I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.What You Need by Lorelei James
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Signet on January 5, 2016
Source: the library
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Also by this author: "Schooled", Wrapped and Strapped, Unraveled, Just What I Needed, Racked and Stacked, Hang Tough, Spun Out, All You Need, When I Need You, I Want You Back, Want You to Want Me
First in the Need You contemporary romance series and revolving around the Lund siblings. The couple focus is on Lennox Greene and Brady Lund.
James uses first-person dual point-of-view from Lennox’s and Brady’s perspectives, so we get that first-hand insight into the thoughts and emotions from each of them.
Be aware this is not the usual Lorelei James…nothing kinky, dang it. It’s a straight contemporary romance that takes forever before anyone gets in bed with each other and sweet, even as Lennox works to push Brady into being more spontaneous and less controlling. I did enjoy the football “play-by-play” as Brady does, ahem, get into Lennox’s pants at the stadium, lol.
It’s also a good lesson in seeing life and circumstances from the other person’s perspective and not jumping to conclusions! A trait that Brady definitely displayed [the former] with his involvement in the floaters’ situation and wanting to get to the truth. Quite the satisfying end result there!
I did enjoy James’ maneuvering for Brady to get up the nerve to go after Lennox, especially with that “help” from Kiley during the outreach session. Definitely a unique pick-up what with the family’s intervention with Brady. It’s an involved bit of writing and nicely done.
Okay, the niggles. Ash was way off in his reaction to Brady’s screw-up, which led to Brady being way off with Lennox. The set-up with Kiley’s kids, as much as I enjoyed Kiley’s help, and the follow-on from it didn’t strike me as realistic. Oh, it was sweet, and I did love it, but…it didn’t ring for me.
That said, I want to give this a “3”, but that would be unfair since it’s mostly because I’m disappointed in a, ahem, “clean” romance, lol.
It’s Brady Lund’s ambitions, spurred on by his grandpa, that find him working eighty-hour work weeks with no life outside the office. A state of affairs that lead his brothers and cousin to stage an intervention that includes a night at a seedy bar…where he sees her, the buttoned up blonde from the secretarial pool who’s starred in his fantasies for months.
Yep, that rebellious streak that Lennox Greene hides at the office is out there at the bar. A situation that finds both Lennox and Brady throwing caution to the wind.
Lennox Greene works as a floater for Lund Industries. Sydney is her best friend there. Kiley Kinslie, a.k.a., Kiki, a very involved social worker with the Hennepin County Outreach program, is Lennox’s roommate.
Lennox’s mother, Lisa, is a low-class, selfish bitch currently shacking up with Billy Ray. Rick was the closest to a real father Lennox ever had. Adam, a pervert, is another boyfriend in the long line of men. Maxie is Lisa’s best friend. Still. Maxie runs a bar, an old-school dive, called Maxie’s Hideaway, regulars — Boz, a burly biker with the Wastrels motorcycle club, Fatso, a skinny mechanic along with Dickie; DJ, a former host for a morning radio show; and, Pistol manages a gun range — call it Maxie’s Pad. Hugo is one of the bartenders. Shasta likes dancing on the bar.
Taylar is the teen girl Lennox hooked up with in high school. Travis, her brother, was in a band.
Brady Lund is the chief financial officer for Lund Industries. Jenna is his very efficient admin; her husband is an engineer. Patrice is Jenna’s secretary. Selka “the Vicious Valkyrie” Jensen is the Lund siblings’ Swedish former-fashion-model mother with an interest in community organizations. Lund Cares Community Outreach (LCCO) is her baby. Their dad heads up corporate relations — a salesman who doesn’t come off like one; Maggie is his secretary. Selka and their dad have been married thirty-five years and still making out like horny teenagers. Maggie is Dad’s secretary. Siobhan is Maggie’s rebellious and rude teenage niece from Ireland. Brady’s siblings include Walker in the construction arm; Annika works in PR; and, Jensen “The Rocket” plays for the Vikings football team.
Nolan “the Prince” Lund is a cousin with an intense interest in fashion; Andres is his personal shopper. Toni is his snake of an admin. Ash is another cousin and COO for Lund; Olivia is his excessively loyal admin. Veronica is Ash’s ex. Cousin Jaxson is a hockey star. Uncle Monte is president of the board of directors. Priscilla is his wife. Uncle Archer is CEO; Edie is his wife. Cousin Zosia is in charge of the Duluth office and a real hard-ass. Zeke is her brother. Jackson Lund had been their mean, nasty grandpa. Britta is Selka’s sister. Bill and Mary are the country house caretakers.
Lund Industries is…
…the family business. Lola is in charge of the floaters. “Perky” Penny goes after anyone in pants. Marcus Benito works in marketing. Anita “Attila” Mohr is the nasty head of Personnel. Renee and Zach are the attack dogs from Finance. May had been on maternity leave from PR. Frank is a security guard. Gaby is in HR.
The at-risk kids…
…Kiley works with include DeMarius “DeMan”; Feisty Maria; Juice; Willa, a.k.a., Red; Owen is quite artistic; Tonto; and, Quay whose sister is Needra. Jonesie is staying anywhere but with the stepdad who’s getting out of jail.
Burt is a guard at the stadium. Martha and Chuck Abbott have their own box at the stadium. Drew seems to be a friend (and former roommate) of Jensen’s; he’s proposing to Brianna. Bud is a majority owner of the Chicago Bears. Nate is Brady’s trainer. Flurry is a happenin’ club that’s very exclusive. Benjamin Larken is the VIP coordinator for Flurry. Zorn is the tattoo artist to see. Tawny works with Zorn. Pixie of Pixie’s Skin Pixels in Kansas City did some of Lennox’s tattoos. Jessica Lewis was Brady’s high school classmate who taught him about gold-diggers. Carly and Tyler are her nasty-ass friends. Persia is another snot in Brady’s adult life.
The Cover and Title
The cover is golden in its yellows to rusts in a general gradation from top to bottom. It’s the profile of a tattooed Lennox Green in a gorgeous slip of a deep rust dress embracing Brady Lund in his suit, unbuttoned shirt, and loosened tie. Below them is the Minneapolis skyline in silhouette with the title in a white serif and script font just above the skyline and the author’s name in an embossed black across their torsos.
The title is more like what Brady’s family thinks, that What You Need is a life.