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New Release Review! BURNING UP by Jennifer Blackwood (Flirting with Fire #1)

Burning Up cover

Burning Up
by Jennifer Blackwood

USA Today bestselling author Jennifer Blackwood fans the flames of desire in her smoking-hot series about firefighters and the women who want them…

Unemployed schoolteacher Erin Jenkins is back in Portland, the town she hasn’t called home for more than a decade. It’s not the way she wants to spend her last days of summer: in between jobs and avoiding her mother’s snooping by escaping to the ice-cream aisle. But when the opportunity arises for her to accompany her brother’s best friend—her lifetime crush—to a wedding, summer gets a whole lot more interesting.

Firefighter and single dad Jake Bennett has built a nice, safe wall around his heart—no romance, no getting burned. That doesn’t mean he’s ruling out a fling. Considering Erin’s visit is temporary, they’re the perfect fit for a scorching no-strings one-night stand. Or two. Or five. Until the worst thing happens: Erin and Jake are feeling more. Damn that four-letter word.

Now their hearts are on the line, and when their smoldering summer comes to a close, it’s going to be harder than ever to put out the fire.

 

Review:

Burning Up is the start to a new series, and what a start it is!

I loved Jake and Erin’s story. She’s had a crush on him forever–he was her brother’s best friend growing up–but he shut her down years ago. As soon as she had the chance, Erin left town and has barely looked back since…until her mother’s health takes a turn for the worse. Newly out of a job, she plans to spend the summer finding a new one as far away from her hometown as she can and avoiding her mother’s meddling at all costs.

For years Jake’s life has revolved around two things–his daughter Bailey and his job as a firefighter. He doesn’t need the complications that dating would bring, but still jumps at the chance to take Erin as his plus one to a family wedding, if only to prevent a maternal set-up with her neighbor the cat lady. It’s not like a relationship with Erin could go anywhere–her brother Reece is his coworker now, and anyway, she’s leaving before the summer’s over. It’s just a friendly date, right?

Riiiight. 😉

I loved the two of them together, even if they took turns making me crazy. Jake’s hesitancy to get involved with his friend’s sister and to start something with someone who’s got one foot out of town already was understandable–mixed with his undeniable attraction to Erin, though, it made him go hot and cold constantly. Erin spent the summer wishing she were somewhere else (literally, at one point–I loved the scenes at the town wishing fountain!), except when she was with Jake…and with her friends, and her family, and…gah! couldn’t she just see how right her hometown was for her? (Not living with her mom, though. That’s never the right choice when you’re almost 30.) Watching Jake and Erin grow closer and let go of their fears was a lot of fun, and I’m anxious to get glimpses of where their relationship is going in future books.

Burning Up is only my second book my Ms. Blackwood but definitely not my last–I can’t wait to find out what’s going on with Sloan (Erin’s BFF) and Reece. Fingers crossed that book 2 is theirs!

Rating: 4 stars / A-

I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.

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