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REVIEW: On Dublin Street by Samantha Young

Dear Ms. Young:

I think it was Angela James who told me to read this book. We’ve both been glomming on as many New Adult books as we can, mostly from the self published ranks. On Dublin Street isn’t necessarily Mature YA or New Adult or whatever we are calling it, but it has a similar feel. It’s written in the first person and features a just graduated college student living in Scotland.

On Dublin Street Samantha YoungJocelyn Butler is an orphan, having lost her family when she was a teenager in a terrible car wreck. Shuffled from foster home to foster home, she’s hardened her heart and allowed herself no close connections. After high school, Joss moved to Scotland to attend the University of Edinburgh where she has lived ever since. One of my major complaints is that little of the Scottish atmosphere is provided here. There are hints here and there, but I felt that the story could have been moved anywhere – to Australia, California, England – and the story would have been the same.

After her roommate and closest friend Rhian moves to London, Joss looks for a new place to live and falls in love with a high end luxury flat. Joss hasn’t touched much of the money she inherited, feeling it is tainted by the loss of her family but decides to dip into her fortune to pay for her share of the flat.

Her new roommate is Ellie Carmichael, a PhD student, whose brother (and owner of the property) is Braden Carmichael, a wealthy developer in Scotland. Joss initially resists Braden’s advances, dismissing him as a wealthy playboy womanizer. However, after weeks of trying to tamp down their mutual attraction, Braden offers a no strings attached, friends with benefits affair. Joss relents but attempts to keep as much distance as possible from Braden, emotionally.

The reason that Joss and Rhian were such good friends was because both of them had painful pasts and neither pushed the other for more than a superficial friendship. What Joss did not realize is that the time spent with Riann created a deep connection. In spite of all her efforts to hold herself aloof, Joss really cares for the people in her life. Riann, Ellie, and Braden become indispensable to her emotionally but she realizes it almost too late.

Braden and Joss have a meet cute when Joss hails a cab to take her to Dublin Street, the location of the new flat. Braden hustles her into the cab saying they’ll share the cab:

“Good.” He pulled the door open. “I’m heading in that direction, and since I’m already running late, might I suggest we share the taxi instead of wasting ten minutes deciding who needs it more.”

A warm hand touched my lower back and pressed me gently forward. Dazed, I somehow let myself be manhandled into the cab, sliding across the seat and buckling up as I silently questioned whether I’d nodded my agreement to this. I didn’t think I had.

This is Braden. Totally in command. Pushy. Refusing to take no for an answer. If this type of guy is unattractive to a reader, this book is not for them. However, Braden appealed to me and to Joss. Someone less assured would have never been able to break through Joss’ barriers. Someone less persistent would have given up after her second no. Or maybe her third. Someone who was less intense wouldn’t have burned so fiercely for Joss and thus would never have pushed her so hard.

This book had some funny dialogue, some amazingly hot sex scenes, and emotional drama.  Did I mention the amazing sex scenes? Let’s combine some of these in a little excerpt:

Hard to tell with you sometimes. Speaking of hard…

I was caught between laughing and scowling. What did he mean it was hard to tell with me sometimes? Deciding it best to let it go, since he was joking again, I text back … wood floor?

No…

… back book?

Think more anatomical

… intestines?

OK, you just took the sexy out of it.

or (and this is a bit salty so I’ll put it in spoiler quotes:

[spoiler]“Just for that, I expect you to wrap that dirty mouth of yours around my cock tonight.” He narrowed his eyes on me.I felt the impact of those words as they pebbled my nipples and soaked my panties. Despite my body being completely turned on, I was floored. I couldn’t believe he’d just said that to me in a fancy restaurant where anyone might overhear. “Are you kidding?”

“Babe,” he gave me a look that suggested I was missing the obvious, “I never kid about blowjobs.”

The sound of someone choking brought my head up. Our waiter had descended on us just in time to hear those romantic words and his rosy cheeks betrayed his embarrassment. “Ready to order?” he croaked out.

“Yes,” Braden answered, obviously uncaring he’d been overhead. “I’ll have the steak, medium-rare.” He smiled softly at me. “What are you having?”

He took a swig of water. He thought he was so cool and funny.

“Apparently sausage.” Braden choked on the water, coughing into his fists, his eyes bright with mirth as he put his glass back on the table.

[/spoiler]

I found the ending to be a bit melodramatic and I could have lived without the epilogue.  I liked the secondary romance between Ellie and Braden’s best friend.  There is some weird formatting issues and some typos but overall I thought it was a very polished product.  I definitely want to read more.  At $3.99, it’s a satisfying, emotional, contemporary romance.  B

Best regards,

Jane

 

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Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She 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

18 Comments

  1. RebeccaJ
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 12:09:54

    Glanced at this cover quickly and for one horrifying moment, thought his nose was really something else…LOL!

    ReplyReply

  2. MrsJoseph
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 12:12:20

    I just finished reading this a few days ago. LOVED it! There were few eye rolling moments and I liked both characters AND the secondaries. Well-rounded characters FTW!

    ReplyReply

  3. Elyssa
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 12:16:57

    I read this one, too. I think I asked you about it and you said I would like, and that was enough for me to buy.

    I did like this but a lot of my enjoyment was dimmed because it didn’t feel or look copyedited–there were A LOT of typos–and the wonky formatting kept pulling me out of the story.

    I also had a BIG problem with a few story things that happened. The one in particular where Braden expresses his disapproval/outrage at what she wears to the nightclub and also when he tells her to put her hair up put SO many red flags up for me. I don’t care if he’s being “possessive,” I just did not like that at all. And I thought she forgave him a little too easily for that thing he told her–I’m trying to be vague as it’s a huge spoiler.

    However, I did think the book was highly emotional and very intense. I’m glad I read it but I wasn’t blown away by it.

    ReplyReply

  4. Kati
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 12:35:20

    I really loved this one. I think it’s because there’s little I like more than a heaping helping of romangst, which this one had in spades. Plus I love me an overbearing alpha, especially if he’s a caregiver, which Braden was.

    This book was truly successful for me, and it lingered for a few days with me after I read it.

    ReplyReply

  5. MrsJoseph
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 12:37:25

    @Elyssa:

    I can see your point about the dress. I had a few raised eyebrows at that, too. I didn’t get too upset about the hair…I guess I found his request reasoning sexy, lol.

    I think I found it easy to be ok with her forgiving him about what he said because she was so jacked up in the head…she did quite a few objectionable things (IMO) as well…

    ReplyReply

  6. Mandi
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 12:52:17

    I liked this one. It’s sexy, Braden is all pushy and dominant (but of course likable) ..but I also liked that the heroine is the one that is more broken…..a lot of times it’s the dark, dominant hero that needs saving. But Braden is a pretty stable guy. I liked the side stories too.

    ReplyReply

  7. pamelia
    Sep 18, 2012 @ 16:58:36

    I was kind of “meh” about this one. I liked the angstyness of the heroine to some extent, but then the entire plot was whether she would get over her angst and realize she could let Braden it and by about the 60% mark I was OVER that in a big way so the last 40% of the book was pretty frustrating.

    ReplyReply

  8. Angela James
    Sep 19, 2012 @ 08:27:44

    “and I could have lived without the epilogue.” ha! I think that’s the exact phrase I used when I was talking to you about the book. I don’t mind epilogues, but this one felt weird.

    I really enjoyed this book, I’d pick up another adult romance from her in a heartbeat.

    ReplyReply

  9. jane_l
    Sep 19, 2012 @ 09:02:50

    @Angela James: The ending was really discordant because a shmoopy epilogue didn’t fit either character. They weren’t soft or sentimental.

    ReplyReply

  10. Hope
    Sep 19, 2012 @ 15:30:09

    When I finished this one I was like “Huh.” I liked it but at the same time I didn’t. I still haven’t put my finger on exactly why that is. I’ve put it down to being in a bad mood when I was reading it.

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  11. Kaetrin
    Sep 19, 2012 @ 23:32:22

    I suspect I will lap this one up. It’s on my list :)

    ReplyReply

  12. Loosheesh
    Sep 20, 2012 @ 06:14:18

    On to the wishlist it goes! Sounds like something I’ll love :-)

    ReplyReply

  13. emptycalories
    Sep 24, 2012 @ 06:42:18

    Did anyone else have trouble getting this from B&N? I can’t find anything by Samantha Young! Waa!

    ReplyReply

  14. Jen
    Oct 18, 2012 @ 08:42:35

    I thought this was a great read! Very sexy! I loved that the male lead was able to see through the bullshit act surrounding the female lead and not back down.
    The author just recently mentioned she was planning a sequel. Whether it will be based on the leads from this book, or the supporting characters I’m not sure.

    ReplyReply

  15. Kati’s Top Reads of 2012
    Dec 17, 2012 @ 11:02:08

    [...] with my romance, and this book certainly had it. Combine that with a dreamy hero, and I was sold. Review by [...]

  16. Courtney
    Feb 19, 2013 @ 14:34:46

    Oh, Jane. I usually agree with you about books, but I did not finish this book and found it worthless by the time I was 50% through. Maybe part of the problem was that it was on so many “Best of” and “Top” lists for 2012, thus my expectations were so high, but it was one of the worst books I’ve read in a long time.

    I found Jocelyn terrible character/heroine who was shallow, way too self-absorbed, rude, mean-spirited, and boring. I found Braden to be a cookie-cutter alpha-hero who, like Jocelyn, lacked any emotional depth for me. I have no idea why he was ever attracted to her and I couldn’t get past yet another heroine who has no idea how beautiful she is. Really? In this day and age when every man at the bar she works with wants to get in her pants she has no idea how attractive she is?

    Self-published or not (I bought mine via Kindle and it now appears Penquin has scooped up the publishing rights), this book didn’t work for me on any level.

    ReplyReply

  17. On Dublin Street | Samantha Young | Book Review
    Sep 01, 2013 @ 23:01:48

    […] Book Blog – “Tragic and heartwarming” Dear Author – “a satisfying, emotional, contemporary romance” Book Brats – “truly […]

  18. Andrea Mart
    Dec 24, 2013 @ 11:18:19

    I loved the book, but didn’t buy Braden habit of saying everytime he has a girlfriend. No macho man, like him, does that…

    ReplyReply

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