Review of CLOSE TO PERFECT by Tina Donahue (see her website)
Kensington Brava, December 2005
When a zealous photographer splashes his rear end over the tabloids, hunky businessman Josh Wyatt is besieged by women. Which wouldn't have been so bad, except Josh's attorney reminds him that some of those women will be looking for a chance to sue--and Josh has lots of money to be sued for. They settle on hiring a bodyguard--although Josh fears the onion-breathed types who respond to his ad. All, that is, except one. Tess Franklin, a beautiful ex-cop and current bodyguard, sends his blood temperature rising. She's the perfect solution--she can pretend to be his girlfriend so he won't even have to look like he's the kind of wimp who has a bodyguard.
All Tess wanted was the job. Okay, so she wouldn't mind working with a guy with a butt like the tabloids show, but really, she wasn't looking for anything else. The second she sets eyes on Josh, though, she's a gonner. Just as her parents clicked when they first met, something in Tess snaps into place when she sees Josh. She knows she is just a way-station for him, that he has too many women, too much temptation, and that her bodyguard job will be over all too soon. For her, though, this is love and a life-altering event.
Fortunately, Tess doesn't have to do much actual bodyguarding, because both she and Josh are so intoxicated by the desire flowing between them like an electrical short-circuit that she hardly notices anything around them. Still, she is his employee. A few stolen kisses, a moment or two alone in an elevator, a shopping trip where Tess shows that she's all girl despite her weapons and her H2H (hand to hand) training are all that actually happens--but every moment they're together, every moment they're apart and Tess doesn't know why, is a combination of torture and sensual delight.
Still, the original problems remain--the two are from different worlds. Ultimately, Tess is looking for more than she knows Josh has to give.
Author Tina Donahue delivers a sizzling story. Building on the familiar sexy bodyguard hook, Donahue ladles on the sexual tension. She details every groin-straining erection, every bounce of Tess's curvy bottom--carefully bringing in bits of Tess's family to let us know where she comes from and to give Josh a chance to be just folks (admittedly just folks with multiple zillions of dollars). If you're looking for a complex plot, tricky espionage, or technical information about the bodyguard (or tabloid) businesses, run-don't-walk in another direction. But when it comes to sexual tension that just doesn't let up, CLOSE TO PERFECT is, well, close to perfect.
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