Review: A LOT LIKE LOVE by Julie James

THE FBI WANTS HER COOPERATION.
As the daughter of a billionaire and the owner of the city’s top wine store, Jordan Rhodes is invited to the most exclusive parties in Chicago. But there’s only one party the FBI wants to crash: the charity fundraiser of a famous restaurateur, who also happens to launder money for the mob. In exchange for her brother’s release from prison, Jordan is going to be there—with a date supplied by the Bureau.

AGENT MCCALL JUST WANTS HER.

As the top undercover agent in Chicago, Nick McCall has one rule: never get personal. This “date” with Jordan Rhodes is merely an assignment—one they’re both determined to pull off even if they can’t be together for five minutes before the sarcasm and sparks begin to fly. But when Nick’s investigation is compromised, he and Jordan have no choice but to pretend they’re a couple, and what starts out as a simple assignment begins to feel a lot like something more. . .


Title: A LOT LIKE LOVE
Author: Julie James
Series: Connected to the previous book (SOMETHING ABOUT YOU) and the upcoming book (ABOUT THAT NIGHT, Apr 2012) through the characters, don’t know if it’s been labeled with a series name.
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Year of release: 2011, March 1
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Source: Bought via The Book Depository

First line:
From the moment Nick McCall walked into his boss’s office, he knew something was up.

Memorable Scenes:
– Jordan teaching Nick about wine tasting at the Eckhart party > so funny, especially Nick’s dry remarks
– bath tub scene > fan yourself moment

FBI Agent Nick McCall has a dry kind of wit, is straightforward and a quick thinker. Wine-store owner Jordan Rhodes and she’s smart, independent and kind. They are perfectly matched as they’re both quick-witted and sarcastic. There was some great chemistry between Nick and Jordan that starts off with just the right amount of hostility/dislike to make it interesting to see when and how they’d really fall for each other and admit to the attraction simmering between them. It also was the spark for some awesome and witty dialogues.

I really liked the mix of Chicago’s upper class and the FBI agents that formed the secondary cast for this book. I was doubly happy to see Sam again. I have a soft spot for Sam and I will keep buggering Julie James about him until he gets his book. In this book top favorite secondary character Sam was almost outshined by Martin, Jordan’s assistant. He was a delightful character and addition to this book. Also loved seeing Jack and Cameron again, as I always like it when previous main couples make an appearance in later books.

Julie James’ books read like movies/TV shows. Movies and shows I like to watch. The plot in this book is catching a money-laundering criminal. I liked this suspense plot and how it was wrapped up. It goes perfectly with the romance part of the book and never takes over to push the book from contemporary romance to romantic suspense. Another thing I loved was the references to movies and TV shows, which will be lost on readers who don’t/didn’t watch them but put a knowing grin on the readers that do/did

I really like Julie James’ writing. You start reading and before you know it you’re dozens of pages further. She meshes the romance and law enforcement stuff effortlessly and easily. And she’s a master at fun and witty dialogues. Whether between the main couple or secondary characters, her dialogues are always a pleasure to read and one of the strong points in her books, as is the sarcastic wit. I broke out in laughter several times reading A LOT LIKE LOVE and only second to emotionally being shaken up that’s what I love most when I read a book and what makes it a successful read.

A LOT LIKE LOVE is a cross between contemporary romance and romantic suspense without the dramatic stuff. A fun, quick read that kept me reading well into the night, as I just couldn’t put it away. It was light but fascinating and just the fact that I’m tempted to go to a wine tasting now, while I’m a absolutely NOT a wine drinker except for an occasional sweet white, says plenty about Julie James’ wonderful writing.

Favorite Quotes:
Her voice was low, her tone as cold as the air. “The next time you want to know something, Agent McCall, don’t bother to sweet-talk me first. Just ask.”
“I assure you, Ms. Rhodes, when I sweet-talk a woman, she knows it.”

Jordan examined it curiously. “I can’t believe how small it is.”
“It picks up voices from fifty feet away, even through clothing. Ally you need to do is tuck it inside your bra.” His eyes went to the V of her neckline. “Assuming you’re wearing a bra with that dress.”
“Nope. Just Band-Aids over my nipples.”
Six years working undercover for the FBI, another five years on NYPD vice, but damn if Nick had a clue how to handle that predicament.
Jordan grinned. “I’m kidding.” She twirled her finger. “Turn around.”
He complied.
Don’t think about her nipples. Don’t think about her nipples.
He was thinking about her nipples.

That was his fake girlfriend in there. Sitting at the table where they had just shared cheese fries the night before. And if she thought she could throw scorching hot sex-looks to any pansy-ass scarf-boy who wandered into her shop, she had another think coming.
He had a look of his own to show the douchebag.
It was time to break out the don’t-fuck-with-me face.

(Jordan to Nick) “Oh , blow your undercover op out of your ass. […]”

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