Today is my stop during the blog tour for Wicked Favor (The Wicked Horse Vegas #1) by Sawyer Bennett! I’ll share my review of the book and there’s an excerpt and some teaser images.
New York Times bestselling author, Sawyer Bennett, is happy to introduce a new Wicked Horse club in Las Vegas and you’re cordially invited to attend the grand opening…
As the owner of The Wicked Horse, an elite sex club located along the Vegas Strip, Jerico Jameson never spends the night alone. Gorgeous, ripped, and totally alpha, Jerico doesn’t grant favors and will rarely give you the time of day—unless he wants you in his bed. So when the sister of his sworn enemy shows up asking for help, saying no should be easy. But when Jerico takes one look at her and sees an opportunity to help this beautiful woman while exacting revenge on her brother, he’s not about to pass that up.
Beaten and bruised, Trista Barnes is running out of options, and Jerico is her last chance to get out of the mess she’s in. She doesn’t know why Jerico despises her brother so much, but as long as he can help her, she doesn’t care. Jerico offers her safety while opening her up to a sinful world she never knew existed.
As she succumbs to Jerico’s erotic charm, Trista lets herself fall into the wicked world of guilt free pleasure with no regrets. Under his strong alpha hand, she blooms, and so does Jerico’s possessiveness. But what happens when Trista finds out she was a pawn in Jerico’s game all along, and that the price for his favor was steeper than she ever imagined – her heart.
Jericho Jamison is an ex-marine who is now a wealthy, successful businessman with two thriving business. One is a special ops business and the other is a sex club. Having been burned by women in the past, Jericho is now strictly a one-time-woman man and he enjoys all the privileges that come with owning the Wicked Horse.
Trista Barnes is a wonderful daughter and aunt trying to do the right thing. In order to help someone in her family, she got herself into a difficult situation and now she needs a bailout. Her brother sends her to Jericho and he refuses her at first but then agrees as he spots an opportunity for some vengeance on her brother – his arch enemy.
I didn’t like Jericho at first because of how he was planning to use Trista, but he grew on me a lot and as the story progressed he redeemed himself. When I discovered what had been done to him, my heart ached for him and it all clicked into place. The serious trust and commitment issues made total sense. It still doesn’t excuse his willingness to throw Trista to the wolves but I can understand where he was coming from.
The chemistry between our mains was electric, and I felt the sexual tension, however, I wished more time had been spent developing their relationship outside the bedroom/sex club.
This book stretched my comfort zone at times, and I was seriously fanning myself reading this one! I found it hard to accept the fact that Jericho had sex in front of his employees and that they were openly allowed to do the same, and don’t even get me started on the fact he screwed some of his employees. Talk about a lawsuit waiting to happen! I know it’s fiction but the HR side of my brain struggled with that aspect of the worldbuilding and plot. I also found the main plot to be very predictable even if the story was very well executed.
The writing and voice were strong and distinctive and the pacing was perfect – it was hard to put this book down at times.
BTW, I didn’t realize this was a spin-off to another series Sawyer has written. You most definitely don’t need to read that series to enjoy this book – it is a complete standalone.
In summary, this was an enjoyable erotic romance with well-developed characters.
Thanks to the author and Inkslinger PR for providing an ARC of same which I am voluntarily reviewing.
She pops her head in first and gives me a tentative smile. “You busy?”
“Not at all,” I tell her as I wave her in.
She disappears for a moment, and then opens the door wider. I see she’s carrying a large, plastic container that’s dome shaped and has a handle on top. My eyes only flick to it briefly before coming back to her. She’s much better to look at.
Shutting the door behind her, she walks up to my desk with a goofy grin on her face and sets the plastic container in front of me. I look down at it, and then up to her. “What’s that?”
“Something I made for you this morning,” she says, unlocking the tabs at the bottom. She lifts the dome top off, and I’m staring at a cake in front of me.
Slowly, I look back up to her. “You made me a cake?”
“Not just any cake,” she says while wagging a finger at me. “A four-layer, homemade red velvet cake with whipped mascarpone icing.”
“Jesus,” I mutter as I look at the cake, wondering what this weird squeezing sensation is in my chest. When I look back up to her, I have to ask her again, “You made that just for me?”
“Just for you,” she says with satisfaction all over her face. “You said it was your favorite, and I had some time this morning after pancakes.”
I push out of my chair and wave a hand at the cake. “You just happened to have all these ingredients, huh? You routinely use something as odd as mascarpone?”
Her grin turns mischievous as she shrugs. “Well, I may have had to go to the grocery store for a few things.”
Jesus fuck. I can’t believe she did that for me.
My mind races over the years, and I can’t remember anyone doing something so randomly nice for me. So spontaneous and with the sole intention of doing it to please me.
Picking up the cake, I round the desk and head for the side door that connects to my kitchen. “Let’s take this next door.”
I don’t miss the disgruntled expression on Trista’s face as she clearly expected me to act differently. I’m sure she was thinking I’d be a bit more effusive in my praise, and I intend to be.
Just… in my apartment.
She follows me through the door as I balance the cake on my hand. I immediately lay it down on my kitchen counter and spin around just as she’s walking through the door, taking her face in my hands and walking right into her. My mouth hits hers. She gives a huff of surprise as I turn slightly and back her into the refrigerator. Angling my head, I kiss her deeply. It’s possible because she angles hers the other way, opening her mouth to give me entrance.
Yes, it’s a deep kiss, but it’s not sexual. It’s a show of unbridled happiness that makes me feel like a kid, or perhaps it’s gratitude that Trista perhaps thinks this is something other than “just sex”.
When I pull away, Trista’s cheeks are pink and she’s slightly panting. She whispers breathlessly to me, “I should make you cake more often.”
The grin that breaks wide is my answer, followed by another swift kiss. Then I’m turning away from her and grabbing a fork out of my drawer. Without any pomp, and certainly no circumstance to wait for a plate, I punch my fork down into the top of the cake and pull a huge chunk out.
“Oh, my God.” Trista giggles as she comes to stand beside me at the counter. I angle toward her as I bring the fork to my lips, open my mouth wide, and shove the cake in. Cheeks bulging and the taste of rich cake and lightly sweet, tangy frosting coating my tongue, I groan in satisfaction. Our eyes stay locked as I chew and chew and chew, and finally swallow the heaven in my mouth. Trista’s eyes are sparkling with humor and a bit of pride.
“Good?” she asks.
I give a swipe of my tongue over my bottom lip to catch some stray frosting there. “It’s amazing. Thank you.”
She beams a brilliant smile as she sets the cake carrier on the counter and turns toward the door that leads back into my office. “You’re welcome. Now… I’ve got to get going.”
“Wait,” I say as I snag her arm and turn her back to me. “You just got here.”
“And my work is done,” she says impishly, going to her tiptoes to give me a quick kiss. “I’m meeting Mom and Corinne for lunch, and I’ve got to get going.”
Well, there goes all thought of spending my afternoon with Trista in bed rather than golfing.
But I’d never begrudge her time with Jolene and Corinne. Their unity right now is extremely important. I do pull her into me and wrap my arms around her waist after throwing the fork into the sink. Trista’s hands come to my chest as she looks up at me curiously.
“Take the night off,” I tell her softly and I have to admit, the way her eyes go warm makes me feel fucking really good. “Make it an entire day and night thing with Corinne, okay?”
“Really?” she asks with sweetest type of surprise in her eyes.
“Yeah,” I murmur as I tighten my arms around her. “I’ll keep myself occupied with the cake tonight.”
Her lips quirking, she gets a playful look in her eyes. “We could… um… FaceTime each other later.”
My eyebrows rise with interest, but I play a little stupid. “FaceTime?”
“Naked. FaceTime.” She annunciates each word slowly, and my dick perks up at this suggestion.
And for a man who has done about every dirty thing imaginable, it hits me hard that this is something new. Something I’ve never done with another woman and now, I’m glad she’s not coming so I can have something new and unique just with Trista.
“What time might you be calling me?” I ask in a husky voice.
“Be ready around eleven,” she says, pressing into me. “Clothing is optional.”
“Wrong,” I tell her with a shake of my head. “Naked is mandatory.”
About the Author:
Since the release of her debut contemporary romance novel, Off Sides, in January 2013, Sawyer Bennett has released more than 30 books and has been featured on both the USA Today and New York Times bestseller lists on multiple occasions.
A reformed trial lawyer from North Carolina, Sawyer uses real life experience to create relatable, sexy stories that appeal to a wide array of readers. From new adult to erotic contemporary romance, Sawyer writes something for just about everyone.
Sawyer likes her Bloody Marys strong, her martinis dirty, and her heroes a combination of the two. When not bringing fictional romance to life, Sawyer is a chauffeur, stylist, chef, maid, and personal assistant to a very active toddler, as well as full-time servant to two adorably naughty dogs. She believes in the good of others, and that a bad day can be cured with a great work-out, cake, or a combination of the two.