Title: Test Drive
Series: Body Shop Bad Boys #2
Author: Marie Harte
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published: June 7, 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
My Rating: 4 stars
GET TO KNOW THE BODY SHOP BAD BOYS
Johnny, Foley, Sam, and Lou are the rough and tumble mechanics of Webster’s Garage. These reformed bad boys are used to living fast, but it’s the women in their lives who take them from zero to sixty in a heartbeat.
Johnny Devlin’s a charmer with a checkered past. He has had his eye on scorching-hot bartender Lara Valley for ages, but she’s rejected him more than once. That doesn’t mean he won’t come to her aid when some dirt-bag mauls her. When she asks him on a date as a no-strings-attached thank you, he can’t say no. And then he’s saying nothing but hell, yes.
Read on for my thoughts on Test Drive. No true spoilers, promise.
I never could resist a bad boy, and I don’t think you’ll be able to resist these guys either. The Body Shop Bad Boys series takes place in Delilah Webster’s garage of the story What To Do With A Bad Boy from the McCauley Brothers series. And occasionally characters from that other series will wander through. Do you need to have read the McCauley Brothers series in order to understand and enjoy this new one – heck, no. Will you want to if you haven’t read them already – probably because it’s a smokin’ hot, enjoyable series.
There are a lot of characters introduced early on in Test Drive, along with a bit of this world building. Don’t let that overwhelm you, if you simply accept that these are secondary characters who will be popping up here and there during the series until each of these bad boys gets his own story – you’ll be fine. Soon they’ll all flow together like a family reunion.
Johnny comes off as a bit of a ladies man, with a touch of arrogance humor among the guys. In fact, Johnny loves and respects the ladies, and there are times when this rough around the edges tough guy can be quite the gentleman. Lara’s been on his radar for awhile now, but so far she’s shot him down every time. Lara sees Johnny as trouble, and that’s something this bartender is avoiding at all costs. She has a plan to get out, move up and not stay here where she grew up. She’s a nursing student, while working the bar to fund her education – and eventually she’ll be able to realize her dream. So no thanks to Johnny, it’s not personal it’s just not in her plan.
Until that moment when Johnny steps in to rescue her from the slime ball that is her sister’s ex. She offers him one date, one non-binding, friendly date as a thank you for his help. Honey, that one opening is all Johnny’s going to need.
Test Drive is an intense, entertaining romance. Johnny and Lara’s romance is a slow burn heading toward a burning blaze. Slowly and with confidence, Johnny is showing Lara his true self, not what everyone else sees. And Lara will have to make a choice between fulfilling the dreams she’s fought so hard for or loving the bad boy who is so right for her.
I enjoyed my time spent with Lara and Johnny – now the wait for the next story. I’d recommend this one for any Romance reader who enjoys a solid story with believable characters. You’ll want to get in on this series from the start.
*I received an e-ARC of Test Drive from the publisher,Sourcebooks Casablanca and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. That does not change what I think of this novel.*
Available in paperback and for the Kindle