Licked by Brooke Blaine ~~~Review~~~

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Blurb

As the owner of Licked, an eclectic ice creamery and bar, Ryleigh Phillips doesn’t have time for that love stuff. Serving up Nibble My Nuts sundaes and Drunken Sailor boozy shakes are as close to an orgasmic affair as she’s had in months thanks to her expanding empire—until the night of her ten-year high school reunion.

When Ryleigh’s crush, gorgeous ex-football god Cameron Mathis, comes streaking into her life (literally—streaking), she begins to wonder if she really can have it all.

Wouldn’t it just figure that the moment you think life is perfect is when it falls spectacularly apart?

Enter Hunter Morgan, the contractor in charge of Licked’s renovations. Devastatingly handsome, and a smartass to boot, he’s got his eyes on Ryleigh from the moment he finds her passed out on his couch (yeah, that’s a long story). There’s just one tiny complication—he happens to be Cameron’s best friend.

When the lines between relationships and friendships blur, and it’s impossible to choose between two delicious flavors, what’s a girl to do?  Taste a sample of each? Or go out and get LICKED?

elegant man

My Take

Ok, seriously? How fun would it be to be able to order cookie dil-dough or up-the-butter pecan ice cream?  I want a Licked Ice Creamery in Washington DC.

Licked is a fun book.  I was initially worried about the possibility of a love-triangle.  I hate it when the heroine makes the wrong choice (don’t lie, you think it’s the wrong choice, too). Thankfully, Ryleigh makes the right choice.  It’s pretty evident early on who the hero of our story is going to be, so thankfully that whole ‘who will she pick/make up your damn mind already’ story arch doesn’t get dragged out for half the book and we can concentrate on the good stuff.  And it is good stuff – there’s humor, and angst, and all sorts of sexiness going on.

There were a couple of things stylistically that didn’t personally appeal to me. The story is told in first person point of view and a couple of times Ryleigh ‘talks’ to the reader.  I found this a little distracting – I would rather the heroine just narrate and not try to involve me in the story.  The other thing about first person is it is entirely Ryleigh’s story.  When the big conflict occurs and the hero reacts, I really wanted to know what he was thinking and feeling.  It’s explained to us later on, but I wanted to experience it from his point of view since it mainly revolved around him and his back story.  The tropes within the story were fairly easy to pick up on.  This is a romantic comedy, so it’s not like the author is trying to hide a big mystery and it’s not going to be that big of a deal for most people.  

Again, these are issues I have personally with the style of the book, not the story itself.  I knew what was coming, but the emotional damage that moment wreaked on my psyche was still snot blubberingly ridiculous (you’ll know the one I’m talking about when you get to it).  Even knowing there’s a happy ending (not that happy ending – get your mind out of the gutter…oh, wait…) still didn’t stop me from thinking there is no f’ing way he can do that! What the ever loving hell?!  Licked is engaging enough that my hangups with the style didn’t stop me from enjoying this story.

Licked is a fun, sweet, sexy book that is going to have you craving some boozy ice cream goodness and begging to get licked.  Extra cream.  Maybe some salty nuts.

Extra Sprinkles

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About the Author

You could say Brooke Blaine was a book-a-holic from the time she knew how to read; she used to tell her mother that curling up with one at 4 a.m. before elementary school was her “quiet time”. Not much has changed except for the espresso I.V. pump she now carries around and the size of her onesie pajamas. Flash Point is Brooke’s debut solo novel, and she is the co-author of the erotic serial, A Desperate Man, with Ella Frank. The latter has scarred her conservative southern family for life, bless their hearts. If you’d like to get in touch with her, she’s easy to find – just keep an ear out for the Rick Astley ringtone that’s dominated her cell phone for ten years.

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