Tempting is the first novel in the contemporary erotic romance series by the same title from author Alex Lucian. To say that it's a teacher-student romance would be overly simplifying it and doesn't give the book the justice it deserves. It doesn't have all the fluff you expect from a romance novel. There's a lot of sex because for a good, long while, that's what the relationship between the main characters is about. However, sex isn't all that this book is about. Both main characters have stories to tell and they're not necessarily the kinds of stories that have fairy tale-like endings. There are moments that one or both may evoke strong, negative feelings--that happened to me in the case of the female main character here more than once--but as their joint and individual stories unfold, you begin to empathize with them and even, dare I say, like one or both and admire their joint fiery passion, the heroine's tenacity and independence, and the hero's vulnerability and depth. So, no, this isn't a gushy romance, but it is one hell of a love story.
Nathan and Add had one hot, unforgettable night together. In the light of day, Nathan is back to being Professor Nathaniel Easton, thirty-four and a widower. He hasn't forgotten the young woman he was with, but it was a momentary blip in his staid routine. The last thing he expects is to cross paths with her again, only this time it's in his classroom...as his creative writing student. Add is Adele Morello, twenty-one and a student on a scholarship. She's also very much a temptation, one that Nathan doesn't need but, without question, wants desperately. As much as he makes it clear in words that he doesn't want anything to do with her, Adele takes up the challenge and more than makes her presence felt. A clandestine affair between a professor and his pupil may not cost him his job--not when his family is as entrenched as it is--but it could end Adele's scholarship. It's one thing to keep their relationship secret, but when Nathan's past leaves him unable to move on, it may very well lead his new shot at a happiness--Adele--to slip away.
This is the kind of debut that readers should take note of because Alex Lucian is an author worth watching. The storytelling feels honest, with an eroticism that isn't there merely to titillate but to seduce the reader into the secluded world that Nathan and Adele have created for themselves, enveloped by the secrecy that's been forced upon them by their statuses at the university. Adele is every bit the young twenty-one-year-old that she is, her being impulsive easily seen as immaturity but not everything she does is immature. She follows her heart and goes with her gut, even if it may be misconstrued and lead to heartache. Adele is exactly what Nathan needs--that necessary push forward albeit in a package that he can fully appreciate. Their story ends with a happily-for-now because it continues in the third book in the series, Provocative, which I was slated to read and review. So, I consider it kismet that Tempting was available for free on Amazon because this was so worth the read. I'm giving this novel five out of five stars. ♥
Date Read: 26 July 2016
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