Licked, a hilarious romantic comedy, is the first novel in a new series by Brooke Blaine. The book features a realistic heroine who's spunky, has a flair for vintage fashion, and is caught between two very different men. Did I mention her ice cream store that is full of flavours with naughty names? Tell me you're not intrigued! I sure was and Blaine delivered exactly the kind of novel I was expecting. It was fun and I was entertained throughout.
Here's the synopsis:
As the owner of Licked, an eclectic ice creamery and bar, Ryleigh Phillips doesn't have time for that love stuff. Serving up Nibble My Nuts sundaes and Drunken Sailor boozy shakes are as close to an orgasmic affair as she's had in months thanks to her expanding empire—until the night of her ten-year high school reunion.The actual storyline of this novel isn't what I enjoyed the most. I mean, I did like the plot but what set this book apart is the way it was told. Curse words and innuendo were used liberally in this book, which I appreciated. To me, it's just not natural if there isn't at least one f bomb in the whole novel. But maybe that's just me because I can sometimes (ok, often) swear like a sailor. Apart from the speech, the rest of the story - the setting, the characters, their lives - was so relatatable, and that is always something I love to have in the books I read.
When Ryleigh's crush, gorgeous ex-football god Cameron Mathis, comes streaking into her life (literally—streaking), she begins to wonder if she really can have it all.
Wouldn't it just figure that the moment you think life is perfect is when it falls spectacularly apart?
Enter Hunter Morgan, the contractor in charge of Licked's renovations. Devastatingly handsome, and a smartass to boot, he's got his eyes on Ryleigh from the moment he finds her passed out on his couch (yeah, that's a long story). There's just one tiny complication—he happens to be Cameron's best friend.
When the lines between relationships and friendships blur, and it's impossible to choose between two delicious flavors, what's a girl to do? Taste a sample of each? Or go out and get LICKED?
I also liked that Ryleigh's friends are more than just the stereotypical BFFs you find in romcoms. They had their own, distinct personalities that had me interested in their lives too. I'm sure that probably has something to do with the fact that Licked is the first in a series, L.A. Liaisons, so her friends will become main characters themselves. (The next, Hooker, is out now!) Nothing is more annoying that having a vivacious main character with best friends who aren't good for anything but being spoken to. She may as well have a cat.
Of course, I did like the story. It almost veered into cliche territory with the whole reconnecting with a high school crush and then falling for his best friend, but somehow Blaine made it work. One of the relationships was so ho-hum boring and the other was blistering hot with a touch of sweetness (being a romcom, you can probably figure out which was which). Because I loved Ryleigh, I really wanted her to make the best decision for her. She did but, boy, did it take awhile for her to get there! Actually...the getting there was half the fun of the novel!
Overall, Licked was a lot of fun. Brooke Blaine has created a series with real, likeable women who find themselves in situations that almost any twentysomething could relate to. I'm really looking forward to reading Hooker sometime soon! Now, where can I find an ice cream parlour that serves flavours like Crushed Nuts and Ground-Shaking Orgasms?
*A copy of this novel was provided by the author via Rockstar PR in exchange for a review. All opinions are honest and my own.*