Kinsley Scott’s life is perfect. She gets all the no-strings sex she can handle, she has a successful career as Laurel Lake, popular lesbian romance author, and she has a great relationship with her roommate and best friend, Leah. So what if she thinks the idea of a happily ever after is total garbage? Her fans don’t need to know that and they seem more than happy with the uber-positive brand image she’s cultivated for Laurel.
Grace Harper’s heart might be broken after her longterm girlfriend cheated on her and dumped her, but Grace hasn’t given up on love. When Leah, her childhood best friend, invites Grace to visit her in Philadelphia, Grace does something totally outside her comfort zone and packs enough stuff that she can spend the summer there before heading back to her teaching job in the fall. The fact that Leah lives with Laurel Lake, Grace’s favourite romance author? That’s just a bonus.
It doesn’t take long for Grace to learn that Kinsley is nothing like Laurel’s online persona. She’s an unrepentant player and is proud to be a total asshole. The two quickly start butting heads, leaving Leah with no other option: she’s going out of town for a two-week vacation and expects her best friends to (definitely not kiss and) figure things out. And as much as they keep butting heads at first, they both start to warm up to each other, especially as Kinsley helps Grace become more assertive. Grace is only in Philly for the summer and Kinsley doesn’t do attachments, so keeping things chill should be easy enough when they start hooking up, right?
Oh, did I ever love Kinsley and Grace! I gave this book a “Taming the beast/thawing ice queen” tag because whoa is Kinsley ever a beast at the beginning! She’s SUCH a jerk and yet I was charmed by her even from the beginning. It was incredibly satisfying to watch her calm down and start to gentle as she grows to care for Grace. On the flip side, I equally adored seeing how Grace grows a backbone thanks to her time with Kinsley, even if Kinsley annoys the hell out of her. They make such a fab couple and I adored their happily ever after.
And Leah… this book has such great friendship writing and I loved seeing how it worked between her and each of the leads. She’s so good at giving the kind of support they need, whether it’s a hug or a kick in the pants. May we all have a friend like Leah in our lives.
The Writing Style
Sunsets and Shades is written in the first person and alternates between Grace and Kinsley’s perspectives. Given how different they are (truly, opposites attract in this one), I appreciated getting to see into both of their experiences and emotions.
Everything worked for me in this book. The pacing is perfect, the romance is beautiful, their chemistry is sizzling, and the sex scenes are 🔥🔥🔥.
I was a sleepy zombie for a couple of days because it kept me up so late!
I love this book. Like, big time, feel-all-the-feelings, want-everyone-else-to-read-it-too, love it. If you like romance at all or are even just looking to dip your toe in the romance pool, run and get this one. Sunsets and Shades will live on my keeper shelf and I can’t wait to read it again.
Excerpt from Sunsets and Shades by Erica Lee
Leah pushed away from me and shook her head. “You’re disgusting.” She then started walking toward the door and turned around just before leaving. “Just take it easy on her, OK?”
“Of course. I promise.” I tapped my middle fingers together twice, which had somehow become our sacred sign of a promise at some point during our friendship. Leah gave me a satisfied grin, before completely retreating.
Before leaving the room, I switched out my glasses for contacts, then confidently marched down the hallway. I swaggered toward the couch where Grace was now sitting and stopped right in front of her, offering my hand. “If you’re going to be sticking around here, I need to reintroduce myself. I’m Kinsley Scott. Unlike Laurel Lake, I don’t believe in happy endings. I honestly think love is a crock of shit and you’re much better off alone anyway. Sex on the other hand… sex is where you should put your focus. I’m kind of a lady sex connoisseur myself, so if you need any advice on finding someone to bang, I’m in. But I can’t be expected to continue to spew this bullshit about happily ever after with you.”
Once I was done with my rant, Grace just stared up at me, eyes wide. “That’s… good to know.” She slowly nodded her head as she spoke. “I’m going to go to bed now.”
I watched her as she retreated back to Leah’s room, then turned back to look at Leah, who was now shaking her head at me. “What happened to taking it easy on her?”
I shrugged my shoulders. “That was me taking it easy on her.”
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Bits and Bobs
- ISBN number: 9781097568802
- Publisher: Indie Author
- Erica Lee Online
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