Publication Date: 8/15/13
Source: Received from author for review
Rating: 5 stars
I don’t care what my cousin says; I am not the queen of impossible relationships. I mean, just because my last boyfriend tried to kill me and left a bit of a scar on my neck, then forced me to move across the country and legally change my name to Reese Randall to escape him, does not mean—
Oh, who am I kidding? For a freshman in college, I have to have the worst dating track record ever.
It’s no wonder love is the last thing on my mind when Mason Lowe enters my life. But the chemistry between us is like bam! Our connection defies logic. And he’s just so freaking hot. Being around him makes me feel more alive than I’ve ever felt before. I even like bickering with him. He could be my soul mate...except for one teeny tiny glitch.
He's a gigolo.
Boy, do I know how to pick them.
Price of a Kiss was a fun, sweet, and surprising story, and I'm not even sure what I can say to do it justice. This is a book that is getting many, many rave reviews, and though I was a tiny bit skeptical, I was convinced within a few pages. Or more accurately, within the first page.
At first glance, Price of a Kiss might seem to have a bit of a morally "skeevy" feel. I mean, Mason is a gigolo. Paid for his sexual services. A man who is professionally obligated to satisfy. So yeah, I was obviously interested in Mason Lowe, but not prepared for the sweet, thoughtful, self-sacrificing and completely lovable, huggable, and endearing man he actually was. I went in thinking Mason would be the bad boy I would be convinced to love, but found the opposite. It's quite nice when I can love a questionable book guy without feeling squicky, yeah?
Reese Randall is a young woman on the run. Sort of. After a violent end to her last relationship, she is hiding in plain sight, and not at all interested in starting a new relationship. I adored Reese. She was adorably perky, quirky, and had a wicked sense of humor, which she used at almost any given opportunity. Her hilarious remarks, both internal and external, had me laughing and cheering her on. I could so totally see myself making the exact same remarks, particularly in awkward situations.
What I found so nice about Price of a Kiss was that it was a thoughtful story. You would think a book about a gigolo falling in love would be all sex, sex, sex, but that was so not the case here. Reese and Mason both take their situation seriously, don't want to lose their friendship, must make difficult and heartbreaking choices, but can't seem to fight the inevitable love that is growing between them. The relationship between Mason and Reese was angsty and a bit tormented - because of the necessary hesitations - but was never irritating or annoying. It just squeezed my heart and had me on edge, hoping the two could overcome their obstacles.
If I had to describe Price of a Kiss in one word, that word would be Anticipation. Sweet, delicious anticipation that most certainly pays off in a brilliant and satisfying way. I can't recall ever reading such a seductive book with so very little actual physicality. It's not that there isn't any physical action going on, because there most certainly is. Kage did a remarkable job of slowly building the intensity one glance, one grip of the hand, one brush of the lips at a time. Like I said, Anticipation.
Price of a Kiss was a delicious treat. I will read whatever Linda Kage writes.
But that's when it happened.
His face lit up and he grinned.
It was the first real grin I'd ever seen him give. And it was all for me. If fried a couple of my nerve endings. I definitely felt overheated. Might've even smelled smoke. ~18%
My lips parted and my entire body throbbed. "Mason?" I said slowly, my voice timid. What're you doing?"
"Something I probably shouldn't." His voice sounded hoarse and tender as he dipped his face and pressed his forehead against mine.
I began to tremble. I don't know if it was because of anticipation, utter excitement, dread, or outright fear. "If...if you shouldn't, then...don't."
A throaty whimper like a wounded cougar tore from his voice box. "Easier said than done." With his fingers slipping through my hair, he curled his hand around to the back of my neck, urging my face up, probably to align me into position for a kiss. Then he whispered my name.
God, the achy, husky way he said it was like a silken caress to every erogenous nerve in my body. ~36%
"All you have to do is stretch out your hand, Mason." Pressing my palm against his chest, I whispered, "I'm right here."
He shook his head. I can't. I'm tainted."
"No." To my own doom, I stepped away from the door, going to him, my arms outstretched to hold him and soothe his wounded soul. ~73%
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About the author:The youngest of eight children, Linda Kage grew up on a dairy farm in the Midwest. She now lives in Kansas with her husband, daughter, and nine cuckoo clocks. Linda is a member of Romance Writers of America and its local chapter, Midwest Romance Writers.