Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Managed (VIP #2) by Kristen Callihan @Kris10Callihan

4.5 stars


“I am a cold man.”

Frigid indeed. Gabriel “Scottie” Scott, manager of the infamous rock band Kill John, is known for his controlling nature and icy demeanor. In “Idol”, book one of the VIP series, he did not give me the warm and fuzzy ‘oh so easy to fall in love with’ feeling. Regardless, his detached persona totally fascinated me. When “Managed” popped up on my kindle, I could not wait to jump into this story to see firstly, if I could warm up to his character and secondly, meet the heroine that would hopefully unravel him. As it turned out, Scottie quickly won me over. A few pages in and one bumpy airplane ride with the vivacious Sophie was all it took for Gabriel to worm his way into my heart.
"You are my warmth." 



“I wasn’t prepared to need you this much. I don’t know who I am anymore if you aren’t with me.”

Gabriel was totally swoon-worthy. Honestly, just the way he was described, I had all these deliciously handsome visuals flooding my mind’s eye. Tall, dark, gorgeous ~ a body of a Grecian god ~ looks of a runway model… Yeesh, Gabriel made my heart flutter.


“You are beautiful, Gabriel.” His expression shutters.
“It’s only veneer. Nothing of what I am on the inside.”

He proved himself wrong. There was a loving, beautiful man buried beneath that all that veneer.


Add to that goodness, Gabriel had an air of mystery. On the surface he was refined, professional, calculating and meticulous in all ways. Business being the priority, managing the band consumed his life. But hidden underneath the façade lived a man filled with secrets and fears. There were times his character was stripped bare to expose both his anxieties and his fierce, almost savage side. I loved seeing him uninhibited thanks to Sophie. Being his absolute opposite, she brought Gabriel to life. Through her love, he opened up his heart to become a lovable and passionate hero that I completely fell for. And despite his pretentious personality, Gabriel could be down right funny, especially in his back and forth banter with Sophie and his band mates. This scene in particular had me giggling out loud.


It hits me like a fist to the gut: she has been, yet again, fucking with me…
…I bite the inside of my cheek to keep from grinning. Leaning forward, I crowd her space, ignoring the scent of lemon tart that floats around her.
She tenses right up, her head jerking back, her body bolting straight. I love it.
“All right,” I murmur low in her ear, as she shivers and wiggles to get away. “You caught me. I do want oral satisfaction. Badly. Be a dear and take the edge off for me?”
She gasps, velvety skin going pale. “Are you kidding me?”
“We already went over this.” I reach beneath my seatbelt to undo my actual belt. “I’m in need, and it has to be you.”
“Whoa, wait a minute, buddy.” Her hand presses against my chest and quickly flinches back, as if the contact burns. Oddly, it was rather warm, and I still feel the imprint of her hand through the layers of my clothes. I ignore that too and give her an exaggerated brow wiggle…
…A strangled sound leaves her. “You…nasty…I don’t believe this…”
“Oh, come on, love. Give us a suck, eh? Just a little teasing lick of the tip?”
And when confessing his feelings to the guys, Gabriel managed cracked me up…


I glance around. The guys are giving me my privacy by watching the TV. But they are here. For me. They’ll never leave me behind. My mates. My family.
“I love you too,” I blurt out.
And instantly regret it. My face burns as they all turn my way with varying degrees of shock in their expressions.
Rye gurgles on a laugh.
“Fuck,” I mutter. “That’s not… You know what I mean. You’re my mates.”
“‘In Whoville they say that the Grinch’s small heart grew three sizes that day,’” Killian drawls.
They all laugh.
“Sod off,” I growl, fighting a smile. But I won’t retreat anymore. Sophie was right; it hurts both me and them when I do that. I look each of them in the eye. “I mean it.”


Aside from what he believed himself to be, Gabriel was beyond loving, truly sincere and down right sexy. He's the type of hero who could melt your heart as well as make you tingle.
“Hush now and spread those lovely thighs wider like a good, chatty girl. I’ve work to do here.”


Sophie Darling was riotous ~ a likeable bold and sassy heroine that perfectly complimented the uppity Gabriel. Beyond chatty and extremely blunt, she was a cyclonic force, leaving Gabriel no choice but to yield and break all of his rules. From their whacky first encounter on an airplane ride to London, to becoming part of the bands’ entourage, Sophie made her way into our hero’s heart, forever changing him. Her lighthearted and whimsical personality made this a super fun and sexy read.



I freaking adored everything about this book – the steaminess, the laughs, Sophie’s silliness, Gabriel’s broody sexiness, the bonds of friendship and the bands’ hijinks. It was an addictive low angst read that I devoured in just one sitting and it reminded me of all the reasons why I fell in love with this author’s writing style. Once again, Callihan penned another trademark slow burning love story, taking the time to develop her dynamic characters and their friends-to-lovers-opposites-attract relationship, while weaving in tons of sexual tension. I liked the fact that Gabriel and Sophie’s romance was unhurried. And once their sexual hunger was finally unleashed... all I can say is WOW. Gabriel was off the charts scorching HOT. As their fiery passion  ignited , I fell deeper in love with this couple. Although “Managed” is book two in the VIP Series, it can totally be read as a stand-alone. (But I highly recommend reading “Idol”. It too was a fantastic read). Can’t wait for the next sexy Kill John rocker to fall in love!





I voluntarily reviewed an Advanced Reader Copy of this book