Lisa Creane's Reviews > Love and Let Die

Love and Let Die by Lexi Blake
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really liked it
bookshelves: america-contemporary-fiction, romance, erotica

Ian Taggart has been a smart, ferocious badass in every one of the previous stories, but has taken on more depth over time. Watching a secondary character develop throughout a series is a pleasure, and the suspense Lexi Blake built into Ian's story--his brother will barely talk to him after A Dom is Forever, the CIA op that led to his wife's supposed death is at the center of The Dom Who Loved Me, her reappearance is key to On Her Master's Secret Service--made this story great from the start.

The first half is BDSM romance, where the two of them try every which way to reconcile--and my favorite read of the series so far. The second half is romantic suspense, their teaming up to take down the bad guy that's been the main villain throughout the series (don't worry, there will be more). I'm not so much into the thriller part but if you love a lot of shooting, this will make you very happy.

Blake's writing is great, and her characters sparkle. Blake seems to take her time in writing the stories well so there are zingers flying all the time, especially from Ian but also from Charlie, his long-lost wife. They're both smart and sarcastic and suspicious and watching how that plays out in a Dom/sub relationship is a lot of fun.

Ian's gruff manner, passion for his wife, bewilderment about love, protective ego and impatience with the other (funny) characters trying to get him to talk about his feelings all play out in a convincing, entertaining, sometimes hilarious way. Charlie's determined, in an I've-been-trying-to-get-back-to-you-for-five-fucking-years kind of way and when he tries to take her out to the curb after she woos him with a sexual favor you know there will be revenge. It's clever and immediate and oh-so-sweet and his response--high protocol so she can't speak--is the same, and drives him as crazy as her.

They reject each other a few more times, each upping the stakes in return, and it's quite the sexual comedy, building the tension for when they both give in for their make-up sex, which is more poignant than explosive and totally fits the tone of the story. She's been a very good girl for him, and it packs an emotional punch when he gets this.

This is the second reunion of spouses in the series, and this one's weighed-down less by guild than the last. Ian's pretty much blameless for what happened, and Charlie had good reasons for what she did. It makes for a fresher story, less focused on recriminations.

The sex is also not as dominant as you'd expect with Ian, who has been, as his brother coughs out, a manwhore. Because they're not exploring each other through sex; they did that in the past, and know it's phenomenal, but sex didn't keep them together. This time, they're in it for love, and for that they'll have to trust each other.

Like Mr. And Mrs. Smith, but a lot better :).

When at the end, Charlie does something devious to defeat the bad guy and try to save her husband, Ian's admires her for being "smart and kind of really fucking mean" you know the two of them are meant for each other because that's totally Ian. But that's not the whole pictures, because they're also sweethearts in every sense of the word.


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Reading Progress

October 13, 2013 – Started Reading
October 14, 2013 – Shelved
October 14, 2013 – Finished Reading

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