Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Book Review: FOREPLAY by: Sophie Jordan

Title: Foreplay (Ivy Chronicles, #1)
Author: Sophie Jordan
ISBN: 0062279874
Reading Level: Adult
Genre: New Adult Romance
Length: 304 pgs
Binding: Paperback
Published: 5 November 2013


Before she goes after the life she’s always wanted, she’s about to find the one she needs. Pepper has been hopelessly in love with her best friend’s brother, Hunter, for like ever. He’s the key to everything she’s always craved: security, stability, family. But she needs Hunter to notice her as more than just a friend. Even though she’s kissed exactly one guy, she has just the plan to go from novice to rock star in the bedroom—take a few pointers from someone who knows what he’s doing.

Her college roommates have the perfect teacher in mind. But bartender Reece is nothing like the player Pepper expects. Yes, he’s beyond gorgeous, but he’s also dangerous, deep—with a troubled past. Soon what started as lessons in attraction are turning both their worlds around, and showing just what can happen when you go past foreplay and get to what’s real...

My Rating:

My Review: If you are one of my blog followers then I apologize for sounding like a broken record. Lately I've been coming across books that aren't so easy to rate. FOREPLAY by Sophie Jordan falls somewhere between a 3.5-4 star rating. On the one hand, it's a story we've heard over and over again in the ever popular NA genre: Inexperienced virgin (Pepper) wants a guy (Hunter) that she thinks is out of her league. Slutty/promiscuous friend (Emerson) convinces her to find someone that will help her gain the sexual experience she needs in order to win over the guy. Virgin doesn't count on falling for the "tutor" (Reece) that agrees to teach her foreplay. On the other hand, the author somehow uses the timeworn formula to create a story that in some aspect feels fresh and original.

There are quite a few elements that Jordan uses to set this book apart from the rest. With stories focusing on the good girl trying to go after the guy she thinks is the best for her rather than the actual guy that is, there lacks a certain depth. But in FOREPLAY, the author gives our heroine, Pepper, a  psychological reason for setting her sights on Hunter Montgomery due to her troubled childhood past. Hunter is her best friend's older brother. During her teenage years, Pepper would spend many days and evenings at the Montgomery's. Blinded by the yearning for the "perfect home life" that she experienced at their home, she thinks being with Hunter is the key to happily ever after.

Let's face it, ladies. In stories like these, a hero can either make or break a book. Thank the gods Sophie Jordan knows how to write a hunky male lead! At first I was a little nervous when I came to realize FOREPLAY was strictly going to be in Pepper's POV. I guess I've been getting spoiled with authors writing dual perspectives. After all, I'm the type of gal that likes getting into the heads of "bad boy" characters. But I had nothing to worry about. Jordan used it to her advantage. Reece turned out to be this very sexy, mysterious, strong/silent type. Since we are only able to see Reece through Pepper, I was drawn to him just as much as she was, because I felt like I was experiencing her curiosity and excitement, right alongside her.

Even though we never got a chance to see things through Reece's eyes, I found him a very intriguing character. First and foremost, there is a bit of a twist in his actual identity (which has something to do with his younger brother) that I didn't see coming. My lips are sealed since I don't want to spoil anything, but it was nice that the book synopsis didn't give away everything which quite frequently happens. Aside from that, Reece is a young man with the weight of the world on his shoulders. At 23 years old, he has experienced the loss of a mother, an abusive, alcoholic father that blames him for his current state of handicap, owns and runs the family bar (which is where Pepper meets him), all while trying to raise his wild 17-18 year old younger brother Logan. And because of this heap of responsibility, he quite college. I guess what I liked about Reece is the fact that there is a realistic quality to his character. I'm all for characters that are given shitty circumstances and turn things around for the better.

Now that everyone knows I liked both Pepper and Reece, you're probably wondering about their chemistry. OFF THE FREAKIN' CHARTS! Jordan definitely knows how to build sexual tension. And once we get to the foreplay...oh, yeah, HOT HOT HOT. That first scene where Reece drags Pepper through the back of the bar, up the stairs to his apartment...the things he says and does to her...*fans self* Yeah, definitely worth the build up.

The trouble I had with the story actually starts once Pepper finally decides to go all the way with Reece. Reece has an apartment above the bar which gives them total privacy, yet where do they finally do the deed??? At her dorm/apartment which she shares with 2 other people! I was disappointed because this is not the first book I've read where the girl loses her virginity at her dorm (some examples would be True by Erin McCarthy, My Favorite Mistake by Chelsea M. Cameron). I get this is a NA book where most of the characters are in their college years, so it does make sense that sexual situations would happen at a dorm. But come on! Think a little outside the box! Especially since Reece has his own place!

From that point on, the story started to turn pretty generic for me. The "big thing" that happens at the end of the story felt too contrived. I can't say much more or else I'll be in spoiler territory.

FOREPLAY was a pleasurable read and Sophie Jordan deserves a pat on the back for creating a relatively fresh story out of a tired old formula. While the plot does fall a little flat somewhere in the middle to the end of the book, the author's strength is in her characters. I really enjoyed Pepper and Reece. FOREPLAY is the 1st novel in the Ivy Chronicles, so I definitely look forward to seeing what characters Jordan writes about next.

best wishes,mia

FOREPLAY Book Trailer


  1. Girl, this really sounds like something I would read. You make it sounds like a really good book.
    I'm so into new adult romance right now, I thinks is a genre with good books in its bookshelves :)
    It's true that most of them follow the same formula and it's hard ot find an original and fresh story.
    Anyway, great review.
    I hope you are ok :)

    1. Hey, Ruty!

      the NA genre is poppin' for sure! But sometimes I just have to take a break because they tend to start to blend in. That was my problem awhile back. I requested and read quite a few from netgalley which I still have to review. But not one really stood out, so now I can't remember which is which lol. So, I am going to try to spread the love and not get so caught up in just one genre for a long period of time.

      Anyway, thanks for stopping by. I just was over on your blog and left a comment.

      Chat with you again soon!
      Mia :)

  2. I always wondered about this one. sounds pretty good to me. I am all over it now.

  3. I have been seeing this all around. I think I will give it a read.

    1. It's definitely worth a read! Thanks for stopping by :)