As a fan of rockstar romances I was drawn to this book the moment I read the synopsis with its tale of a sexy rocker falling for a single mom while doing all he can to win her over. Keep reading to get a tempting taste of Charmer by Kayley Loring, along with my impressions of it, then add this sweet and sensual romance to your bookshelf too!
She serves me coffee late at night when I come around to write lyrics, but it’s not the caffeine I’ve gotten addicted to.
We’ve got the spark, but she’s the only woman in town who seems to be immune to my charms.
When it’s time for me to leave for my cross-country tour, I just can’t imagine not seeing her for months.
So I offer her a job on the road with me.
Everyone in LA knows that Nico Todd has a way with songs and with the ladies.
What he doesn’t know is that I would love to let him have his way with me.
But my life can only revolve around one infuriatingly cute guy — the six-year-old that I live with.
Imagine my surprise when Nico finds out about my little boy and tells me to bring him and my mom on the road too.
And imagine Nico’s surprise when he realizes my son is the biggest charmer of them all.
MY IMPRESSIONS OF THIS BOOK:
I may have studied to be on the wrong side of the camera, because I am the Meryl Streep of acting like I don’t want to lock myself in a closet with Nico Todd and lick him all over.
I can feel his beautiful brown eyes on me as I walk away, but I’m not going to look back at him. If I look back at him, he’ll think I’m flirting. And I’m not flirting. I’m just a really awesome waitress who obsesses about the well-being and voice and eyelashes and butt and hands and full lips of all my customers. I check in with my other table to see if these non-Nico people want anything else, and quickly glance over my shoulder at him.
He’s scribbling in his notebook. Not looking at me. Good. Why should he?
But praise the Disney gods, he grew up good. I wasn’t a huge fan of that wizard show—always more of a movie nerd—but I watched the first season if I was at home when it was on. I was thirteen and my friends had pictures of Shane Miller and Nico Todd up in their lockers. I may have had Annie Leibovitz portraits and stills from Ken Burns documentaries taped to mine, but I had eyes and hormones. Still do!
I didn’t recognize him immediately the first time I saw him walk into the coffee shop, but my stomach flipped in a way that it hadn’t in years. We get all kinds of celebrities in here pretty much every night, because Beachwood is that kind of neighborhood. It’s a casual hipster restaurant, so most people roll in here wearing T-shirts and jeans, unless they’re talent agency doucheholes. But some people look better in T-shirts and jeans than others. Some people have that glow about them, even in a dimly lit retro coffee shop. And all the other waitresses who were on that shift were talking about Nico in the back of the house. It seemed like every one of them knew someone or had heard about someone who’d been out with him—once or twice. I’ve been somewhat out of the loop for about six years, so that was the first I’d heard of him becoming a musician, and that was when I knew for certain that he’d be off-limits for me.
But I mean, it’s my job to take good care of him while he’s here. And to occasionally wonder what the fuck he’s up to when he isn’t here. And to think about him every time I take a shower.
Because once I had listened to him on Spotify, I became a fan.
I fell in love with the songs and tried to stay detached from the singer.
Which is impossible, because he’s so good. His voice is sexy, sure, but he has this way of singing with his whole heart and soul even though he isn’t usually belting things out. And he’s got magic fingers because the way he plays guitar—I swear it feels like he’s strumming my clitoris. His songs are cool but warm at the same time, like an ice cream sundae. They’re all about women, of course, and it’s so easy to close your eyes and picture him singing to you. Even the songs that are about things not working out with a girl are somehow poignant and swoony.
But by the tenth time I’d listened to every song on all of his albums, I realized something: even though he writes and sings love songs—he never once says the words “I love you.”
Which is why he’d be nothing but trouble.
But I can still appreciate his talent when I’m alone, in the privacy of my bedroom.
I can still have a crush on him.
Everyone needs a little crush to get through the day.
FIND AT GOODREADS here.
MY IMPRESSIONS OF THIS BOOK:
As a fan of rockstar romances there’s much to recommend this book! From its decadently delightful slow burn romance between the main couple, to its witty banter, to a wonderful cast of secondary characters, readers will be quickly captivated. When it comes to heroes too, Nico Todd’s immensely drool-worthy and has come a long way from his first appearance in Ms. Loring’s Sleeper, a book where he lived up to all the typical rockstar stereotypes. Here though he’s a changed man who’s ready to find his HEA. That HEA comes in the form of a single mom who leads him on a merry chase in a tale that will warm the heart and put a smile on your face.
Nico’s at the top of his game, beloved by fans and wanted by all women....all women except waitress Kat though. He’s enjoyed being the player for years but seeing his sister and best friend happy has him longing for that same kind of support and it’s what draws him to Kat every night though she’s not falling at his feet easily. He’s not one to give up however and it’s a slow walk to earn her heart as he helps her make her dreams come true while treating her family like his own. Taking her and her family on tour with him gives him just the opportunity he needs to prove himself to her too. While Kat thought Nico wasn’t the fatherly type, he proved that oh so wrong through his endearing interactions with her son Tate. Tate brought out a softer side to Nico and it showed just how committed he could be to someone, how caring too. He showed just how perfect he could be for her if she just got rid of her preconceived notions about sexy men. With each turn of the page I fell a little more in love with Nico. His big heart shown through at every turn, his self-deprecating manner too, and I enjoyed watching the slow and steady relationship brewing between him and Kat.
Kat’s the ideal heroine, the kind I wish every story showcased. She’s a strong-willed young woman who sacrifices everything for her son Tate, born after a one night stand that left her all on her own to raise him. Being left on her own has tainted her perceptions of men though and it’s part of what has her pushing Nico away so hard at first. His sexiness tempts her mightily though as his charm slowly starts winning her over. He also wins her over by giving her the chance of a lifetime...to make a documentary and photograph life while living it for a change. For far too long she’s put her needs aside to raise her son but she’s now given the chance to do something for herself and it had me cheering her on every step of the way. With each turn of the page Kat and Nico’s romance evolved into a connection full of smiles and sizzling encounters as this group became an unexpected family while traveling down the highway of life.
On a whole this was a romance full of heart and soul, a romance between two immensely likable people who make each other complete. They supported each other as she sees past his rockstar exterior while he gives her the chance to feed her soul through her photography. Just like music fuels his soul, so too does photography for her. Their connection was both heartwarming and scorching, giving a perfect balance that was virtually angst-free in a story that gave me tons of warm fuzzies. Along with this near-perfect main couple were the secondary characters of Kat’s son Tate and Louise, Kat’s mom. Tate’s wonderfully realistic, a mini adult at times while having a tantrum occasionally too, and the reactions of Kat and Nico to these moments were equally relatable. Children normally annoy me when I discover them while reading, but Tate utterly charmed me. I loved the side of Nico that was brought out in their interactions, a side that had him being both a friend and a father figure. These scenes made me smile and endeared Nico to me even more fully. Louise was just as strong-willed as her daughter, a sassy and protective mom and grandma and Nico had to work equally hard to win her over as she was a strong defender of her daughter. Their time on the road saw all of them becoming an unconventional family and I enjoyed the journey immensely as the story wound its way to its cheer-worthy conclusion. With times so stressful right now this is just the book you need as it’s a carefree romance with delightful banter and characters that I’m still thinking of. Though this book stands strongly on its own I’d still recommend reading Sleeper first to get greater insight into Nico’s personality while discovering more wonderfully crafted characters from Ms. Loring!
My rating for this is an A.
*I got this book from the author for review in exchange for my honest opinion.
Before writing steamy romantic comedy novels, Kayley Loring got a BFA in creative writing from a Canadian university and had a fifteen-year career as a screenwriter in Los Angeles (under a different name). She mostly wrote PG-13 family comedies that studios would pay her lots of money for and then never make into movies. In 2017 she decided to move to the Pacific Northwest and write about all the fun stuff that she wasn't allowed to write about in those PG-13 scripts. Now she’s breathing cleaner air and writing dirtier words. It’s an adjustment she’s happily getting used to.