Title: The Consequence of Seduction
Author: Rachel Van Dyken
Series: Consequence #3
Release Date: February 9, 2015
Reid Emory has never had reason to question his luck with the ladies. As the owner of a lethal set of aqua-blue eyes and a devastating grin, this Hollywood heartthrob always brings his A game…but lately his luck seems to have run out. The actor is in need of some help, and there’s only one person he can trust to take his love life—and his career—to an explosive new level.
Jordan Litwright’s newest client is trying her patience. As a publicist, she’s more than content to stay in the background and let others shine. But when a publicity stunt backfires, she suddenly finds herself thrust into the spotlight—as Reid’s new love interest. And while other men usually overlook her, Reid is focusing in with laserlike intensity. There’s no denying they have serious chemistry.
But once Reid breaks into the big time, can they turn their made-for-the-media romance into a forever love?
The consequence series returns with Reid’s highly anticipated story. Rachel Van Dyken delivers Reid’s match in the feisty and lovable Jordan. These two had a great push and pull creating a chemistry that was fun to watch simmer while they dealt with the drama of Hollywood and the ever present, always to be feared Max Effect. I’d be lying if I said it wasn’t entertaining to watch Reid struggle with his feelings for Jordan after everything he’d put Max through in the last book. Jordan’s self-doubt and overall disbelief in Reid’s sincerity put his normally easy swagger and charming personality to the test. The resulting disaster was amusing, filled with absolutely insane antics, ridiculous conversations, and the kind of embarrassing moments that were simply horrifying. We also got a little more of Colton, Milo, and Jason, and plenty of Becca and Max to make life for Reid and Jordan much more interesting.
“Note to self: don’t look directly in his eyes for fear that clothes will spontaneously pull themselves off my body.”
Poor Reid never stood a chance, and Rachel Van Dyken certainly didn’t hesitate to put him through his paces. I liked getting a glimpse of his more emotional side, specifically near the end of the book where his sexy and romantic side comes to the surface. I absolutely loved how genuine Jordan was. Rachel Van Dyken portrayed her as flawed, someone entirely human who made mistakes, jumped to conclusions, and embarrassed herself… a lot. I always appreciate characters that don’t feel airbrushed in both looks and personality. From her frizzy hair to her tendency to spill things on herself, she was a character I could relate to and laugh with and that went a long way for me with this story. Reid and Jordan’s relationship doesn’t really develop beyond the superficial until the final third or so of the book. It was here that their connection became something meaningful with emotional depth making me swoon and allowing me to fall in love with them.
“I don’t understand whatever language you’re speaking. You’re cute as hell when you get that I want to take over the world look on your face. But I’m completely lost.”
My one issue with this novel is that I felt like there was less balance between storyline/character development and humor than in the first two books. There were pieces where the story building paled beneath the ridiculous and it took away from my connection to the characters and the authenticity of the story. The Consequence of Seduction differs from the previous books in the series in that the humor is geared more towards slapstick comedy. There were still some moments of biting wit and well-timed sarcasm that had me grinning, but the lifeblood of this story is physical comedy. Fueled by over-the-top accidents, a ridiculous amount of bad luck, plenty of uncomfortable situations, and a sibling rivalry gone terribly awry, The Consequence of Seduction made me gasp, cringe, and pray to all available deities that grandma would just keep her clothes on. With the fun familiarity of the characters and the crazy events that unravel, The Consequence of Seduction is an amusing addition to the series.
Let me be honest, this review is one of the more difficult that I’ve had to write in a long time. I’ve made it no secret that I really adore Rachel as a person, as well as what she produces in her novels. However, The Consequence of Seduction just didn’t do it for me. It very much followed the style of the previous two books in the series, but there were a couple areas that felt lacking, which really divested my attention and interest.
“I’d spent my life fixing other people’s problems, living in the background, blending in. And for the first time, I didn’t want to blend. I wanted color.”
My biggest qualm is that the slap stick comedy just went a little overboard for my taste. While in the first two books, there was balance with the storyline and character development, the humor seemed to overtake everything else for the first three quarters of Consequence of Seduction. There was one particular scene, the big dinner I’ll call it, where I spent more time rolling my eyes and questioning the ridiculousness, that I wasn’t able to focus on anything else. It felt like a moment for introductions and connections, but that part was completely missing. Overall, some of the humor of the scenes felt forced, rather than to help aid the characters’ personalities. Furthermore, I wasn’t really able to feel a connection and chemistry between Jordan and Reid the way I was able to with the previous couples. I knew it was there, but it wasn’t conveyed through the words and actions. The journey didn’t feel like their own, but rather one of the circumstance. I think the problem is that I know the potential Rachel has, so I had set the bar pretty high for this novel, and it just fell short from those expectations.
“He was the type of guy you compared every other guy to. There was no going up. There was no getting better. Only worse.”
I think that had this book been a novella of the last twenty percent, it would have been a five star rated book for me. During the final portion, it was like Van Dyken became inspired and her characters finally started speaking to her. There was dialogue and humor, but the balance that seemed lacking was more than present; it was perfection. I loved those serious moments of Reid and Jordan finding their footing and seeing Max’s trouble be used for good. I didn’t dislike The Consequence of Seduction, but it wasn’t my cup of tea. I yearned for more out of the writing and the characters, but have no doubt that some readers will absolutely fall in love with all the antics. I’m certainly looking forward to Jason’s story and just how he’ll get his happily ever after!
Max jumped onto the couch and held up his hands. “Before you do this, remember, our mother has a Jesus sticker on her car. What would she say?”
“Must you bring her into everything?” Reid roared, stopping in front of the couch, chest heaving.
Max shrugged. “It’s not my fault I’m her favorite son.”
“Mom. This morning.”
“Was this before or after you added vodka to her coffee and slipped her a pill?”
Becca made her way around the brothers and motioned for me to walk with her toward the kitchen. No words were spoken. She simply popped the cork from the wine bottle and poured what looked like three servings into a glass and slid it toward me. “Believe me, it helps.”
I took the glass and sipped while she drank straight from the bottle. “Does he ever . . . stop being . . . Max?” I asked. “Curious minds want to know.”
Max jumped off the couch, and naturally he made his own swish sound effect before landing on his feet, thrusting his hands into the air, and turning toward Reid. “I’ve been her favorite ever since I won at gymnastics.”
“You don’t win at gymnastics,” Reid said through clenched teeth. “You get scored.”
“Perfect ten.” Max winked back at us, then covered his mouth and said, “Zero,” while pointing to Reid.
“We were six!” Reid argued.
“Dude!” Max held up his hands. “I’m just saying, it’s not your fault you’re not the favorite. Let it go, man, just like Rose let go of Jack.”
“Who’s Jack?” I whispered.
Becca choked on her wine. “Oh, well, uh, last year Reid had a momentary breakdown because of Max peer pressuring me to shoot Reid in the ass with a tranq gun . . . he spent an hour singing ‘My Heart Will Go On.’” I winced. “Off-key.”
“Damn you!” Reid turned on his heel and thrust his finger in our direction. “What did I ever do to you!” I think he was talking to Becca. “I hit on you once, one time—”
“—thrice.” Max coughed.
“And the only reason was so that I could get back at this one.” He jerked his hand back to Max, nearly hitting him in the face. “Because he told Grandma the lock on my door was broken. I was taken advantage of!”
“Well, it was!” Max rolled his eyes.
“Because you took a sledgehammer to it, you bastard!”
Max grinned. “Guilty.”
Honestly, I wasn’t sure what they were talking about. So I did what any sane girl would do. I drank.
And when my glass was nearly empty, Becca very kindly refilled it while Reid and Max continued pacing around the living room.
“You think if we chant fight, they’ll take their shirts off?” Becca asked.
I eyed Reid’s near perfect physique. “One can only hope.”
“Dirty girls,” Max shouted. “Both of you! Jezebel! I won’t have you poisoning her mind!”
“Oh, please.” I rolled my eyes. “And stop calling me a whore!”
“Term of endearment when Max says it.” Becca patted my hand. “Next time just say thank you. It’s easier that way.”
I glanced back at the guys just in time to see Reid launch himself at Max, hands wrapped tightly around his neck, holding him against the couch while Max screamed. “Help, help!”
“We should probably intervene.” Becca took a long sip of wine and set her glass down on the table, then yawned.
“Yeah.” Max started turning purple. “We probably should. What do you normally do? Take off your top? Blow a whistle? Call the cops?”
“Cops refuse to come when Emorys call—believe me, it’s like the whole McDonald’s thing. Public service refuses to help them now.”
Max made a choking noise while he tried to kick Reid in the shin.
“Oh, well.” Becca walked slowly toward the guys. I followed. I expected her to gently ask them to stop fighting and separate them.
Instead, she punched Reid in the face and then separated them.
He stumbled back.
I caught him and fell backward against the other couch while he rubbed his face and whispered, “My hero.”
“My lungs broke your fall,” I wheezed.
Max gasped for air. “You know my biggest fear is not breathing!”
“Not breathing?” I had to ask, I just had to.
Reid chuckled. “For six years Max was convinced every food was going to cause him to go into anaphylactic shock because Oprah did a segment where some chick nearly died after eating a kiwi!”
“A kiwi!” Max repeated hoarsely. “Who dies from kiwi? That chick.” He shook his head vigorously. “I refuse to go down eating.”
Reid moved off me and sat back on the couch. “He took Benadryl every time he ate fruit.”
Max narrowed his eyes. “Make fun now, but we both know that watermelon gave me hives! My throat closed, you bastard!”
“Maybe if you took smaller bites . . .” Reid said helpfully.
Max lunged again.
Becca grabbed him by the shirt and tugged him back onto his own couch. “No more fighting, we have engagement pictures tomorrow.”
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Don’t miss the rest of the Consequence series:
The Consequence of Loving Colton (Consequence #1)
The Consequence of Revenge (Consequence #2)
The Consequence of Rejection (Consequence #4)
Rachel Van Dyken is the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today Bestselling author of regency and contemporary romances. When she’s not writing you can find her drinking coffee at Starbucks and plotting her next book while watching The Bachelor.
She keeps her home in Idaho with her Husband, adorable son, and two snoring boxers! She loves to hear from readers!
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