Review: Ain't He Precious? by Juliette Poe (Sex and Sweet Tea #1)

Note: This ARC was provided by the author via InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review.

Ain't He Precious? is the first book in the small town romance entitled Sex and Sweet Tea series penned by Juliette Poe. Who is Juliette Poe? She's none other than bestselling author Sawyer Bennett, whose Last CallCold Fury Hockey, Wicked Horse, and Sugar Bowl series I've had the please of reading and whose most recent standalone, The Hard Truth About Sunshine already counts as one of my top favorites for 2017. Her alter-ego seems to have Southern sassy storytelling down pat, with a lot of sweet and a hint of spice. Yes, this series starter doesn't have as much on-page sex as you may have come to expect, but the author is using a nom de plume so I had already taken into account that there was going to be something unique with this series compared to the Bennett-penned ones.

This small town romance series is set in the fictional North Carolina town of Whynot and centers on the Mancinkus family. Book one focuses the eldest of the siblings, thirty-five-year-old Trixie, who has her own practice in town, having returned home after her graduation from law school and choosing Whynot over Boston and leaving the only guy she's ever completely loved behind. When she calls Ryland Powers for his help with a case that she's handling, she knows that she and Ry may end up discussing what happened eleven years ago. They were about to graduate, had firm job offers at a prestigious law firm, and were going to live in Boston...until they weren't. This could short time together could give Trixie and Ry closure, or it could well be their second chance at precious love.

I adored this series starter and the kooky townsfolk of Whynot! Choosing between being true to herself and staying with her true love is what caused Trixie and Ry to part ways over a decade ago, but this second chance romance of theirs highlights that the most real kind of love never really dies. The story is told from three points of view--Trixie's, Ryland's, and Pap's, who just happens to be Trix's grandfather--and I loved Pap's observations and musings. He saw things from the viewpoint of a Yankee who left behind his life in the city and from that of someone who's lived in the South for more than two decades. He had a unique understanding of what his granddaughter and her city slicker ex-boyfriend were going through, and was a light, heartfelt peripheral character.

I confess that I was a bit surprised that there wasn't as much sex here. I mean, there's definitely a fair amount of sex, but some of it is off-page. However, I'm not complaining, and the sex that is on-page was hot.The focus really here is Trixie and Ryland trying to reconcile what brought about the end of their relationship eleven years ago and contemplating if there truly is any hope for the city lawyer and partner at a big firm and the small town attorney who had a fledgling practice of her own. I liked Trix's family and we get a bit of an introduction as to who the second eldest Mancinkus sibling--Lowe--will be paired with. A fairly quick read but one that never disappoints, Ain't He Precious? was a more than pleasant surprise and I certainly will not be saying "no" to even more. 4.5 stars. ♥

Date Read: 14 April 2017

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