Fighting Love (Love to the Extreme #2)Talk about kicking a fighter while he’s down.
by Abby Niles
Publisher: Entangled Select
Former Middleweight champion and confirmed bachelor Tommy "Lightning" Sparks has lost it all: his belt, his career, and now his home. After the devastating fire, he moves in with his drama-free best friend, Julie. One encounter changes everything and Julie is no longer the girl he’s spent his life protecting but a desirable woman he wants to take to his bed. Knowing his reputation, he’s determined to protect Julie more than ever—from himself.
Veterinarian Julie Rogers has been in love with Tommy since she was ten, but would love to get over the man. She’s quiet nights at home and a glass of wine. He’s clubbing all night and shots of tequila. As friends they work great. As a couple? No way in hell. She just can’t get her heart to agree. When she starts spending time with another fighter, the man who’s always treated her like a sister is suddenly not being very brotherly and enflames her body like never before.
Can two childhood friends make a relationship work, or will they lose everything because they stopped FIGHTING LOVE.
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Read chapter one from Fighting Love here.
My Thoughts: I really enjoyed the first book in this series, Extreme Love, and have really been looking forward to reading Fighting Love. I would like to mention that this is a companion novel and can easily be read as a stand alone. There is just something about MMA fighters that draws me in, kind of the way books about rock stars does. I also love stories about friends turning into lovers. Throw in a hot, sexy, bad boy and I'm hooked. Tommy Sparks and Julie Rogers have been best friends since they were kids. He's loves her and is fiercely protective of her, but has had her in the "friend zone" all their lives, where as Julie has been totally in love with Tommy since she was 10 years old, enduring the joy of having him as a best friend and the pain of watching him as a player and with other women, while being side-lined and playing second string for years because she doesn't want to lose their friendship.
Tommy has never handled fame well and it's cost him big time. When a tragic fire causes him to lose everything he has left, he moves in with Julie until he can find a new place. Suddenly the whole dynamic of their relationship begins to change. She's acutely aware of his presence and Tommy begins to have thoughts that are not "friend zone" material about Julie that both freak him out and turn him on. When Julie begins to date another fighter, Tommy realizes he doesn't want her with anything else, a revelation that both scares and excites him. Julie has always wanted Tommy, but as she begins to sense the signals from him changing, she isn't quite sure if she misreading things or not. When thoughts turn into actions and cross the line from the mental arena to the physical one, things really get interesting. Tommy wars with his desires and his worthiness of Julie, while Julie is determined to finish what he's started, which provides for some really hot and humorous situations. Just when things seem to be finally going well, circumstances change and the past threatens to reclaim the present, causing Tommy to face the possibility of losing his BFF and the woman he loves forever.
I really enjoyed Fighting Love. I think I liked it even better than Extreme Love. I loved the relationship between Tommy and Julie, which was super hot and romantic, but what I loved best was the way the friendship part of their relationship was emphasized and built upon. Abby Niles did an outstanding job doing that and let that factor be what everything else in their relationship stemmed from, while keeping it front and center the whole time. The romantic aspect was swoon-worthy and the sex was sizzling hot, and I loved the story line itself. Tommy is hot, a total bad boy, cocky, sexy as sin and he know it. I also loved watching Julie come out of her shell as the relationship between them progressed. The book captured my attention from beginning to end. The characters were well written and easy to connect to, while the overall plot was enjoyable and entertaining. Fighting Love is a wonderful contemporary romance that I totally enjoyed and would most definitely recommend to fans of this genre.
Excerpt:He strode down the hall. When he reached the bathroom, he grasped the knob, pushed inside, and instantly felt like he’d been hit with the stupid stick. With her back to him, fresh from her shower, Julie was completely nude as she ran a comb through her hair. The wet brunette strands reached right below her shoulder blades, gently caressing her skin and introducing him to an hourglass figure and a flawless, apple-shaped bottom. His gaze locked there.
The rounded cheeks were cockhardening perfect. A woman’s ass had always been his weakness, but Julie’s? F-cking hell. He’d never wanted to get his hands on a butt more.
“Tommy!” She twisted toward him, covering herself with her arms, but not before he saw the enticing swell of her breast. As she squatted to snatch a towel off the floor, he still hadn’t moved. “Get. Out!”
What the hell was he doing? He shook his head, backed out, and slammed the door. “Sorry!”
Taking deep inhales, he collapsed back against the wall. Out of everything he could have seen on Julie’s body, why did it have to be her ass?
He shook his head sharply, trying to dislodge the image. The tempting perfection of it refused to vanish.
Even worse, his d-ck was raring and ready to go from the replay.
No. Oh, God. No. This was so wrong on so many levels.
Julie was his best friend. He’d never once thought of her in a sexual way. But he’d had no clue she looked like that under her clothes.
The bathroom door slammed against the wall and a furious Julie emerged, wrapped in a robe. She shoved him and he lifted his arms to ward her off. “What the hell, Tommy! Knock before entering.”
Angry that she’d made him see something he could never unsee, and finding that he liked it, he yelled back, “It’s called a lock! You don’t live alone anymore, Julie. Lock the god-mn door.” Just to get it out there and remind himself more than anything, he added, “I do not need to see someone I consider my sister naked.” He pointed at her. “Don’t do that to me!”
He stalked back to his room and slammed the door.
Shoving both hands in his hair, he fisted his fingers and tugged, letting out a long, frustrated yell as he paced the room.
Last night he’d wanted to kiss her, and now she had a perfect ass. Fabulous.
God, he wanted to throttle her.
One of my favorite quotes:
"While I do like the sweet, I have so much fun when you want to get dirty.".......Julie