on July 11th 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Romance
Source: Personal Copy
I, Makayla Alexander, am on a mission to reinvent myself. So when a super hot guy boards the plane and flashes his rock hard abs, I pay attention. When he sits next to me and offers me his nuts, I can’t resist. But when I choke on them and he tells me I need to work on my gag reflex, I realize I might be in over my head.
Before I know it we’re in the lavatory and attempting to join the Mile High Club. Let me just say this...anyone who tells you it’s easy to get it on at 37,000 feet isn’t telling you the truth. After the flight attendant busts us for getting frisky in the air, the only thing that can ease my total and complete mortification is the simple fact that I am never going to see him again.
Hours later, I can’t help but wonder if fate will ever allow me to become a new version of myself.
Because Fate, she’s a fickle bitch.
Case in point...my seatmate is my new next-door neighbor.
Even with the whole fate thing we have going on, we are so not meant to be together. He’s all cool and sexy in that make love not war kind of way. Guys like him are dangerous. With that bring-you-to-your-knees body, that handsome-as-hell face, and that dirty, dirty mouth, I guarantee one glance from him wets every girl's bikini bottoms.
And then there’s me…the quirky girl looking to find herself in California. All I want to do is learn to let loose. Say words like peace and groovy. Bury my toes in the sand. Who knows, maybe even have sex on the beach.
Unable to get him out of my head, I entertain the thought of being more than just friends. I know the idea is absurd. And yet, I go with it. You see Camden Waters gets me. Really gets me. Like no other guy has before.
On this 7-mile stretch of paradise, I decide to keep things simple and just have fun...that is until fate decides to screw with me, again.
Can two people hell-bent on finding themselves realize the search should have ended the day they met? Find out in No Pants Required—a sexy, funny, romantic stand-alone, that will have you hurrying to grab your bathing suit and rushing to the beach to check out every lifeguard on duty.
***Want more of the men of Laguna? You can find Keen in Bedwrecker and Brooklyn in Hollywood Prince. These books can be read as stand-alones or as a series.
For the past year, Kim Karr’s No Pants Required has popped up on my “books you might like” on Amazon. And for the past year, I clicked into the book’s website to learn more… only to turn away for something newer and shinier. I’m not sure why it took so long to break down, buy the book, and read it as it was right up my alley: a funny, somewhat steamy contemporary romance. Well here’s how it went down….
The book’s synopsis does a good job summarizing the premise. Makayla Alexander has cashed in her life as a New York accessories designer to reinvent herself on the beaches of Laguna, California. Traditionally a reserved, somewhat quirky girl, Makayla’s new roommate makes her a list of 10 things to do to “lighten up” – including joining the mile high club. Well as luck has it, the guy sitting next to her in first-class on her flight to California makes a move and they find themselves err…. struggling in the airplane bathroom. Things only get better when Makayla later finds out that the mystery man is her new neighbor, Camden Waters.
Let’s start with the good:
- Makayla isn’t a pushover. As weird as it sounds, the blurb on “reinvent myself” made me expect either 1) the world’s biggest pushover attempting to be aggressive or 2) a woman trying to change herself to win back a guy she once thought would be the love of her life (okay fess-up – how many times has everyone seen that trope before?) But honestly, Makayla is just ready for a change in job and a change in men. She’s coming off of a bad relationship, but she just wants a fresh start. And that woman can fight back like no one’s business!
- The dialogue. I laughed out loud more than I’ll admit and the over-the-top dirty talk was fitting for a book entitled No Pants Required. The was probably the best part of the book for me.
But here’s where I struggled:
- You can only count on serendipity so many times. I know you have to suspend your disbelief going into the book – we’re talking about two people randomly hooking-up on an airplane only to later learn that they’re neighbors – but there was an even less likely run-in between three characters that happened before the airplane scene.
- The pacing was off with the first 80% focused on sex and the remaining 20% focused on plot. The first 100 pages felt like a series of everyone hooking-up or almost hooking-up. I just wanted something significant to happen and move the plot along. AND HAPPEN IT DID! Then we moved into middle-land and it was still all about the sex, but then the last 20% hit and the whole plot got crammed in at once. We suddenly learned that Cam and Makayla had more to their life’s ambitions than having sex ALL THE TIME and needed time to take care of other matters. I mean, good for them but it was just… rushed.
I read Connections by Kim Karr last year and really enjoyed the experience, but I found myself struggling with No Pants Required. It was a cute beach read that was low on excitement but high on sexual tension. The dialogue was hot, the characters were funny, but the plot and pacing felt off.