Friday, January 13, 2017

[ARC Review]: "Driven to Distraction"

romance novel covers, contemporary romance, Driven to Distraction by Olivia Dade
Driven to Distraction by Olivia Dade
Publisher: Lyrical Shine (January 17, 2017)
Series: Lovestruck Librarians, 5
Genre: Contemporary Romance 


Constance Chen is not the demure kind of librarian. Sure, her high-horsepower ride is Big Bertha the Bookmobile, but Con swears a blue streak, does her own home improvement, and wears steel-toed boots. She has a tight circle of friends, a demanding, beloved sprawl of a Chinese-American family, and a strict hookups-only policy when it comes to men. Her life is just how she wants it. Except for one maddeningly sexy footnote.

Sam Wolcott, her friend’s baby brother and the library’s IT star, has been throwing sparks with Con since he moved to town. To everybody else, he’s a thoughtful, sensitive sweetheart. To Con, he’s a cantankerous pedant, because if they don’t fight nonstop their clothes will spontaneously combust. Sam needs a commitment Con won’t—can’t—give. And neither of them will chance their hard-won bonds for pure lust.

Too bad Con and Sam have a whole week in a very tiny, very private space to sustain their dumb arguments. Alone. What happens in the Bookmobile might take their resistance right out of circulation . . . 

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My Review:

If they were fighting, they weren't fucking.


But some days she wondered whether their arguments would continue to do the trick for much longer.

Sam and Con have always clashed at work. The two can't stand each other, though their coworkers all claim they are each the nicest person to get along with. We all know what the REAL problem is then: sexual tension. And oh, is it delicious between these two.

Sam works in the library's IT department; Con runs the bookmobile. But the issue keeping them apart isn't just being coworkers. For one thing, Sam is the younger (half) brother to Con's best friend. On top of that, Con does not do commitment or relationships. She's a booty-call-on-my-terms all the way kind of woman. Between those three things? They've got ample reasons why they should fight, not fuck. But they both know what they actually want to do. 😏

Con has her reasons for not wanting anything more than sex. For one thing, she's had some bad experiences with exes who expected all of her, allowing her no time for herself, her life, or her dreams. No more. Now Con sticks to keeping it simple and dirty -- and always on her terms. When Sam and Con do finally decide to get the tension out of the way, it's Con who is in control. She wants quick, hard, scratch-an-itch sex with him, nothing more. But she's afraid that Sam is going to start wanting more, and she just can't give him more. Even if she's tempted . . .

Fair warning: There is a (brief) part of the book where they break-up temporarily. Part of Con's arc is also her decision to never have children (biological or otherwise), which creates some conflict with Sam, who does. Or rather, Sam thinks that he does; in reality, what he wants is people around that care and support one another -- he wants family. He realizes that family isn't restricted to a wife and children, but that family can be made from friends and extended family. I won't get into all the details, but in short Con does not magically change her mind and want children because she's found The One and Sam doesn't have to change his stance, either, instead realizing that he doesn't need children of his own to be complete, he just needs Con and the family they've created.

I had so much fun with this book.

I loved their banter and the fight-'em-and-fuck-'em tension that they had going on.

Her back hit the wall, and Sam was suddenly pressed tight against her, from her breasts all the way to her sex. His leg slid between hers, his hands on her ass tugging until she was straddling him, her dress hiked to her waist and her pussy naked and wet on his hard thigh. She began to grind herself on him, her hips rocking as he licked a line from her collarbone up to her jaw. He nipped her earlobe, and she gasped in excitement.

Fuck, the pressure against her clit was amazing. Enough to make her come if he gave her a couple more minutes. She was soaking his pants leg, and the most primitive part of her hoped he'd never get the smell of her arousal out of the fabric. Every time he wore his suit, she wanted him to think of her. Picture her. Get hard at the memory of what they'd done together this night.

"You're beginning to pant." Sam grasped her hips, stilling her movements. "I win."

She licked her dry lips. "I'm panting, but not your name. Not yet. Maybe"--slanting him a look of challenge, she wriggled her ass--"not ever."

"Fair enough. I can do better."

I loved that Con was the one who just wanted sex and took control of her own sexual agency. Also, Same is such a great match for her; she's sexually confident, but he's her equal and their scenes were ridiculously sexy. I mean, really, really sexy. There's even a desk quickie in the bookmobile. 😉

"Nothing would make me happier than sharing your burdens, Con. And that's the truth. So break up with me if you'd like, but don't do it in response to some version of me that only exists in your head. When you're overwhelmed and taking care of your responsibilities, I'm not going to whine and make your life harder. That's not who I am. That'll never be who I am."

I loved that Sam had to gently woo Con, working with her boundaries rather than trying to barrel through them. He offers her thoughtful, small gifts -- like her favorite lunch, a new hammer, etc. -- as well as being there to offer help, even though she was very much against accepting help. Again, he didn't push her in this regard, but he let it be known that he was there, that he could help her and that his helping her didn't mean she was unable to handle it herself.

I could very much relate to Con. Not that our stories are exactly the same. However, I was able to relate to a lot of her feelings regarding having your childhood replaced with caring for family and the struggle to be the anchor for everyone, even years later. It's something that not every reader is going to be able to relate to, and that's fine; for me, the ability to relate on a personal level just added to my enjoyment of this book.

I loved the other characters. Many of them have their own stories in previous books, and I will definitely be reading them.

"No. Absolutely not." Penny propped her fists on her slim hips. "We are not--I repeat, not--holding a vibrator race. I don't care which one vibrates itself off the table first, and we are definitely not placing bets on the winner!"

I loved all the fun moments, scenes, and quotes. My Twitter was full of quotes I shared, and honestly I didn't even share ALL of the good ones.

And yes, I even liked the scene that shows love, and taking care of someone, is not always pretty. You'll know the scene I'm talking about when you get to it.


Did I like Driven to Distraction? YES
Would I recommend it? Oh hell yes!
Can it be read as a standalone? Yes; I read the novella right before this (it was free recently) but even so you can jump in with no problems at all.
Would I try another from Olivia Dade? Yes!
Quickie sell: Lumbersexual IT + take-no-shit bookmobile librarian + fantastic sexual tension and chemistry.

4 1/2 STARS! 

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I received an e-ARC of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley.

*Note: The quotes used belong to Olivia Dade; TBQ's Book Palace does not claim them. Any mistakes or typos in the quotes are my own fault.

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I had so much fun reading this one. Don't miss it!

Remember, you can find the other quotes I shared HERE.

Remember, since this is a Royal Pick, come back on January 26th for a chance to WIN an ecopy of your own!


Until Next Time,


  *TBQ's Book Palace is a member of both the Amazon and Barnes and Nobles affiliates program. By using the links provided to buy products from either website, I receive a very small percentage of the order. To read my full disclosure on the matter, please see this post!

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