I have been a huge fan of Lauren Dane’s Brown Sibling Series since I discovered it a few years ago, but I have a confession…well two to make first. I haven’t read the third book in the series yet. Mostly because it is a bit pricey and I haven’t had time to dedicate to reading a book I pay so much for. The second confession is I haven’t really liked Raven through all of the books. Yep, I have found her too rude, crass, blunt and without a filter. So this made me want to read her story to find out why she is that way and hopefully learn to like her.
Raven Smith has wandered in and out of the Brown Siblings series and I know very little about her other than she says what’s on her mind. At one time she had a relationship with Brody, the oldest Brown, and broke his heart even though she was honest that she was not the single person type. She is confident in her sexuality, but also harbors some deep scars from her childhood. While I sympathized and learned to love Raven, I ended up not loving a lot of the supporting women characters.
Raven and Johah Warner meet at a mutual friends engagement party where Jonah approaches Raven about a tattoo to cover his entire back. While that is his main focus, he also wants to get to know Raven more. His daughter is away for her last year of high school in Italy, his divorce is firmly in the past and he is ready to explore some of his darker desires with the right woman. He thinks that is Raven.
Raven doesn’t do relationship and only recently settled down in Seattle to be closer to her friend, Erin and her son Alexander. We find Raven having better relationships with the kids in this story, which even Raven admits is unusual, but she likes their innocence and honesty.
While Raven and Jonah move slowly they also move quickly to the bedroom where Jonah explores his dominance on Raven. Raven is sort of confused at first as to why she likes being spanked and tied up, but after a while, she owns it and doesn’t question it. Jonah loves that he can be honest to who he is with Raven. But as the two start getting closer, Jonah put in demands for exclusivity between them. But he also taps into the darker secrets Raven has never shared, stirring up some of the reasons she is the way she is as well as some fears the she must overcome.
What I loved about Jonah was his unconditional love and I don’t mean he let her walk all over him. He was dominant, but also caring and solid in his commitment to her. But he took his time drawing out things from her past as he got to know her. He respected her fears, but also pushed her to overcome some of the smaller fears. Though it all, he stood beside her and didn’t let anyone walk over her.
Now to some of what I didn’t like. There was one sister-in-law that finally got what she had coming to her but not soon enough. Then there was Jonah’s rude mother. While she is a dominant force, she also said and did things I thought someone should know better about. There was Jonah’s grandmother. Now I am all for letting old people be who they are as they are nearing the end of their life, but rudeness isn’t something I think anyone should have tolerate. Erin and Daisy were the two side characters that were women that I held much respect for. Erin and Raven are as close as sisters and Erin sticks up for her over and over. Daisy comes in recently, as she is Levi Warner’s fiance as well as friends from the Delicious series. Daisy is a fiery Latina that can light my fire if swung that way.
Raven does reveal a lot of her past, slowly through the course of the book. Even some of her own situations changes as somethings were revealed. While she didn’t change, she did find some peace through her relationship with Jonah, a balance that looked good on her. While she still has some deep seated issues, she will get through them in time.
Jonah is the solid man who knows what he wants. He is a good father, great son and wonderful boyfriend.While he knows what he wants, he knows he has to go slowly for Raven. And he is fine with that as long as Raven is there though it all.
This was a tough story of a past that can break the best of people, but also forges a person who while rude, really is a good person who pulls her own weight and shares love with her closest friends. BDSM played a role, but it was not in your face. There was spanking, tie me up and even a collar, but it was all done tastefully with the right timing.
Overall I adored this story and once again I have become a Lauren Dane fan. She writes stories about real people falling in love, family that has your back and friends who hold you close. It has it all with a lot of dreamy, sweaty sex. Yep, it has all of that plus lots of sex. What’s not to like?
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