on October 13th, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Joel Anderson doesn’t take anything seriously.
Not his relationships, which have been few and far between since his brutal divorce. Not the drama of working in a tattoo parlor, which seems to be around every corner. When things get him down, he smiles and cracks a joke. But he’s not the kind of man you cross, or you’ll find yourself at the wrong end of his fists.
Annika Belousov takes everything seriously.
Like her job as a reality television producer, given that she typically has something to prove. Or her love life, which is defined by a series of requirements — affluent, ambitious, accomplished, to name a few. Definitely her family, who worked their whole lives to afford her every opportunity, a sacrifice she doesn’t take lightly. When she’s tapped to produce a reality show at Joel’s shop, she doesn’t think twice, just goes in for the kill, as if there were any other way.
The second Annika walks into Joel’s shop, he makes it his mission to crack her open, but she’s not having it. He’s all wrong — too crass, too hairy, too un-serious. But it doesn’t take her long to find out there’s more to him than smirks and tattoos. And what she finds could put her career and his heart on the line.
Not that Joel cares. Because for the first time in a long time, he’s found his tonic.
I have to start off by saying how in LOVE I am with this cover. I don’t know what it is, perhaps the tattooed hottie has something to do with it, but I can’t stop looking at it… it’s beyond sexy and definitely fits Joel and Annika!
Annika and Joel are pretty much complete opposites. Joel is a cocky, confident, tenacious and hardworking tattoo shop owner. He runs the shop with his brother Shep and the staff that have become more like his family. Annika is by first impression, a cold-hearted, stand-offish, ice princess who lives for her job. They meet when Joel agrees to a reality show about Tonic, his shop and Annika is the uptight executive producer. Right from the start, he is infatuated and intrigued with her cold demeanor and wants a chance at breaking her down. The last thing she planned is falling for someone that is so far from her normal type.. he’s all beard and tattoos; but Joel is determined to break down her walls.
“You’ve ruined me for all other men, Joel Anderson.”
I loved Joel; he was the kind of male lead you can’t help but love. Yes, he was quick tempered at times, but he is loyal, devoted, and he when he loves, he loves hard! Oh and I was very excited for a slight cross-over from Staci Hart’s Bad Habits series- when Patrick (Tricky) and Rose were mentioned. He is a tattoo artist at Tonic and although he doesn’t have a huge part in the book, it was nice to hear an update on how him and Rose were doing.
I also really liked the whole idea of the reality show aspect to this book and Laney (Annika’s boss) kind of reminded me of Quinn from the TV show UnReal– which I love. However, I did find some of the show scenes to be really slow and I think I just needed more. A reality show should be filled with drama, well I think the “threat” of drama was always there, but it just didn’t follow through for me.
This was still a cute, quick read and because I enjoy Staci’s writing so much- I would recommend it to readers and I look forward to more from her.
“Because you’re mine, and I’m yours. I’ll give you my name, my heart, my soul. Anything you want, so long as you return the favor.”