Monday, September 21, 2009

Review: Feels Like the First Time by Tawny Webber

Title: Feels Like the First Time
Series: Dressed to Thrill
Author: Tawny Webber
Read copy: eBook
Published: September 1, 2009
Publisher: Harlequin
ISBN: 1426838948
ISBN-13: 9781426838941

Zoe Gaston needs to unmask a mystery man for work. She also must survive her dreaded high school reunion—and the costume party that opens it. So Zoe, once voted Girl Most Likely to Die a Virgin, comes dressed as a leather-clad dominatrix... whip and all!

Her scandalous costume catches a secret lover. He seems so deliciously familiar under his disguise.... He's gotta be her long-ago crush.

But Zoe is shocked to discover the sexy body she's been so thoroughly enjoying belongs to Dexter Drake—her oldest friend! And he's hiding something bigger than just his identity....

My rating:

Zoe Gaston had hated high-school. So why is she back in Idaho for her ten-year reunion? Well, her brother is trying to make it in the platform business and to do that he needs something exclusively tied to his product to compete with the big dogs. He's thinking of a video game and the most popular video game designer, pseudonym Gandalf the Wizard, appears to had gone to the same school as Zoe - and even used her in his first game.

Zoe's mission: go to the reunion, discover Gandalf's identity, and ask him to work for her brother.

Easier said than done. Absolutely no one knows who Gandalf is, she still hates high-school, and she severely dislikes everybody from that time period. Everybody except her best friend, Dexter Drake. And this reunion is a perfect opportunity to reconnect with Dex. Though their friendship might be at risk, because Dex has turned into a hottie that inspired rather "unfriendly" thoughts in Zoe...And there's also the issue of a masked hunk that had cornered her in the darkened garden.

So, not only is Zoe's only friendship at stakes because of the untimely lust, but she happens to lust after two men at the same time...Or is she?

There are no words to express just how much I loved this story. I always enjoy reading high-school reunion stories (while dreading my own that's coming up soon), but I also love the friends-to-lovers stories. And this book combines the two.

Dex has been in love with Zoe for thirteen years (ever since they've first met), but she had seen him only as her best buddy in high-school. They didn't keep in touch, so the high-school reunion was a perfect opportunity for Dex to make his move.
I loved this guy. He was utterly adorable in his quest to win the heart of the woman of his dreams. He was sweet, possessive, jealous to the right point, and still determined to be at least her friend when she rejected him for fear of ruining their friendship. And you gotta love a guy who's prepared to dress up as Aragorn (in tight leather pants) to get a chance to kiss his girl

Zoe, though at the beginning appearing rather spastic, quickly grew on me. Maybe because I saw myself in some of the situations she'd been through in high-school, maybe because I saw myself in her protective mechanism (nothing beats sarcasm and snarling comments).

These two were both rather damaged from their high-school experience, making stupid mistakes, stupid choices, misunderstanding almost everything, and trust and belief in others was a big issue. But they learned. And they did it together.

Well, now to the other thing I really like about this HQ Blaze. It was hot. Let me repeat that - HOT. Scorching hot in fact. From the make-out session in the darkened garden in full costume regalia, the computer game avatar-sex foreplay, to the all-night set-the-sheet-ablaze session in utter darkness with a blindfold and leather restraints. Oh, boy. I'm still fanning myself.

What a great combination of wonderful characters, great high-school related trauma, humor, secrets, and steamy, a little on the kinky side sex.

A definite keeper!


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