I've gotten behind on my book reviews, and I feel like I've done everyone a big disservice by waiting so long to write this review. Especially with all this cold, snowy, icy weather most of us have been having. Because this book, Flirting with Disaster by Victoria Dahl, is almost guaranteed to keep you warm. Perfect for those cold days when you can't leave the house, and want to spend the day curled up with a good book. You need this book.
I liked this book so very much. Actually, I loved this book. It's early in the year, so if I say one of the best books I've read all year, the compliment doesn't have the kind of weight it deserves so let me add that I feel certain when the year nears its end, I'll still be able to say it's one of the best books I've read this year. Easily going on my list of favorite romance novels. This book is so good.
The book immediately caught my interest in its description of the heroine. Thirty something artist, Isabelle, living in a cabin on her own, with a decent distance between her and the next person. She's happy with her life, content to be on her own. And I thought yes, this is someone to which I can relate. Someone who isn't pining away for a husband and babies. Someone who is happy with her work and her solitude. And she's an artist. As an artist, I was impressed by how well Dahl captured the life and mind of an artist. Sometimes I read books in which a character in an artist and I find myself thinking, painters don't really think like that, weirdo. But this character resonated with me.
There are some great characters in this story, besides the main couple. My favorite secondary character was probably Isabelle's neighbor who was always cooking for everyone. I usually don't like small town contemporary romances, but I love this Jackson: Girls Night Out series and the people in these books. I have read the other books in the series, Looking for Trouble and a novella, Fanning the Flames, and enjoyed them, but it isn't necessary to read them before this one. This stands alone just fine.
Everything is going well in Isabelle's life, when Tom, a U.S. Marshall shows up at her door, claiming he's there to protect a judge whose life is in danger. But Isabelle panics, certain he's figured out her secret. She isn't who she claims to be. She's in hiding because of crimes her father committed and she's afraid she's been caught. Eventually she realizes Tom was telling the truth - the story about the judge is all over the news, but her behavior has now made him suspicious, and he's attracted to her and wants to know more about her - as you can guess, he does figure out her secret. So there's a bit of crime drama/mystery to this story, along with a very steamy romance.
So steamy. This book has some of the best sex scenes I've ever read. Ever. I'm trying to think of some educated, mature way to write about this and all I can come up with is, "This book is so hot!" Because it is. I mean, the story is great, the characters are interesting, and yes, the sex is so very hot.
I loved that the characters are intelligent and independent and they know what they want. This is romance for grown-ups. These are real people, living real lives, working on creating a real relationship.
I'd recommend this book to anyone. Grab it before all the snow melts, and pretend like you've got your own little cabin in the snowy woods and enjoy!
I received a review copy via NetGalley.