I just love a best friend’s sibling book … I just can’t resist one!
Kiss Me #1
by Emma Hart
What do you do when you’re the reigning kissing booth champion but the only person you want to kiss is your best friend’s brother?
Let me make this clear right here, right now: I, Halley Dawson, do not care that Preston Wright is kissing other women.
Not a lick. Not at all. Nuh-uh-freakin’-uh.
I do care that he’s doing it six feet away from me behind a gaudy velvet curtain—making him my competition in this year’s kissing contest.
Why do I care, you ask? Because I’ve had an unfortunate crush on the insufferable idiot since I was sixteen years old, but I also know it’s never going to happen.
He’s the Creek Falls bachelor to die for, and I’m the Creek Falls racoon lady who puts peanut butter sandwiches out for them every night.
I’m not going to let him break my four-year-long reign—no matter how many times he breaks the rules and slides the curtain across to do the one thing he’s not allowed to:
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“I never answered your question.”
“What question?” I darted my eyes to the side.
“Just now. You asked me if I wanted to kiss you.”
I did, didn’t I? Right. “Oh,” was all I said.
Slowly, he moved his hand to my chin and gently lifted it. Still, I didn’t look at him, keeping my eyes firmly trained on the front of the tent, even though I was facing him.
“I want to kiss you.”
My eyes darted to his.
“I thought that’d do it.” His lips twitched, and he lowered his head until I had to fight the urge to close my eyes in anticipation of the kiss that was coming.
I swallowed, my lips parting.
Preston moved closer.
And he kissed my cheek.
I jerked out of whatever trance I’d just been in. “What the hell?”
He jumped off the stage, grinning. “I guess we’ll have to wait until tomorrow to break the stalemate, won’t we?”
“Oh, hell no!” I jumped off, stalking him to his side of the stage. “You just stood there in front of me and told me you want to kiss me, then kiss my cheek? The hell was that?”
His eyebrows shot up, amusement flashing in his eyes. “If I didn’t know better, I’d think you wanted to kiss me, too.”
“Irrelevant,” I shot back. “But you’re a special kind of asshole to tell a girl you wanna kiss her and then not do it.” I turned around, then stopped. “You know what? When I beat you tomorrow, you can kiss my ass.”
“You’re way too mad about this.”
“I’m not mad!” My voice raised a few octaves. “I couldn’t care if you want to kiss me or not. I most certainly don’t want to kiss you.”
“Why are you shouting at me?”
“I’m not—” I was shouting at him. “Whatever,” I said in a normal voice. “Make sure you take that money to the bank. Tell Tish I sent you.”
I left him on his side of the curtain and went to get my purse. He could get fucked. After all that where I think I was so damn nervous I broke a sweat, he didn’t even kiss me.
I wasn’t lying with what I said.
He could kiss my ass.
I’d even wear my good panties and bend over for him.
I definitely have mixed feelings about this one. I love sass as much as the next person, but unfortunately I felt like sometimes this moved a bit too much toward b*tch rather than snark. I really liked Preston though and he was enough to gloss over those areas (although sometimes I wonder why he put up with the women in his life). I also loved Halley’s relationship with her adorable trash pandas – her love for her raccoons helped me forgive her for some of her more difficult moments.
I do wish, though, that we had gotten more of Preston’s POV. He’s a upstanding guy, doesn’t sleep around, and decent. Maybe that’s why we only get a couple of chapters about him and the rest is Halley and her buffet of issues. Which is fine, but maybe it would have been better to be entirely her POV so I wouldn’t have felt cheated to get just a couple of glimpses of him. I also wished we had gotten more of Halley’s grandma and Preston’s Aunt Bethel, because I think those hilarious old ladies could have provided a bit a good hearted fun and humor to the story and offset some of the girls mouthiness.
I do have to admire how Hart kept things relatively drama free (except for the smart mouth moments), when she could easily have gone for the drama. The romance itself is sweet and cute, and handled in a laid-back manner. Overall, if you are looking for a sarcasm-ladden rom-com, Kiss Me Not delivers well.
Emma Hart is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty novels and has been translated into several different languages.
She is a mother, wife, lover of wine, Pink Goddess, and valiant rescuer of wild baby hedgehogs.
Emma prides herself on her realistic, snarky smut, with comebacks that would make a PMS-ing teenage girl proud.
Yes, really. She’s that sarcastic.
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