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Tuesday, March 30, 2010:
Instant Temptation by Jill Shalvis (2010)
T.J. Wilder is the perfect package of breathtaking adventure and raw sex appeal. Even better, he's about to reconnect with the one woman he's never been able to forget...

Get Your Pulse Racing

To Harley, the landscape around Wishful, California, is exhilarating, untamed, and more than a little dangerous. The same could be said for T.J. Wilder, who's invited himself along on her trek to study a rare coyote. Harley's career is riding on this trip, and she doesn't need a stubborn, incredibly sexy distraction. But T.J. is a professional guide who knows when to stay back and when to provide invaluable expertise-just like he's done since they were in high school. And Harley, as usual, is torn between throttling him and giving in to the raw attraction that's been smoldering all these years.

T.J. knows how proud and capable Harley is, but he's damned sure not letting her put herself at risk when there are illegal hunters in the area. She needs him, with the same soul-stirring urgency that he's always craved her. And here, in this beautiful place days from civilization, he'll finally have a chance to prove it-over and over again...

Oh man, I am a total broken record here, but y'all know how much I adore the books of Jill Shalvis. They are funny and sexy and hot and just plain ole wonderful in a "sigh with happiness" kinda way. Nothing but two people falling in love and having naughty, explosive sex in the process (somebody sign me up!) Rugged, alpha heroes who make me weak in the knees and heroines I envy for the good fortune.

Harley has had a crush on T.J. for what seems like forever, but he's only ever looking for a good time, and Harley knows she can't and won't do casual, not even with the hottest guy she's ever known. Still, that doesn't prevent her from lusting after the maddeningly irresistible man, no matter how much she wishes otherwise. Harley intends to find a safe, stable man to settle down with, and T.J. is just getting in the way, messing up her plans. It's best if she avoids him altogether. Damn the man for ruining her plans...

T.J. is well aware that he and Harley have been tip-toeing around each other for years, but T.J. is getting a little tired of it, especially when he sees how open and affectionate she is with his family and friends. He doesn't understand why she doesn't like him, so when he has the opportunity to get her alone, he's determined to find out the truth, once and for all. It might not change anything, but at least then he'd finally know.

So when Harley goes on a short solo expedition into the wilderness to study a rare coyote, T.J. determinedly follows her, knowing that no matter how independent the sexy blonde is, she's not the type to prepare for every possible outcome, plus she's rather endearingly disorganized, which makes him rather nervous. And, what the hell, he figures maybe he'll get some answers out of her for once....

My thoughts:

Oh that T.J. is one sexy alpha. While it's rather difficult to choose which is the sexiest brother, T.J. might actually get my final vote. I'm a sucker for a guy hung up on the heroine, even if he doesn't fully realize it. It's like deep down he knows, but doesn't think he wants or can have anything permanent, so he shoves it down where he doesn't have to think about it, and believes that casual sex and fun times are all he's capable of. But after awhile even that gets old, and he's look for something different.

Harley cannot wait to get out of Wishful and finally start having a life. Taking care of her loving yet irresponsible family and paying her own bills has left Harley flat broke, and she needs to get this job in Colorado so she can finally break free and follow her dream. Not to mention get her away from T.J. She's been crushing on the eldest Wilder brother since they were in school, and never once has he looked at her as more than a friend. Besides if he ever did, it would be a one-time deal, no strings, and Harley wants the strings. I liked that she had definite ideas about that, and just because she wanted T.J. didn't mean she was willing to blindly follow him and end up heartbroken when he eventually left. It frustrated the hell out of him, but she stubbornly stood her ground.

So these two are circling each other. And kissing. And circling. And there's the bickering. And more circling. And finally naughty touching. Let's go back to circlng. At first it was rather hot. But when it relentlessly went on and on, I was getting reeeaalllly fed up. Delayed gratification has never been my strong suit, but this was getting rather ridiculous. Things would be heating up and inevitably something would happen to interrupt the sexxin' stuff. I teetered on a very thin "throw the book against the wall" ledge for a bit, and that is a very scary place to be, especially when it involves an author you love. Just when it looked like we'd reached a meltdown of epic proportions, the book got back on track and bone-jumping commenced. Crisis averted. Whew.

Most of my regulars here know I'm a pretty forgiving reader. It's just who I am. I have my definite hot buttons, over which I can get quite vocal, but for the most part, I can let things go if I feel the rest of the story can be saved. And that's exactly what happened here. T.J. learns some things about his past that he didn't realize, and Harley learns to take a leap of faith. And together the two made my mushy heart go awwwww.

And damn that Jill, she kept teasing me with glimpses of T.J.'s lean, muscular, sexy body. His shirt would ride up, or he'd bend over and show off that cute butt. Or his well-worn jeans would hint at treasures beneath. I was drooling from those scrumptious visuals and had to wonder if these are the kinds of men she sees in her neck of the woods. If so, I think I'm moving...

So we still have Jill's trademark humor and sexy teasing. We still get mouth-watering heroes who fall for the type of women we all could be friends with. And last but not least, we get a sigh-worthy love story that makes it worth the minor aggravation I was experiencing. As always, it's sad to say good-bye. I will miss those Wilder men and the women lucky enough to be loved - and bedded - by them.

Rating: **** out of *****

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  1. I have GOT to get this book. I normally only read paranormal romance, but you make this sound awesome. Thanks!

  2. None of my bookstores put it out early, so I'm picking it up this weekend. I love Jill's books and can't wait to read this one. Great review Stacy.

  3. Hmmm. I think you're persuading me (very well I might add :) to try one of Jill Shalvis' books....

  4. Really great review Stacy! I have loved the Wilder men and I'm absolutely looking forward to this one. I think you hit the nail on the head about the elements that make Jill Shavis' books so readable and her characters so memorable. The banter back and forth between the protagonists is always spot on as well as endearing. You get to know her characters by the way they talk to each other and not just through exposition. I'm a bit worried about the 'prolonged' back and forth and interruptions - that usually drives me up a wall - but I trust you when you say it's all worth it. So this one is on my list.

  5. I'm looking forward to this one. I'm a big fan of Jill Shalvis's books. I tried to pre-order it from Books on Board today but it's not showing up in the search function. I think the prices are all going up from the 1st because of the deal Apple did with the big 5 pubs so I might have to wait a little before I can pick it up. It depends on how much the price goes up I guess. I will get it one of these days though.

  6. Can't wait to read this one! And, I'm so glad you enjoyed it so much.

    It's sitting in my cart at B & N. Gotta go click that button, now! :-)

  7. Thank you so much for reminding me of this book! For some bizarre reason, I forgot to add it to my April shopping list. Egads! I'm delighted to hear it's a good one.

  8. You made my day. Now, I just want to know where I can buy this book, you widen my thinking about casual sex. I want read it immediately and be back here to share more thoughts.

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