Thank you for the advanced copy of MAN CANDY by Melanie Harlow. All opinions are my own.
Not just back in town, but living in the flat right beneath mine. And he looks good enough to eat, which is just one more reason to stay away from him.
But I can’t resist.
The sex is incredible (pretty sure we’ve shaken the house right off its foundation), but he can’t fool me—not this time. A degree in marketing and five years in advertising have taught me that “true love” is a fairy tale used to sell lipstick, diamonds, and perfume. It doesn’t exist.
He thinks I’m wrong, and he wants to prove it.
I think he’s crazy, so I dare him to try.
It might be the biggest mistake of my life.
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Who knew candy could be so delicious and good for you?? Melanie Harlow has turned the tables on the ‘brother’s best friend’ romance and given us a satisfying confectionary treat that is both deliciously sexy and irresistibly sweet. I enjoyed every last morsel of this story, as I have with all of Harlow’s books. (Ok, that’s all of the candy metaphors, I promise!)
Jaime is a 27-year-old woman who lives and works in Detroit. She’s all for physical relationships, but bails when feelings come into play. However, there has been one love in her life—Quinn, her childhood friend. Ten years ago, she cornered him, confessed her love, and he laughed in her face. That was the last time Jaime let herself get close to anyone.
Quinn is a hot male model who goes against stereotype, meaning he’s more than just a pretty face. He’s caring and sincere, he cooks and takes classes, and he’s totally crazy for Jaime. Quinn wants it all with her, not just a fling, but Jaime has so many rules and walls in place, it’s nearly impossible to get close to her. He’s nothing if not patient, though, even when Jaime is being stubborn and aloof. I thought he was absolute perfection.
This book has so many elements I love, from the endearing characters to the fantastic writing to the hot banter. Harlow knows how to give us sweet, sassy, swoony, and sexy, and she does it well in Man Candy. It’s light and refreshing and perfect for a summer beach read!
“It’s so good to see you, Jaime,” he said. “You look great.”
“You too,” I said before I could stop myself. I didn’t want him to think I still cared—in fact, I wanted him to know I wasn’t fooled by his charm. I wasn’t that silly little girl anymore, the one who’d doodled his name in her notebooks and blushed when he said hi at school and cried herself to sleep when he asked another girl to his prom. That silly little girl was gone, and in her place was a confident, smart, professional woman who knew her worth and, even better, the truth about love. No more stars in her eyes.
But why did he have to be so hot?
OK, pull yourself together. No drooling.
“I’m so glad this worked out.” Quinn let me go but stood too close, his feet planted wide and his arms crossed over his chest. He wore jeans, a gray knit pullover that hugged his muscular chest and arms, and his feet were bare. His hair was damp and messy on top, just like it had been the last time I’d seen him in person. His full lower lip made me want to bite it. Maybe even draw blood.
“Sorry, I just got out of the shower,” he said sheepishly, ruffling his hair. “Want to come in and catch up? Or maybe go out for a drink? I just need to throw some shoes on.”
“No.” Trying desperately to shove the image of him in the shower from my mind, I elbowed past him and trudged up the stairs. My cheeks were hot, which meant they were probably turning scarlet. They ruined my poker face every time.
“Come on, it’s Friday!”
“I have work to do.” He was naked a few minutes ago. And wet.
“Did you have a bad day?”
“No.” Rivulets of water streaming over those muscles.
“You already have plans tonight?”
“No.” Steam rising as he stroked himself beneath the spray.
“You don’t love me anymore?”
I froze as the shower fantasy exploded into bits, replaced by a humiliation that paralyzed me, one foot on the top step, one hand on the banister. Slowly, I turned my head and glared at him over one shoulder.
Now the grin cocked up on one side. “Because you used to, you know. You told me.”
“You need to forget about that.”
“Yes,” I snapped. “That was a long time ago. Back when I was young and impressionable and believed in love.”
His brows went up. “You don’t believe in love anymore?”
“Not the romantic kind. That’s a fantasy used to sell things like lipstick and roses and diamonds.”
“Pretty jaded for twenty-seven, aren’t you?”
I resumed heading up the stairs. “I’m not jaded, Quinn. I’m just a realist.” And I’ve been burned before, trusting guys way less attractive than you.
He said nothing more, and I let myself into my flat. As soon as the door was shut behind me, I leaned back against it, exhaling and fanning my face.
He still got to me. That was so aggravating.
I mean, how was I supposed to sleep at night? Quinn Rusek was one fine piece of man candy, and I had a sweet tooth for him that wouldn’t quit.
But he’d made fun of me! Again! A nice guy would have at least pretended not to remember what I’d said. Or maybe apologized for humiliating me. Or not have brought it up at all!
What an a$$hole.
A hot a$$hole—the worst kind.
Curse you, Alex, and your generous heart.
And curse you, Quinn, for getting under my skin again. You stay away from me.
But a traitorous little part of me hoped he wouldn’t.
(Bet you can guess which part.)
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