by Susan Mallery

January 2007
ISBN: 978-0-373-77176-9
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Mass Market Paperback

Sizzling is the third story in Susan Mallery’s appealing Buchanan series. This story is a winner from the get-go.

Sexy and charismatic ex-baseball player Reid Buchanan has had it easy his whole life. A great baseball career, money, and lots and lots of women. Everything went wrong when his baseball career ended. It just got worse when a nasty article critiquing Reid’s bedroom performance appeared in the newspaper. Suddenly reporters are coming out of the woodwork wanting to talk to Reid about his “problem.” Reid needs to escape so he heads to his grandmother Gloria’s house, where she is recuperating from a broken hip. Reid’s only consolation: irritating Lori Johnston, Gloria’s day-nurse.

Lori wants to be immune to Reid’s fascinating personality. She despises men like him, who use their looks to get by in life and to use women. She’s determined not to see below the surface of his façade, but somehow, it’s not that easy. Reid is more intelligent, more vulnerable, and more caring than he first appears and the more time Lori spends in his company, the more she longs to be one of the women he would be interested in. She’s a plain-Jane nurse who longs for a love she believes will never be hers; he’s an ex-baseball heartthrob who wants someone to understand him. Will the forces of fate be kind to these two?

Sizzling is vibrant contemporary romance at its best! Featuring flawed but personable characters, Susan Mallery brings to life the humiliation, pain, and even humor of Reid’s unorthodox situation. Reid and Lori are certainly no match made in heaven, but as you read, you’ll get the distinct impression that they work. They balance each other out. Lori’s prickly demeanor and cynical nature is toned down through Reid’s wry humor and happy-go-lucky nature.

This is a book where transformation is the keyword. Reid, Lori and even Gloria go through a major personality transformation and while I had a hard time believing in Gloria’s sudden warmhearted character, Reid and Lori are nonetheless realistically changed, challenged and bettered by love and respect.

Sizzling is a poignant and amusing reading pleasure!

Reviewed in December 2006 by Sarah.

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