by Lisa Renee Jones
Series: Inside Out #1
Published by: Simon and Schuster
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Erotic Fiction
In the bestselling style of Fifty Shades of Grey, Lisa Renee Jones delivers sexy thrills and heart-pounding sensuality with a tantalizing page-turner in which the eyes of a high school English teacher are opened to a world she never knew existed, and she finds a passionate craving within that she never knew she possessed. The journal comes to Sara McMillan by chance, when she inherits the key to an abandoned storage locker belonging to a woman named Rebecca. Sara can’t resist peeking at the entries inside . . . and finds a scintillating account of Rebecca’s affair with an unnamed lover, a relationship drenched in ecstasy and wrapped in dark secrets. Obsessed with discovering Rebecca’s destiny after the entries come to an abrupt end, Sara does more than observe the players in the woman’s life; she immerses herself in the high-stakes art gallery world Rebecca inhabited—and is magnetically drawn to two men. Which one seduced Rebecca with his masterful and commanding touch and brought her fantasies to exquisite life? On a daringly erotic escapade, Sara follows Rebecca’s path to fulfill her own hidden longings. But after she tastes the forbidden pleasures Rebecca savored, will Sara be helpless to escape the same submissive fate?
If I Were You by Lisa Renee Jones is the first book in her Inside Out contemporary romance series. With darker sexual elements and comparisons to Fifty Shades (which I have not read), I was unsure, but so many of my friends loved this series, so I settled in.To my surprise I devoured this in only two sittings. It ends with a cliffhanger consider yourself warned.
Sara McMillian is a high school teacher who through a series of circumstances, inherits an abandoned storage unit once owned by a woman named Rebecca. Inside she finds journals that contain a scintillating account of her affair with a dominant male. Curious, she wants to know more and digs through the boxes. She discovers Rebecca worked in the art world at a famous museum. Sara becomes obsessed with discovering what happened to Rebecca when she learns she went on leave and never returned. She buys tickets to the museum and finds herself swept up in the world of art and the men who work there.
Jones spins a captivating tale as she drew me into the story, introducing strong, complicated characters and a mystery surrounding Rebecca. The tale is sexually heated, and Jones knows how to create these erotic, sensual scenes but the book was tamer then I expected and the sex while detailed did not steal the stage. Sara’s discovery, sexual awakening and pursuit of a passion once thought lost to her kept me engaged.
I loved Jones’ take on the dominant and submissive relationship in If I Were You. It has a much more realistic approach. One scene opened the door to other areas of exploration but none of the characters participated. It left the door open for situations that are more adventurous in future novels.
The men she meets at the museum are strong, dominant and wealthy. Mark owns the museum and pushes Sara to pursue her dreams even as he hints at controlling her. Chris is an artist she has long admired who wants to possess her even as he warns her away. Sara is pushed from her comfort zone but is also thrilled. As Jones peels back her layers, she reveals a strong and confident woman.
While Sara does spend time with one of the men, and gets closer to finding what happened to Rebecca, If I Were You ends with things on edge between them and Sara in danger. Of course now I need more!
“You shouldn’t walk away from something that intrigues you”
“I can feel this man in every part of my body and he has not even touched me.”
“Great. I’m with the hottest man I’ve ever known and raccoons have crawled through my hair and settled under my eyes.”
“My boss is dictating my preventive hangover care, and I just used the word swords in reference to his obvious cockfight with the man I just made out with in a public hallway. I am truly in an alternate universe.”
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