This may be my first Harlequin romance I've ever read, and I'll definitely be back for more. This author will also be one I'll check out further. I can't remember if a Goodreads friend recommended this or I was drawn in by the cover.
The heroine Marissa is a psychologist, and the hero Danny is a Naval officer. I'm a psychologist and I have a THING for men in uniform, so I felt like this story was written for me! The setting is the Naval Academy--a location I researched for one of my novels--making me feel right at home.
Marissa is a new psychologist who paid for grad school via her secret career as "Mad-Mari", a self-help author whose titles include Why Do Men Suck?
and Thanks, But I'll Just Keep My Vibrator
. She maintains a popular author blog and her blog posts are included in the story.
I can relate to Marissa wondering if her graduate degree and independent spirit might intimidate guys. I also nodded when Danny finds out her profession:"I'm twenty-nine. Just got my doctorate in psychology."
He gaped. "I don't know where to start. The doctorate at twenty-nine part, or the fact that you're a shrink."
The reaction was a familiar one. Especially the psychologist part. Everybody worried about that one, as if she would be head-shrinking them from their first meeting.
Marissa is hilarious. She rushes to an interview as a guest lecturer at the Naval Academy, and she's not feeling a lot of body confidence that day: But the interview had come up suddenly and a borrowed skirt in her size had sounded fine, until she'd put it on this morning. It seemed the months of writing at home had added to her waistline, not to mention her hips and butt. The long pencil skirt fit like a casing on a sausage. And the sausage was trying to escape.
She shouldn't worry about her appearance, because Danny thinks her waist is small and her curves are kickin'. When he sees her teaching a class of midshipmen, he had the refrain from Van Halen's
Hot for Teacher going through his head.
Danny is a good guy who looks GREAT in his whites *swoons*. Their physical chemistry is psycho-military hot. To Marissa, A first kiss was a critical thing. It set a tone, lifted a bar.
Danny lifts that bar sky HIGH.
At times their banter is so sexy and fun.He reached for a bread stick, offering her a sly look. "You mean you haven't told them you've been shagged to within an inch of your life?"
She gave him that look--that warm, sensual look that told him where her mind had gone. "You mean, I still have an inch left?"
He gave as good as he got. "You can have as many inches as you want."
Her eyes closed and her lips parted..."I could use a lot," she whispered. "I could use them right now, as a matter of fact. Damn, I should have worn panties tonight."
His hand tightened reflexively, and the bread stick snapped in half. "Don't," he warned her.
The beginning of the story is fantastic but I got a little annoyed by Marissa withdrawing from Danny a few times later on due to her fear of intimacy. This is why shrinks need their own shrinks. Girlfriend's got family issues that interfere with her relationship with Danny, and he's very patient to let her figure it out. The whole "I won't date military men because they cheat and are gone all the time" just didn't ring true for me in this story, for some reason. That conflict felt slightly contrived.
But I really enjoyed this story and highly recommend it! It's fun and flirty.