Author: Lisa Renee Jones
Series: Inside Out Trilogy #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: August 24, 2012
Author's Website: http://www.lisareneejones.com
Buy Links: Amazon
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How it began…
One day I was a high school teacher on summer break, leading a relatively uneventful but happy life. Or so I told myself. Later, I’d question that, as I would question pretty much everything I knew about me, my relationships, and my desires. It all began when my neighbor thrust a key to a storage unit at me. She’d bought it to make extra money after watching some storage auction show. Now she was on her way to the airport to elope with a man she barely knew, and she needed me to clear out the unit before the lease expires.
Soon, I was standing inside a small room that held the intimate details of another woman’s life, feeling uncomfortable, as if I was invading her privacy. Why had she let these items so neatly packed, possessions that she clearly cared about deeply, be lost at an auction? Driven to find out by some unnamed force, I began to dig, to discover this woman’s life, and yes, read her journals—-dark, erotic journals that I had no business reading. Once I started, I couldn’t stop. I read on obsessively, living out fantasies through her words that I’d never dare experience on my own, compelled by the three men in her life, none of whom had names. I read onward until the last terrifying dark entry left me certain that something had happened to this woman. I had to find her and be sure she was okay.
Before long, I was taking her job for the summer at the art gallery, living her life, and she was nowhere to be found. I was becoming someone I didn’t know. I was becoming her.
The dark, passion it becomes…
Now, I am working at a prestigious gallery, where I have always dreamed of being, and I’ve been delivered to the doorstep of several men, all of which I envision as one I’ve read about in the journal. But there is one man that will call to me, that will awaken me in ways I never believed possible. That man is the ruggedly sexy artist, Chris Merit, who wants to paint me. He is rich and famous, and dark in ways I shouldn’t find intriguing, but I do. I so do. I don’t understand why his dark side appeals to me, but the attraction between us is rich with velvety promises of satisfaction. Chris is dark, and so are his desires, but I cannot turn away. He is damaged beneath his confident good looks and need for control, and in some way, I feel he needs me. I need him.
All I know for certain is that he knows me like I don’t even know me, and he says I know him. Still, I keep asking myself — do I know him? Did he know her, the journal writer, and where is she? And why doesn’t it seem to matter anymore? There is just him and me, and the burn for more.
This is the first of a trilogy (The Inside Out Trilogy), my first reaction is oh my! This here book is one intense read, an excellent one to be specific. Exciting, adventurous, sensual, mysterious, surprising and fun! Lisa sure does know how to write up some great characters; especially those alpha males (swoon!) Any reader out there that enjoyed 50 Shades of Grey, (even those who didn't because it was too dark or whatever reason), that enjoys a bit of mystery, some BDSM or even just hot alpha men will enjoy Lisa’s If I Were You.
Sara is a high school teacher who has always had an extreme love of art, but did not have an artistic bone on her body. She’s extremely knowledgeable on everything art, but that was never enough to get her where she wanted to be. Taking a chance of trying to find a woman whom she is concerned about (Rebecca), she goes to an event at the art gallery where Rebecca is supposed to work. From there many of her dreams begin to come true. She meets a couple of very hot alpha men and one in particular catches her eyes and possibly her heart. But did she bite more than she can chew and is she any closer to finding Rebecca? Could one of these men know more than they are saying? She’s getting closer to what she needs and hopefully is ready for what’s in store. I enjoyed Sara’s character; she’s far from a quitter and is brave and bold. I found myself relating quite a few times to the way she was feeling and thinking throughout the story and found myself feeling as if I was the character herself.
Chris (oh Chris), he’s a handsome, artistic, talented, multicultural FINE male specimen who is a real whopper of a catch. He’s no stuck up stuffed shirt snob. He does not hold what he knows above anyone’s head and enjoys sharing a great conversation with others. He’s become intrigued with Sara and does not know how to deal with it. He’s a bit frightened of these feelings she’s bringing forth. He’s also frightened Sara might run from him once she learns all of his secrets.
I'd love to see Chris and Sara together as a REAL couple. I think they complement one another and just fit, like pieces of a puzzle, the yin to the others yang. I hope the next book is not going to be too long of a wait. The ending left me gasping and wanting to know what was going to happen next. I'm really looking forward to it :)
I read a lot of this while at the gym on a treadmill and a little warning for you. If you are the type to exercise and read at the same time, be ready to sweat on top of your sweat (that’s exactly what happened to me!)