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Monday, January 11, 2016

Review: Tempted by Jess Michaels

I can’t believe it’s been a little more than a year since I stumbled across this author! Now here I am bouncing in my seat like a puppy because the next book in this series will finally solve the mystery of the missing sibling!!

Format: .mobi (A copy of this book was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for the purpose of an honest review. )
Publisher: The Passionate Pen
Release Date: January 12, 2016

The youngest son of the Woodley clan, Gabriel has been obsessed with bringing his missing twin sister home since she disappeared over two years ago. His drive has forced him to block out all else, including any feelings he may have for the beautiful Juliet Gray. But when she is brought to London by Gabriel’s mother, avoiding the desire she inspires becomes impossible.

Juliet never wanted to come to London in the first place, especially since she knows she won’t be able to avoid Gabriel, who has been both confusing and drawing her from the moment they met. But to give her father a chance at happiness, she’ll stay in town. When Gabriel asks for her help in finding his sister, explosive secrets will be spilled and long suppressed longings will overflow. But will their search bring them love or expose them to a danger that could destroy all they’ve built?

The Woodleys have come a long way from book one but they have yet to find their missing sister, Claire. Tempted is Gabriel’s story, he’s Claire’s twin and is easily the most intense and reclusive of the Woodley clan. Since Claire disappeared, he’s dedicated every waking moment to finding her and bringing her home. As much as he loves his other siblings, he also resents them for seeming to move on, get married and have children while Claire is gone.

Humble healer Juliet Gray is responsible for saving Gabriel’s mother’s life and she should have gone her own way after but the Woodleys are a grateful and unusual family and they begin to include her in their lives as one of their own. Juliet’s presence makes Gabriel question his decision to focus solely on the search for his twin and try as he might, he can’t completely push her away.

Since I started reading this series the only thing I knew about Gabriel was how devoted he was to his twin and that he had no problem dancing on the line between hero and villain in order to obtain information on his twin’s whereabouts. Author Jess Michaels used Tempted to strip away Gabriel’s intense, often cold hearted exterior and expose him to a variety of emotions all at once which definitely painted him in a new light. I think that it was Gabriel who really brought forward the rollercoaster of emotions the entire family felt knowing that they were missing a beloved member of their family. Gabriel was the physical embodiment of all the emotions everyone had regarding Claire in my opinion.

What I found ironic was that Juliet, the heroine in the story was a healer and who more in need of healing than Gabriel? Juliet had such a warm, inviting personality that just drew people to her and as a reader I thought that was a big plus. She didn’t let herself be bullied by anyone but Juliet still had plenty of insecurities about her place among a titled family. I will say that Juliet’s presence emphasized how rare a family like the Woodleys was. They accepted her readily as one of their own even though she came from a humble background. I loved her interactions with the family, especially the Woodley matriarch. It not only highlighted the social differences between Juliet and her benefactors but also showed how kind they were with her and that’s what originally had me falling for this family.

Gabriel and Juliet’s romance was more sweet than sexy because the pair share secrets about themselves that shapes their physical chemistry and helps an odd sort of friendship grow where before it was stiff politeness mixed with a confused attraction.

Of course the elephant in the room is the missing Claire who has had a huge presence in all the books in the series. Since her book is next (YAY), I am anxious to see how her life has been and her reunion with the siblings that love her so much. Plus, I have a feeling the hero of her book is going to be a good one!

Final Verdict: Tempted gave one more Woodley sibling their happy-ish ending but with Claire still gone it was bittersweet especially since it’s her twin Gabriel. I have high hopes for the final book in the series along with an anxiousness to see what Jess Michaels does next. As always, Michaels’ books bring a fun mix of historical romance, passion and oddities in the characters.

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