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Showing 1-10 of 28 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 59 reviews
on March 7, 2014
It was a review from a friend so I wanted to like this. Perhaps it is the story and others are better. As for this story, rarely have I ever read of such simple and simple-minded 30+ year old characters. He is 37 years old and he cannot figure out how to date a woman so he uses his brother's name. He is a little skeeved out by the fact that the heroine works at an adult shop. A 37 year old man is intimidated by a woman who works where they sell bras and lube. I cannot even process that. But the heroine takes the cake. I am not sure of her age and I can't bother to search the text. But they are of similar age. This is a grown, adult woman who is still so traumatized by her sexy pics from high school going viral when she was 17 that she is totally terrorized when a shadowy nemesis threatens to tell her father that she works at a sex shop. That's as convoluted as it sounds. An adult lies to the police about a robbery because someone might tell her 70 year old father that she works in a sex shop. I almost gagged on air. The sex is supposed to be emotional and life-altering but because the characters lack any authentic emotion or life, it just feels like someone describing Ken and Barbie getting it on. Poor character development, implausible contrived tension and unsatisfying read.
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on February 28, 2013
Although I liked Bad Boys Do for the sweetness, Real Men Will edged it just a bit for the exact opposite reasons. It wasn't just that the heat level was higher, but also that everything in it was just...more--more emotions, more chemistry, more story, more character to the characters, just, more. However, that's not to say there weren't a few problems with the plot (similar to Bad Boys Do). I think angst is well and good but for some reason, in this book, it made me like the characters less. Not Eric and Beth, however. They were great--loved their chemistry. In fact, of all the main characters in the trilogy, I liked Eric and Beth the best. Beth was cool and sweet and Eric was far different than he was in the other two books. But this right here is where the problems for me take root. While I always enjoy seeing characters in a new light in their own books, I think this stark difference in the characters in their own books versus in their siblings' books is my main point of contention with this book and the series as a whole. In each of the books, I like the main characters great, and the secondary characters (the siblings) not so much. This constantly changing reaction to the siblings made me disconnect with the family a bit, and made for an almost inconsistent feeling of satisfaction in how I viewed the characters at the series close. So in a nutshell, the downsides were the slightly weak character back stories and the whole love the main character/really dislike the secondary characters dichotomy consistent in all the books in this series (a personal thing I'm not a huge fan of for most stories as I don't feel it necessary to spotlight the main characters in such a way for them to shine), along with the angst I mentioned earlier, where there seemed to be a lot of build up and emotion but not quite the follow through when all the hidden events for the characters' personal turmoil comes to light. The more memorable upsides were that the characters were compelling enough and the writing was stellar enough that I was able to overlook these downfalls whilst reading the story (these are more post-reading analysis points). Hence the 3.5 star rating. That's the overshadowing upside. Victoria Dahl's writing makes even a "just good" story much, much better. Dahl is a wonderfully talented author, truly one of the best in sparkling dialog, snappy and witty writing, engaging characters, and steamy love scenes. She makes the fun parts of the book really fun. Sure, the story itself wasn't that strong as there wasn't a whole lot to it but when the writing is this good, it's easy to forgive. Overall, I found myself liking the book a lot. I read it in one sitting and found myself really "there with" the characters (another great plus). My niggling downside feelings aside, I'm very happy with this book and the series as a whole.
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on January 13, 2012
Stop, Warning! If you have not read Victoria Dahl's novella "Just One Taste" in "The Guy Next Door" (authors: Lori Foster, Susan Donovan and Victoria Dahl) please stop now and go back and read it. It's the "prequel" to this story and without having read that story you may not get some of this story. But don't worry I really enjoyed "Just One Taste" so it is no hardship to read and plenty steamy.
Eric had to take on the responsibility of raising his two teenage siblings and run the family brewery business at the age of 24. Always the serious responsible one just for one night he wants to let that all go and be free of his name and all the responsibilities that come with it. Beth is a fraud; she is the manager of the Wild Orchid, Boulders premier erotic shop that caters to women. She loves her job, but feels guilty that most of what she preaches and teaches she doesn't follow herself. Anytime she is with a man she can't let go, until a chance meeting with "Jaime" at a business expo. For one night she is going to forget everything and let go and just enjoy the one night "Jaime" has to offer. Eric knows this is one night and knows as Eric he can't be what he wants to be so when the beautiful Beth assumes he's Jaime his younger, more carefree brother he doesn't correct her. Knowing if she ever found out all hell will break loose, but really how will she ever find out? Months later a party brings Beth to the Donovan brewery, months of thinking about "Jaime", and remembering the one night she was free. Now, not is all that it seems, people keep referring to the young cute bartender as Jaime, but she knows that's not Jaime, or does she??

I absolutely ADORE this book! It is now one of my new favorites. I'm telling you, it's the quite ones you have to worry about! Who knew Eric had it in him, I sure didn't. As this is the third in the series you come to know Eric only as the uptight always says "Hell No" brother. In this book, you get to see an entirely different side to him, one I like. A lot gets better explained in this book as to why Eric has been the way he is. Now on to Beth, who I adore! I was totally relating to Beth, I always said that if I had plenty of money and wanted to open a fun business it would be an erotica shop that catered to woman. So I was totally into that part of the book. There was just so much about Beth that I related too; she is definitely one of my favorite book heroines. Jaime and Eric finally kind of come to a truce, Tessa is still cute as a button and sassy as hell. I laughed a lot in this book; I cried in a couple of parts it and was plenty steamy. You get the full spectrum of emotions which is more then you can expect. I highly recommend this book and this series. In fact I'll be checking out more from Victoria Dahl, I think she will become one of my favorite Contemporary Romance Novelists.
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on October 27, 2011
More than 4 Stars but not quite 5!

This is the third book in the Donovan series. The story centers on Eric, the older brother who has sacrificed a great deal of his adulthood to raise his younger brother and sister after the death of their parents. His personal life has been put on hold for years and as his brother and sister find love, he comes to realize that he is not happy. As a matter of fact, nothing is going right in his life and he doesn't know what to do. After years of being in control and doing everything for family and for their family run business, his life is about to spiral out of control. He is a man who needs a wake up call and he gets it with his one night stand with Beth. It was a dream come true. A fantasy brought to life for one night.

What happens next impacts his "life in a rut" routine, his relationship with his brother and sister, and even his place at the family business.

What I really liked about this storyline was the idea of redemption and you are never too old to grab onto it. Beth and Eric weren't perfect but they were good people. They made some mistakes in their youth and hung onto to guilt like so many of us do. They needed some help to get out of the guilt trip their lives had become. For one night, they let themselves go, or rather the personas they had become, and the consequences were far reaching!

I like the concept of forgiving yourself and others and giving life a fresh start. They needed it!

And since it was a series, it was nice to see some closure on issues that the siblings faced as a family. It was good to see Jamie, Olivia, Tessa and Luke again.

The story line sizzles and pops as they see something in each other that starts, continues and ends with hot and sizzling action.

The fantasies are endless with this one!
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on July 8, 2013
This book, #3, of the series finally helped explain who Eric was. Both he and Beth were products of their upbringing! The interaction between the 2 was sizzling which was a little surprising based on Eric being so straightlaced and by the book. It was great seeing him ruffled by Beth and who she is.
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VINE VOICEon November 2, 2012
The concept of this book was Beth is a manager in adult store and has one night stand with Eric the owner of brewery. The twist is that Eric was pretending to be his 1/2 brother when he had is encounter with Beth. When Beth realizes Eric was lying about his name she confronts him. Beth and Eric find themselves extended their one night stand while trying to work through family and work issues. Fun quick read - Enjoy.

If you enjoy this genre I would also suggest; Talk of the Town ,Talk Me Down ,Naturally Naughty: Bare Essentials (Harlequin Blaze, No 62) and Can't Hurry Love.
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on February 7, 2013
I'm sort of new to reading romance novels. A friend had been encouraging me for years, then finally a writer I respected recommended it, so I gave it a whirl. That's all to say my experience with the genre isn't so deep. This however has been my favorite. I'd even rank it up there with several non-genre books, because I want to press it into a few people's hands. Even the faro-mentioned friend, who's romance taste tends towards regency and usually hates contemporary works, enjoyed it. Dahl handles the topic of people's expectations and our reactions to those expectations is a masterful and realistic way that I really connected with.
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on January 19, 2013
I had expectations here, maybe higher than it should have been. The sex was hot. The storyline was a bit of a stretch. I didn't quite get the drama and why they were so angsty over something that didn't seem to be such a big deal. I eventually got it and understood. The problem was that by the time I 'got' it I was annoyed with the characters. Other than the problem with the plot, it was a nice little romance. I would definitely read more by this author.
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on July 31, 2012
I LOVED this trilogy. I really wanted more. I thought Eric was sexy in a quiet guy kind of way. I never right reviews but this book was great. Even though you he was the older "prefect" brother he had this wild side that made you want more. The romance in this book was not cookie cutter and the sex was hot. I plan on reading it again. Not to mention I made all of my friends are read it. I really would love to see the series continue to one or two more books because I want to know what happens to them.
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on November 23, 2012
I own everything Victoria Dahl writes. She is one of my favorite authors and this book reinforced once again why she is. Now I just need her to sign this one like the rest of my collection.

I couldn't put it down and read it one day. It was smoking hot and the heat between Eric and Beth was visceral. The Donovan trilogy was amazing and this was a great ending to a terrific series.
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