I do love me a good enemies-to-lovers story! Especially one that is chock full of witty banter, intensely denied attractions, slow burn and smart characters. The Thing About Love covers all of that! Former lawyer Jessica Harlow and former Army Ranger, John Shephard, met during Academy training at Quantico. It was hate at first sight – that happens when the two smartest people in the class butt heads. Needless to say, when they are paired together in an undercover sting operation six years later, you can almost feel their eyes rolling. Neither person is excited and they just want to get this assignment behind them so they can go back to their separate corners.
I haven’t read a ton of Julie James’ books but I’m very impressed by the ones I have read. She does a great job with her dialogue, you guys know I’m a sucker for witty, smart verbal sparring and Jessica and John and equally matched. There is a nice flow in their give and take, it never feels forced. Neither character wants to admit to the sparking attraction. You know, the brain is the sexiest organ and these two turn each other on big time with their smarts, as well as their physical sex appeal. The Thing About Love is definitely a feel good story filled with sexy heat. Once they get to the sexy times, James does not disappoint.
The other part of this story that I particularly enjoyed was the undercover sting operation. Odd, right, it’s a romance but the action/suspense/case building portion of the show was just as entertaining as the relationship building. Clearly, James knows what she’s writing about and she paints an excellent picture of the leg work, research and the preparation needed to pull off a good undercover mission. This part doesn’t overshadow the romance, it builds it and is perfectly paced. I was just as invested in the investigation as I was in the romance, I like that a lot about this book. Nothing to skim here! I mean, again, the sex was not too shabby either and John Shepherd is the sort of hero you’d like to climb like a tree. Good gravy, walking sex appeal like his will never get kicked out of bed!
There are cameo appearances from her FBI/US Attorney series but The Thing About Love is technically a standalone. I have not read that series but I’m sure folks who have will be tickled pink when some favorites show up. For someone who hasn’t read that particular series, trust that it isn’t necessary to follow along, these are cameos in the truest sense. Having said that, I have been sufficiently teased enough to go back and add the FBI/US Attorney series to my TBR list. James has me intrigued and I want to read more by her.
Smooches,Tags: Contemporary, enemy to lovers, FBI, Julie james, scandal