5 silken sheets
Opening a new Barbara Elsborg book is like unwrapping a special birthday present. A treat. Something to savour. I can’t tell you how excited I was to get my sticky hands on an advance review copy. I planned to wait until the weekend to read it, when I could be sure of several hours without interruption, but nah. I couldn’t wait. Instead, I had several train journeys glued to my Kindle, a couple of lunch breaks where I didn’t move from my desk, and one late night. Very late night * grin *
Jai Winter is trying to do the right thing, even though he knows it’s wrong. Forced to participate in kinky sex games, the renowned model spends his spare moments creating an impressive list of suicide options. Until a snowy day provides a bit of Summer…a pink-haired burst of sunshine with a ready smile. What begins as the hottest sex of his life turns into a ray of hope.
Summer Dey has baggage of her own—literally. Having spent eighteen months in South America trying to escape a shocking accident, Summer finds an illegal nightmare hidden in her suitcase. She doesn’t want to put Jai in danger, but his gorgeous face and killer bod prove hard to resist.
Boy meets girl, girl falls for boy, and everything would be perfect if it wasn’t for blackmail, drug dealers and tragic events in both their pasts. Staying together could be their salvation—or their ultimate undoing.
Barbara Elsborg gets into her characters with an ease that makes it seem effortless. By the end of the first page my heart was breaking for Jai, for the seemingly endless mess he was trapped in. He contemplates suicide constantly and his despair is tangible.
Summer’s problems seem easier at first. Coming home from a trip to South America, when she finds drugs in her luggage she knows she’s in trouble.
Her gaze was continually drawn to the unexpected present from a guy who didn’t do cuddly. Retrieving a pair of nail scissors from her toilet bag, Summer snipped away at a seam on the toy until she could tease out the stuffing. A groan escaped when she found the first package. Her fingers made contact with another and she threw the dog down into the empty case.
Leaving the drugs behind, in the airport bathroom, is the only thing she can do. Luck isn’t on her side though, and she misses a vital connecting flight, alongside a handsome stranger. Jai.
There was something about the way he looked at her that made her think she was maybe supposed to know who he was, but she didn’t recognize the name and she was sure she’d never seen the guy before in her life.
Unfortunately, heavy snow ensures that they’re trapped at Philadelphia airport overnight and during the long, cold hours, they get to know each other. Really well.
Are your nipples pierced?” The question slipped out before he could stop it.
No, you can’t come out and take a look, he yelled at his cock. There’s nothing to see at the moment. The stupid thing still tried, pressing against his zipper.
For Jai, not being recognised is a novelty. He learns that Summer, with her shock of Barbie-pink hair, is not only hot as hell, but she’s funny too, and smart. Summer is in an equal state of shock at the depth of the attraction she feels.
One quick, gentle brush of his lips over hers and Summer was swept away in an instant, as if she’d stepped into the surf and the sand had dropped from beneath her feet and she’d been dragged out to sea. It had actually happened to her on Reñaca Beach in Chile and a boat had to rescue her, but somehow this was more frightening.
* fans myself *
It’s not all sex. Their dialogue is perfect. Jai almost tells her his secret, but stops himself at the last minute.
She leaned to whisper in his ear. “You don’t like modeling, do you?”
The breath caught in his throat. “I fucking hate it.” The words slipped out before he could drag them back. He pressed his lips together. Too late.
“Stop doing it.” She gripped his hand.
“It’s not as simple as that. I have an…obligation. Contracts. Commitments. I’m…trapped.” It was as much as he dared say.
The point arrives soon enough, when they land at Heathrow and have to separate. After all, they both agreed it was just a temporary thing.
Not another word because the next, whether from her or him, would result in a flood of tears. Not another touch because that would have the same effect. Go, walk away, leave me now before I do something stupid.
“Bye,” he said and strode away.
She gulped back a sob and sank her teeth so hard into her cheeks, the coppery tang of blood seeped into her mouth. A moment later, she followed him through the green channel.
Nothing to declare apart from her stupidity.
My heart broke a little bit more at that point. And since I was only at 28%, I knew things were just getting started.
I could quote endlessly from this book. I can’t find anything in it that I don’t like, any character that annoys me. They all fit perfectly. From Jai’s horrible agents and awkward family, to Summer’s awful mother and sisters, they all build a heart wrenching tale that you can’t put down.
There is so much fun here too. The appearance of the irrepressible Charlie Storm (the hero from STRANGERS) had me clapping my hands in glee, and reminding me why I adore Ms Elsborg’s books so much.
The good-looking dark-haired man by her side offered his hand.
“I’m not allowed to kiss, not even air-kiss,” he said. “I have an insanely jealous wife.”
The pretty woman on his other side elbowed him hard.
“See?” the man said. “Insanely jealous with scalpel-sharp elbows. I’m bruised head to toe.”
Jai shook the guy’s hand. “We’ve met once before at a party. I’m Jai Winter. This is Summer.”
“Charlie and Kate Storm,” Jai told Summer as he dropped into the seat next to Summer.
“Is it? Are you? Really? Blimey,” Summer blurted. Oh my god. I’m sitting next to Charlie Storm.
She writes from the heart. Her characters are so fully fleshed out, you think you know them. I certainly wish I did know Jai!
Okay, there is one grumble. This is published by Ellora’s Cave, which means it costs more than you’re probably expecting, but trust me. You won’t regret it. I can guarantee if you love a book with strong main characters, excellent secondaries, a plot that rushes along and a love story that leaps off each page, you won’t be disappointed.
5 silken sheets
5 sexy lips
Publisher: Elloras Cave
Published: February 2014
Warnings: an addiction to Barbara Elsborg’s work