Series: Bluebonnet, #4
Publisher: Berkley, June 2014
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Playing innocent is easy.
After being the quiet, shy girl her whole life, Elise Markham is ready for a mental makeover. She’s done keeping to herself and staying out of trouble—it’s time to break out of her shell and maybe meet someone intriguing in the process. So, on a photography trip to Bluebonnet, she has a whole lot more on her mind than snapping photos, especially when Rome walks into the picture.
Playing dirty is fun.
The newest instructor at Wilderness Survival Expeditions has a colorful past, to say the least. Having come from a family of notorious con artists that destroyed his credit and reputation, all before his eighteenth birthday, Rome just wants a decent job and a quiet life in a town where no one knows his name. He’s exactly the kind of bad boy that an innocent girl like Elise should stay far away from.
But Elise is tired of doing what’s right. She’s ready to throw caution to the wind—and let Rome show her just how exciting being bad can be…
Elise Markham didn’t think the sexy, tattooed Rome noticed her. Why would he? She couldn’t utter a word in his presence without feeling like a fool. Instead, she’s determined to love him from afar…but what she doesn’t know is that the sexy Rome has his eye on her.
A self-made man, Rome has seen the dark and dirty of the world, but pulled himself out of it. He can’t keep his eyes off Elise, but how can he be with her when he can’t shake the shadows?
The Virgin’s Guide to Misbehaving was a hit/miss for me.
- I loved their chemistry. It was so deep and real. Set against their own personal issues, it was astonishing the pages didn’t catch fire.
- The romance was sweet. I loved Rome’s reference to her as “my girl.” The light possessiveness was lovely in small doses.
- The continuation of Bluebonnet was great. It was nice to see other characters play small cameos, but not overtake the novel.
- I started to really tire of Rome’s self-deprecating remarks. It soon felt like he couldn’t pay her a compliment without degrading himself, either mentally or out loud. It was hard to cheer for him when he didn’t even cheer for himself.
- Throughout The Virgin’s Guide, Elise is painfully shy. She has to get drunk on beer to even talk to Rome in the beginning. By the end, she’s the image of confidence. The journey wasn’t there to support this transition and left me feeling like Elise had dual personality disorder instead of character growth.
In the end, The Virgin’s Guide gets a great rating on the steamy scenes, but the lack of character development brought down what would have otherwise been a stellar story. With a little extra oomph for the characters, this would have easily been a five star book.