The single mom & the escort.
If ever there were a story of two complete opposites attracting, it's Damaged Goods
. This book shouldn't have worked, but it all came together to create a truly magical story.
Joceyln is a single mother; hardworking and completely capable of providing for herself & her children. It was refreshing to read about such a confident woman. But Joceyln struggles to find relationship-worthy men. She's not picky, per say, but she knows what she wants and she isn't afraid to turn a man down she doesn't click with. She's tired of the dating game -- and in dire need of some raw, rough, passionate sex. At the urging of her friend, Jocelyn hires a male escort for a few hours of fun.
Enters Sabian. He's exactly what I expect a male escort to be like: sexy, confident, and completely focused on his client's pleasure. Sabian is worth every penny Jocelyn spends on him! It takes her a month, after their first encounter, to decide she wants more of him. By their 3rd experience, you can start to see things becoming more personal. On their 4th "date", things take a drastic change when Joceyln can no longer deny how curious she is about him and begins to ask questions. Sabian opens up, they share some very real moments, and then, right before they sink into a desperate kiss, Sabian says...• • •"There's something I want you to know," he said.
"Hmm?" My lips tingled from the vibration of his voice.
His hand moved into my hair, the other drawing my body closer to his, and just before our lips touched, he whispered, "My real name is Austin."
My heart pounded, thundering his name over and over in my ears as he held me to him and kissed me. Electricity crackled through my veins and up and down my spine, and while it was far from the first time we'd touched, this kiss was charged with the thrill of a first kiss.• • •
And that's when it changed. From that point on, I never thought of Austin as Sabian. This is what Lauren Gallagher excelled at in this book. We begin to learn who Austin is; the artist, the fun-loving guy. I adored seeing him with his family. In a nutshell, Austin became human. The sex changed, too. It was more personal, beautiful, and so damn sensual. It's easy to see that, for him, escorting really is just a job.
They don't rush their relationship. When they're ready to take the next step, Jocelyn does the brave thing and decides to be upfront with her ex-husband about what Austin does. Luckily, she has a really good relationship with her ex (and his wife). I won't spoil that scene, but I'll just say it's one of my favorites in the book!
Jocelyn is no saint, and even though she tries to be understanding of Austin's job, she struggles at times. They work through it without any of the BS that's so typical in romance novels.
The epilogue takes the entire book from good to great! Joceyln & Austin have earned the right to become one of my all-time favorite couples! I really hope you give their story a chance.
• 5+ stars!