Tuesday, January 26, 2016

ARC REVIEW - INTO THE FIRE (Gorgeous Entourage #1) by E.L. Todd:

TITLE: Into the Fire
SERIES: Gorgeous Entourage
GENRE: Contemporary Romance
RELEASE DATE: January 30, 2016
PUBLISHER: Fallen Publishing
PAGES: Approx. 328
RATING: 4 Stars!


Despite everything I've done for my parents, I'll never be good enough for them. Instead of seeing a man to be proud of, they just see an embarrassment. I served four tours in Afghanistan but that doesn't mean anything to them. They only see the ink, the party life, and my short stint in jail.

And nothing else.

When they were in trouble, I handed over my life savings. I didn't think twice about it because they're my family, my blood. They raised me to be my own man and gave me everything I needed. It didn't matter that it was every penny I had. It didn't matter that the money was set aside for my future. My dreams.

Because they needed me.

But now they refuse to pay me back until I become the man they think I should be.

I have an unusual professional.

I escort men, acting as their date to family functions or work parties. It's my job to act deeply in love with my client. And I always nail it.

But it's not what you think.

I'm not a prostitute.
I'm not a call girl.
I'm an actress.
Get it right.

There are strict rules when it comes to my profession. There is no touching, kissing, or anything but hand-holding. Those who choose not to comply will get a swift kick in the nuts.

But all this goes to hell when Ash walks into my life.

REVIEWERS NOTE: I received this eARC from the author in exchange for an honest review.

4 Inked-Up Stars!
Sexy, Fun and Entertaining! 

The Review: 
Into the Fire is a fun, heartfelt romance filled with naughty and clever banter, sexy character interactions and a hero you can’t help but fall in love with. Told in alternating POV’s, you’ll get hooked the moment you open this one!

Ash is as cocky as they come. He’s completely full of himself and totally oblivious of his own inner self. But it works for him. He doesn’t take life too seriously even though he’s been through some tough times. He likes living on his own terms and he makes no excuses for it. He’s honest to a fault and he’s loyal to his friends and family. He’s also kind of a manwhore. After loaning his parent his life saving so his father's business didn’t crumble, he’s desperate years later for the loan to be repaid so he can pursue his own dreams. However, his parents think he’s wasting his life and decide not to pay the money back until he changes his irresponsible ways to suit them, including settling down.

Ash is definitely against settling down, so this is where Alessandra and her company, Gorgeous Entourage, comes in. Alessandra is a wonderful heroine. She’s straightforward, sincere, funny, intelligent, beautiful and sweet. She’s also a platonic escort who Ash hires to play his girlfriend. Right from the start, Ash rubs Alessandra the wrong way which causes a little bit of friction but also a very well written, tension filled, slow build to romance. Alessandra isn’t looking for a real relationship and is perfectly fine playing the girlfriend, helping those who need someone as a showpiece only. She has strict rules for her own protection, but Ash breaks through her barriers and her rules. 

These two were great together and their salacious chemistry was super hot!

There were a lot of lively and entertaining scenes in this book as well as a few emotional and angsty ones. The author did an amazing job bringing the characters to life with their amazing bedroom play but also with their everyday life and their “getting to know you” moments. Though there was an instant attraction, there wasn’t an insta-love and I enjoyed watching these two friends, who were so opposed to finding love, come together and finding a real, true, solid foundation to build their romance on. Both Ash and Alessandra were likable and I connected with them instantly.
And that ending? Perfection!!

But... I will say there were some scenes that felt overdone and drawn out. There was two or three times I felt the story got bogged down with dialogue and character resistance. And on occasion, Ash’s actions were immature and I don’t mean because he was learning to grow as a character but rather the author wrote him in a way that made him seem much younger than thirty... at least to me. 

However, those rare occasions didn’t take away from the story as a whole. This was the first book I’ve read by this author and I can say that I am definitely a fan. She did a great job pulling me into Ash and Alessandra’s world and by the third chapter, I was already rooting for them and their happy ending. I’m certainly looking forward to reading her other books!

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