If I Were You
by Lisa Renee JonesPublished by: Gallery Books Publish Date: August 24, 2012 Genre: Contemporary Erotic Romance Series: Inside Out Trilogy #1 Source: E-ARC provided in exchange for honest review My Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars Blurb from Amazon:
The steamy first installment in the Inside Out erotic romance trilogy by Lisa Renee Jones, in the bestselling tradition of Fifty Shades of Grey.
When Sara McMillan finds a stack of journals in a storage unit, she’s shocked and enthralled by the erotic life the writer led. Unable to stop reading, she vicariously lives out dark fantasies through Rebecca, the writer—until the terrifying final entry.
Certain something sinister has happened, Sara sets out to discover the facts, immersing herself in Rebecca’s life. Soon she’s working at the art gallery Rebecca worked at and meeting Rebecca’s friends. Finding herself drawn to two dangerously sexy men, the manager of the gallery and a famed artist, Sara realizes she’s going down the same path Rebecca took. But with the promise of her dark needs being met by a man with confident good looks and a desire for control, she’s not sure anything else matters. Just the burn for more.
I admit, ever since I read 50 Shades and the Crossfire series, I have been enamored with this new genre of contemporary erotic romance reads. I love the Cinderella aspect of the wealthy man being drawn to an intriguing woman, the couple having to overcome obstacles and hang-ups, and I love how each author puts their own spin to the tale. Plus, the sexual heat is an added bonus. When I heard that If I Were You was a “50 Shades meets Basic Instinct,” I knew I had to give it a try. I picked up the book one evening to get the feel of it, and read the entire book straight through. Yes, I was up late and the lack of sleep was entirely worth it.
If I Were You begins with an entirely fresh approach. It takes awhile for Sara to really get into her story, she is caught up in another woman’s story after coming across her journals. The journals detail this other woman’s romantic life in an erotic, increasingly dangerous spiral, with a mysterious and abrupt ending. As Sara reads the journals, she longs to find out what happened to the woman, Rebecca, to restore her journals to her and to make sure she is okay. Sara finds that Rebecca has vanished, but while investigating, Sara gets caught up in Rebecca’s life. She takes up Rebecca’s old job and finds herself immersed in a romance that is eerily similar to Rebecca’s.
I loved the mysterious and suspenseful element in If I Were You. Sara’s romance is not obvious at first, it develops slowly, then when it hits, the connection is powerful. Throughout the book, there is always that unknown element: What happened to Rebecca? Who was she describing in the Journals? What did Sara get involved in? What happened to Sara’s friend? There are so many questions brought up and along the way, the tension rises, both at the art gallery (Sara’s new job) and in Sara’s relationship with Chris (an artist). There are secrets everywhere, and If I Were You touches on the secrets, but leaves so many of them unanswered.
There is much to love about If I Were You, from the mystery surrounding a “missing” woman and her dark, erotic journals to a woman making a new life for herself, trying to make her dreams come true yet fighting her past at the same time. The erotic nature of this book makes it a hot read, but the sex is not overdone at all. Also, Sara does not lose herself in her romance, at least not yet. If I Were You just touches the surface of this story and lays the foundations for what promises to be another exceptionally powerful romance trilogy. Bottom line, If I Were You is the most riveting contemporary erotic romance since 50 Shades of Grey and Bared to You. Romance readers, you do not want to miss this one!
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