Book Review: Lick (Stage Dive #1) by Kylie Scott
Okay now, I don’t gush easily these days – especially not about New Adult – but Lick has got to be one of my new favorite rock star romances (and I’m sort of obsessed with them). There was very little I disliked about this story – okay, really, there was NOTHING I disliked about it – and it actually reminded me a lot of the first book in Nalini Singh’s new rocker series. Seeing as how Nalini Singh is one of my go-to, drop-everything authors, that’s a serious compliment for Ms. Scott! So now to try to explain why I loved this story so much… where to start?!
David and Evelyn. Definitely gotta start with them. Notice I didn’t just say “David” and put our female lead second. That’s because I adored both of these characters equally. That is a rare thing in the world of written romance for women; it’s not so often that a hero and heroine sweep you off your feet together, but that is exactly what these two accomplished.
[quote]”I married you, Evelyn, because you made sense to me. We make sense. We’re a whole lot better together than apart. You notice that?”[/quote]
The great thing about these two is that I liked them individually – when they were on the outs and had to be separate, stormy personalities within the story – and I liked them just as much as a couple. David is moody and snappy, but also charming and thoughtful – the kind of guy who will watch out for you first and who cares more about you as a person than what you look like or can do for him. He’s deeper than your average rock star hero – without sacrificing those little personality & lifestyle gems that make rock romances so appealing – and I liked that too. Evelyn is downright adorable. Sometimes female narrators can be tough for me – I have to be able to relate to the personality of the character telling the story when it’s delivered in first person – but Ev was absolutely someone I would love to have as a bestie or sister. She reminded me a lot of myself, a little light on confidence but ballsy when she needs to be and always cognizant of how her words and actions affect others. Her humor sparkles and her caring spirit is a balm to David’s wounded, cynical soul.
The secondary characters – all the bandmates, even Jimmy, and her best friend Lauren – were also well crafted and relevant. Yes, Jimmy is an ass, but he’s an addict. The story needs some conflict in order to move forward through the series, and I suspect Jimmy has depth to his character that we haven’t even glimpsed yet. Mal is a bright shining, beacon of good-natured, solid friendship that lights up every single scene he is in. He’s going to make some woman – and a whole stadium full of faithful Kylie Scott fans – very happy in his Stage Dive story. Lauren is scrappy and cultured and just the kind of best friend you want at your side; she’ll tell you how it is then let you cry on her shoulder before giving your guy hell for hurting you.
And the premise for Lick is simply delightful. Girl wakes up on a motel bathroom floor, with the hangover from Hades and staring at a hot, shirtless, tatted-up dude who smiles down at her like she’s his everything, then finds out she’s gotten married to a rock star and has his name inked across her ass. That could have come off as cheesy or felt staged, but the delivery was absolute gold. That first scene had me hooked even before David said a single word, before we got a literary look at his gorgeous hair and tight jeans. The interplay between them just made the story that much more NECESSARY to read. Seriously people, if you like rock star romances – hell, if you like any contemporary romance with heart and humor – Lick is an absolute must read, one of my favorite books of the year… even if it wasn’t published this year!
One more thing…
Yes, this is technically part of the New Adult genre, but don’t let that scare you! I was worried the love scenes would be closed door or too sickly-sweet. They are definitely not! This story is emotional and the sex is just as hot as the characters’ chemistry promises it will be! The storyline may be a little “angsty”, but it didn’t feel contrived or immature. This is what good New Adult should be like! And the sex… there is on-page, super-hot sex, people! There, you have been warned-slash-enabled. Now go buy it and experience this funny, heart-warming, steamy roller coaster of a story for yourself!