Thursday, February 2, 2012

Review: Instant Attraction by Jill Shalvis

Title: Instant Attraction
Author: Jill Shalvis
Published: February 2009 (Kensington Publishing Corp.)
Rating: 3/5
Summary: Accountant Katie Kramer is a quintessential good girl—working hard, recycling diligently, all the while trying to ignore the feeling that she doesn't fit in anywhere. That's all she wants. Well, that—and amazing sex, and the kind of daredevil escapade she can look back on when she's crunching numbers in a dusty cubicle. Which explains why she just took a job in Wishful, California, working for Wilder Adventures and Expeditions. Waking up to find a magnificently built stranger towering over her bed—that part defies explanation...

After wandering the planet for months following a life-changing accident, Cameron Wilder has come back to the only home he knows. Under other circumstances, he might be thrilled to find a gorgeous woman sleeping in his cabin, but now, while he'll risk his body taking clients on adrenaline-drenched excursions, his heart is off limits. Still, Katie's killer smile triggers something deep in his gut...among other places. Showing her how exhilarating it can be to stop balancing her life as if it was a checkbook is the biggest rush he's ever felt—and an adventure Katie's wishing would never end. . .

My Review: This was my first Jill Shalvis. I had heard good things about this series from a fellow romance-loving friend of mine, and I was in the mood for a "small northern town" contemporary romance. Ergo, I thought of this series immediately. It was a good read. The very first scene had me laughing out loud! Cam and Katie had some great banter throughout the book. They also had some insane chemistry and really great almost-moments. And holy cow, can Shalvis write a sex scene! I felt the need for a cold shower a couple times.

I really loved Katie. She was feisty and witty without being obnoxious about it. She had a habit of talking to herself, which was endearing, and she had some real things to work on with herself. I enjoyed reading her journey. Cam was sexy and awesome, but he came with his share of issues that got old fast. The supporting characters were intriguing, and I really enjoyed the subplot. In fact, I was rooting for that couple just as much as I was rooting for Cam and Katie.

Now, for some quotes. Because Shalvis just writes some immensely quotable lines, I will say.

Like the newly brave woman she was, she threw the covers over her head and hoped he hadn't seen her.
You ever have a day that's just a complete waste of mascara?
"Do you exercise?"
"It's on my to-do list." At the bottom, but still...
On the one hand, it sounded like a great adventure. On the other, it sounded like an unusual obituary.

This was my first Jill Shalvis. It was an enjoyable read, but in my opinion, it does not showcase her best work. I have since read 3 more by Shalvis, and I'm in the middle of another. All of these have been substantially better than Instant Attraction, and she is quickly becoming one of my favorite contemporary romance authors. This is funny because it is exactly what happened with Julia Quinn. I had heard great things about her, so I picked up The Secret Diaries of Miss Miranda Cheever. I was less than impressed. But then I gave her another shot, and I discovered her brilliance. I think it's good that I am reminded of that now and again. An author might just be okay or good in one book, but their next book might be utterly stupendous. I think I am going to challenge myself to read at least one more book this year by an author of whom I did not have the best first impression.

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