Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Review: Riding on Instinct

Title: Riding on Instinct
Author: Jaci Burton
Genre: Erotic Romance
Series: Wild Riders/Book 3
Published: April 2009
ARC Review

From author's website:

Department of Justice agent Shadoe Grayson is out to prove she’s no rookie, and eagerly accepts her first undercover assignment at a strip club in New Orleans. Working with the Wild Riders, a government agency of bad boy bikers, her goal is to bring down a corrupt DEA agent. All she has to do now is learn to strip like a pro.

Standing in her way is the arrogant and smokin’ hot Spencer King, her partner and one of the Wild Riders. Spence thinks she looks more like a schoolteacher than a stripper, and doubts her ability to do the job. But when he mockingly challenges Shadoe to strip just for him, he finds out there’s more to the surprisingly sexy agent than by-the-book rules and Government Issue pantsuits.

Now Spencer has to resist his baser instincts while Shadoe learns that taking off your clothes doesn’t always equal losing control…

Riding on Instinct is my very first book by author Jaci Burton. Why I haven't read anything by her before, I have no idea. The book was incredibly hot with the hero and heroine building up the sexual tension. There were plenty of sex scenes but they were only part of the story. The relationship that develops between Shadoe and Spence, how they work together in very tense situations was also a big part of the over all storyline.

When Spencer King first meets Shadoe Grayson she is wearing her usual work uniform of pantsuit, no makeup and her hair in a very confined bun. She looks nothing like the stripper she will soon be portraying. She has to prove that she deserves the undercover assignment but it won't be easy to convince Spencer King. At first he sees only the fact that she looks nothing like a stripper and tells her exactly what he thinks. Being blunt is part of Spence's charm. Shadoe's ace in the hole is her photographic memory and the fact that she wants this assignment so bad she's determined to succeed.

I liked Shadoe right from the start. Took me a little bit to get used to her name but she is a character that on the surface you think you understand her and yet she continued to surprise me. She's a resilient field agent when she needs to be, willing to do whatever it takes to reach her goal. She stands up to Spence's disdain for her and leaves him speechless the first time he sees her dance.

And that brings us to Spencer King. Bad boy. Biker. Loner. They all describe him but he is so much more than that. He's smart, funny, sexy as all hell and loyal to his fellow Wild Riders. Spence may be a real ass at times but he's still manages to be likeable. You know the kind that will make a smartass remark then follow it up with a wink and a grin. After meeting and working with Shadoe, Spence must try to convince himself that he doesn't want any serious relationships. That he prefers shallow sex to anything long term, or so he keeps saying. He's really just afraid of taking things beyond sex. Of feeling more than just the physical side of sex. There's a scene at the end that Spence says what I think he was trying to tell Shadoe throughout the story.

Spence to Shadoe ~

"I don't know how to do this, Shadoe."

"How to do what?"

"Love someone. I've never done it before."
page 293

Awe, doesn't your heart just melt for him? Yeah, he's a hardass, arrogant SOB at times but he still made a wonderful hero.

So Shadoe and Spence head to New Orleans to try to find a rogue DEA agent. The rogue has been helping the Colombian drug dealers stay one step ahead of the DEA. Shadoe will work at the strip club where the transactions happen and Spence will be her bodyguard. Two other Wild Riders, AJ and Paxton will pose as customers (tough job guys!), keep an eye out for anyone suspicious and be Shadoe and Spence's backup.

I'm not all that familiar with strip clubs, it's been years since I've been in one but I certainly got a feel for what it was like for Shadoe to work in one. The atmosphere of the club was well written as were the descriptions of the various women working at the club. The camaraderie of the dancers was fascinating to read as was the rivalry between some of the women. I liked the fact that Ms. Burton showed how Shadoe connected with some of the other dancers. She gave them personalities apart from simply being strippers.

This is an erotic romance and Burton certainly knows how to write erotica. The way Shadoe and Spence steamed up the pages I'm surprised the edges didn't curl. The plot was one that I completely fell for and who wouldn't love hot guys riding Harleys? The first time Shadoe rode on Spence's bike was very sensual. Shadoe held on to Spence using not only her arms wrapped around him but her thighs against his and her chest to his back. And poor Spence, lol. He was just a wee bit uncomfortable having just seen Shadoe strip on stage and then having her cuddled up against him on the bike. He kept envisioning her on stage in her very revealing costume. Yep, he was just a bit uncomfortable.

What a fun ride Ms. Burton took me on with Spence and Shadoe. I will definitely be getting the first two books, Riding Wild and Riding Temptation, in this series. I need to find out about Mac/Lily and Diaz/Jessie, the couples from the first two books. And I definitely want to read more about AJ and Pax. Let's just say that their very good at sharing and leave it at that. I'm hoping their book is next in the series.

Riding on Instinct was released yesterday so if you can't find it in stores yet it should be there very soon. Jaci Burton has written a number of books, both erotica and romances. She also writes the Demon Hunters series with three books currently out and the fourth due out this June. You can read more about all her books at her website.

Rating: A-


  1. I dunno why the name Shadoe is making me laugh. It sounds awkward in my mind. Shad-O I can't stop emphasizing the d and O sounds. I know, who gives a frigg, I'm being picky.

    Anywho, I've never read anything by this author either. It sounds like a good book!

  2. Yeah, bit of an odd name. :)

    Burton has a decent backlist - I might give her Demon series a try.

  3. I haven't read anything by Jaci either, but this sounds really good. The camaraderie and rivalries of the dancers at the club really does sound like an interesting element, too.

  4. I read and enjoyed riding Wild, but haven't read another Burton since. there are just so many authors out there that I want to read. I tend to want to try new authors all the time. But this sounds good.

  5. CJ ~ There's definitely a hierarchy within the dancers. The higher up the "pole" the more power that dancer had.

    Jessica ~ I totally understand wanting to try new authors. I've been pretty lucky with the ones I've try. My TBR pile just keeps growing. :)