Oxford #1; Standalone
Meet the men of Oxford magazine! In the first captivating spin-off of Lauren Layne’s Sex, Love & Stiletto series, a not-so-friendly battle of the sexes turns into a scorching office romance.
Hotshot sports editor Cole Sharpe has been freelancing for Oxford for years, so when he hears about a staff position opening up, he figures he’s got the inside track. Then his boss drops a bombshell: Cole has competition. Female competition, in the form of a fresh-faced tomboy who can hang with the dudes—and write circles around them, too. Cole usually likes his women flirty and curvy, but he takes a special interest in his skinny, sassy rival, if only to keep an eye on her. And soon, he can’t take his eyes off her.
Penelope Pope knows all too well that she comes off as just one of the guys. Since she’s learned that wanting more usually leads to disappointment, Penelope’s resigned to sitting on the sidelines when it comes to love. So why does Cole make her want to get back in the game? The man is as arrogant as he is handsome. He probably sees her as nothing more than a barrier to his dream job. But when an unexpected kiss turns into a night of irresistible passion, Penelope has to figure out whether they’re just fooling around—or starting something real.
A sweet, comical, and endearing read. The heroine is especially refreshing and inviting which makes this story really stick out. Most times heroines will do the same thing regarding certain situations or when around men, but Penelope Pope does the complete opposite. I loved her and her naivete–she’s more honest than most.
Penelope Pope loves sports, tennis shoes, casual clothes, and hotdogs. She’s the girl next door, the tomboy, the one who is always seen as ‘one of the guys.’ She’s fine with that, comfortable with it. But inside she craves that feeling of being irresistible, desired. In New York, leaving Chicago behind, she’s after her dream job: sports editor at Oxford magazine. The one thing standing in her way? The charismatic, sexy Cole Sharpe. Cole has been freelancing with Oxford for awhile now, and he’s desperate to be in a permanent position. The guy who normally has a type (the busty, tall, blonde variety) and a kind (one-nighter, please) will have his world turned upside down when he comes across Penelope.
Penelope was such a lovable character and I want her as a friend. She was incredibly real, while also being soft (girl can’t give the cold shoulder to save.her.life) yet she knew at which point she wasn’t going to take any more. Her lack of walls and non-guarded heart were wonderful, and the fact that you could relate to her plights, her wants, and her desires was enjoyable to read. Cole, on the other hand, was so taken back by his response to Penelope and the fact that she was like no one he had ever met that he became instantly enamored. Their humor together and the easygoing manner with which they slowly fell for one another was a great palate cleanser. I definitely recommend this book for the sweet feelings, the well-written story, and the relatableness (is that a word…) of Penelope. This was my first Lauren Layne book and it won’t be my last.
Oxford #2; Standalone
Release Date: February 2, 2015
♦ABOUT THE AUTHOR♦
Lauren Layne is the USA Today Bestselling author of more than a dozen contemporary romance novels.
Prior to becoming an author, Lauren worked in e-commerce and web-marketing. A year after moving from Seattle to Manhattan to pursue a writing career, she had a fabulous agent and multiple New York publishing deals.
Lauren currently lives in Chicago with her husband and plus-sized Pomeranian. When not writing, you’ll likely find her running (rarely), reading (sometimes), or at happy hour (often).