Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Blog Tour & Book Review: Straight Up Love by Lexi Ryan

Straight Up Love
by Lexi Ryan
The Boys of Jackson Harbor #2
Genre: Standalone Contemporary Romance
Release Date: May 8th, 2018

From New York Times bestselling author Lexi Ryan comes a sexy new standalone romance about a woman who’d do anything to have a baby and the man who’d do anything to have her…

For my 30th birthday, I’m giving myself the one thing I want most: a baby. Sure, this would be easier if I had a husband—or even a boyfriend—but I refuse to be thwarted by minor details.

When I drunkenly confess my plans to my friends, they convince me to ask Jake Jackson for help. Jake, the best friend who’s been there for me through thick and thin. Jake, who also happens to be smart, funny, ridiculously good looking, and the winner of all the genetic lotteries.

So when Jake takes me up on my request—with the stipulation that we get the job done the old-fashioned way—I’d be a fool to decline.

The only problem? I don’t know if I can separate sex from all the things I feel for this amazing man. If I can’t keep my heart under lock and key, I risk losing the relationship I need the most.

Jake has his own reasons for granting my baby wish. But when I discover his secrets, it could mean the end of us. I have to choose—run or stay and fight for love.

Fall for the boys of Jackson Harbor in Lexi Ryan’s sexy new contemporary romance series. These books can all be read as standalones, but you’ll enjoy reading them as a series!

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Ava’s crawling back down the bed and pulling the covers over her head.
“Can we talk about this?” I ask.
“No,” she says, her voice muffled.
I cross the room and pull the blanket off her head. I know she’s hungover, but I can’t just walk away from this conversation. I barely slept last night, freaking torn up about her pregnancy and all its implications, and now she’s telling me she’s not pregnant. She just wants to be, and she wants my help.
What the fuck does that mean?
“Talk.” I fold my arms across my chest.
“I want a family, and I’m sick of waiting for Mr. Right to come along, so I’m going to do it on my own.”
“And you want my help?” Hell. I’m trying really hard not to jump to conclusions here. Emphasis on hard.
“Yeah. I mean, no. I mean . . .” She takes a deep breath. “It sounded like a good idea last night.”
Doing baby-making things with Ava sounds like a good idea to me every minute of every hour of every damn day, but I’m quite aware that doing that with me doesn’t cross her mind nearly as often. Okay, or ever. “Last night, when you asked for my help, you meant you wanted me to get you pregnant?”
She scowls. “Are you being dense on purpose?”
“I promise I’m not.” But if ever there was a conversation where I’m going to need things spelled out for me, this is it. “I just want to make sure I understand.”
She presses her palm to her forehead. “I just wanted you to jack off in a cup and hand it to me. Not the weird way.”
Right. Because that wouldn’t be weird. “I’m sorry.” I hold up a finger. “Give me a sec.” I walk around the room, scanning the ceiling and the corners. I check behind the lamp and crack the closet to look in there.
“What are you doing, Jake?”
I spin on her. “I’m looking for the camera—the one you planted before you Punk’d me. Is that show even still a thing? Because I’m sure I’m being Punk’d right now.”

About the author:

Lexi Ryan is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of emotional romance that sizzles. A former academic and English professor, Lexi considers herself the luckiest girl around to make a living through storytelling. She loves spending time with her crazy kids, weightlifting, ice cream, swoony heroes, and vodka martinis.
Lexi lives in Indiana with her husband, two children, and a spoiled dog. You can find her at her website:

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My review:

‘”Would you put some cheese in my eggs?”’
Straight Up Love was a sweet book that I adored and which was absolutely well written. I was laughing and swooning because it started out so great but I thought that the story generally fell a bit flat. The pace was ok though I wish it would have picked up some more as there often wasn’t much happening. I would be lying if I said that I didn’t love some moments in this book but there were also times when it felt a bit dragging and more of a 3 Star read.

There’s nothing more to say about the story than what the blurb already gives us of two best friends who loved each other since they were kids but weren’t aware of the other one’s feelings.
‘I wish I could tilt her chin up so she was forced to meet my eyes, but we don’t touch like that, and if I touched her face right now, I know I’d want to slide my hand into her hair and lower my mouth to hers.’
Closer to the end was a little twist that has me looking forward to the coming books because I like the Jackson Family and I’m curious enough to want to know who’s next and how everything will develop.

I’m not a fan of having half of the book’s story included in the blurb because since I knew that Jake would offer to get her pregnant the old fashioned way, I felt that the story took too long to get to this point. So between Ava’s low self-esteem, her worried thoughts and constant questioning Jake’s words, her best friend getting her to love him and the story almost turning in a circle, you might think I didn’t like the book but surprisingly I still liked it. (Not as much as the first book but it was entertaining nonetheless.)
‘I take a step closer, but she’s still not close enough. She won’t be until she’s in my arms and wants to be there. She won’t be close enough until she’s come there on her own.’
I liked Jake’s character. I did, really. But to be honest, I don’t know why he was so hung up on Ava. Maybe I’m wrong but I seem to remember her as a funny, strong and confident woman from the previous book but she was quite the opposite now. Don’t get me wrong, she was sweet and it’s not like I didn’t like her but her insecurities and lack of self-love were kind of depressing. Why did she even want a baby on her own when she was still trying to impress her father? Her thoughts and feelings were all over the place and it was very hard to read her because I never knew what her new agenda was. Jake loved her all his life and I still don’t know why he waited around for her for so long. There was nothing he wouldn’t have done for her and I missed some self-preservation from him. He obviously wasn’t the alpha kind of man but still a nerdy shy guy.
‘Jake isn’t just a prime example of the kind of guy every girl deserves; he’s my rock.’
Overall it was a sweet romance and very nice read but it wasn’t all-consuming and held not enough story to make me forget my surroundings.
‘It’s time for me to pull on my big-girl panties – or maybe time to pull them off.’
-- I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book given by Social Butterfly PR. --

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
View review on goodreads

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