From New York Times bestselling author Kristen Ashley, comes the first standalone in the exciting new Moonlight and Motor Oil series—THE HOOKUP—releasing December 19, 2017!
About THE HOOKUP (Moonlight and Motor Oil Series #1):
When the new girl in town, Eliza “Izzy” Forrester decides to hit the local drinking hole, she’s not ready to meet the town’s good, solid guy. She’s definitely not prepared to engage in her very first hookup with him.
Then Izzy wakes up the next morning in Johnny Gamble’s bed and good girl Izzy finds she likes being bad for Johnny.
Even so, Izzy feels Johnny holding her at arm’s length. But Johnny makes it clear he wants more and Izzy already knows she wants as much of hot-in-bed, sweet-out-of-it Johnny Gamble.
Floating on air thinking this is going somewhere, Izzy quickly learns why Johnny holds distant.
He’s in love with someone else. Someone who left him and did it leaving him broken. Whoever was up next would be runner up, second best. Knowing the stakes, Izzy will take what she can get from the gentleman that’s Johnny Gamble. And even knowing his heart might never mend, Johnny can’t seem to stay away from Izzy.
Until out of nowhere, his lost love comes back to town. He’s not going back, but Johnny still knows the right thing to do is let Izzy go.
And Izzy knew the stakes, so she makes it easy and slips though his fingers.
But that’s before Johnny realizes Eliza moved to town to escape danger that’s been swirling around her.
And that’s why Johnny decides to wade in.
That and the fact Eliza Forrester makes breakfast with a canary singing on her shoulder and fills out tight dresses in a way Johnny Gamble cannot get out of his head.
Order your copy of THE HOOKUP today!
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I am the first to admit that I will read everything Kristen Ashley writes. No, I will DEVOUR everything Kristen Ashley writes! And ‘The Hookup’ will please her hardcore fans with Johnny and Izzy and their super-HOT and yes sweet romance.
I LOVE when the protagonists sleep together right at the beginning and THEN get to know each other. In classic Kristen Ashley fashion, Eliza Forrester goes home with Johnny Gamble after a few drinks. And yes, Johnny knocks her socks off but Izzy has never had a one-night stand! What should she do? How should she act? She is the quintessential “good girl” so this is just not something that she EVER does. And oh boy are things ever awkward!
“Babe, why’d you put on your panties?” I blinked up at him. His fingers slid inside the waistband to lightly cup one cheek of my behind. My lips parted. “Sweet, shy Eliza,” he muttered like he was referencing me to someone else even if he was gazing right into my eyes. “Gonna have to break you of that.” Yes. Oh God, please let it be yes.
One of the things I adore about KA is her heroines are not 19 years old. They are WOMEN with full lives, loyal friends and yes, maybe some baggage. Izzy had a tragic childhood but through sheer will and determination, created a beautiful life for herself. She is well-educated and has a wonderful job. Was she warned to stay away from Johnny? Of course! But how could she possibly resist this electric and uber-sexy man?
“I only know him in passing too, but I still know he’s that guy. The kind you can’t help but like. He’s solid. Dependable. From good people. His brother took off before Charlie and I got to town and I heard he’s a bit of a wild one. But I knew the man, and Johnny Gamble’s dad was like that too. Those men are men who fix your car even if you can’t afford it and let you make payments that won’t bite too deep. ”
Johnny has distanced himself from relationships and women ever since his heart was smashed into bits by his girlfriend. He was completely wrecked. He is a hard worker and a good businessman. He, too, has built a wonderful life for himself. But the heartbreaking drama with his ex is all everyone talks about and it’s why Izzy just knows that Johnny will never truly care for her. What they have is just sex, right? But Johnny actually likes Izzy which of course makes for some truly heart stopping moments.
Johnny makes some very stupid decisions which are really the basis for most of the drama in this book. I think the blurb might throw off some readers into thinking this book is about a love triangle but that’s definitely NOT what this romance is about! At all. Johnny realizes he better get his act together and that Izzy is not like his ex-girlfriend. She is loyal and smart and the real deal. Thank God Izzy has her sister Addie to rely on to help get her though the impending heartbreak.
My heart ached for Izzy as she realized she was falling for Johnny. Despite all the hot and dirty sex they were having, Johnny still kept her at arm’s length. There was plenty of sex but zero intimacy. Izzy gave her heart to Johnny because that’s all she knew how to do and he handed it back to her on a platter.
“I’ve never been in love,” I shared quietly. “Avoid it,” he advised resolutely. “It sucks.” And again… There we were.
I cried a little during ‘The Hookup’ as I do during most of KA’s books! I also adored the small-town setting and the all of the locals. And Johnny Gamble might be one of THE most Alpha of Alphas. Over-the-top possessive, sexy, masculine but kind and strong, he is everything I want in a Kristen Ashley hero. There’s plenty of suspense and action and a wonderfully warm cast of supporting characters, too. Fans of Kristen Ashley will eat this one up. It’s a classic!
“You have a chandelier in your bedroom?”
I grinned, the nerves beginning to glide away.
I also shrugged.
“Am I gonna walk outta your house tomorrow morning coated in glitter dust?” he asked.
My heart sang and the nerves took flight.
He was spending the night.
“I don’t think so,” I answered.
“Best get to fucking you before I turn into a unicorn or something,” he muttered.
“Izzy?” she answered.
“Hey, I’m home,” I told her.
“Okay, well…how are you?”
How was I?
Johnny’s behavior explained by the sad fact it was the anniversary of his father’s death, but still explained, and he was coming over for dinner the next night, not to mention, after not being affectionate (at all, unless you counted sitting me on the countertop, which I kind of did) after the last time we’d had sex, he made out with me at the door of my car for a good, long, happy while—I was great.
“I’m great,” I told her, opening Serengeti’s stall and moving in, lifting a hand to pat her jaw while she moved her nose to snuffle my neck and blow at my hair.
“Damn,” Deanna muttered.
My hand arrested on Serengeti and I focused on Deanna.
“What?” I asked.
“Damn,” she repeated.
“Damn what?” I asked.
“Well, just to say Johnny Gamble is Johnny Gamble.”
A specific area in my chest squeezed at the way she imparted that obvious but still confusing information.
“What’s that mean?” I asked.
“He’s Johnny Gamble of Gamble Garages. Did he tell you that?”
No he didn’t tell me that.
And suddenly I was embarrassed about something that I hadn’t liked all along.
But it was worse since Deanna knew more about a man I’d slept with than I did.
Serengeti was getting fidgety, so I used my hand on her to lead her out of her stall, and once in the corridor, she trotted out the open bay at the back, directly into her pasture.
I moved to Amaretto as I shared with Deanna, “No, he didn’t tell me that. I mean, we talked but we were also doing other things.” I let that lie. It did, weighty between us on the phone, before I went on, “I don’t know what that means.”
Even though it seemed like I did. Something seemed familiar about that.
“You haven’t lived here long enough,” she murmured while I opened Amaretto’s stall and moved in for some quick pats before I let him loose. Louder, Deanna said, “You know the gas station in town?”
That was where I’d seen it.
“He owns that?”
“That and seven more of them across three counties. None in the city, just in the counties. Some of them are like mini-mart stores. All of them sell gas and do work on cars.”
That was impressive.
About Kristen Ashley:
Kristen Ashley was born in Gary, Indiana, USA and nearly killed her mother and herself making it into the world, seeing as she had the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck (already attempting to accessorize and she hadn’t taken her first breath!). Her mother said they took Kristen away, put her Mom back in her room, her mother looked out the window, and Gary was on fire (Dr. King had been assassinated four days before). Kristen’s Mom remembered thinking it was the end of the world. Quite the dramatic beginning.
Kristen grew up in Brownsburg, Indiana and has lived in Denver, Colorado and the West Country of England. Thus, she’s blessed to have friends and family around the globe. Her family was (is) loopy (to say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write. They all lived together on a very small farm in a small farm town in the heartland. She grew up with Glenn Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon and Whitesnake (and the wardrobes that matched).
Needless to say, growing up in a house full of music, clothes and love was a good way to grow up.
And as she keeps growing, it keeps getting better.