Title: Up To Me
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
This book is impossible to review. There I said it. It’s completely and utterly impossible to write a review about it without ruining the plot for readers. I shall endeavor to try… Up To Me is the follow up to Down To You, the smash self-published hit by New York Times Best Seller, Michelle Leighton. We’re sure that Up To Me (like Down to You) will be no exception in making it on the NY Times list! ;) Her sequel picks up right where the first book ends, with Cash and Olivia in deep trouble because of his father’s mob dealing. This led to Cash leading a double life, his twin and mother both dead, and his father serving prison time for his wife’s murder.
In the sequel, Up To Me, Leighton never gives the reader a chance to catch their breath, and neither do Olivia or Cash have time to breathe as they go from the frying pan right into the inferno of the fire. The plot has so many unexpected twists and turns that my heart was racing along with the characters, and not because of the amazing sex scenes that Leighton writes. Taking a moment to reflect on Chapter 29. *********** It was OMG. Okay back to review. If you want boring, stale and ho hum, then don’t bother reading this book. If you want fast paced, edge of your seat thrills then rush and buy Up To Me. I am still reeling from all the revelations that this book supplied.
The romance between Olivia and Cash is still in full swing, but Olivia still has her doubts about her choices in men. Cash still has trust issues, but who wouldn’t after the last seven years he has lived. I applaud Ms. Leighton in her ability to give both characters voices that ring true, especially in their internal dialog.
The reader does get to meet Olivia’s peach of a mother; the term “bitch on wheels” comes to mind. The woman makes Cruella de Vil appear warm and cuddly.
Ginger is included in the tale and to be honest she’s a little over the top, but I have actually known a Ginger or two in real life so she is believable! I think she provides some needed levity in a reality that may have driven Olivia over the edge. She is Olivia’s touchstone to her life prior to Cash, and she does need that connection.
Yes, Marissa and Taryn are back, enough said on those two.
Plus we get introduced to a hunk with an accent in Gavin, the bar manager. What is it with guys and accents? They’re so fine and delectable.
I believe that Leighton has hit her stride in this adult contemporary genre. I was surprised that Amazon at one point had Down To You listed as erotica; and I greatly disagree with Amazon’s classification. Yes, there is sex, OMG tongue hanging out of mouth, scorching sex, but her books are romances on fire; hint Amazon…new classification. I would love to see Leighton branch out into adult paranormal with her new writing.
I am LUCKY! Yup I really am. Those were my first thoughts going in as I started to read Michelle Leighton’s second book of the Bad Boys series. Then I kept reading and thought HOLY WOW, I sure did get lucky!
We last left off with the mysterious new character named Duffy, introduced to us at the end of the first book Down to You. We’re pretty sure that he’s up to no good as he breaks his way in to Olivia and Marissa’s apartment, just waiting for his chance to get his hands on Olivia. The danger is not over yet for this couple. While it’s nice that all the secrets are out in the open, there is still a past that Cash cannot deny. He is well aware of the problems that this past can pose for Olivia and their future together. His father is in jail, the mob is still a threat, and he still has to deal with living a double life. Olivia on the other hand has her doubts. Cash is slowly pulling her deeper into the relationship, and it’s now at the point where Olivia will be completely inconsolable if things don’t work out between them. This, of course, would only prove that her mother was right about her taste in men. Eee gads her mother! Enough said!
It’s not all about love, but also life and death. Some really HOT new characters get introduced and boy does Miss Leighton know how to introduce them!! No more, no more, or else I’ll spoil it. But 5 stars from me. It was a THOROUGHLY enjoyable read and I mean thoroughly (insert winky face ;-) ) And here’s some visual aid for those of you that like the visual aid :-)
My Fav Lines: “The funny thing is, the only thing I want is you. Just you. If it was up to me, I’d make the world disappear and it would be just us. Just you and me.” ~Cash
“He closes his eyes as he does, like he’s breathing in a part of me, a part of my soul.” ~Olivia
“I’ve never wanted someone this way. So deeply. So completely. So desperately. But that’s the part that gets me in trouble. It’s the part that scares me.” ~Olivia
“Remember the way you fell when I’m kissing you and touching you. Don’t think with your head. You know me. And when my lips are on yours, you trust me.” ~Cash
I am relatively new to Ms. Leighton’s writing but I found Down to You along with its sequel Up to Me an easy read mixed with a little angst and tossed with a decent heaping of heat. Even though I had read the first a while back, this time I decided it was time for a re-read before diving into book 2 and I don’t regret the decision one bit! Ms. Leighton did not lose a beat with the continuation, which I sometimes find happens with sequels, and I was not disappointed in the least.
Of course, regardless of when I read the first book, I could never in a million years forget the chemistry and budding relationship between Cash and Olivia. These two not only have some serious electricity between them but they have very valid trust issues that any reader can relate to. This story shows more of the inner struggles of a relationship that is founded the way theirs was. This is not your typical Happily Ever After where the girl gets the guy and they ride off into the sunset to have their perfect life. Here you see the good the bad and the ugly, especially when it’s begun at warp speed and now being threatened by all sorts of ugliness. There are some new introductions and even some old ghosts that make their presence a little more well known in this book, and that too was new and refreshing about Up to Me. There is more suspense and a bit more dark drama in this one but Ms. Leighton did a good job using book 1 to set us up for the ride of book 2. I enjoyed the journey she took me on and I eagerly await the next installment!
Now, instead of giving you some awe inspiring, heart melting quote, I will share with you my favorite, most laughable one that just showcases Ms. Leighton’s incredible sense of wit and humor:
“Difficult is breaking and entering. But for a piece of dick like that, I’d break so he could enter. I’d commit a felony and two misdemeanors for an hour with something like that.” ~ Ginger
I have been knee deep with another review but wanted to take a minute and echo what all my fellow “lovers” have said! Once again, Michelle Leighton does not disappoint with the continuation of her “Bad Boys Series.” Up to Me was everything I had anticipated and MORE! Be forewarned ladies, as you’ll definitely be adding Cash to your list of book boyfriends (if he wasn’t already there). I’ll leave you with my two favorite scenes: hotel and VIP room. Need I say more? One of my favorite lines in the book that hasn’t been mentioned was “Ovaries beat out testicles in speed shower match.”