Lovin' los libros

A book blog dedicated to young adult and new adult novels

Review: Staking His Claim by Tessa Bailey

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Staking His Claim (Line of Duty #5)
   by: Tessa Bailey

Publication Date: Feb. 3, 2014
Publisher: Entangled: Brazen
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Group: Adult
Source: e-ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.
Page Count: 176 pages
Order Links: Amazon | B&N
My Rating: 4/5 stars

He wants her. All of her.

NYPD sniper Matt Donovan is in Hell. Instead of driving his best friend’s little sister home from college, he’s stuck with her roommate—a fresh-faced ray-of-sunshine with a body that makes grown men weep. There’s no way he’ll allow himself to taint the little vixen, no matter how hard she tries to tempt him, so he resigns himself to the longest—and hardest—drive of his life.

Matt’s obvious attraction suits grad student Lucy Mason just fine. She had no idea her brother’s best friend was so deliciously hot. Knowing he’d never have his wicked way with his buddy’s sister, she lies about her identity and seduces him. But Matt’s no fumbling college boy. His desires run deep—and dark—and he wants to teach Lucy what wicked really means.

Matt’s demanding appetites only make Lucy want more. But when her cover's blown, he’s furious—even as his hunger for her becomes insatiable. Matt can’t trust anyone, least of all himself. And he knows all too well that darkness always destroys the light…

Let me put it this way: this book was so HOT, I actually had to check my hands for burn marks by the end of it. Tessa Bailey knows how to bring the steam and her latest book in the Line of Duty series is no exception! She has created two very sexual characters that deviate from the sexual norms and give us a scorching, tantalizing journey of how just how far each of them is willing to go when it comes to one another.
After having graduating from college, Lucy Mason is heading back to New York City to start the next chapter in her life. Having been ditched last minute by her best friend Sasha, she now must make the trip alone- with her older brother's best friend at the wheel. Meeting Matt Donovan in person is an experience that Lucy will never forget. Nor is overhearing him mention that he heard she was a bit of a nuisance. She is hurt by this, as she does feel that way when it comes to her family. After getting into some trouble, Lucy gave up her wilder ways and buckled down to do what she needed in order to help her family. Having Matt Donovan eye her in the coffee shop like he wants to devour her from the inside out, launches her into a lie so he will continue looking at her in that way. Yet Lucy has no idea what looms just under the surface with Matt. She finds out his desires run darker and instead of shying away from him like most women do, she embraces his darker side and finds she's a bit more wicked in her tastes than she originally thought.
Of course, there's only so long that Lucy can keep up the act of being someone other than herself. Living in New York, where she's bound to meet up with her brother's friend again, she knows she needs to come clean about her true identity, but doesn't.
If there's one type of Matt Donovan can't stand- it's a liar. He is angry and upset once he finds out just who made that mini road trip with him. He knows he should stay away from Lucy for a number of reasons and yet he finds himself seeking her out, even after she had lied to him. While this bordered on stalker, I actually really liked how Matt would show up (as she left her itinerary in his car). Seeing Matt's playful side with Lucy is really sweet and by far my favorite sweet scene of the book is the FM. (Guess you'll have to read to find out what that is!)
I liked Matt's character, but he drove me a little crazy with the self-deprecation. He is the one who constantly pushes Lucy away and then pulls her right back in again. He knows it's wrong to sneak around with her behind her brother's back, but most of all he's insistent she won't be able to withstand the darkness within him and will turn heel and run for the hills. Women have been disgusted by Matt's deviate sexual nature in the past, leaving him a bit self-conscious about his approach. He looks at Lucy and sees goodness and light and he knows spending time with him will only drag her down and he would resent himself for taking that light away from her.  Yet Matt is the one who constantly hurts Lucy with his words (or lack thereof), not his actions. She is all for the mixing of pleasure and pain, and likes him being in control. However, Matt has a really hard time reconciling that this beautiful, wonderful girl could really want to be with him and give in to his needs.
I enjoyed this story quite a bit, but I did feel there were a few points towards the end that seemed a bit rushed for me. Matt spends most of the book fighting his inner demons about how to deal with Lucy and I felt like I missed the falling in love part. We went from blind attraction and lust to love and while I do believe he absolutely loves her, I just felt we missed those moments where we got to see him stop and realize that he wanted to fight for her and not against her.
Despite that minor issue, I really enjoyed Matt and Lucy's story and fans of the Line of Duty series will really oooh and aaah over that adorable epilogue!

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  1. Burn marks, you're hilarious! I kind of agree on the "rushed" front. And I can only take so much self-deprecation before I wanna slit my throat, but it's Tessa and her characters! I love them all. It was still a fantastic read. And yes, that epilogue! Great review!

    1. Haha! Yes! Save for those minor issues, I still enjoyed myself immensely! I can't wait to go back and read books 2-4!

  2. Ohhh this one sounds awesome and I just one-clicked it the other day! So many brazens for me to catch up on! Once I finish review books, I sneaking one of these in. Great review!

    1. YAY! I love when you one click! Hahah! I love sneaking Brazens in! They are so fast, it doesn't really feel like you're cheating on review books!

  3. Wow girly this sounds super sexy!! OMG I LOVE a guy who's a little deviant ;) they make for the best characters!! Great Review Love I'll have to check this series out!

    1. It is SO sexy Ria! Whew! I was seriously red from blushing so much!

  4. "Let me put it this way: this book was so HOT, I actually had to check my hands for burn marks by the end of it."

    That is a great line! I can't wait to read this one.

    1. Hehe, thanks Andrea! I don't usually blush when reading these types of books, but this one? I was red the whole time! LOL.

  5. Those covers sure are risque! lol this one sounds ahem...interesting! I still haven't read a Brazen, just the Flirt series which got me flustered so I am imagine it would be full on flail with these!! Don't know if I could handle it, I may get the vapours like a southern belle ;) Great review love!

    1. The Brazen covers are always so sexy! Hahaha! They are definitely steamy, steamy, steamy! I love them!

  6. You are your Brazens! LOL This one didn't catch my eye like the other Brazens have, though. Still, they ARE on sale so... ;)

    Great review!

    1. Heheh, Tessa Bailey is one of my new favorites, so I HAD to snag this up! I love that they're doing a sale this month!

  7. Matt Donovan is CALIENTE!!!! I'm a huge Tessa Bailey fan. All her Dirty Talkers are at the top of my BBF list ;)

    I loved all of The Line of Duty Series. Great review, Jessica!

    Mikki @A Bookish Escape

    1. Hahaha! She really knows how to write the sexiest dirty talking alphas! Whew! I loved Matt!


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