Friday, June 1, 2018

Book Tour for Part-Time Lover by Lauren Blakely (Review & GIVEAWAY)

A marriage of convenience leads to unexpected love in this tale of past hurts, fate, and the healing power of love that will keep readers fully immersed while taking us to exotic locales.  Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Part-Time Lover by Lauren Blakely, along with my impressions of it, then add it to your bookshelf.  In honor of this first installment in the Part-Time Lover series make sure to enter the giveaway below for the chance to win a Kate Spade Tote and a $50 Sephora GC too!

I’ll say this about Christian — he made one hell of a first impression. When I first saw the strapping man, he was doing handstands naked on a dock along the canal. His crown jewels were far more entertaining than anything else I’d seen on the boat tour, so I did what any curious woman would do — I took his photo. I might have looked at the shot a few dozen times. Little did I know I’d meet him again, a year later, at a secret garden bar in the heart of the city, where I’d learn that his mind and his mouth were even more captivating. But given the way my heart had been trampled, I wanted only a simple deal — No strings. No expectations.
Our arrangement worked well enough until the day I needed a lot more from him...
Let me just say, this whole part-time lover thing was her idea. I’d have gone all-in from the start, but hey, when a gorgeous, brilliant woman invites you into her bed, and only her bed…well, I said yes.
But then, one hysterical phone call from my brother later, begging me to find myself a wife so grandfather’s business stays in the family, and I need a promotion with Elise. Turns out a full-time husband suits her needs too, and a temporary marriage of convenience ought to do the trick, until we can simply untie the knot...
As long as no one finds out...
As long as no one gets hurt...
As long as no one falls in love...
But our ending was one I never saw coming.


A year ago
I stroll up the hilly yard toward my house, passing my brother, Erik, who stands close to the porch. “Did you scare them all away? Admit it—they cringed in terror, scary movie—style.”
I slash an arm through the air. “Whole boatload of them. Tears, shrieks of horror. Wailing.”
He cringes dramatically.
“Toss me a towel, will you? Or do you want to continue to admire your more fit and handsome younger brother?”
Erik scoffs and throws the towel over the porch railing, away from me.
I shrug. “I’ll just go inside, and you can check out my arse.”
“You can count on me never ever checking out your arse.”
I grab the handle on the sliding-glass door and head inside to one of my homes. You can’t beat a home on the water. But then, a flat in Paris is hard for me to say no to as well. Good thing I get to have both. I grab the pair of boxer briefs I left on the couch and tug them on as Erik follows me inside.
“Seriously. How did it go?”
“Exceptionally well. I landed a date tonight.”
“Bastard. You’re not supposed to get dates when you flash the tourists, and especially not when your beloved brother is only in town with you for a few days.” Most of the time Erik’s in London, where we were raised.
“Jealous much?” I ask, heading for the fridge and pouring a glass of cold water.
Erik flexes a bicep, then another, posing like he’s Mr. Olympia. “I’ve scored plenty of dates with this fabulous physique. Just none lately.”
“That would be because you’re married, you tosser.”
He flashes a dimpled grin. He’s so ridiculously in love with his wife, it’s nearly disgusting. He could be the poster child for man-who-falls-arse-over-elbow-for-a-woman. That’s something I can’t say for all the men in my family.
“I’m like Grandfather, happy as a clam.”
I furrow my brow. “How does anyone know clams are happy? Is there a study on clam happiness? We all assume they’re rays of sunshine, but how do we know?”
He scratches his chin. “Good question.”
“I bet they aren’t happy at all. I bet they feel nothing. Is that what happiness should feel like? Nothing?”
He sighs. “Aren’t you philosophical today?”
“Maybe. It happens every now and then.” I take a drink of the water. “But what can you do? Sometimes deep thoughts stray into my brain, and I can’t help it.”
“Best to get them out of your head if you have a date tonight.”
“Perhaps she likes thinkers,” I suggest.
“So who is she? Did you exchange numbers on the dock? Or did you, I don’t know, play charades with your appendages swinging in the breeze?”
“Yes. I can do Morse code with my dick.”
“Such a useful skill,” he deadpans.
“We did it the old-fashioned way. Picked a spot to meet and a time.”
He raises his chin. “And why her? Of all the ladies on all the tours you’ve ever flashed, you haven’t asked one out before. Not that you’ve told me about anyway.”
I let my brain rewind to the petite brunette with the big sunglasses who ogled me unabashedly from the side of the boat. She was pretty, that much I could tell even from fifty feet away.
But pretty alone isn’t enough. Pretty is a dime a dozen. I’ve dated women who aren’t pretty, but are witty, clever, and keep me on my toes. I like those traits just as much. Perhaps more. But I’m not opposed to pretty either.
“She was bold. She called out bravo. She said it louder than anyone ever has.”
“So she knows how to read your Morse code.”
“She’s welcome to read Morse code on me anytime. Come to think of it, she can even treat me like I’m fruit at the market.”
Erik laughs. “In some countries, they don’t let you touch fruit at the market.”
I gesture to my body, from my chest down to my legs. “In the fine country of Christian Land, it’s highly encouraged for the bold brunettes to touch the fruit.”




It’s a complicated road to HEA for two people bruised by love in the past as a marriage of convenience takes an unexpected turn when fate intervenes. Business and pleasure soon become entwined in a romance full of heart and soul that charmed me from the first page to the last.

Elise thought she’d found the love of her life after being swept off her feet in a sensual whirlwind that ultimately revealed itself to be based on lies.  Since the deception was revealed she’s been trying to pick up the pieces, but it’s been a time of loneliness and uncertainty.  She never wants to have her heart hurt the way it was and is resolutely keeping it closely guarded.  No longer does she place her faith in love, no longer is she the woman who had dreamy and romantic thoughts of HEA.  She’s quite content relying only on herself, but fate clearly has other thoughts by putting a sexy naked man in her path at every turn.  The moment she meets Christian is a moment that’s freeing.  He doesn’t push her but instead lets her be the woman she needs to be in a journey that’s empowering.  Where once she was lost, being with Christian helps her rediscover herself in a journey that had me cheering.  Despite her early heartbreak Elise was a strong-willed heroine who picked herself up and carried on.  She fought for her business and defined boundaries that she thought would make her happy.  She stood up for herself, but her self-preservation had her missing out on life when we first meet her.  Christian’s showy entry into her life though gave her a much-needed kick in the butt that ignited a sweet and sensual romance that kept me glued to the pages.

Christian has his own painful past when it comes to love after the end of his marriage due to their differences.  He’s now clearly just living in the moment, happy to let his married brother run their family business.  When Erik’s marriage falters though, Christian does the unexpected in forming a marriage of convenience with a woman who’s tempted him like no other.  His first glimpse of her was while he was flashing her tour group and from there fate brought them even closer.  Their relationship started out slow and steady, a connection of casual encounters that slowly deepened into a more emotional bond.  Their marriage was only supposed to last three months, but Christian knew early on that that was not near enough time to experience all her decadent delights. Getting to know her heart and soul left him wanting to know more and when their plans get upended he makes the grandest of gestures to show her the true power of love in an ending that warmed my heart.  Christian’s a delicious hero who often wears his heart on his sleeve.  He’s fun-loving, flirty, charming, and a master of dirty talk.  Despite the dissolution of his marriage he never truly gave up on the idea of love, he just needed to find the right woman.  Elise is just that woman as they are crackling together and I enjoyed the slow burn of their relationship.  By the end of the book Christian showed himself to be the quintessential book boyfriend and I’m still dreaming of him.

The start of this book was a bit slow as readers got brief glimpses of the main characters, got a bit of their pasts, and until fate set them on their journey to HEA.  Having met these characters briefly in one of Ms. Blakely’s previous books I was thrilled though to have their shocking first meeting expanded to show their playful sides here.  It was a chuckle-worthy encounter that endeared Christian to me from the beginning and was the kick start that Elise needed to start living again.  Theirs is a romance full of sweetness and sensuality that showed both of them to be kind hearted and loyal to those they call family and it made them a formidable pairing.  Surrounding this strong-willed main couple was a small cast of secondary characters, the highlight being Christian’s brother Erik who had his own heartbreak here and who I hope to see more of in the future.  The interactions between the brothers was playful, but also caring as they were protective of each other and I found them a drool-worthy duo.  With its exotic locales and sweet and sexy main couple there was a strong sense of romance throughout this story.  The sensual encounters between Elise and Christian were steamy too but it was a slow burn to get there in a narrative full of teasing and flirting that put a silly grin on my face.  With each word and each loving glance between them, Ms. Blakely wrapped me in a sensual blanket that kept me wholeheartedly immersed in their magical journey to HEA.  By the turn of the final page I sighed with satisfaction and am counting down the days until Ms. Blakely wields her magic wand again.

My rating for this is an A-/B+.

*I got this book from the author for review in exchange for my honest opinion.


A #1 New York Times Bestselling author, and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that's hot, sweet and sexy. She lives in California with her family and has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than 95 times, and she's sold more than 2.5 million books. In June she'll release PART-TIME LOVER, a sexy new standalone romance. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter HERE



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