A Bluebonnet Novel , #3
Berkley Sensation
ISBN-13:  978-0-425-26236-8
January 2014
Contemporary Romance

Bluebonnet, Texas – Present Day

It has been five years since Grant Markham's wife died, and he hasn't even thought of dating again, must less getting a girlfriend, but he knows with his mother and father coming for a visit, she is sure to try to set him up with someone.  Grant and his two friends, Cole and Dane, own Wilderness Survival Expeditions, and along with his assistant, Breena, he is doing just fine.  How he will handle his parents and sister Elise's visit is another thing.

Breena thoroughly loves her job working with Grant, Cole, and Dane.  She pretty much wears what she wants, which is usually someone else's shirts, and emails her friends most of the day.  Oh, and breaking things around the shop so Cole's father, Pop, has something to fix so he feels as if he's contributing to the company.  When she throws away Grant's fuel filter, she doesn't remember he had to pick up his parents at the airport that day, so she offers him the use of her rust bucket; no gas, no current registration, but what the heck!  As his mother Justine tries to set him up for dinner that night, Breena can't abide her words and plants a kiss on Grant and says they are boyfriend/girlfriend.  She so enjoys the expression on Grant's face, and later that night as she goes to his cabin, she can't figure out why some no strings sex isn't also on the calendar.

Grant can't believe the attraction he feels for Breena, who is totally kooky in how she lives her life.  When he finds out she only owns one set of clothes, no jackets or sweaters, and a twenty year old car, the mystery of her life confuses him.  Grant tries to stay away from Breena, but he enjoys the sex with her even as she insists there can be nothing else between them, yet he keeps trying to bring affection into the picture.  The more Breena wants uncommitted sex—and even while Grant tries to talk himself into the same thing—it might just take her opening up to him about her past before they can both get on the same page of their relationship.

Jessica Clare has both Breena and Grant telling their own stories.  Grant is still hung-up over his wife's death, but not for the reasons you'd expect.  Breena is just weird, and while she has friends, she prefers to be on her own and ready to leave at a moment's notice anytime she feels uncomfortable.  Breena makes Grant look uptight for liking a neat desk and wearing nice clothes, and Grant is overwhelmed by all the emotions she pulls out of him despite saying she wants nothing permanent or romantic coming between them.

Our secondary characters are Cole and Dane and the women in their lives, and especially Grant's sister Elise, a shy, tongue-tied woman who wants to fit in but can't.  There also is the mystery of the new employee, Rome, pierced, tattooed, and looking totally unapproachable.

THE EXPERT'S GUIDE TO DRIVING A MAN WILD certainly is a different sort of novel.  I never really warmed up to Breena and the way she acts, despite learning the secrets in her life.  Grant is a man who becomes enthralled with her, but can't see beyond the burning hot sex.  The next story of Bluebonnet, Texas, THE VIRGIN'S GUIDE TO MISBEHAVING (June 2014), will feature Elise, Grant's sister, and the tatted-up, pierced, bike-riding Rome.  It will take a lot to get Elise to let her hair down; maybe Rome is just the guy for the job.

CeCe Johns