Review: NEVER HAVE I EVER by Alisha Rai

The higher the stakes, the hotter the game.

Ana Hudson enjoys her picture-perfect marriage to the love of her life. Everything is pleasant, easy—and satisfying. Then an anonymous e-mail arrives filled with lurid pictures of Taylor’s youthful exploits, leaving her wondering if she really knows him at all. More importantly…does she know herself?

Driven to uncover the truth and push the limits of their sexual boundaries, she convinces Taylor to arrange a weekend getaway to a friend’s luxury cottage in the mountains. It’s the perfect place to get her husband to spill his secrets—and show him there’s a wealth of kinky fantasies hiding inside his good girl.

Taylor’s spent years suppressing his animalistic side, hiding the not-completely-human DNA that once drove him wild. Except now his once quiet, reserved Ana has launched a campaign to destroy every inch of his hard-won control.

With the snowy wilderness containing his darkest memories surrounding them, and his old pack-mate dropping in to give them a few pointers, the sexual battle of wills gets fierce.

Warning: Contains a brooding, dirty-minded, not-quite-human hero, a sweet not-quite-good-girl heroine, a howling-hawt car ride up a mountain, a chase through the snow followed by an erotic adventure with sports equipment, oral sex, anal sex, and a M/F/M ménage scene that will leave you panting.

Author: Alisha Rai
Series: Reynolds Pack, book 1
Genre: Paranormal Romance, Erotic Romance
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Year of release: 2010, December 14
Format: eBook
Source: Received e-ARC from author for review

First line:
Wine was safe, the perfect complement for any dinner.

Memorable Scenes:
– drive to and arrival at the cottage > who’d have thought that of Ana…
– Ana and Taylor watching p0rn > never knew watching p0rn could be described so scorchingly hot

NEVER HAVE I EVER starts with preparations for a getaway to the Adirondacks for the Hudsons. Ana has received an anonymous email about her husband…Which prompts her into showing him her inner bad girl. Taylor has been suppressing his true nature as a shifter due to things that happened in his past and plays with fire when he takes Ana back to a part of his turbulent past. Slowly his sexual dominance returns to the surface and Ana turns out to be more accepting of it than he thought.

Ana is a shy, cautious and organized worrywart. I liked Ana but I’m not sure I would’ve tackled “her problem” the way she did. Taylor, Ana’s husband, at first sight is calm, quiet and gruff but that exterior hides an intense, commanding man underneath who can be sweet and funny as well.

I really liked that NEVER HAVE I EVER tells the story of an already married couple. I always like when I don’t have to suspend disbelief to enjoy hot and heavy sexy times, which I normally do when new couples go at just a few pages into the story. The sex scenes in this one are very hot. Both Taylor and Ana know how to crank up the heat level in those scenes. I’d never read a scene in a romance novel this elaborated about a couple watching p0rn before and Alisha Rai definitely wins points there for originality and hotness.

With every page I read it got steamier and more interesting. And speaking of interesting, keep an eye out for Eli, Taylor’s best friend and pack-mate, when you read this book. He definitely made it to my “anticipating this character’s book”-list. I hope to see more of the pack and its members in possible future books. And definitely would like to see Eli’s story and find out who’s going to be at the receiving end of his alpha hotness and bring him the HEA he’s yearning for.

NEVER HAVE I EVER is a very nice and steamy novella that brushed a few subjects like D/s and bondage in a light way. The werewolf stuff was a nice backdrop, but no more than that, as for me the paranormal element was not the strongpoint in this story. It was the emotional impact and sizzling chemistry between the characters that made it a memorable read for me.

Favorite Quotes:
She bit her lip, wishing she could just turn off the part of her that worried and fretted and thought everything through three thousand times before settling on something. Vowing to change was easy; altering a lifetime’s habit was harder. (This quote was like seeing into my own soul…this is so me!)

He drifted closer and reached down to unwork the knot she’d made of the apron ties. They were stubborn.
Cloth bands, securing Ana’s slender wrists to his metal bedframe…
He yelped. Flat-out yelped, like a fucking nancy boy, and dropped his hands. Blinking, he looked up to meet her puzzled gaze.

She actually had to check herself from sighing in feminine appreciation when he walked over to her. When they’d first met, Ana had immediately known that Eli probably never lacked for female company. Forget the fact that he was rich and gorgeous. His walk alone, all loose limbed and easy and confident, was a screaming aphrodisiac to single women everywhere. Hell, not just the single women. She might be madly in love with Taylor, but she could spot a prime male specimen when he sauntered up to her.

“See. We can have it all,” she said, breathless, when they parted. The wild beast and the civilized man; the dark hunger and the tender romance.


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