Release Day Launch/Blog Tour: Love So Hot: Marquita Valentine

Love So Hot(Lawsons #1)
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Expected January 12, 2015

Bank Teller and all around good girl, Sydney McKnight, is tired of being the girl all the guys want to have as a friend. Who better to help unleash her inner vixen than her best friend and secret crush, Brody Lawson? Only, Sydney has no idea how to ask him, without their friendship going up in flames, until that is, the town of Jessamine's annual Firemen's Auction gives her the perfect excuse to set her plan into motion.

Fire Captain Brody Lawson has been in love with his best friend, Sydney, for years, but he would never risk their friendship by confessing his feelings to her. So, when Sydney beats out the competition to buy his time at the annual Firemen's Auction, Brody can hardly believe his luck until she asks him to teach her how to seduce a fellow fireman.

Now, it’s up to Brody to show Sydney how perfect she already is and convince her that they only man for her is him, because if Sydney is going to seduce any man, it’s going to be him. And once he has her in his bed, he’s not letting her go.

The first in a series of about a large group of brothers, Love So Hot is a friends to lovers story between lifelong best friends Brody Lawson and Sydney McKnight. But there is more to the story that just a case of best friends secretly in love with each other, and for a novella, this was jam packed with details and characters.

In a lot of ways Sydney feels stuck. Working at her family’s bank as a teller surrounded by the same people with little chance of things changing in any aspect of her life. And she’s also stuck in the friend zone with the only man she’s ever really loved. When the chance to corner her best friend Brody with a date won at an auction, Sydney thinks this may be her one chance to seduce the man she loves. The only catch? He thinks she wants him to teach her how to seduce a man so she can go after someone else.

When Brody learns Sydney wants him to teach her how to seduce another man, he realizes two things -- he can’t say no, and he doesn’t want to let her go.
The events leading up to the auction itself were fun and a great introduction to the town and several of the community members. As with any small town, this one is filled with gossip, and attempts to keep anything a secret are nearly impossible -- especially when everyone else can see what neither Brody or Syndey are able to see.

My one catch was the way their physical relationship progressed. The speed at which they moved things along during their lessons left me feeling a little uncomfortable given what both thought was going on at the time. But it was fairly easy to move past that catch, as it was obvious they were meant to be together and it was only a matter of time before their true feelings came out.
This was a fast read with fun characters. I loved the little introductions to some of the other Lawson brothers and the women in their lives. Though Brody is the only firefighter in the bunch they promise to be stories filled with plenty of heat.

I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review.

Good, dependable Sydney McKnight has a crush on her best friend, Brody Lawson. He is a handsome firefighter that all of the ladies want. He has feelings for her too despite having a semi-relationship with another girl. But they keep each other in the friend zone due to fear of rejection and insecurities.

A couple of fashion fairy Godmothers and a bachelors' auction set the scene for a big makeover reveal. But even then they can't seem to communicate effectively enough about their hidden feelings. So Sydney moves to Plan B that has the potential to push him over the edge or break them apart. Her plan for having him teach her how to be seductive towards other men might just bring him to his knees.

It is a recipe for disaster and with other men clamoring around her trying to get attention, his jealousy only increases. They are two friends who know each other so well, but could also be totally clueless. There was lots of miscommunication and misunderstandings. And there was a town full of well meaning nosy friends and family sometimes helping and other times hurting the situation. 

Brody always wanted to be the hero, the good guy, and do the right thing. But he was hard on himself if he make a mistake. And could make impulsive choices compounding his mistake. But he really could be swoon worthy when he put his mind to it.

Sydney was trying to step outside of her comfort zone and be seen as a sexy woman and not just a good friend. But she compares herself to the other more popular woman in town and never feels that good about herself. And when  she tries to be more seductive and manipulative like her friends tell her to, it does not always work out for her.

They had good chemistry once they explored it although I have to admit that I did not exactly like how it got started and the whole situation felt awkward to me at times. But I was able to get past it because all along I felt like Sydney and Brody belonged together.

It was a cute, humorous, and fast read. There were some things that made me shake my head or annoyed me. And some things I felt needed more development. I liked the characters and having both points of view especially since they did not communicate their feelings well. There was a lot of underlying dynamics under the surface with other characters. It was fast moving and not really deep so it seemed like in some ways it moved too fast, but then other things took longer to discover.

Their friends especially Cherry and Lemon McCoy and Kyle added more drama and mischief to the story. He has quite a few brothers. At least Lucas, Mason, Tristan, and Austin were names I caught and there are several available woman in town.  His brother Lucas' story was teased a bit and so was some drama between his brother Tristan and Lemon.  Overall it was a quick, sweet, funny romance in a town full of quirky characters with interesting dynamics.

I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review. 
Marquita Valentine
New York Times Bestselling Author, Marquita Valentine, writes sexy heroes that make you swoon and sassy heroines that make you laugh. She’s the author of the bestselling contemporary romance series, Holland Springs, and the new adult romance series, Boys of the South.

Marquita met her husband aka Hot Builder at Sonic when they were in high school. She suggests this location to all of her single friends in search of a good man—and if that doesn't work, they can console themselves with cheesy tatertots. She lives in North Carolina in a very, very small town with Hot Builder and their two children.

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