From his dirty-blond hair and breathtaking smile, to the abs from heaven and the irresistible V in his waistline, everything about Bodi Olympic-gold-medalist Banks screams hot piece of @$$.
Yet there’s more.
Dark shadows lurk behind his soulful, serious eyes.
I’m enamored. He’s captured me.
How can running an art foundation with Bodi Banks turns into a slow-burning, epic romance, even though he tries to push me away at every chance? How can I stay away from a broken, routine-driven man whose soul cries to be forgiven for a crime only he believes he committed? Or is that a lie?
**STROKED LONG can be read as a stand alone.
There are books that you enjoy. There are books that leave you thinking you are enjoying a good book. And there are books that you just don't want to put down.
And there are books that you fall asleep reading because you can't stop, you just have to know what happens. There are books that leave your heart in your throat and leave you in tears. And there are books that make you elevate an author to your "must read" list.
Bodi and Ruby's story is one of the 2nd kind.
There was such a strength in the writing that you connected with them, that you didn't feel you were hearing a story, but were living it. Bodi is a little broken, he is the first person to tell you that. But through the strength of Meghan Quinn's writing, you don't see him as broken, but rather whole. You see a complete person. Maybe one who is not perfect, but one who is complete. You feel connected to him, you understand him. You want him to be happy.
Ruby is wonderful. So engaging and unexpected, Bodi and the reader are never quite sure what she will do and you get the impression that she is not sure either, which adds an appeal to her that draws you in to her as well.
The secondary characters are appealing, the glimpse of Reese and Paisley is fun for readers who have read the first book, but balanced enough as to not be distracting from this one if you haven't. The glimpse of Bellini was, probably, necessary...but I didn't like her any more in this one than I did in the last (which, trust me, is how it is supposed to be) but I did enjoy some of the scenes with her...because, well, you have at least laugh while you cringe at her.
There is such obvious love for the characters, as I mentioned before, that the strength of the story jumps from the pages, you can't help but be drawn in. The pacing is perfect, the secondary characaters add to the story in wonderful ways, the changes in the setting, and the progression of time work both inside and out of the story...there is a series of jumps in time in the same setting near the end that are also executed with such precision that you can't help but wonder what will happen in the next snippet.
This book was just good. I highly recommend it.
Oh, and the point about the Christ the Redeemer Statue in Rio? Spot On.
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2cdpvwA
Amazon CA: http://amzn.to/2bMRByM
My palms are sweaty; my anxiety is at an all-time high; and I’m so fucking nervous I’m two seconds from retreating. I’m sitting in the classroom next to the one Ruby teaches in, leaning against some cabinets while holding a bouquet of daisies—Eva’s idea. One of the girls who works at the club is pulling Ruby out of the classroom right now and what should be a two-minute task seems like an hour as I wait impatiently, running my apology over and over in my head.
Just as I’m about to give up and leave, the door to the classroom opens and Ruby enters, looking confused and asking, “What’s going on?” over her shoulder. When she turns toward me, her face falls and her cheeks redden. Shit. She doesn’t look happy. Is she embarrassed?
From behind, the girl who helped me shuts the door, giving us complete privacy.
“Hey,” I say lamely.
Looking around, Ruby asks, “Um, can I help you with something, Bodi?” She’s being professional. I have to hand it to her; she’s much stronger than I am.
Extending the flowers out to her like a robot, I say, “I got you flowers.”
A little finesse, Bodi. Christ.
She doesn’t move so I realize I have to make a better attempt at this apology. I can’t be Robot-Bodi; I need to use my feelings. I sound like Eva.
Stepping forward, I hand her the flowers, and she graciously takes them. What I think is going to warm her up, only confuses her even more. Her brow is furrowing.
Sticking my hands in my pockets, I shift in place and take a deep breath. “I was an ass this morning. I know you heard what I said to Eva, and I want you to know I didn’t mean any of it.”
“Bodi, you don’t need to explain,” Ruby cuts in. “We’re colleagues, I get it. Last night I overstepped your boundaries and asked too much. I apologize and promise it won’t happen again. From now on, we act strictly professional toward one another.”
Fuck that and fuck me. This is not the same Ruby I’ve grown to know. Like. Feel safe around. There isn’t a spark in her eye, a smirk to her pouty lips, or energy in her beautiful voice. She’s lacking her sparkle, and it’s slowly splintering me in half. Because I caused this.
“I don’t want that,” I say honestly. “You are more than someone I work with, Ruby.” I grab the back of my neck, feeling unsure of my footing, and then choose to speak to her honestly. “I’m not good with this kind of stuff, and I really have no experience, but you make me want to try. Maybe we can be friends.”
“Friends?” There is a slight twitch of her lips that makes me think my Ruby is coming back.
My Ruby? Shit.
“Yeah, friends. I, uh . . .” I clear my throat and look her in the eyes. “I like talking to you. And even though you try to get me to eat sweets, I like hanging out with you as well. You make my days fun.”
Now there is a full-on, mega-watt smile gracing her beautiful face. The flowers in her hand are now pressed against her chest in a hug, and she’s moving toward me.
“I would love to be friends with you, Bodi.” Opening her arms, she steps into my space and pulls me into a hug. Her face rests against my chest, and smelling the sweet scent of her shampoo instantly puts me at ease.
Wanting to reciprocate the affection, I wrap my arms around her and pull her small body closer into mine. That’s bullshit. I want to hold her because I like holding her. Not because I want to reciprocate. “I’m sorry for being an ass this morning, Ruby. Sometimes I react before stopping to think. And poorly at that. I enjoyed last night.”
“It’s okay, Bodi. I could see you were under duress.”
“You don’t have to forgive me that easily.” I chuckle. Eva was right. I’m pretty sure Ruby will let you off easy. She’s cool like that. Yeah, she is cool like that.
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STROKED by Meghan Quinn
Released: July 19, 2016
Cover Designer: Murphy Rae
Cover Designer: Murphy Rae
NA Romantic Comedy
Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/2a34Tow
Reese King: Olympic medalist, underwear model, Greek god.
His body is chiseled from rock, sculpted by the weight room, and refined by water.
On a daily basis his skin is completely bare for everyone to see, tan and defined, only covered up by a minuscule piece of spandex. There is no denying his sex appeal.
I hate to admit it, but I’m head over heels infatuated with him.
There is one HUGE problem though. His achingly gorgeous abs, inked up arm, and cocky swagger belong to my boss, the high-profile, reality star bitch from hell and certified heinous human being, Bellini Chambers.
What I think is going to be an easy job assisting a glorified wench turns into a cluster f*ck of epic proportions.
About the Author:
Born in New York and raised in Southern California, Meghan has grown into a sassy, peanut butter eating, blonde haired swearing, animal hoarding lady. She is known to bust out and dance if "It's Raining Men" starts beating through the air and heaven forbid you get a margarita in her, protect your legs because they may be humped.
Once she started commuting for an hour and twenty minutes every day to work for three years, she began to have conversations play in her head, real life, deep male voices and dainty lady coos kind of conversations. Perturbed and confused, she decided to either see a therapist about the hot and steamy voices running through her head or start writing them down. She decided to go with the cheaper option and started writing... enter her first novel, Caught Looking.
Now you can find the spicy, most definitely on the border of lunacy, kind of crazy lady residing in Colorado with the love of her life and her five, furry four legged children, hiking a trail or hiding behind shelves at grocery stores, wondering what kind of lube the nervous stranger will bring home to his wife. Oh and she loves a good boob squeeze!
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