I am one of those people who totally worshipped at the house of Cosmo and would read those magazines religiously. As I don’t have the time to read magazines any more, I totally miss out on those awesome short stories they usually publish in Cosmo. UNTIL NOW. You guys, the other day I was browsing Netgalley and besides the cornicopia of Christmas romance, a bunch of sexy looking novellas got uploaded. These novellas were part of a new imprint at Harlequin called Red Hot Reads. So, of course I requested a few and devoured the first one, Cake by Lauren Dane in one sitting. If novellas like Cake are what I can expect from this imprint color me PUMPED.
Wren is a young art student who moonlights as a delivery person working for her cousin, Kelsey. She always makes deliveries to genius artist Gregori Ivanov at the end of her shift, as he usually invites her for tea, desserts and conversation. There’s definitely a flirtation there between the two. Wren is ready to take the flirtation to the next level, whereas Gregori finds himself immensely attracted, but is trying his damndest to resist Wren as he does not want to wreck their friendship. She’s the one person who does not want to use Gregori for his connections or his money. Fortunately for Wren, things are about to heat up real quick.
Okay, you guys here is the thing about Lauren Dane’s Cake, I could not for the life of me take the love interest, Gregori seriously. I am really into clean cut and the boy next door and atheletic and all that. Gregori is kind of the opposite. He’s described as having a mohawk with scarlet red tips, and a scarlet red beard. At one point his mohawk is down and in a ponytail and I am like, ew. I am sorry, I just kept picturing someone trashy like one of those local walmart shoplifters. So for me, whenever Gregori was described I would try to picture him as punk rock Ryan Gosling, but with a faux hawk because mohawks are ugly — at least to me! That’s my taste, sorry! Anyways, I did think that Gregori and Wren had some fierce chemistry. I loved how Wren was so assertive and not afraid to take what she wants from Gregori. I know sometimes the girl is willing to put up with all kinds of bullshit, but not Wren. So kudos book. Then again, I would totally expect a Cosmo heroine to be fiesty and to know what she wants in the bedroom.
As for the writing, Cake was a total pleasure to read. I thought Dane did the bedroom scenes very, very well AND tastefully too. I mean, it’s not at all fade to black, but still classy. I am not sure that will make sense to anyone but me. Alas. I really enjoyed Cake, and will definitely be reading more of Lauren Dane’s work — just I couldn’t get fully into Gregori because of my mental picture. I would definitely recommend this if you are into the whole punk rocker/artist thing.
Disclosure: Review copy provided by publisher
Other reviews of Cake by Lauren Dane:
Harlequin Junkie – “a sweet love story”