Tuesday, April 3, 2018

X Marks the Spot by Opal Carew

Opal Carew takes desire to a whole new level in her latest erotic, standalone romance!

Abi has been in love with Del for years, but they never got around to acting on their mutual attraction. And then she met and married his best friend, Liam.

But when Abi and Liam’s marriage falls apart, Abi decides to take control of her life and find her happily-ever-after with Del. So when they’re all staying in a country inn for her brother’s wedding, Abi decides to slip into Del’s bed and seduce him… except she accidentally ends up in Liam’s instead.

Liam never stopped loving Abi, and he plans to use every blazing hot trick in his book to keep her in his bed…even if it means sharing her with Del.

X Marks the Spot is emotional, sexy, and is Opal Carew at her best!

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Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

I had a bit of a love-hate with this book. At times, I really found leading lady, Abi, to be way too wishy washy and stringing the men along cruelly. She's sleeping with her ex-husband but had planned to sleep with her longtime friend, Del, that night, and it just happens the two switched rooms. She loves her ex, Liam, but loves Del too. The patience displayed by these two men (who happen to be old friends themselves) was a bit far reaching in reality, but it worked well for the story. I had no idea this was to be a ménage book and was quite happy with that outcome! Bossy in the bedroom, Abi's ex-husband, Liam, is the show saver here if you ask me. Liam telling Del and Abi what to do gave the steamy scenes more heat and pulled the three characters together better.

Mary Jo☆☆☆☆
This is not your typical romance or ménage story.

Abi and Liam have been separated for a couple of years and Liam refuses to sign the divorce papers. He insists he still loves her, but Abi has her doubts. After a tragic loss, he pulled away from her in every way that counted, and she can't put herself in that position again.

She's always had a fierce attraction for Del, but neither of them acted on it because Del is her brother's best friend. Del is also good friends with Liam, and when Abi's life turned upside down, she turned to Del for comfort. Abi has never acted on the attraction between her and Del, but she's ready to move on and see where a romance might lead. If only Liam would sign the papers and let her go.

Liam loves Abi. He knows that he screwed up in the past, but he does love Abi, he just has to prove it to her. Del also loves Abi but knows as long as she's married to Liam, there is no way Abi will even consider a relationship with him.

What neither Del nor Liam knows is that Abi may have a solution that will solve all their problems.

I enjoyed this book and the slow buildup to the ménage story. Of seeing how Abi finally comes to terms with what she wants and how both men want to make her happy.

Avid Reader☆☆☆
M/F/M Romance
Triggers: Click HERE to see Avid Reader’s review on Goodreads for trigger warnings.

Abi, Liam, and Del... Where to begin with this story? Hmmm. Abi is a woman who is trying to move on from a tragedy in her life. What's making this the most difficult is that her wealthy husband is refusing to divorce her.

Del and Abi have been friends since her older brother asked him to watch over her in school. Despite their attraction, Del has placed Abi firmly in his friend zone, despite their mutual attraction.

The slow buildup throughout this story is a good thing. I liked how Abi's sisters tried to give their opinion without being overly pushy. When a unique opportunity of a family wedding presents itself, Abi decides that she'll make her move for Del after all.

What happens next is not what Abi expects, however, it is a very predictable storyline. She sneaks in to surprise Del, only to be more surprised that it's her ex-husband, Liam, instead. They still are attracted to each other and while one thing leads to another, Abi is now in quite a conundrum.

Abi has to decide whether or not her past will dictate her future. Can she find it in her heart to forgive her husband or has her heart changed allegiance to Del? The relationship aspect is sometimes very youthful, as Abi can't decide between the two men.

Overall, this is a slow-burn relationship, and everyone must come to the same conclusion. But my biggest complaint was Abi's character. She wasn't a strong woman throughout and that bugged me a lot.

I am a big fan of ménage romance, so was excited to get this on my Kindle. Ms. Carew has written some super-hot erotica, and this also has some very sexy scenes in it. I did, however, struggle with the pacing and the timing of events. I felt that everything I wanted was there, but just that the way it unfolded didn't entirely convince me.

It is difficult to pinpoint what the issue was, but I think it was that I didn't identify with them as people before the wedding events kicked off. Things are revealed later, but it would have helped understand Abi's insecurities and behaviour if revealed earlier. As it is, she comes across as spoiled and petulant, rather than having a genuine concern about Liam's claims to love her.

Once they had worked out there was a solution, then things were as hot and heady as I expected, and very satisfying. I am just not sure that the best friends aspect of Liam and Del got a lot of coverage, and there were gaps which seemed odd – surely Del would have known that Liam liked D/s games, and surely Liam would have thought about the voyeur/trio options earlier.

Having finished the story and thought about it for this review, my memory is shuffling the story round and giving me a good feeling about the outcome. Give it a go and see what you think!

This is the first book I’ve read by Opal Carew and early on I wasn’t sure what to make of it. I was having issues with the characters and the story and about 10% in I read a line in a sex scene that just had me laughing and laughing. When I shared this with fellow reviewers I was told Ms. Carew writes “unapologetic smut.” This actually helped me get in the right headspace to enjoy the story.

X Marks the Spot is the story about a pretty selfish woman and the two men who are madly in love with her for reasons I couldn’t decipher. This felt a bit like a soap opera but with lots of really hot, dirty sex. And like watching a soap, I just sat back and watched (or in this case read) the drama and story unfolding, judging the characters, enjoying myself. and feeling a little guilty doing it.

At the end of the day, X Marks the Spot was pretty entertaining, and if you are a reader that likes your stories with lots naked time, this book will hit the spot.

Opal Carew is the author of more than twenty erotic romances for St. Martin’s Press, including Nailed and A Fare to Remember. She lives in Canada and makes regular trips to the U.S. to speak at conferences and industry events.

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Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of X Marks the Spot by Opal Carew to read and review.

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