Overall rating – 5 silken sheets
Seven days. And seven rules to break…
District Attorney Vanessa McGregor firmly believes that structure and order are the stuff that dreams are made of. Happiness can be planned – and it starts with seven rules she’s laid out for her future. But as she’s organizing her best friend’s wedding in Hawaii, all of Vanessa’s best-laid plans are about to meet their match in a wickedly hot MMA fighter…
Jackson “Jax” Maris is focused on surfing, training and fighting. That is, until he opens up his big mouth, and finds himself having to pretend he’s engaged to his little sister’s best friend, Vanessa. When they’re force to share a romantic bungalow, however, their little charade suddenly takes a turn for the seriously sexy. And while Jax is definitely not part of Vanessa’s long-term plan, he has seven days – and seven naughty nights – to turn her seven-rule plan upside down.
Vanessa MacGregor’s “Lucky 7” Rules to Live By
7. Never take your responsibilities lightly.
6. Never indulge in the poison of lies.
5. Never let a fling last more than three days.
4. Never date a man who chooses fists over words.
3. Never date a man who lacks a stable future.
2. Never relinquish control.
1. Never fall in love.
I loved Gina L. Maxwell’s debut in the Fighting For Love series (Seducing Cinderella) and I eagerly awaited this follow-up. It was worth the wait 🙂
Jackson “Jax” Maris, is not only a champion MMA fighter, gentleman and bedroom Dom, he’s also a Hawaiian surf dude. Ohhhh… be still my beating heart. He meets his match in Vanessa MacGregor and their story is a beauty.
Oh, he was definitely doable. Did Hawaiians have the saying “Save a surfboard, ride a surfer”? If not, she was totally starting it.
Lucie and Reid, from Seducing Cinderella, have called on their closest friends (and future Best Man and Matron of Honour) to help with finalising their wedding plans. Lucie has been struck down with a stomach virus and just needs them to stand in for a few days at the exclusive Hawaiian resort where they plan to marry. So far, so simple.
However, their initial meeting at the airport goes badly. Disastrously. Jackson is ridiculously late picking her up and it goes from bad to worse.
“There’s a distinct difference between chivalrous and pushy. You are being pushy.”
“Pushy?” He made a face like he’d never heard the word before. “I’m just trying to do what I came here for. I apologized for being late and now -”
“No, you didn’t,” she blurted out before she could stop herself. Remembering every word of a conversation could sometimes put a damper on social situations, but as a prosecutor in the DA’s office it was a valuable asset. And calling dickheads on their “chivalrous” behaviour? Priceless.
I loved, LOVED Jackson. His charm. His gentleness and protectiveness towards Vanessa. His strength and confidence – and his snarky inner voice, captured so well by Gina L. Maxwell. He behaves badly at first though:
She finally met his gaze and filled in the big, fat blanks. “You and I have to check in as Reid and Lucie, in order to secure their wedding.”
Vanessa would do anything for Lucie, if it saved her wedding. Even staying in a romantic bungalow with Jax, hard though it might be.
He’d been blindsided by her crazy Jekyll and Hyde allure. And then, she’d rebuffed and dismissed him like a puppy who’d dropped a ball at her feet when she wasn’t in the mood to play catch. He was beyond fascinated.
It doesn’t take long before Jackson turns up the charm:
Rubbing a hand over the back of his neck, he actually had the gall to grin at her from under his impossibly long lashes like a lying teenager who knew how to charm his way out of trouble. Un. Effing. Real.
Ordinarily, I wouldn’t like Vanessa. She appears hard and controlled, changing her mind on a whim, and flashing from hot to cold without warning. But… we quickly learn why she is the way she is, and why she has created her unbreakable Rules. Watching Jackson try to figure her out is delicious. Watching him try to break her rules one by one is enthralling, and watching as this strong-yet-vulnerable woman brings this alpha-male to his knees is sumptuous.
“Rules?” he asked with a wry raise of an eyebrow.
She levelled him with a confident stare and her chin lifted a hint more. “Yes. Rules.”
He loved that she didn’t back down when he tested her resolve. Some women would have given up at the first sign he wasn’t thrilled. But not Vanessa. She was totally at peace with her crazy, and for some reason it turned his crank that much harder. Sounded like he’d be doing a lot of things to humour his eccentric pretend-bride-to-be.
The wedding-planning scenes made me snigger, with Jax and Vanessa both on their best behavour for the outrageous Wedding Planner, Robert.
He pointed to the nametag pinned to his breast pocket. “I know it looks like my name is Robert, but it sounds like someone commanding a grizzly in a canoe. Row, bear!” He giggled at a joke he’d no doubt told to thousands of tourists. “Row-bear, get it? My mother’s French, but I was born here, which explains both the strange pronounciation and my lack of a French accent.”
Row-bear stole the scene every time he appeared * grin *.
He didn’t like the idea of choosing his sister’s wedding cake for her, but there wasn’t anything they could do about it. This whole mixed-up identity situation was sprouting legs and soon it’d be running out of control if they couldn’t figure a way to rein it in.
This was one of those rare books where I tried to make it last. It was tempting to gobble it up in one sitting, but I managed to ration myself to a few chapters at a time. Suffice to say, I’m very much looking forward to the next in the series 🙂
Overall rating – 5 silken sheets
Sexy rating – 5 lips
Plot – great
Characters – great
Warnings – only a burning desire to go and ogle yummy surf-dudes in Hawaii 🙂
DETAILS: Genre: Contemporary romance Published: March 2013; $3.79 (Amazon)
Publisher: Entangled Publishing (Brazen imprint)
Author website: Gina L. Maxwell