Series: Mechanics of Love #1
Published by Avon Impulse on June 16th 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Source: Self Purchased
Some things are sexier the second time around.Cal Payton has gruff and grumbly down to an art...all the better for keeping people away. And it usually works. Until Jenna MacMillan-his biggest mistake---walks into Payton and Sons mechanic shop all grown up, looking like sunshine, and inspiring more than a few dirty thoughts.Jenna was sure she was long over the boy she'd once loved with reckless abandon, but one look at the steel-eyed Cal Payton has her falling apart all over again. Ten years may have passed, but the pull is stronger than ever... and this Cal is all man.Cal may have no intention of letting Jenna in, but she's always been his light, and it's getting harder to stay all alone in the dark. When a surprise from the past changes everything, Cal and Jenna must decide if their connection should be left alone or if it's exactly what they need for the future of their dreams.
Jenna has returned from the big city, and come back to her hometown. Its been ten years but she is ready to make her life away from the crowds and the expensive housing and to a place that feel like home. Her father has called her back for a job, and so now she is back in the same town as her only love, Cal Payton. A man whom she has always loved but had to hurt him to save him and she knows he has never forgiven her for it. She doesn’t know if there is a chance to have a future with him again, but she is going to show him that is genuine in her feelings for him and stand by him. Cal Payton, is thirty years old, and helps run his father’s car mechanic shop along with his younger brother. Cal due to the faults in his parents, was forced to raised his brothers. Now he is embracing freedom and enjoying the peace and quiet of his home with only sports as entertainment. But Cal will be forced to make a decision when Jenna returns. Beautiful and loving Jenna, a woman he has always loved but broke his heart. But when he finds he has a step brother he never knew about and might have to raise him, he starts to question his own beliefs for living, and wonders if he can let Jenna, his sunshine, back into his life and be content in the dark and bleak existence that is his life.
Cal had to grow up very quickly. His mother abandoned Cal and his brothers when they were young. His father wasn’t the most loving of fathers and pretty much left them to their own devises. Cal as the oldest, had to be the one to raise his brothers, and show them the right way in living and it drained him completely. In high school he fell in love with Jenna, and they planned a life together, until her family forced her to make a difficult choice, either break it off with Cal or save his future and Jenna chose the latter. Cal has never forgotten. Cal is not the upbeat and positive young man he once was. He has changed into a man who is serious and thinks only of his own wants, which he has never had before. Cal is a hero that is a fighter, he has strength but also struggles emotionally. He is responsible and hard-working, and dedicated to his goals. But Cal’s disposition is not very nice at all. He is so grumpy, moody and temperamental at times. But boy do I love my grumpy heroes.
Jenna fell in love with Cal, and even though she planned on going to school, she always wanted to be his wife and have a family with him. Her family didn’t approve of their relationship, and when a fight broke out between Cal and her brother. Her parents gave her a choice, either they press charges and Cal goes to jail, which would ruin his future. Or break it off with him and go to college, and they would leave him alone. Jenna sacrificed her love so that Cal could be free without the stain of a criminal record. Jenna has returned and even though she doesn’t expect anything from Cal, you see how much she wants him back in her life again. Jenna was feisty and funny and a fighter. She was a solid match for Cal, because she knew how to match his grumpy nature. Jenny is carefree and honest and good. She is upfront about the mistakes she has made in the past, and she makes an effort to get her “Cal” back.
Plot and Story Line
Dirty Thoughts is the first book in a new series by Megan Erickson. This is also the first book I have read from this author. This series is a series based on a family of brothers, a mechanics family. This concept was very interesting, because this is a first for me, reading a romance that deals with one of the main characters being a car mechanic. I have to say sexy as all get out!! I had so much fun with this story and couldn’t put it down. What a page turner too!! The writing that Megan Erickson displays in this story is so engaging and immediately draws you in. I do love it when authors can do that for a reader. That no matter what your mood, you can still fall in love with a story. What really drew me most to this book was the “second chance” trope. I just adore this trope in romance novels because its such a romantic concept that in the real world most people only dream about, and in this story it becomes a reality. Both Cal and Jenna have a past with each other. They were high school sweethearts, but were really in love with each other. But they were driven apart by circumstances neither of them had much control over. They moved on, worked and for ten years they have been apart, but neither of them have entered other relationships. That is something I quite enjoyed, because you sense how right they are for each other. But we have another aspect roll into the story…the step brother, a teenager who doesn’t feel safe at home and wants to live with Cal. This is where the relationship between Cal and Jenna begins to shift from getting to know each other and being friends into something more. Now let me talk about these brothers. Boy did I have a rockin’ time with all of them. We have the two brothers that Cal raised Brent and Gabe. Both brothers are a bit different but you they have similar traits too. And I can’t wait for their stories. Then we have the step brother who is gay, (a unique twist), and we see some seeds that could be a future story–maybe? We will see what this author does. I truly had a fun time with this one, and what a truly tender and poignant story and still have some lighter moments that seemed to balance the story out for this reader!!
I just adore Avon covers, but they do so good with their contemporary ones. This cover I love, with the red and black background. The pose is so adorable, sensual and light-hearted all at the same time!!
Dirty Thoughts is a story that is guaranteed to capture your attention from the beginning. It’s a romantic tale of two people who find each other after ten years, and rekindle a sensual passion, characters to fall in love with, and a story to endear you. A SEXY GEM!!
“Like me, how?”
“Um, like, all . . . ” Asher puffed out his chest and held his arms out from his body like his biceps were huge. “Don’t dirty my house,” he said in a false low voice. “Do what I say. Grrrr.”
There was a gasp, and Asher clapped his hand over his mouth. Jenna covered his ears with her hands and hissed, “Don’t say things like that in front of the children!”
Had they both been at the sauce while he was in the shower? What the–
Jenna’s handds dropped from Asher’s ears, and he turned to her, clasping her hands. “Its okay, Jenna. Its going to be hard, but I think I can overcome this.”
Cal threw up his hands. “For God’s sake–”
“John Hughes is not an actor.” Jenna’s voice wobbled, like she was speaking at his funeral. “He’s only one of the greatest film makers of all time.”
“Breakfast Club…Ferris Bueller’s Day Off..Weird Science!” Asher’s voice cracked at the end.
They were still both clutching each other, staring at him like he had leprosy. He rolled his eyes and stalked into the kitchen for another beer. “You guys are ridiculous.”
“We’ll pray for your Hugh-less soul!” Asher shouted.
“Love you, Sunshine. Not sure I ever stopped. But what I felt for you at eighteen is nothing compared to how I feel about you now.”
“Thought I’d come here that night and steal a ray of that sunshine. Then walk away, hoping it would keep me warm for a while. But damn if you didn’t catch me in a day, sucking me back in, making me feel like if you weren’t by my side, I’d die of frostbite.”