Friction by Sawyer Bennett

I came across this book searching for Sawyer Bennett after I saw that she is, contrary to what I previously thought, publishing a new Cold Fury novel. Oh, happy day. The book is not yet up on NetGalley, but this one was, and since I enjoyed the last Legal Affairs series I read, I decided to grab this one.

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I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

One-Sentence Synopsis
Two lawyers on opposite sides of an important case can’t keep from starting an affair, promising each other and themselves that what happens in the court room won’t affect what happens in the bedroom. For a full synopsis, see this book’s Goodreads page.

The Good Stuff
I love this author, but there were a lot of things I questioned at the beginning of this book, so I was pleasantly surprised when it found its romantic footing and drew me in to the angst between Reeve and Leary.

Though I never would have considered myself a fan of stories where law was the setting, I enjoy these ones. They don’t get bogged down in law jargon, and though I have no idea how valid anything is in the legal world, it’s written so well and convincingly that I buy right into it and have a lot of fun in the process.

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Things That Made Me Go Hmmm
Right at the beginning I had a knee jerk reaction. The heroine is told to use everything she has to win, and that seems to include her sexuality and looks. I wasn’t sure how I felt about this. I was even more conflicted because the “winning” was actually to help good people in bad situations.

Reeve, in general, is a good guy, but in the first few scenes between him and Leary, I almost thought he was objectifying her. It was a thin line, really, considering she was trying to turn him on to get the advantage in court. It just seemed a little off to me.

The Romance Factor
The romance didn’t pick up until later and was definitely overshadowed by the sex in the first half of the book. Things subtly blossomed between Leary and Reeve, but where this book really hit my romantic sweet spot was all the emotion Reeve shows when he messes up. Because a groveling man who knows he did wrong can bring the best angst ever. 4/5

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The Steam Factor
Though not her steamiest novel, Bennett still doesn’t hold much back. There’s plenty of dirty talk, sex positivity, and heat inducing encounters, including one in a public bathroom that was both hot and kind of funny. 5/5

Final Thoughts
By the time I really got into the book, my initial reservations were gone. Leary is good at what she does and has a good reason for using everything she can to win. I also liked that the book brings about some moral questions and explores them through the plot. If a sequel to this one comes out, I’ll definitely read it.

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