by Lori Foster, Erin McCarthy, and Amy Garvey

June 2006
ISBN: 0-7582-0934-7
Reviewer Graphic Button Kensington Publishing
Trade Paperback

This steamy anthology is guaranteed to bring on the heat any time of year…

Luscious by Lori Foster features SWAT officer Lucius “Luscious” Ryder and Bethany Churchill. Bethany has been staying with her twin sister Marci at her apartment. Lucius is the landlord and has definitely been keeping his eye on Bethany. Unfortunately, she seems determined to keep him at arm’s length and for Lucius, when a woman is saying no, he leaves her alone, though he doesn’t want to. Bethany thinks Lucius wants Marci but is willing to settle for second best...her. What will it take to convince her otherwise?

Lori Foster is once again on top with this tasty novella. Bethany and Lucius create series sparks as they banter and spar. The dialogue is humorous and fast-paced, the plotting tight and strong. Luscious is a delightful tale of heroics and love.

Erin McCarthy shines once again in her novella, It’s About Time. Trish Jones is lamenting her lonely love life at a local bar when the bartender asks her to chat with his friend, Caleb Vancouver. Caleb’s down in the dumps because his ex-wife is getting married. He’s determined to get drunk, but instead, he gets a sassy spitfire of a country prosecutor in his face. Caleb is looking for a one night stand. Trish yearns to find Mr. Right, but believes he’ll never show his face. Watch what happens when expectations are thrown out the window and desires and urges are faced head-on.

Trish and Caleb certainly define the romance cliché of opposites attract, but instead of playing up this cliché, Ms. McCarthy takes it in a new direction by showing how much these two have in common once they look beneath the surface. Engaging and witty dialogue cap off a thrilling love story.

Finally, Amy Garvey rounds out this anthology with her contribution, Wish You Were Here. Mackenzie Pruitt has hired contractor Leo Dawson to turn her run-down shed into a photography studio for her. He’s definitely not what she expected. Handsome, sexy, and built, Leo makes her insides boil. It’s an unwanted attraction for both however. Neither is willing to get involved. Leo is hiding some secrets and can’t risk exposure. Mackenzie is convinced he is just not her type. Fortunately, good old-fashioned chemistry can’t be ignored and Leo and Mackenzie give in to their lust. But will it last once Leo’s job is done?

Amy Garvey contributes a smash hit to this collection. Leo and Mackenzie light up the pages with their attraction. Even more importantly though, they share many personal moments that showcase the progression in their relationship. I’ve never read a story by Amy Garvey before, but if her fresh dialogue and the sensuality she portrays in her characters is anything to go by, contemporary romance fans have a new author to keep an eye out for!

All in all, Bad Boys of Summer is a great anthology. There are no duds amongst the pages, and each author brings something unique and intriguing to the collection. Definitely get your hands on this anthology!

Reviewed in July 2006 by Sarah.