Series: Sugar Bowl #1
Published by Loveswept on May 24th 2016
Genres: Erotica, Mystery, Romantic Suspense
Seduction has never been so sweet! The New York Times bestselling author of the Cold Fury series—Alex, Garrett, Zack, and Ryker—returns with the first novel in a hot new trilogy.
“Sawyer Bennett never fails to deliver heroes I fall hard for and heroines I adore,” raves Violet Duke. Now the bestselling author of the Cold Fury series proves that vengeance is sweet—but seduction is to die for.
Sela Halstead lost her innocence in a way that no sixteen-year-old should ever have to endure. She’s spent years trying to forget that night even while wondering about the identities of the monsters who brutalized her—until a telltale tattoo flashes across Sela’s TV screen. The incriminating ink belongs to Jonathon Townsend, the millionaire founder of The Sugar Bowl, a website that matches rich older men with impressionable young women. Obsessed with revenge, Sela infiltrates Townsend’s world, only to come face-to-face with a tantalizing complication: Beckett North, his charismatic business partner.
The tech mastermind behind The Sugar Bowl, Beck always gets what he wants, in business and in bed. And yet, for a man who’s done every dirty thing imaginable, there’s something about the naïve, fresh-faced Sela that sparks his hottest fantasies. Because with her, it’s not just about sex. Beck opens up to her in ways he never has with other girls. So why does he get the feeling that she’s hiding something? In a world of pleasure and power, the shocking truth could turn them against each other—or bind them forever.
Note: Sugar Daddy ends on a cliffhanger. Sela and Beck’s story continues in Sugar Rush and Sugar Free!
Wow. Sugar Daddy is every bit as steamy as I’ve come to expect from a Sawyer Bennett novel, only edgier. It’s almost like an addictive, well-written X-rated soap opera. You’ve got a super nasty villain, a determined heroine, and a massively likable hero. Throw in a huge mystery, some devious plotting, and a wildly sexy romance, and I was sold.
Sela is a grad student majoring in psychology who was attacked ten years ago. We’re not given many details surrounding the event itself, and I love that Sawyer Bennett has left so much room for discovery. It makes me anticipate the subsequent books even more. We do have enough information to appreciate just how degrading and traumatic the attack was. I so admired Sela’s determination to live the best life possible, even while believing that she’s permanently damaged.
The Sugar Bowl is an exclusive online “dating” site that matches Sugar Daddies—essentially lonely, wealthy, horny men—with Sugar Babies—young women who are willing to trade sexual favors in exchange for being taken care of financially. Jonathan Townsend, also known as JT, is the morally ambiguous misogynistic co-founder of the company. When Sela sees him on TV and recognizes his distinctive tattoo, she instantly realizes JT is one of the men who violated her. She immediately sets into motion a plan to pose as a Sugar Baby, with the ultimate goal of killing the playboy millionaire. Personally, I thought Sela’s objective was too short-sighted and lacked creativity. I can think of a half dozen better ways to get revenge. I guess I’m just mean like that.
In the process of trying to trap Jonathan, Sela finds herself in a relationship with his extremely appealing business partner, Beck, whom she plans to use to get close to JT. Of course Beck is easy on the eye and wealthy, but he’s also philanthropic and not at all pretentious or flashy. He lives for his work and is basically the ultimate computer genius—only way hotter than your average eGeek. What starts out as a mutually beneficial business arrangement quickly escalates into something more personal for them both.
Other than the mindblowing sex, I’m not sure why Beck is so quick to abandon his principles and enter into a committed relationship with Sela. Don’t get me wrong. They make a fantastic couple, and thankfully it’s not insta-love. However, Beck is a smart guy, which leads me to believe he wouldn’t easily invite a virtual stranger into his home. The plot is so unique that I felt it could work around this common ploy better.
I enjoyed how Sela wrestles with her need for retribution versus her desire for a healthy, long-term relationship with Beck. The suspicion, deception, lust, and guilt are a heady cocktail in this story, but there’s one nagging issue I couldn’t come to terms with. View Spoiler »Once Sela decides she can trust Beck, why doesn’t she just tell him that JT raped her? « Hide Spoiler
Sawyer Bennett certainly knows how to pen a well-written love scene and—let’s face it—there’s a lot of sizzling sex. There’s an underlying tenderness to the scenes as well though, that makes them seem like more than just gratuitous filler. The intrigue, suspense, sensuality, and interesting characters blend perfectly to make this the type of erotica that does the genre proud.
The blurb is up front about Sugar Daddy being the first book in a three-part series with a cliffhanger ending, so I knew it was coming. What I didn’t anticipate was just how angsty it would be. My heart was pounding toward the end, and I couldn’t flip the pages fast enough. The last sentence left me breathless and desperate for more. I need the next book, like, tomorrow.
Recommended for fans of:
Steamy sexy times
**ARC received in exchange for an honest review.**