Review: Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren
Title: Beautiful Bastard
Author: Christina Lauren
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance/Erotica
Publisher: Simon & Shuster
Release Date: February 12, 2013
Seamlessly written by two authors, Christina Hobbs and Lauren Billings, I didn’t exactly know what I was getting into when I requested to read Beautiful Bastard. Yes, I read this description. However, I didn’t know that 1) it would really, really make me enjoy turbulence or 2) have me looking up the closest La Perla store near me so I can check out the fitting rooms. The book grabbed my attention and kept me. I didn’t want to put it down.
When I started reading the book, it reminded me of Trust in Advertising by Victoria Michaels. I thought it was just going to be that book with sex. You know, a woman works in advertising for a douchebag, gorgeous boss who she secretly loves. That was until I got 4% into the book. That’s where the first sex scene happens. Yep. It comes quickly. No pun intended. It’s intense and erotic. It was one of those scenes where you read it and your heart starts pounding, you put your hand on your forehead, and you email one of your fellow Lovers because they have to know that this is happening! I got to enjoy even more of those scenes when I was reading the book on the plane. I swear it was divine intervention that I got to a really sexy part where Bennett was all up in it and turbulence started. Ahh…flying across the Atlantic has never been so enjoyable!
Chloe, the main female character, doesn’t just get major attitude and dynamite sex from her boss, Bennett, she gives it too. She’s no pushover and I love that. For me, what makes Beautiful Bastard so engaging to read is the fact that the two main characters cannot stand each other. They go at each other pretty well. Chloe and Bennett give Muhammed Ali and Joe Frazier a run for their money in their sparring matches. But there’s this pesky problem that when they have sex together, they are the bomb dot com and it frustrates the hell out of both of them. At times, they don’t even intend to have sex with each other. They don’t want to like it. It’s like when they piss each other off, it produces pheromones and the only thing that can relieve the tension is to have one or both of them talking dirty, begging, marking, pinching, moaning, or gasping.
Interestingly, it also frustrates both of them that they are almost addicted to Bennett ripping off Chole’s “power panties” from La Perla and keeping them. I’m on the fence about that whole situation. I know that it is erotic to have a man want you so bad that he doesn’t even have time to peel your panties off, but La Perla is expensive! Can we substitute a pair of Hanes every now and then? But if they did that, we wouldn’t get La Perla fitting room sex. (I think my eyes just glazed over thinking about that.)
They fall in love. Don’t even trip. I didn’t spoil anything and you knew it was going to happen. Even though the beginning of this “relationship” was unconventional, I started seeing that they were falling for each other and not just each others’ cash and prizes. It’s the opposite of most romance novels out there. Their bodies and desires fit so perfectly together when they are making the beast with two backs, you can only hope they see that maybe their hearts fit that well too.
There was a little bit of a male/female role change in the story that I realized after reading it that was refreshing. Where stories can be formulaic and you’ll see the woman doing ‘X’ and the man doing ‘Y’ because it’s “what they do,” Christina and Lauren flipped it ever so slightly. You’ll know it when you see it (I don’t want to spoil anything) and it will probably make you love the story even more.
Another aspect that really helped me get into the story were the point of views that were used to tell the story. The reader is able to read the novel through the alternating viewpoints of Chloe and Bennett. I think the holy grail in erotic story telling for me is the male point of view. Yes, I know that the majority of these stories are written by women, but I really loved reading about Bennett trying his hardest to not check out Chloe while she’s sitting at her desk. And I wanna know if their thoughts are like mine. Hehehe…
Overall, Beautiful Bastard is a fun erotic story that kept me captivated. The main characters held their own. You can tell the authors had a good time writing this book. I heard there will be a sequel entitled Beautiful Stranger! I CANNOT wait to read it. I want Bennett to be all up in it again.
Note: I was provided an advanced copy of Beautiful Bastard in exchange for an honest review. Guess what? You just read it.