Book 1, Oxford - An Oxford Novel
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Meet the men of Oxford magazine! In the first captivating spin-off of Lauren Layne’s Sex, Love & Stiletto series, a not-so-friendly battle of the sexes turns into a scorching office romance.
Hotshot sports editor Cole Sharpe has been freelancing for Oxford for years, so when he hears about a staff position opening up, he figures he’s got the inside track. Then his boss drops a bombshell: Cole has competition. Female competition, in the form of a fresh-faced tomboy who can hang with the dudes—and write circles around them, too. Cole usually likes his women flirty and curvy, but he takes a special interest in his skinny, sassy rival, if only to keep an eye on her. And soon, he can’t take his eyes off her.
Penelope Pope knows all too well that she comes off as just one of the guys. Since she’s learned that wanting more usually leads to disappointment, Penelope’s resigned to sitting on the sidelines when it comes to love. So why does Cole make her want to get back in the game? The man is as arrogant as he is handsome. He probably sees her as nothing more than a barrier to his dream job. But when an unexpected kiss turns into a night of irresistible passion, Penelope has to figure out whether they’re just fooling around—or starting something real.
Lauren Layne’s New York Times bestselling Oxford series can be read in any order:
I WISH YOU WERE MINE
SOMEONE LIKE YOU
Don’t miss any of Lauren Layne’s hot reads:
The Love Unexpectedly series: BLURRED LINES | GOOD GIRL | LOVE STORY | WALK OF SHAME
The Sex, Love & Stiletto series: AFTER THE KISS | LOVE THE ONE YOU’RE WITH | JUST ONE NIGHT | THE TROUBLE WITH LOVE
The Redemption Series: ISN’T SHE LOVELY | BROKEN | CRUSHED
Praise for Irresistibly Yours
“Irresistibly Yours has it all: fun banter, hot chemistry, and a couple that you just can’t help but want to be together!”—New York Times bestselling author Marquita Valentine
“Lauren Layne had me at baseball, and I stayed up way too late devouring Cole and Penelope’s story. Sassy, sizzling, and sexy (with sports!). This one’s a grand slam!”—Tracy March, author of Should’ve Said No
“After reading the irresistibly sexy, funny, and fantastic Irresistibly Yours, Lauren Layne is a new auto-buy author for me. I can’t get enough of the men of Oxford!”—Christi Barth, author of Risking It All
“Fun and flirty with some laugh-out-loud moments, Irresistibly Yours irresistibly drew me into turning page after page well into the early morning.”—The Romance Reviews
“This is Lauren Layne we’re talking about. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again—I’ll pounce on any of her books. Five fantastic stars!”—Will Read for Feels
“We get to see a whole new Cole in this book and I loved every second of it. I cannot wait to continue this series.”—Jack of All Trades, Master of None
“Once again, Lauren Layne has a winner. Irresistibly Yours is fun, sexy, full of heart and an absolute pleasure to read. It was so, so good to see the whole Stiletto gang together again and I, for one, cannot wait to see Lincoln’s story soon!”—Rhea’s Neon Journal
“I’m a big fan of Lauren Layne’s writing and this book was exactly what I wanted.”—Fiction Vixen
Includes a special message from the editor, as well as an excerpt from another Loveswept title.
I’ve enjoyed titles I’ve read from Lauren Layne, so this was an opportunity too good to pass up. In the companion series to Sex, Love and Stiletto, we are delving into the world of Oxford, a men’s magazine. We’ve met Cole in the other series, and I have to say that I wasn’t a huge fan of what I had seen. He’s a freelancer with a bit of a chip on his shoulder and a history of playing fast and loose with the women in his life. But, we only had some of his advice (bad) and quick pencil sketches of the man.
Oxford wants to expand their sports section, everyone else can have their format dedicated to style and relationships, but sports will set them apart. To do this, they need an editor, and Cole, a long-time writer for the magazine, assumes the job is his. Until he discovers competition in the form of a pint-sized brunette with editing and writing skills, and the ability to be more than just the ‘color’ on a sport story. Penelope is from Chicago with a solid history, even obsession, with all things sport. A tomboy, she is the epitome of ‘one of the boys’ and Cole isn’t quite sure how to handle the competition.
These two have some wonderful interactions, in which Cole is completely redefining how he relates to women, because Penelope isn’t about to fall for his tried and trues. She’s not a game player, in fact, she has a disarming honest approach to all of her relationships, and Cole finds that intriguing and exciting. Of course, since he’s a boy, he screws up often, but Penelope is also truly kind hearted and a good friend, she never lets things get too out of hand. But their relationship is cute and sweet, and feels solidly natural, even as I wished Cole had to work a bit harder before getting what he finally realized he wanted.
You can read this as a newcomer, but you will find characters from Stiletto appearing and having some influence on this story: the two magazines are in friendly rivalry, and friendships and relationships between the two are evident and apparent throughout the stories.
I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
Score one for love!
Cole Sharpe is finally going to join the Oxford family as their Sports Editor. That is the plan anyway. Then he finds out he is in competition with a small but amazing woman from Chicago. May the best sports-buff win.
Penelope Pope moves to New York to get over a man who took her job from under her back home. Then she meets the man who may win the job she has applied for. Cole is everything she would normally want in a man. She is everything he never wanted.
They decide to be friends right off since as Penelope points out, she always ends up in the "friend zone" anyway. She figures she will start there this time instead of get her hopes up. Only, Cole does not like how she assumes she is not worthy of a good man and a good relationship.
With a little help from couples who have been there, maybe Cole and Penelope can have an amazing future of their own. They just have a few bumps in the road to get past first. Definitely a few surprises in store for this couple!
Oxford is the magazine in the same building with Stiletto and the Characters are all here from the hit Sex, Love & Stiletto series. There is humor, heat, sports celebrities and more! I just loved this story! As the beginning to the Oxford series - this was an amazing start with very a sexy read.
***This ARC was given from Netgalley.com and its publisher for review purposes only.
Sweet & Sexy
Wow! Loved this well written, engaging, sexy and sweet sports romance, but this is what I have come to expect when the author is Lauren Layne. This was entertaining and oh so hot. A full story with great details, excellent characters as well as secondary characters in the Stiletto girls and their significant others as well as the other staff members of the Oxford Office who added great witty banter and scheming that you will love. I was engaged from the first page to the last I could not put this down
Cole Sharpe has been a freelance journalist at Oxford for years and he needed this new Senior Sports Editor job to help pay for Bobby, his brothers' care. He thought he had the job in the bag until his boss told him he had some competition. When he found out his competition would be at the game he was eager to size them up, but when he got there he didn't see anybody. Then he notices a woman and it seemed he couldn't take his eyes off of her. She was so engrossed in the game and writing things down in a little notebook that he couldn't even see her face but he was entranced by her, she wasn't his typical type he usually went for, which was the tall curvy blondes and here she was a tiny, thin, brunette with no curses at all, but before he knew it he was sitting right beside her. Now she was so engrossed with eating a hotdog that he just watched, he had never seen a woman eat like that before and when she looked up at him finally he was taken back by her enormous, huge, brown, eyes. But then his boss finally shows up and he finds out that this woman is his competition.
Penelope Pope has just moved from Chicago or you could say she was running from Chicago and a recent heartbreak. Penelope was not only attractive to look at but she is feisty, sweet a tomboy and so honest and real. Sports has been her life and she needs this job so she won't have to return to Chicago. After having her portfolio of her ideas stolen by a colleague that she had feelings of love for and then finding out that he had a girlfriend she was devastated and heartbroken. Losing the job she wanted and then Evan getting it was the final straw, and she had to leave all her friends and family and move to New York. So after enduring such heartbreak, she isn't ready and doesn't want to start any relationship with anyone especially someone she had to work with she can only manage to stay in the friend only zone.
I really liked the perfect slow build between Penelope and Cole. From friends to more, but what? They had both made a promise not to fall in love. But with all that great chemistry that led to a nice amount of sexy times as well as so much in common, will love sneak in and change everything. You will have to read this to find out? What happens when Evan realizes that he misses Penelope and comes to New York to get her back? Will the Girls of Stiletto and their scheming get their desired results? You will have to read this to find out. Loved this story and I can't wait to read Lincoln's story in Playing for Keeps coming in December. Highly Recommended!
Received a copy from Love Swept via NetGalley in exchange for a honest review.