Publisher: Ebury Digital
Publication Date: 28th September 2014
My rating: 4 stars.
The star columnist of Stiletto magazine will do anything for a story. Anything . . . except fall in love. Julie Greene loves flings, steamy first dates, sizzling first kisses, and - every now and then - that first sexy romp between the sheets. But when Julie gets assigned the hardest story of her career - a first-person account of the shift between dating and "I do" she'll need a man brave enough to give a total commitment-phobe a chance at more. Mitchell Forbes, a devastatingly hot workaholic who tends to stay in relationships for far too long, is the perfect subject for Julie's "research." But what Julie doesn't know is that Mitchell is looking to cut loose and that Julie, notorious for avoiding love, is exactly the type of no-strings fling he's looking for...
One of my all time favourite tropes is when two characters are forced in to a situation together and they end up falling for one another. In After the Kiss Julie is known for quick flings, never taking time to settle and actually forming a meaningful relationship and Mitchell is the setting type of guy, he’s just come out of a long term relationship, but to prove to his friend that he can do a quick fling and get rid of a person after a few dates, he’s challenged to take on Julie. Both Julie and Mitchell go into their tasks with their own agenda’s, but they so didn’t expect leaving with much more than they bargained for.
Both Julie and Mitchell were difficult characters to like at first, Julie was the type just to quickly go for a relationship, I think because she hadn’t really been in love, or actually spent long enough in a relationship to fall in love, she was just used to appear crass and abrupt. And my gosh when I first met Mitchell I thought he was a complete bore, okay I perked up when I heard he liked reading, but the way he came across all prim and proper and working on Wall Street, I thought the chemistry between Mitchell and Julie would be a complete snooze fest, but never has Lauren Layne led me astray, of course she was able to weave her magic and actually make me fall for Mitchell (did I ever mention that Mitchell/Mitch has always been a bit of a soft spot when it comes to hot characters names?) and actually develop Julie’s and Mitchell’s relationship into something realistic and meaningful. You have to remember the time they spent happens over days and a few weeks even, but the way Layne built up their time together and the way they got to know each other? It was done wonderfully, I was left wanting more. I wanted them to finally come clean with each other about why they’d got together in the first place, as I knew it would lead to heartbreak in the end and they had come so far, through going to a night club instead of having movie night, runs through Central Park and dealing with bitchy ex girlfriends, their relationship was actually becoming that and their feelings for one another were clearly apparent.
I’m not going to say how After the Kiss ends, but there is a lot of heartbreak and growing up along the way. I was super impressed with how far these two characters came by the end of this book. After the First Kiss was another hit by Lauren Layne for me, thank you Nick for recommending it, I’m hoping this series will fill the void left after finishing The Wedding Bells series and to be honest I can feel a binge reading coming on!