Blush (Black Rose #1) by Helen Hardt
ABOUT THE BOOK
What he wants from you will make you…Blush.
Amanda Thomas is hopelessly in love with Jackson Paris, but he will never see her as anything more than his sweet and innocent bestie. After being virgin-adjacent for too long, Mandy is officially ready to move on. She wants to learn about hot, dirty sex, so she joins an online dating app where the enigmatic Mr. Dark promises to fulfill all of her wicked fantasies…
Jackson Paris has been keeping secrets from his stunning, too-innocent best friend—like forbidden sexual proclivities and his membership at the exclusive Black Rose Underground club. But Mandy has decided she needs an education—the filthy kind. As Mr. Dark, Jackson can safely give her a taste of what she wants—and deter her from pursuing more—without revealing his identity.
But in the dim, provocative atmosphere of Black Rose Underground, there are no secrets. Here, every wicked appetite is satisfied. And for the first time, Mandy will discover who her best friend really is…just in time to shock him with a secret of her own.
When I want to get an erotica fix, I go to Helen Hardt. When best friends decide to try the dark side of sex, will it ruin their friendship?
Amanda Thomas has loved her best friend Jackson Paris forever, but he only sees them as friends. When she decides to move on and explore her sexual side, Jackson interferes by trying to scare her off at a sex club, but it only intrigues her more.
I like that Amanda tries to grow and put herself out there. Though she claims to be an introvert, she really comes out of her shell when she’s determined to show Jackson that she can take care of herself. It’s Jackson who needs to grow up and stop treating her like the little girl she was when they first met. I mean stop calling her “Mandy Cakes” for God’s sake. She’s 29 years old. His own insecurities about his private sex life are getting in the way and he’s afraid he will lose Amanda if she sees his dark side. However, it’s true about submissives having control in the bedroom because Amanda is in charge while she inadvertently seduces and coaxes Jackson to do her bidding. Jackson’s turmoil and Amanda’s growing confidence is a powerful aphrodisiac as they eventually find their HEA.
Amanda’s sister Frankie is hard to read. She’s getting married to a man child and she doesn’t seem happy about it. In fact, neither of them does from what happens at the cliffhanger ending. I can’t wait to explore that relationship further. Also, it’s always good to see returning characters from another series. Ben Black, brother of Braden from the Follow Me series, is a good friend to Jackson as he helps move along their relationship in a very enticing way.
Overall, I enjoyed the story, but I thought the unnecessary incident with Jackson at the end threw it off course a little. Friends to lovers is always a fun theme to explore and the author does a fine job bringing the characters even closer. I can’t wait to read more of this series.
Thank you to Ms. Hardt for giving me the opportunity to read this book with no expectation of a positive review.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
#1 New York Times, #1 USA Today, and #1 Wall Street Journal bestselling author Helen Hardt’s passion for the written word began with the books her mother read to her at bedtime. She wrote her first story at age six and hasn’t stopped since. In addition to being an award-winning author of romantic fiction, she’s a mother, an attorney, a black belt in Taekwondo, a grammar geek, an appreciator of fine red wine, and a lover of Ben and Jerry’s ice cream. She writes from her home in Colorado, where she lives with her family. Helen loves to hear from readers.