
A laugh played across Nick’s wide mouth. “Don’t worry. I plan to be thoroughly satisfied.”
Only my second series book so far (both 1001 Dark Nightsnovellas–probably not a coincidence), and though three characters from a previous novel do play a role (https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/1…) the focus is really on Sasha and Nick here so you’re fine reading it as a standalone.
Dirty Wicked, being a novella, has a pretty short timeframe for the characters to both fall in love and resolve the dangerous issue that’s brought them together in the first place. For the most part it works–Nick and Sasha met before (once) and he’s had a thing for her ever since even though she was married to one of his best friends. She does go from “OMG, what have I gotten myself into with this guy, he’s an ex-con” to “I’m in love” pretty quickly, but overall there’s a decent balance here between resolving the suspense plot and building up the romance, so it’s not too far out there. Nick is a much more sympathetic character than he seems to be at first, and hey, my widow-storyline pet peeve/total copout isn’t used here (yay!), so that was a definite plus.
One of these days I’ll read a full-length novel from this series! 🙂
Rating: 3 1/2 stars / B
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
About the author:
Shayla Black is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than fifty novels. For over fifteen years, she’s written contemporary, erotic, paranormal, and historical romances via traditional, independent, foreign, and audio publishers. Her books have sold millions of copies and been published in a dozen languages.
Raised an only child, Shayla occupied herself with lots of daydreaming, much to the chagrin of her teachers. In college, she found her love for reading and realized that she could have a career publishing the stories spinning in her imagination. Though she graduated with a degree in Marketing/Advertising and embarked on a stint in corporate America to pay the bills, her heart has always been with her characters. She’s thrilled that she’s been living her dream as a full-time author for the past seven years.
Shayla currently lives in North Texas with her wonderfully supportive husband, her teenage daughter, and a very spoiled cat. In her “free” time, she enjoys reality TV, reading, and listening to an eclectic blend of music.
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