Friday, April 12, 2013

Protecting What's His by Tessa Bailey

Why I read it:  There was buzz about this book in my tweetstream just after Easter - it was the dirty talking hero which made me click "buy".

What it's about:  (from Goodreads)  She’s running from the law, and the law wants her bad.

The opportunity was just too damn delicious for Ginger Peet to pass up. The purse full of money she finds—$50,000 to be exact—could give her and her teen sister the new start they need. So she grabs the cash, her gothy sibling, and their life-sized statue of Dolly Parton, and blows outta Nashville in a cloud of dust. Chicago, here we come...

Turns out, Chicago has some pretty hot cops. Hot, intense, naughty-lookin’ cops like Derek Tyler, who looks like he could eat a girl up and leave her begging for more. And more. Tempting as he is, getting involved with the sexy homicide lieutenant next door poses a teensy problem for a gal who’s on the lam. But one thing is certain—Derek’s onto her, and he wants more than just a taste.

And as far as he’s concerned, possession is nine-tenths of the law.

What worked for me (and what didn't): I admit I have a soft spot for Dolly Parton - my high school BFF and I saw her and Kenny Rogers in concert together (many) years ago.  We were far enough away that she wasn't scary looking (and, of course, she was a lot younger then, so possibly she didn't look scary at all.  But I saw he on Colbert recently and... moving on!).  So the statue of Dolly Parton and the snippets of her homespun wisdom were definite attractors.

Derek Tyler was a bit of a mixed bag for me.  There was an explanation in the book for how he'd made it to Lieutenant by age 30 but, it still felt unrealistic for him to be so promoted, especially only having been a detective for a year prior to.  It seemed he didn't really have any trouble with the officers in his department responding to his leadership, which I suppose says good things about him, but it felt too unrealistic to me.  And, given his distaste for how he'd been promoted, attending a charity dinner (and allowing his department to do so as well) at $1,000 per plate where the bill is being footed by a councilman, seemed off too.  On the plus side, he's a dirty talker who is the alpha protector type and that's something that pushes my buttons and rings my bell. 

“Do you feel that, baby? That’s your man moving inside you.”
Ding Ding.

I liked how Ginger looked after her sister Willa and the lengths she was prepared to go to to keep Willa safe and see she was well educated and had a chance for a good life.  In the end, it was that which gave Ginger her chance for a good life too - because they got out of their mother's house and Ginger found new opportunities in Chicago - not only in the romance department, but career-wise too.

To be honest, the romance which interested me the most in the book was Willa's and Evan's.  I would have happily read a lot more about that couple.

Derek did sometimes skirt the line between asshole and hero - and there were times he was on the wrong side of it.  So I didn't love him completely. But then, he comes out and says things like this:
“I can’t kiss you right now.”

 “Why not?”

 His chest rose and fell with a shudder underneath her hands. “I’m looking at you sitting there all puffy-eyed from crying over me. If I kiss you right now, I’ll never stop.”

What else? The book was a bit of a mixed bag for me.  There were aspects I enjoyed greatly (the chemistry between the two main characters, the (unfortunately mild and low-on-page-time) secondary romance with Willa and Evan) and things that left me a bit meh (arguably Ginger's actions at the end fall into the TSTL category).

Still, it was an enjoyable enough book, which I read in one evening.  And there is the dirty talking.

Grade: C+


Jane said...

The lure of the dirty talker.

Kaetrin said...

oh yeah - sucks me in every time! :)