Wednesday, October 5, 2011

All Jacked Up by Desiree Holt

On his fortieth birthday Jack Manning had his own private pity party until a pixie showed up and he was soon "all jacked up".

Jack Manning had carried an image with him all of his adult life of the woman he planned to marry. She’d be every man’s ideal-slender with masses of blonde curls and sapphire blue eyes.

Darcy O’Connor has been the odd-girl-out all her life. Barely five feet tall, she wears outrageous clothes, styles her short black hair in spikes and has developed a smart mouth to cover her insecurities.

When she walks into Eli’s, the favoured neighbourhood hangout, and meets Jack on his birthday, it’s like a collision of the planets. Instantly they rub each other the wrong way. But very hot sex keeps drawing them together.

Will they burn each other out before they realise what their feelings really are?

Reviewer: avidscribe
Jack Manning is facing down turning 40 years of age having a personal pity party at the end of a glass of Bourbon in his favorite neighborhood bar. He’s a good looking enough guy, lean and muscular but shy the inches he thinks he needs to attract the kind of woman he’s been pining for all his life. His dream woman is 5’6” tall, full breasted, lithe, professional and polished with a mane of long golden blond hair. You know—a Barbie doll.

Successful in business, he is embarrassed to find he’s become a project to the wife of his best friend who is determined to hook him up with the right woman ... if she can only get him to stop glaring at every woman who comes in range. Hyper critical with hyper expectations, uptight and feeling the death knell of his youth, he looks around at all his friends now coupled up and wonders if he will ever find the kind of happiness that has so far eluded him.

Darcy O’Connor is the antithesis of everything he considers attractive in a woman standing at 5’ tall with her spikey short jet black hair, heavily made up eyes and plump curves. When the pixie sits down next to him at the bar and starts to snark at him, he is shocked and defensive ... shocked at the surge of sexual attraction he feels towards her and defensive towards her ribbing.

Darcy O'Connor is a woman with a lot of anger simmering just below the surface. She’s tired of being the butt of jokes about her size which she feels has held her back professionally as a technical director at a TV production company. She could be more if she were taken seriously by her boss who only sees her as a sweet little thing. She’s come for a drink at the end of another debilitating day, needing to decompress. She sees Jack in his suit looking officious and uptight and she stabs out at him teasingly, mockingly, pointedly.

When Jack goes to put a hand on her arm to tell her to back off, electricity shoots through him with the force of a thunderbolt. There’s an instant connection there, a strong live current of sexual tension he is confused and wary over.

Two hours later the bar is closing and they’re still at it, sparring with each other and downing drinks. Wanting one more drink for the road, Jack suddenly finds himself face down on the barroom floor, too inebriated to neatly get himself home. The bartender and pixie manage to get him into her car and she drives him home. Coming up through his alcoholic fog, he finds himself being hauled out of her car and up the stairs to his home by the tiny woman. Two things slice through his brain at once—she feels pretty damn good against his body and he has the mother of all boners.

It’s an adorable short story that is minus the angst and extraneous character development you would expect from a longer read. Two headstrong individuals who are so not each other’s types, they insist, can’t keep their hands off each other as they combust in bed. Nothing has ever felt so intense or so right, but it’s all so wrong!

It’s well written and a pleasurable read. The dialog is snappy and real, the morning after their first tumble has all the requisite sober embarrassment that is intermixed with humor and you know they’re going to run into each other soon again and all that incendiary heat is going to flame up despite their protestations. They can’t resist the other’s pull. It’s the resistance that makes it fun, the giving in that makes it memorable. It's brevity makes it something you can knock off in an evening, as I did. If you're looking for froth and fluff, this is perfect  and as such, I'd give it a 5 out of 5.

See the original review on goodreads


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