“Sweet Caroline” by Lissa Matthews
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Red Hots!
Publication Date: April 27, 2010
Cover art by Angie Waters
The second time around is even sweeter…with cherries on top.
Blue Jeans and Hard Hats, Book 1
Buck doesn’t do personal projects. Until he runs into a woman wandering the aisles of the local home-improvement store, looking lost and confused. Just the way this fantasy looks at him nearly buckles his knees. In a hot second, the successful owner of a contracting company becomes a simple handyman, ready and willing to get as personal as the lady will allow.
Since her less-than-golden marriage to the local golden boy ended, Caroline’s declaration of independence includes her own business, road trips…and nipple piercings. Now it’s time to cut the last tie to her old life, but the house needs some work before she can unload it and move to her dream cabin in the mountains. Hard as it is to admit, she needs a little help.
Over the next few months, he shows her his toys, like hammers and drills, and she shows him hers—like floggers and paddles. And their attraction is the tinder that could send Caroline’s plans for an independent life up in flames…
Warning: In this book, there are sightings of glass dildos, leather belt bindings, nipple rings, wicked clamps, cherry cheesecake and a hot, yummy handyman-type guy who’s really good with his hands…
My Review: SWEET CAROLINE starts with a provoking conversation in an adult toy store between Caroline and Buck and I don’t think the smokin’ hot chemistry between them ever went lower then smoldering. Talk about an opening line:
Quote Buck: “I’d have never guessed you’d be interested in clamps.”
Now that would get any woman’s attention and Caroline made sure her comeback was equally stimulating. It’s not that they haven’t met before, I mean, Buck is doing some construction at her house, yet it is the first time where the heat simmering between them is flirtatious vocalized.
Caroline is in the final stages of her divorce and all that is left to do is selling the house. It is a sign for a new start in life; she is her number one priority, her work, her pleasures, her independence, it invigorates her to explore this new phase in her life. Caroline is a likable woman and many female readers can relate to her. She has spine but also has vulnerable moments, she is a sensual woman and with the right man she feels free to release all of her passions.
That man is Buck, now Buck is a Dom and he has a crush on Caroline for a long time now. He is caring but he knows exactly what he wants and he is willing to go the distance to get it. Including to get the love of one woman who is about to start a whole new phase in her life. He has his light-hearted moments but he also has depth of character and he is very serious about Caroline and the relationship he desires with her.
Within the length of this novel, eighty-eight pages, Lissa Matthews managed to paint a convincing picture of a woman who is reinventing herself, taking charge of her life and is empowered by the decisions she’s making. I thought Buck might be a rebound guy but Caroline’s feelings never gravitated towards that and I could sense from the get-go there was more than sex play between them. The Dom/sub element is teasing and playful of tone with enough experience to make their lifestyle believable.
The only relationship conflict in this novella is the fact whether Caroline chooses for Buck and a relationship…or not. Buck doesn’t want to force Caroline in to anything she isn’t willing to give and Caroline needs to figure out if she wants Buck long-term. Their struggles are more told from their inner monologues rather then they lay it out in the open and work through the issue of a long-term relationship. They both had reasons which I understood at some level but I was mentally telling them to “just tell him/her!” They knew the attraction was real, that there was more to it than just a physical heat!
The D/s theme is one of my favorites and though I love it more intense and intricate, Lissa Matthews had some inventive erotic charged moments that rocked the passion between Buck and Caroline. The chemistry between them is a constant hum, pulling them together and it saturated this story with sweet sensuality to scorching, raw, pulse-pounding sex. If there is one thing I’m taking with me from reading SWEET CAROLINE then it’s that this author definitely has a knack for writing every day characters with sultry desires and having flirtatious dialogues.
The summer is around the corner and SWEET CAROLINE is one wicked hot erotic romance read to take with you to the beach or pool, that way you can cool of every now and then. Buck and Caroline will endear you and at the same time make you squirm in your seat.
She was in love with him. Or maybe it was simply a heavy dose of lust. It could be both and it really didn’t make a difference to her either way. She just wanted him. All of him. In her life, her home, and her bed. She wanted his groan of pleasure, his come down her throat. She wanted his hands on her skin, and his heat against her body while she slept. Last night with him had cemented the desire, the hunger. She was meant for more than she’d had before him.
And, the two did go hand in hand. Buck and sex. He cared for her, talked with her, shared with her, but sex with him, submission to him in sex was more than she’d ever thought it could be. It was so damn good. She was often left exhausted, tested, sore, and primed for more.
Spoiler quote Buck:
He looked down into her eyes and kissed the tip of her nose. “You forgot a few things when you left.”
“Uh huh. You did.”
“Dare I ask what I forgot?” Not that she really cared. He was here. He’d brought whatever it was to her.