I received this book for free from Entangled Publishing, Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Hard Compromise by Samanthe Beck
Published by Entangled Publishing on November 21st 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Source: Entangled Publishing, Netgalley
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Laurie Peterson assumes her impulsive one-night stand with sinfully sexy Sheriff Ethan Booker is the biggest surprise of the year…until her bakery burns down while she’s basking in the afterglow. It looks like her dreams are up in smoke, but then Ethan proposes a deal too tempting to resist.
Ethan has no intention of settling for a one-night stand with Laurie. Nor does he want anything to do with the women his wealthy family wants him to meet. Not when he’s waited ten years for his chance to make his move. His deal might have strings—and Laurie may not know the stakes—but nothing will stop this sexy cop from staking a real claim on her body and her heart.
Friends to lovers. One of my favorites. And it was just what I needed. Booker and Laurie have known each other for years. A little over ten years, to be precise. He busted her for underage drinking, among other things, when she was sixteen, shutting her down when she tried to thank him for not actually arresting her by offering him sexual favors. He told her they’d revisit it in ten years. (Which, side note, considering a certain “I’ll be dating you in ten years” comment we’ve heard reported recently, hit me a little wrong, but moving on….)
It’s been ten years, and Booker is done waiting. He gave Laurie the time and space to grow up and sow her wild oats, and he’s ready to make his move. He wants her, permanently, and he’s determined to make her see how good they can be. Laurie, for her part, isn’t so sure. She doesn’t do relationships, preferring one-night stands to anything that could be interpreted as a relationship.
Beck did a good job making me understand where both of these characters were coming from, even as I didn’t really agree with either of them. Laurie’s mother is a big problem for her, popping up at the worst times looking for a handout, and not being above blackmailing Laurie to get it. Laurie is so used to dealing with her mother on her own that she never even considers asking Booker, who’s still a cop, to help her deal with it.
Booker, for his part, was a little pushy for me. I don’t mean in the bed (or wall, or couch, or car). Just in general. “I’ve waited the arbitrary ten years I told you would, now we’re in a relationship, whether you like or not, and whether you’re comfortable with that or not.” It was a little much for me. And, yes, I did just say that Laurie should have considered asking for his help with her mother, but I wasn’t surprised when she didn’t. She’s been taking care of herself since she was a child. Asking for help is not her norm. But Booker wasn’t willing to cut her any slack on that. Laurie’s mother shows up the morning after they’ve hooked up for the first time, and he’s furious that Laurie doesn’t ask him to help her out. Which is ridiculous. Him showing up at her New Year’s Eve party and announcing that they’re together doesn’t automatically make her turn to him with her every issue. He gave her absolutely no time to adjust to her new normal.
Overall though, I really liked this book. I thought Booker and Laurie were a great pair, and they’re one of those couples that I really think fit together. You don’t always think that, or at least I don’t. Sometimes you can’t tell what, beyond mutual physical attraction, is holding a couple together. Laurie and Booker were well matched in every way, other than their backgrounds. Booker’s family is extremely wealthy, and Laurie’s is not. It really wasn’t a big problem, though. Booker’s family wasn’t around much for the book, and the little I saw of them, it seemed like they didn’t care what Laurie’s background was as long as she made Booker happy. But they’re both ambitious, driven, hardworking, and they like to get a little dirty.
This is a follow-up to Compromising her Position, which I really enjoyed as well. They’re the only two books I’ve ready by Samanthe Beck, but I’m planning to dig into her backlist to find out if they’re all as good as they are. You’d be doing yourself a favor to do the same.