Wednesday, March 23, 2011

A Lot Like Love

A Lot Like Love
Julie James
Contemporary Romance
Berkley/March 1, 2011

From the author's website ~

The FBI wants her cooperation.

As the daughter of a billionaire and the owner of the city’s top wine store, Jordan Rhodes is invited to the most exclusive parties in Chicago. But there’s only one party the FBI wants to crash: the charity fundraiser of a famous restaurateur, who also happens to launder money for the mob. In exchange for her brother’s release from prison, Jordan is going to be there—with a date supplied by the Bureau.

Agent McCall just wants her.

As the top undercover agent in Chicago, Nick McCall has one rule: never get personal. This “date” with Jordan Rhodes is merely an assignment—one they’re both determined to pull off even if they can’t be together for five minutes before the sarcasm and sparks begin to fly. But when Nick’s investigation is compromised, he and Jordan have no choice but to pretend they’re a couple, and what starts out as a simple assignment begins to feel a lot like something more. . .

The cover has to get a mention - that dress - Wow! Nick's reaction to the dress was even more priceless. And Nick, well if the placement of his right hand is any indication, he's staked his claim!

I lost track of how many times I laughed, chuckled and no doubt sat there with a grin on my face while reading Julie James' latest romance. What a pleasure to read! Usually, when I like both the hero and heroine, I like one a little bit more than the other but in the case of Jordan and Nick - I loved them both. They come across as opposites, not having much in common, but James makes them fit so very well. This is one couple you will cheer for!

Jordan Rhodes has worked hard for her place as the owner of a well known, and well run wine store. First off, I liked that Jordan wasn't a winy (hehe) spoiled rich girl but can appreciated life's finer things without loosing sight of how hard you have to work for them. A lot of that had to do with her upbringing and the morals her parents instilled in her. She's close with her twin brother Kyle, whose book is next, YEAH! Jordan is a strong heroine while still maintaining her girly side. She's a girlfriend you could picture yourself hanging out with. Whenever I read a character that I can imagine hanging out with, you know the author has done an exceptional job at bringing that character to life. And then there's Nick - who wouldn't want to hang out with him? ;)

Nick McCall just came off a six month undercover op and he's ready for a trip home to New York. Fate has other plans for him. Nick is about to get a crash course in wine tasting from a woman who doesn't easily succumb to his charms. And Nick can be very charming. He is a guy's guy but still manages to pull off the "Tall, Dark and Smoldering" which women love. Nick has this sense of humor that got to me. He had me cracking up with his uniquely Nick observations. Not only what he said but what he thought. His previous undercover work didn't include rubbing elbows with wine connoisseurs. It was amusing to see Nick try new experiences with Jordan leading the way.

Jordan and Nick have chemistry but it's subtle at first. As the story progress, we get to see how that chemistry grows, making the romance that much more believable. Along with the sexual chemistry there is this teasing banter that they fall into. This is a modern Hepburn and Tracy, with the quick wit and easy comebacks that had me eagerly anticipating their next volley of words. Add to that, they are evenly matched with Nick needing Jordan just as much as she needs him. He may try to boss her around but she's no pushover and can hold her own with Nick.

There is a suspense plot running alongside the romance. It's what brings Nick and Jordan together and why they find themselves spending time together with Nick posing as Jordan's boyfriend. The way the suspense is blended with the romance makes for a wonderful balance of anticipation for both. There is also Jordan's great knowledge and appreciation of wine woven into the story. I loved learning all about wine, right along with Nick.

Jack Pallas and Cameron Lynde, the hero and heroine from Something About You make appearances, Jack also works at the same FBI office as Nick and there's some good natured rivalry going on with these two. You don't need to read Something About You before A Lot Like Love but I would certainly recommend it.

If you want a smart, delightful romance with a hero and heroine who will having you laughing one moment and sighing the next, then you'll want to read A Lot Like Love.

Rating: A


  1. Wonderful review - it's going on my buy list!

  2. Mary ~ Thanks! Have you read any of Julie James' previous books? She writes smart,funny contemporary romances. Definitely worth a try!

  3. Great review. I loved this one, and the other three as well.

  4. Great review Leslie :) I'm glad you enjoyed this book so much :)I think it's my favorite so far by Ms James :)

    I did love the camaraderie between Nick and Jack... and really, I expected Jordan to meet Nick's family for some reasons :)

    The only thing is... seriously, Nick has never heard of Dancing with the Stars? ^_^;

    For me though, I have to say, I preferred Jordan a tiny bit more than Nick :P

  5. Lori ~ I think she's getting better and better. Can't wait for Kyle's book!

    Nath ~ Thanks! This is my favorite James' too. :)