Review originally posted on Kindles & Wine
Um, hello? Do you SEE the cover photo for this book? Kindle Gal and I had some discussion about this photo and, if I can be honest…it’s the entire reason I wanted to try One Sweet Ride. I’ve never, ever wanted to read a book because of the cover! In fact, usually I have to overlook the cover to want to read some of them! I happy to report that it isn’t just the cover that is hotter than the South Carolina Lowcountry in August; this entire book is THAT hot!
I just want to say, right off, that I’m not a big NASCAR fan. I don’t follow any kind of racing at all. So the whole racing aspect of this story was pretty much lost on me. But the great news is that you don’t have to be a fan of racing to love this book!
Evelyn is our heroine in One Sweet Ride, and I found myself liking her and not liking her during this book, which I actually kind of liked! At first she’s described as this calm, cool, collected career woman, but she was SO singularly focused on furthering her career that it sort of put me off. She had that “whatever the cost, whatever it takes” attitude, and I just didn’t like it. But then, I ended up doing a 180 on my opinion of her. We’re given some context for her ambitions, and I found myself liking her more and more. In fact, you may not believe this, but Evelyn’s focus and drive eventually became the main reason that I liked her! Another great thing about Evelyn? She has seriously awesome fashion sense! I loved this one part where she’s thinking about how the dress she chooses sends the right message about being interested or not interested in a man she’s going on a date with. I don’t have a lot of opportunities to dress up and go to fancy dinners, so it was fun to listen in on her deciding how to avoid sending mixed messages. I ended up really liking Evelyn, and I think she was the perfect match for Gray.
Speaking of Gray, he was pretty great too. I loved picturing the guy from the cover photo! Phew, he is hot!! But Gray is a lot more than a pretty face and an amazing body. He had great success driving for someone else, but now, he owns his own team and races for himself. All of the business decisions are up to him, and he has a lot riding on his shoulders, but he handles it all with this calm friendliness that I thought was kind of sexy! At one point during the book, Evelyn tells Gray that just when she thinks she knows him, he goes and reveals something new about himself. I agree, and that’s one of my favorite things about Gray. He’s not just some dumb steering wheel jockey. He has interests that you’d never guess, and when he reveals them to Evelyn, it’s so cool!
My only issue with Gray was his relationship with his dad. Gray’s dad is a senator. He has been in politics for pretty much Gray’s whole life, and politics always took precedence over Gray. So he has some serious resentment toward his father, and rightly so. But I feel like Gray was a little too pigheaded about his dad making amends and changing his ways. Everyone is telling Gray that his dad has changed, and even Gray sees some differences in his dad, but he still refuses to believe anything good about him. I can certainly understand why he wouldn’t want to see those changes because he was so hurt by his dad for so much of his life, but I thought it dragged on a little too long.
Together, Gray and Evelyn are so hot! It seems that Evelyn has had something of a dry spell in the Sexy Time area, and she sure does make up for it with Gray! But this book has so much more than just plentiful Sexy Time. The pacing of their romance was superb! I thought that the progression of the relationship between Gray and Evelyn was spot-on—not to slow and not too fast. Also, the author has such a gift for description! Gray and Evelyn go to New York City, and even though I’ve never been there, it FELT like I was there! The NYC sequence was so much fun; I dare you to not fall in love with Gray after reading it!
I haven’t read anything else by Jaci Burton, but after readingOne Sweet Ride, I know I’ll be going back for more. This book has amazing characters, lots of hot Sexy Time, and a realistic progression of the romance between the hero and heroine. Although this is the sixth book in the series, there is absolutely no need to read the previous novels. But I think you’re going to enjoy this one enough that you’ll go back and read the whole series!
Review copy courtesy of the publisher via NetGalley