Character Chemistry: This is fully established physically, but (likely due to length) the emotional chemistry is less developed.
Plot: Carmen and her ex, Matthew, end up stuck sharing their beach house for the summer. When both decide to punish the other through seduction, they cave almost instantly and rekindle their relationship.
Overall: It’s not fully fleshed out but there’s flesh out. (See what I did there?)
Heat Factor: It slipped in. Consent optional. Do you need consent if you’re married?
Character Chemistry: He is large, grumpy and swarthy, and she is fair, smol and pure. How can they not fall in love?
Plot: One damn thing after the next, caused by miscommunication and stupidity.
Overall: They’re mad at each other, but they don’t know why they’re mad at each other, and they won’t stop doing dumb things to each other.
The Bride by Julie Garwood (1989)
Heat Factor: It’s the sexiest one we’ve read so far in the Old School read-a-thon
Character Chemistry: It’s The Taming of the Shrew, but who’s taming who?
Plot: Jamie’s like, “You told me to handle it! So I handled it.”
Overall: This book is absolutely delightful.
Content Note: These books contain rape, ablism, and racism and we discuss this content in our review. Also, sorry, Ranulf of The Black Lyon is not actually a Hottie McScottie, but he’s got highlander energy.
Heat Factor: They keep holding themselves back…until they don’t.
Character Chemistry: Sebastian is too darn noble for his own good, which means there’s a lot of pining.
Plot: Paulina’s Evil Older Brother puts her in a compromising position with Sebastian, and then catches them there, and then throws Sebastian in jail until he agrees to marry Paulina…but what’s his long game???