I enjoyed all of the stories in this anthology but my favorites were the ones by Linda Lael Miller, Lucy Monroe, and Kate Angell.
In “Batteries Not Required” by Linda Lael Miller, Gayle Hayes is heading back to her hometown to handle a business transaction for her mom. Going back stirs up both good and bad memories – largely because of her then boyfriend Tristan. Naturally, the first person she meets is Tristan. I enjoyed the sexual tension and romantic longing in this story. I liked that Gayle stuck up for herself, even while feeling like an outsider. I was very happy with how things worked out. The story’s title refers to an ongoing funny plot point in which she tells Tristan that she does have a current boyfriend and his name is Bob. Of course most women know B.O.B. stands for battery operated boyfriend.
I am usually a fan of Lucy Monroe and she doesn’t disappoint with this story, “Seducing Tabby”. Tabby Payton is not really being insecure when she assumes that sexy Calder Maxwell is approaching her only in order to pump her for info about her sister. The probability is high because it has happened so many times before - until now. Calder is described as a Cary Grant, classic Hollywood leading man type – total hottie. I loved the wooing Calder does – very romantic. He’s a very determined, “you’re the only one for me and I think you’re awesome” kind of hero, which is fabulous.
“No Shirt, No Shoes, No Service” by Kate Angell felt a little bit like a Cinderella story but it was also a fabulous story of reunited lovers. Violet Cates works hard at her aunt’s diner – something she’s done since high school. She tries to put money aside for her dream of one day having her own restaurant, but her sister is a big drain on her money. Her sister is pretty much a parasite – stealing what money Violet doesn’t already gives her, using her place to crash and let her kids run wild. At the opening of the story she meets her long ago true love, Brad. She and Brad used to both work for her at the diner. It was young love and everything was great until Brad left town to pursue his dreams. Once Violet and Brad are reunited it’s as nothing had changed and they were still those two kids in love. I found this story very sweet and sexy at the same time. I like that it was finally Violet standing up to her sister, with Brad’s support.
Overall, fun, sexy, sweet summer reading.