Saturday, November 5, 2011

Don't Mess with Texas by Christie Craig

“I wanted to talk, but I wasn’t going to talk about sex. Not that I don’t like talking about sex. I just prefer having sex to talking about it.” He grinned. “But talking about it isn’t bad.”
Don’t Mess with Texas is my introduction to Christie Craig’s writing, and a delight to read! It was fresh, funny, and steamy and I loved the world she wrote. The characters are interesting, quirky people who I want to know more about. I’m fairly new to the straight, non-erotic, non-suspenseful Contemporary Romance genre, and unfortunately I don’t often find the stories detailed or interesting enough to hold my attention. Thankfully that’s not the case with this story!

Story blurb:
Nikki Hunt thought her night couldn't get worse when her no-good, cheating ex ditched her at dinner, sticking her with the bill. Then she found his body stuffed in the trunk of her car and lost her two-hundred-dollar meal all over his three-thousand-dollar suit. Now not only is Nikki nearly broke, she's a murder suspect.

Former cop turned PI, Dallas O'Connor knows what it's like to be unjustly accused. But one look at the sexy-though skittish-suspect tells him she couldn't hurt anyone. The lead detective, Dallas's own brother, has the wrong woman and Dallas hopes a little late-night "undercover" work will help him prove it . . .
I loved the ‘if something can go wrong, it will’ nature of the story because rather than angsty, those things were all handled with humor. Some of the funniest moments in the story could actually have been dismally dreary, but Ms. Craig did a great job of keeping it light, easy to follow and a joy to read. The family dynamic between Tony, Dallas and their father was laugh out loud funny at times, as well as heartwarming and poignant. The interactions with Dallas and his partners, Austin and Tyler – anyone else notice they’re all named after major Texas cities? – were also pretty darned funny at times, and that’s all part of what made the book so enjoyable. But I have to be honest and tell you, Bud, the English Bulldog with flatulence issues was one of my favorite characters. And speaking of Bud, this was one of my favorite scenes:
Her heart swelled with hope. “We should start all over, try dating, and just see—”

He put a finger over her lips. “No.”

Her chest grew tight.

“I don’t want to start over. I want you back at my place. Bud hasn’t been the same. He’s not eating right. I carried him to the vet and he said he’s depressed. He’s farting like crazy and there’s no one there to laugh with me about it. It’s pathetic.”

She chuckled. “This is supposed to make me want to go back?”

He smiled. “You love Bud. Don’t deny that.”

She took a deep breath and decided to be honest. “He’s not the only thing I love, Dallas. And that scares me because if you don’t feel the same way—”

“For God’s sake, Nikki, what the hell do you think I just said?”

She considered his question. “Saying you want me to share your dog’s farts is not saying you love me.” She laughed.

He dropped his head back on the sofa and laughed with her. Seconds later, he looked at her. “Then let me say it. I love you.” He kissed her nose. “I love all of you. There’s nothing I don’t love about you. The way you talk to yourself. The way you care about your crazy grandmother and her friends. The way you accept people and make everyone happy. Including me. You make me happy, Nikki. Do you know how long it’s been since I’ve been happy? Oh, and I love your body. I really love your body.”

She smiled. “I love you, too.”

“And my body?” he asked, his blue eyes twinkling with sexy humor.

She laughed again. “I love your body, too.”
The bottom line – This was a really enjoyable read. Christie Craig knows how to write fun, sensitive, honorable people who I couldn’t help but fall in love with! And the secondary characters were just as interesting, entertaining and captivating as Dallas and Nikki. And speaking of secondary characters, I think one of my favorite side stories was watching Dallas' dad, recently widowed, find new friends and reasons to keep living. I’m hoping that there will be more books coming because Austin and Tyler both need a happily ever after.

This ebook was provided free of charge by in behalf of Grand Central Publishing. This had no influence on my rating or review.

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