Victoria Woodley is done with men. Fresh off a dating nightmare, she flies from her home in Chicago to Scarlet Springs to take part in her best friend’s wedding. Who picks her up at the airport? Eric Hawke. Of course. She made a fool of herself over him last time she was here. He’s cocky, charming, and sexy as sin. But the fact that she’s attracted to him is all the proof she needs that he’s bad news. She would ignore him if she could. But he’s the best man, and she’s the maid of honor. She can’t just tell him to jump in a lake—especially not when her lips are locked with his.
Eric isn’t looking for a relationship. Between running the firehouse and volunteering for the county’s search and rescue team, he has enough on his plate. He doesn’t need to get tangled up with a woman from the big city, especially one whose idea of roughing it is going without designer coffee. Yet from the moment he looks into Victoria’s big brown eyes, the attraction he feels is too strong to deny. Faster than he can imagine, the spark of desire that has smoldered between them since the first day they met will flare into full-blown passion.
But can Eric convince Victoria to set aside her doubts and trust him with her heart before their time together runs out?
Pamela Clare is one of the best romance writers around. I didn’t even bother finding out what this book was about before I cracked open my review copy – I knew I’d enjoy whatever it was, and whatever subgenre it was written in.
Slow Burn might be the second in a series, but I don’t think that’s an issue if – like me – you haven’t read the first book. Clare creates completely modern, relevant, believable characters. There is no shame attached to sex (and some parts of this book are fairly steamy – as if the cover doesn’t give it away!). She has created a community of friends who seem like normal, twenty-first century thirty-somethings, with modern, twenty-first century dramas.
The hero and heroine are thrown together in a way that makes the speed of their relationship believable. They’re leading the wedding party of the hero and heroine of the first book, and taking part in days of organised activities in the build-up to it.
I tend to have a problem with books where everyone is moving to a small town because the city is evil, and they are all acting like an older generation with different priorities in life. However, I didn’t find this to be the case at all in this book, which was a huge relief. The small town is made out to be the sort of place that might appeal to people in the main characters’ demographic.
If there’s one thing I’m not so sure about, I think it’s a cultural difference on my part. Where I live nobody would try some of the emotional speeches and grand gestures that these characters do (e.g. at the wedding or at Thanksgiving). We’re a little too sarcastic for that sort of stuff in my neck of the woods!
However, I did really enjoy this one. It felt much more realistic to me than most contemporary romance.
Review copy provided by NetGalley.