QuicknDirty-Review: KEEPING PACE by Dee Carney

One spark could burn her world down.
Six years after her husband’s death, Regina Pace is still just going through the motions, her only pleasure a nightly glass (or three) of wine to dull the ache. Tonight is no exception—until a sensual outdoor encounter with her neighbor’s son, freshly home from college. He’s older, wiser, more devastatingly handsome than she remembered. He’s also fifteen years her junior.

Despite her misgivings, it isn’t long before her nightly ritual includes a long, deep drink of Josh Smith. Ogling leads to touching, then the sparks flare into an erotic encounter that feels wickedly right—and deliciously forbidden.
Yet the intense heat can’t burn away the doubt pestering the back of her mind. That the gap between their ages is too large, even for the most determined leap of faith…

Product Warnings
Features a boy-next-door who won’t take no for an answer, more than one sexual fantasy (including some outdoor self-loving!), and a burning romance that proves age is just a number.


Title: KEEPING PACE
Author: Dee Carney
Series: At this moment it’s a standalone and not part of a series (yet)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Year of release: 2011, June 21
Format: eBook
Source: I received a digital copy for review from author

First line:
I could say some sort of spell kept me transfixed to the spot as I watched my neighbor’s son masturbate, and it would almost be the truth.

Memorable Scenes:
– the roses Josh left every evening > Josh makes me weak in the knees!
– the scene on the stairs > I couldn’t breathe…my heart was pounding…I melted into a puddle of aroused goo!
– the sunrise scene > wow!

Quick & Dirty-review:

Ingredients/Summary:
An older woman ready for love, a younger man who is the epitome of romance, sizzling hot sex, slowly developing feelings, an a-hole of a so-called friend, a lot of hesitation and a lovely ending.

Hero:
Josh Smith is the younger guy next door. He’s even-keeled and matured when he’s not drunk. He’s an old soul, passionate, headstrong, impulsive, romantic, candid and frank.

Heroine:
Regina Pace is the older woman and a widow of 6 years. She’s the main character whose POV is the backbone of this story. She’s solitary, strong, confident, stubborn and loyal.

Likes:
– the writing that painted such vivid images in my mind
– the extensive and in-depth characterization
– Josh. Period

Dislikes:
– not having Josh’ POV, but this is a very minor dislike as even without it this book was great!
– the Lou part, especially Regina’s reaction to Lou when she’s contemplating considering him over Josh.

Writing:
The first person narrative is not my thing and I think this is the first contemporary erotic romance I’ve read in 1st person narrative. However, when the writing is good, something like the narrative shouldn’t bother the reader and in this case it definitely didn’t as I love Dee Carney’s writing style and the way she conveys emotions and feelings through the pages.

Verdict:
KEEPING PACE kept me enthralled from start to finish! What an amazing and emotionally rich story full of depth and heat. I loved it so much I wasn’t even bothered by the 1st person narrative. If anything it gave me a thorough and in-depth look in Regina’s journey back to love.

The very start pulled me right in emotionally. The intensity, Regina’s doubts, indecisiveness and hesitation about taking a chance on love with Josh, their fights and tension caused by external elements made this so much more than a breezy and light erotic romance within the cougar trope. The ending left a satisfied smile on my face and I’m now looking forward to my next taste of Dee Carney’s writing.

Favorite Quotes:
I almost took a step back when my brain finally registered what it all meant. A small cry of surprise tried to spill from my lips, but I bit it back in time. Instead, I stood transfixed and watched an amazing specimen of human musculature move with an erotic beauty that took my breath.

Desire swelled within me, and I weakly fought it into submission, though it would not die without a struggle. I saw a hint of lust reflecting in his eyes and prayed I didn’t imagine it.

Damn Josh for shattering my once regimented life and reintroducing me to an existence where I fantasized. As soon as I left the seductive hold of fantasy, reality crashed into me until I couldn’t breathe from the harshness of it.

I wanted his kiss but resisted the temptation to force our mouths to connect. The intimacy of the way we stood now seemed to join us better than any mere kiss could. In our closeness, Josh became the very air I breathed.

I watched his eyes as he revealed me slowly. The amount of want, the anticipation of this moment, bloomed in them. His face became youthful then. One of a boy at Christmas, about to open what he knows will be his favorite present.

“Gina,” he growled. And it was a growl. A low predatory sound sexy enough to make me come right there and then.

“Seriously.” His whispered words held a measure of heat in them. “You’ve got this look… This sultry, seductive, come-hither look.”
“You’re just horny.”

Josh, as always, had impeccable timing. Anyone who looked at him would be able to tell he’d been drinking. Despite the crisp enunciation, his eyelids drooped, and he just had the aura around him. The same kind of aura that put cops on alert when pulling a driver over or nurses disbelieving when they asked exactly how the dildo had become stuck up there.

“Josh!” I cried out. He made me hurt inside, the kind that made my heart swell, and brought me to the edge of a cliff over which I wanted to happily tumble.

A voice in my mind screamed at me. It cried out it did love him. That we both loved him. That when I looked at him, there was more there than youth alone. There was promise and hope for so much more between us. But the voice wasn’t powerful enough to move my mouth, and so I sat in silence when he walked out of my bedroom. The ethereal light from the hallway had somehow become a shadow, embracing him as I would not.

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