Melanie Harlow’s “Man Candy” is an enticing romance, especially since the dual protagonists have reversed roles. “How’s that?”
you ask. Jaimie has had a ten year crush on gorgeous male-model Quinn since she was 13 years old. But when she professed her love for him way back then, he embarrassed her and made her sorry she’d revealed her feelings. That incident lit the flame in Jaimie’s psyche that formed the basis for her theory that the idea of soulmates, true lifetime love, marriage and HEA are not real but are instead concepts judiciously applied in advertising to sell merchandise and services across markets worldwide. Quinn, being several years older and due to his modeling gigs, had traveled extensively and he was feeling it was time to settle down. He temporarily moved into the same duplex apartment building where Jamie lived while his condo was under construction and was nearing completion. Jaimie’s amorous feelings for Quinn were not in vain. He’d always been attracted to her but was biding his time for them both to be in the right place at the right time. And that time had finally arrived.
Jaimie had an extensive set of “rules” on what was acceptable (to her) for a successful relationship. Many men just let their eyes glaze over after hearing her demands and stipulations. Thus, Jaimie hadn’t had a real “boyfriend” in too long a time. And thank the gods that be, Quinn found Jaimie as attractive as she found him. Not an unheard of basis to begin a budding romance. But could Quinn get Jaimie to freely give of her whole self and be happy, instead of offering only her body for mind-blowing sex?The sex was awesome but Quinn was looking for something more meaningful between them. Could he change her theory to include traditional love? Maybe not but he was willing to try, whereas Jaimie was more interested in the multiple orgasms Quinn gave her. He wasn’t worried about what he was offering. What concerned him was how long it would take before Jaimie began to pull away when she felt the emotions were more intense than she wanted to deal with now and into the foreseeable future.
Author Harlow did a commendable job crafting male/female characters as lovers with reversed roles as they pertain to societal norms surrounding the concepts of love and marriage. Every woman still drawing breath would want a man like Quinn for a boyfriend. Jaime on the other hand, didn’t believe in the concept of true love but she was all in for the physical relationship part. Its an original plot and storyline and it kept me reading way past my bedtime. And isn’t that one of an author’s motivations? If this is an example of what’s to come in the rest of the “After We Fall” Series, all Melanie Harlow fans better buckle up ‘cause the world as we know it is about to make a major shift. Five stars
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