Title: The First Taste
Series: Slip of the Tongue #2
Author: Jessica Hawkins
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: August 4, 2016
Andrew Beckwith has already devoted his life to one girl—and as far as he’s concerned, she’s all he needs. The rough-around-the-edges bad boy left his reckless ways behind six years ago when his daughter Bell was born. To the female population’s dismay, he’s unapologetically single. When Bell’s mother walked out on them years ago, he vowed never to let another woman close enough to hurt them again.
Amelia Van Ecken isn’t just another woman. She’s an independent, smart, and savvy businesswoman who doesn’t have time for sex, much less love. In the midst of a drawn-out, bitter divorce, all she wants is to bury herself in work. But when sharp-tongued Amelia and stubborn Andrew cross paths, sparks fly—and burn. Two things are obvious in an instant: they want each other, and they’re from different worlds. It’s the perfect formula for an off-the-charts one-night stand. After all, it’s not as if opposites ever attract.
“What’re your plans tonight?”
She scoffs. “It’s Friday night. What aren’t my plans? I have drinks with friends in an hour, then a late dinner, and who knows after that.”
She gapes at me. “Cancel my plans? Why would I?”
“Come out with me. Sadie says there’s a place around here with great pizza.”
She laughs, tilting her head and exposing the smooth column of her throat. “First, I don’t eat carbs, so there’s no way you’re getting me to do anything with the promise of pizza. Second, I just told you—I don’t date.”
“And neither do I.”
“Then why are you asking me out?” she asks.
“Because despite what you may think, I am a gentleman, and it’s only good manners to buy you dinner first.”
“First?” she asks, wrinkling her nose. “What’s second?”
We stare at each other. I let her figure it out on her own. It’s rare to meet a woman like me, someone who truly has no interest in finding a partner. I’ve heard that claim from enough girls to know when they’re bullshitting me, and unless Amelia is a Grade-A con artist, she definitely isn’t looking to get serious.
When she understands, the wrinkles on her forehead ease, and she parts her lips. I answer with a knowing smile. Suggesting sex within half an hour of meeting someone might normally get me slapped, but I get the feeling Amelia appreciates a more direct approach.
“I don’t date,” I say, “but I’m still a man with eyes.”
She makes no secret of looking me up and down. “You’re not my type either,” she warns. “I like men who carry a briefcase and see a barber regularly.”
I run my hand through my black hair, which I know is too long. “How’s that working out for you?”
She narrows her eyes. “Fine. Perfect.”
“I have some tattoos too,” I say. “And ride a motorcycle. Since that’s normally how I get most girls, I suppose those are turn-offs for you.”
“They are,” she says immediately, straightening her shoulders. “I’ve never understood the appeal of a bad boy.”
“Then tonight, we’re a match made in heaven, aren’t we? It shouldn’t be hard for either of us to say goodbye afterward.”
She bats her eyelashes a few times, not because she’s flirting but because she’s thinking. Considering. Which means it’s basically a done deal. I’ve never gotten this far with a girl only to have her walk away. “Why even bother with dinner?” she asks.
I take a moment to study her, her shoulder-length, perfectly coifed blonde hair. Her defined red lips that look like a heart when pursed, which is often. Yeah, based on the fact that I’m noticing details—something I try not to do anymore—I know I’m feeling her tonight. Most guys would jump at the opportunity to skip the small talk, but that doesn’t really appeal to me. I like women, always have. Just because Shana fucked me in the head doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate them. Doesn’t mean I don’t want to spend time around them—just so long’s it’s surface stuff.
I don’t want to scare her off by suggesting I might want to have a conversation with her, so I just shrug. “Because I’m starving.”
“I’m not hungry.”
“Indulge me then. I need my energy.”
“For what?” she asks.
I arch an eyebrow at her. I’ll definitely need my energy for a night with her.
She reads my expression and her cheeks redden. “Oh.”
*****REVIEW FROM LIZ*****
This is my first Jessica Hawkins book. I met her at a signing a few months back at an author event and have had Slip of the Tongue on my TBR for some time. Then I saw this one was coming out and knew I had to read this. This is a standalone book in the same world as Slip of the Tongue, however, you do not have to have read it first. I did not, but I am definitely going back to read it.
In The First Taste, we meet Andrew Beckwith. A man with a bad-boy reputation that he willingly left behind to care for the only girl that has ever mattered to him, his daughter. When her mother walked away from them without looking back, he swore no one would ever hurt them again. EVER. But he is also a man with needs.
Walk in Amelia Van Ecken. She is a no-nonsense, smart businesswoman who has priorities set out for herself and sex and love are not on that list! Not even close! Going through her own loss and drama, she buries herself in her work and that is what she needs and wants right now.
Though they could not be more opposite from each other, the attraction for each other is off the charts. Since commitment and ever-after is the last thing either of them wants, one night seems to be just what the doctor ordered, until it wasn’t. Even with all their self-imposed limits and what they thought they wanted these two could not stay away from each other.
And though Andrew was an amazing, sweet, doting father to Belle, he was all alpha male in the bedroom. What a powerful combination! Even as the char shop owner, greased stained hands Andrew was the last thing Amelia ever wanted, he gave her all she needed. But coming off a devastating marriage, the walls around her were so high, it seemed no one could ever penetrate them. And for Andrew, he loved tearing apart the very well, put-together Amelia. Every chance he could!
I loved these characters. Andrew was just so swoon-worthy. An amazing father to Bell, but also a man onto himself. His daughter was always his priority, but he also knew what he wanted and how to obtain it. And did I mention an amazing alpha-all-male in the bedroom? Okay, did not want to forget that! Amelia came off as stuffy, stuck-up and stiff at the beginning, but slowly we go to understand what made her that way and how Andrew opened her up.
Their story is not easy and most of the time they are each other’ worse enemies, but the push and pull between them added to what was happening and what was coming. In the end, it was all worth it.
I love the pace of the story, the characters and all the emotions I felt while reading it. Even with all the angst, the bit of humor and the banter between Andrew and Amelia the author added made me enjoy it that much more. And the chemistry and sex between them was off the charts! A great second chance at love story and so worth the read!
I give The First Taste by Jessica Hawkins 4 stars
Jessica Hawkins grew up between the purple mountains and under the endless sun of Palm Springs, California. She studied international business at Arizona State University and has also lived in Costa Rica and New York City. To her, the most intriguing fiction is forbidden, and that’s what you’ll find in her stories. Currently, she resides wherever her head lands, which is often the unexpected (but warm) keyboard of her trusty MacBook.
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