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REVIEW: CB: Dare Me by Leigh Ellwood

Dear Ms. Ellwood:

Dare MeYou have a fun sense of humor and your prose is quite readable. The romance, however, seemed rushed and pushed aside for the sake of the explicit sexual content. I had trouble believing that this couple truly loved each other or whether they just enjoyed the sex.

Cal Briscoe is a studio musician who struggles with the fact that at the age of fifty-one, he is unmarried and essentially alone. This loneliness is punctuated by the imminent marriage of his best friend, Brady, the hero in Truth or Dare, to a woman that Cal fancies himself with, Ellie. Much of the beginning half of the story is spent on the poignant feelings Cal exhibits when he longs for Ellie and his unrequited love for her.

Upon the urging of Brady, Cal decides to take refuge in Ellie’s hometown of Dareville, Virginia. There he meets Sue Carmichael, a photographer. Sue and Cal are opposites (the contest entry said think the Odd Couple) and often rub each other the wrong way.

The story is about taking chances and moving outside of one’s comfort zone for both Sue and Cal which is an excellent theme for a romance story (or any story). The problem lies in the fact that while there are a plethora of sex scenes (both fantasies and real acts), the romance story is left behind. The character growth is rushed. One minute Cal is a pot smoking slacker in love with his best friend’s fiancee and the next, Sue is his lastest crush and he is a work out fiend devoted to living better. The transformation lacked believability.

I can’t help but feel disappointed as you clearly have a good voice that is humorous and smooth. I’d certainly try you again but hope that next time a better balance is struck between the hot parts and the story. C for you. Take heart, though, Keishon liked this much better than I and just goes to show how subject reviews are.

Best regards,


Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. Leigh Ellwood
    Aug 01, 2006 @ 19:55:14

    Every day is a learning experience. Between this and other events, I’ve certainly learned quite a bit. I’ll take the C, because now I have something to shoot for with my next book.

  2. kate r
    Aug 04, 2006 @ 16:30:02

    Enjoying sex isn’t half bad.

    A couple of the eroticas I’ve read lately the characters had NO FUN in bed. Jeez.

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