I chose to review Beautiful Stranger the TBR Challenge for April.
Beautiful Stranger by Christina Lauren
Series: Beautiful Bastard #2
Escaping a cheating ex, finance whiz Sara Dillon’s moved to New York City and is looking for excitement and passion without a lot of strings attached. So meeting the irresistible, sexy Brit at a dance club should have meant nothing more than a night’s fun. But the manner—and speed—with which he melts her inhibitions turns him from a one-time hookup and into her Beautiful Stranger.
The whole city knows that Max Stella loves women, not that he’s ever found one he particularly wants to keep around. Despite pulling in plenty with his Wall Street bad boy charm, it’s not until Sara—and the wild photos she lets him take of her—that he starts wondering if there’s someone for him outside of the bedroom.
Hooking up in places where anybody could catch them, the only thing scarier for Sara than getting caught in public is having Max get too close in private.
I read Beautiful Bastard years ago and did not enjoy it. I did read two other CL titles afterwards and really enjoyed them so I thought I’d go back and read book 2. I am happy to say that it was leaps better than Beautiful Bastard.
Sara Dillon is new to New York and she’s going out dancing with friends. She’s just come out of a relationship that was not good for her (her ex cheated on her). So she flirts with a guy at the bar, not expecting -or wanting- anything to happen. But she has a reckless urge to hook up with her sexy stranger – right there, in the club. They do hook up in an alcove and then Sara walks away, not sharing her name.
This intrigues Max. Max is a known player in NYC and for a woman not to want to see him again, it means he can’t stop thinking about her. Luckily for him, Sara is friends with his friend’s wife. After another scorching encounter, Sara proposes a friends with benefits arrangement with Max. The only catch being they can’t have sex in a bed – Sara is embracing her newfound exhibitionist streak.
Without giving anything away, eventually the meet ups aren’t enough for either Sara or Max but she’s got baggage from her ex and he is not known for commitment.
Ok, I really enjoyed this one. I liked that Sara and Max’s relationship didn’t develop in a typical way. I liked that Max encouraged Sara’s new kinky side. He helped her in a non-shaming way that let her be brave enough to try new things. And that’s the kind of guy Max was. He was a good guy. Despite not having a serious relationship before, he was there for Sara. Even though they weren’t in a ‘relationship.’ Sara’s issues about relationships made sense and I get why she reacted the way she did when she thought Max did what he did. The sex scenes were hot and the romance was sweet. I was looking forward to jumping into book 3 but when I checked the blurb, I realized I read it already. LOL So I’ll start the Wild Seasons series soon.