“My angel is walking around in black high heels.”
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Urban
Book Length (Est.): 240Pages
A gangster hiding from his past. A single mom fighting for her future. Can she show this bad boy the man he’s meant to be?
My name is Salvador Rosas. Back in the barrio, my past is written on the walls: ESHB. Short for East Side Hollenbeck, my father’s gang—my gang. Hell, it’s a family tradition, one that sent both my brothers away. They used to call me “Ghost” because I haunted people’s dreams. Now I’ve got nothing going for me except a hipster gringo mentoring me in a new career. An ex-con making craft beer? No mames.
Still, people in this neighborhood look out for one another. That’s how I became Vanessa Velasco’s unwelcome tenant. Chiquita pero picosa. She’s little, but with curves so sweet they’re dangerous. I remember Vanessa from the old days, the straight-A student with big plans. Plans that were derailed by another kid stupid enough to think he was bulletproof. Now Vanessa knows better than to believe in empty promises. There’s fire in her . . . and if I touch her, I might get burned.
I’m trying everything I can to go straight. But when East Side Hollenbeck comes calling, I might have to risk it all to find out if there’s a future for Vanessa and me. Because she’s the only one who can quench my thirst for something real.
The Rosas brothers will return in Trashed!
*I received an ARC of this book free from Barclay Publicity in exchange for an honest review*
Salvador’s life didn’t turn out exactly like he wanted, but he did his time and now he’s trying to get his life together…that is if the ESHB will allow it. He struggles between doing what he thinks is right and what he thinks he’s obligated to do. One will bring joy into his life and the other will bring nothing but pain. But when you are working two jobs and living in a garage you don’t have many options.
Vanessa already fell for one homeboy. He gave her an adorable daughter. He also made her a widow for said daughter was born. Now she spends her time between working, studying, and being a mom; there is no time for a man. Let alone another homeboy who could destroy her life.
With no place to go Vanessa’s grandmother lets Salvador move into her garage. He gets cheap rent and she gets a handyman who will clean all of her deceased husband’s stuff out of the garage. What he didn’t expect to get was Vanessa. She didn’t like him being there and had no problem telling him, but she is also a very lonely woman who finds it hard not to fall for someone who’s trying his best to make a better life for himself.
Thirsty will bring you down into the hood, into the middle of gang life, and show you how it feels to try to escape it.
I liked the storyline, but there were a few things that kept me from loving the book. One, if you don’t speak Spanish (like me) then there’s a lot of words and conversations you won’t understand. Stopping to try and understand what was being said kept interrupting my reading flow. Two, there’s an underlying story where the ESHB is concerned, one that includes a rival gang moving into town, but it’s all left up in the air. Maybe there will be some more to it in the next book, Trashed. And lastly, is it just me or was there no chemistry between Salvador and Vanessa? I mean yes they have great sex and an occasionally deep conversation, but for the most part it was hard to tell if she even truly liked him most of the time.
*Clicking on the book cover above will take you to the Amazon purchase page.
The ride starts with a burst of music like a jack-in-the-box. We glide backward and over a couple of times. The Ferris wheel stops to let other passengers on. At the very top, our carriage swings back and forth before it goes still.
Now I can see my neighborhood from a different viewpoint, high above. The lights of the carnival are bright and beautiful. The smells of tacos, hot dogs, and popcorn fill my nose. People pack the church parking lot. Cars line the street, and in the surrounding houses, lights in the windows show where families are talking or watching TV or having dinner.
“How are you doing?” I ask.
“I’m all right.”
She’s looking at the same things I am. I wonder if she is seeing the same details. I stroke her hair and take another risk. “So what do you think?”
“Starting something with me?”
She takes a deep breath but doesn’t say anything.
“What are your doubts?” I say.
“Are you kidding?” She snorts. “You’re seriously asking me that?”
I laugh a little. “Okay, well. Besides the obvious.”
“You have your own life. I have mine. You’re trying to rebuild from the ground up. I’m trying to secure my daughter’s future. We’re heading in different directions.”
She isn’t wrong. Life has disappointed her in such deep and cruel ways, I don’t blame her for protecting herself. But even as she tells me this—the truth about how we’re not right for each other—I feel how right it is to talk to her, to hold her hand, to show her who I am. “I have an idea,” I say. “Probation.”
“I’m only around for two months, right?”
“Spend those two months with me.” I look into her eyes. “I want to be with you, Vanessa.”
“I’ll be gone before I have a chance to disappoint you.” When the words leave my mouth, I try to ignore how pathetic they sound. “We’re adults, not dumb kids. We won’t lose our heads.” I run my fingers through her silky hair. “I swear to God, every time I look at you, I feel . . .” I reach for the most honest word I can find. “Thirsty.”
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