Double QuickScore-Review: WINTER FIRE and HIDDEN FIRE by Jess Dee

 There’s never been any question in Rachel Ashberg’s mind. Jackson Brooks is the one, and they both know it. The problem? Thanks to his unbreakable rule—never date his twin sister’s friends—he’s completely off-limits. Even if they can’t imagine being with anyone else.

It’s been over two years since their last encounter, when they gave in—just once—to their passion. Now, as the Brooks twins’ milestone birthday approaches, Rachel and Jackson are about to meet again at a gorgeous mountain resort. Needing something to take the edge off the desire that has never faded, she indulges in a fling with sexy stranger Garreth Halt. He even makes her forget Jackson for a while. Or…maybe not.

When she mentions Jackson’s name in passing, Garreth picks up on all the hidden undertones in her voice. And he brings Jackson into their bed, if only in a fantasy they play out together. Funny thing about Garreth’s fantasies, though. Even the most improbable, impossible ones have a way of becoming reality…

Warning: Enough heat is contained within these pages that you won’t even notice the winter cold. You might fall in love with Jackson—the real-life hero, determined to protect his sister from further pain—but it’s the handsome stranger, Garreth, who’ll take your breath away.

Title: WINTER FIRE
Author: Jess Dee
Series: Fire, book 1 – A Red Hot Winter story
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Year of release: 2010, January 4
Format: eBook
Source: Bought via Samhain’s eBook-store

First line: Heat radiated from the stone fireplace, warming the room.

Memorable Scenes:
– the ménage scene > *fans self*

QuickScore-Verdict:

WINTER FIRE is short and extremely hot! I pegged Garreth from the very start, suspecting he was more than just a stranger and I was happy to see that my hunch about him was spot-on.

I missed more active input by Jenna. She played a huge passive role in the romance and in all the main characters’ lives but other than being told about her, she didn’t participate in the story and I missed that. Also, the ending was rather sudden, I wanted more closure and to see Jenna’s reaction but I’m hoping Jess Dee will fix that in HIDDEN FIRE, the sequel to this story that’s coming out in January 2012.

The ménages Jess Dee writes are indescribable. There are one of a kind in both heat and emotion. They are not for everyone but I gobble them up like a starving woman who finds herself at an all-you-can-eat buffet.

Jess Dee has an amazing knack for combining scorching heat with intense emotion, which I love about her writing. She really doesn’t shy away from heavy difficult emotional stuff and manages to combine it with some sexy explicitness, turning het books into unconventional stories that make a lasting impression on me.

Favorite Quotes:
She laughed out loud. “You really are flirting, aren’t you?” And was she ever responding. A tingling awareness flowed through her, an open recognition of the energy that crackled between them.

His full, lush lips took hers in a blistering kiss. A kiss so wicked it shook her very foundations. It burned off the cold, replacing it with a fierce heat that seared her from her mouth right through to her feminine core.
He tasted of scotch and man and sex—every bit as scrumptious as she’d anticipated.
Better.

Her lips. Her full, ripe lips. Kissing him back. Pressing against his with the same urgency he felt. They did him in. Stripped away whatever self-control he had left. He swept his tongue inside her mouth, losing himself to her taste. (Jackson)

Jackson caught her, spun her around and kissed her. So forcefully she couldn’t breathe. But that was okay. What was a little life-saving oxygen when the man she’d loved forever kissed her as though his very life depended on it?

Rachel had trouble remembering to breathe. How could she, when every sense was inundated by these beautiful men? When Garreth, the gorgeous stranger she’d grown so fond of, tantalized her neck with tiny kisses and tormented her breasts with perfect strokes of his hands? When Jackson, the man she’d loved forever and given up hoping for, kissed her like he might never kiss another woman again?

♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

 Dirty desires, dark secrets…deepest love

Well, this is an unexpected twist. Jenna Brooks is all set to spend the weekend wallowing in misery, repairing the cracks in the façade she’s maintained for twelve years. Instead she’s…tied to a chair. Kidnapped by her own twin brother and her so-called best friend.

It’s for her own good, they say. She’ll thank them later, they say. But when they reveal her partner in captivity, she shores up her emotional barriers. It’s Garreth Halt. The one man for whom she let her guard down. What a fool she was.

For one electrifying moment, Garreth had Jenna naked in his arms, on the edge of losing her legendary control. Could have kept her there forever, too, if he hadn’t felt honor-bound to tell her the truth. Before she’d heard the whole truth, though, she’d retreated behind the fortress around her heart.

Now they’re knee to knee, with no escape. While he’s irritated he let his alleged best friend get the drop on him, a small part of him is thrilled. With one final chance to show her his love is real, Garreth methodically, wickedly, sets out to dismantle her defenses.

One dirty word at a time.

Warning: Garreth may have charmed you in Winter Fire, but this time around, his blatantly sexy demands, even sexier actions and heart warming love for his heroine are gonna make you fall head over heels.

Title: HIDDEN FIRE
Author: Jess Dee
Series: Fire, book 2 – A Red Hot Weekend story
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance
Publisher: Samhain Publishing
Year of release: 2012, January 31
Format: eBook
Source: Received an e-ARC from author for review

First line:Jackson Brooks lifted his glass in the air and held it out in a toast. “Happy birthday, sis.”

Memorable Scenes:
– the kidnapping scene > hilarious
– Garreth goading Jenna into losing control > WOW! is all I can say

QuickScore-Verdict:

Control is important to Jenna Brooks but Garreth Halt makes her want to let loose and relinquish the reigns/reins. She has repressing her emotions and putting up walls around herself into an art because she cannot afford to fall apart. I really liked Garreth’s honesty towards Jenna. His determination to break down her defenses and reach her emotionally was formidable.

I loved that the first pages of HIDDEN FIRE cleared up the only thing that bothered me a little in WINTER FIRE: how did Jenna feel about her brother Jackson and her best friend Rachel being in love?

Heat, humor and intense emotions are fixed elements in Jess Dee’s writing. The combination never fails to reel me in and keep me glued to the pages once I start reading. Her sex scenes are arousing and exquisite. They set the pages on fire. And if that on its own isn’t enough, she combines those scorching scenes with emotions that rip your heart out. Love that!

There are a few authors that make me sound repetitive in my praise of their writing and Jess Dee is certainly among them. She tackles risky subjects and tropes in her own unapologetic way and delivers little jems filled with sizzling heat and heartrending emotions. I didn’t think it possible but I loved HIDDEN FIRE even more than I loved WINTER FIRE and that is a ménage, my fave trope in erotic romance…Go figure!

Favorite Quotes:
A soft, seductive whimper escaped her mouth, whispered over his neck and sent tingles down his spine. She shifted, flattening her hips against his, pushing hard against his erection, molding herself to its shape. The groan she emitted was a carnal hum.
It took a second, no more, but Garreth saw stars.

And then her lips were on his, kissing him, her tongue probing entry into his mouth.
He’d seen stars before? Hell, comets were crashing into earth now. Jenna, in his arms, kissing him. Disbelief froze him in place—for all of about three seconds—before he kissed her back, wrestling for control, taking her mouth as he plunged his tongue between her lips.
She tasted like cream and sugar all wrapped up in one succulent treat. Her need—her desire—intoxicated him. He sipped from her mouth, drank from it like a parched man.

This was a side to Jenna he’d never seen before. The woman who controlled her every move and considered her every word, had vanished. This Jenna acted purely on instinct, and her open hunger for him fed his greed.
If she carried on like this, he wouldn’t get a chance to make love to her. He’d come in his freaking pants.

He cursed the ropes, dug his fingers into the binds, searched blindly for the knot. And spoke. Didn’t stop speaking. Couldn’t. Not when she listened to every word. Whether she had a choice or not, she was hearing him. And whatever he said was having an effect. Jenna was losing control. One dirty word at a time.

Her kiss was wild and uninhibited, as though she gave no thought to technique and merely gave in to her instinct to make him hers.
Garreth let her. Let her lead him with her gluttony, consume him with her voracious appetite. Let her take forceful command of his mouth. His body, his senses, his soul. She was the one tied to the chair, yet he was the one who couldn’t move one damn muscle.

But this was Garreth, and with Garreth she finally felt free enough to shake off her inhibitions. Under his encouragement, she’d given herself to him completely. Given in to the forbidden lusts she hadn’t allowed herself to acknowledge for so long.
Problem was, now that she had acknowledged them, they refused to remain hidden. Garreth had released the devil in her, and the devil wanted to play.

Jenna’s appalled gasp made Garreth grin. What a paradox his woman was. A prudish, prim soul on the outside, horrified by Rachel’s less than subtle jabs at how many times Garreth had come last night, and a wild, uninhibited vixen on the inside. Deep, deep down on the inside. Where no one could see. Well, almost no one. Just him.

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