Visiting the Bottoms Up bar, Suzy makes the mistake of hooking up with a man who won’t take no for an answer. She’s rescued from danger by a tall, handsome cowboy with the power to make all her submissive fantasies a delicious reality. By a strange twist of fate, he’s Jonah McKenzie, whose family owns Bottoms Up and who she very briefly loved and lost during her college days.
Picking up the pieces of that original relationship, destroyed in tragic circumstances, Jonah and Suzy act on their growing passion for each other. Jonah is enthralled by sexy Suzy, who relishes the feel of his belt on her backside, but he also loves soft Susannah. But if he’s ever to truly rein in his reckless beauty, Jonah must overcome both his interfering grandmother, who’s determined to disinherit any of her grandsons who don’t marry and produce a family, and the barriers thrown up by an emotionally scarred Suzy.
Rein Me In is the second in Larissa Lyons and Alyssa Brooks’ Bottoms Up series, but it runs parallel to events in the first volume, Restrain Me, so you don’t need to have read that to make sense of this. If, like this reviewer, you don’t quite understand the appeal of cowboys, you won’t learn much from the novel apart from it involving some combination of muscles and chivalry, but if you already lust over men in stetsons, there’ll be much here to enjoy. Lyons and Brooks write seamlessly as a team, creating a believable romance between a solid, dependable hero (albeit one wracked with fits of needless jealousy) and a closed-up heroine who needs to be taught how to love and trust. The scenes where Suzy submits to Jonah generate real heat, and will appeal to those who like to see BDSM themes explored outside a traditional master/slave setting. Unfortunately, some of that heat is diluted by the antics of the supporting cast, intended to provide comic relief which isn’t always necessary. The worst offender is God-fearing matriarch Nana, who the McKenzies all appear to love deeply despite her being the worst kind of fundamentalist Christian stereotype, believing extra-marital sex to be a sin.
Throughout the course of Rein Me In, various plot lines featuring McKenzie siblings are carefully developed for future books, so expect the Bottoms Up series to ride the range for quite a while to come.
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