by Christina Lauren
This is the third book in the Wild Seasons series of standalone stories with interconnected characters.
After falling in love with the stories of Mia and Ansel (Sweet Filthy Boy), Harlow and Fin (Dirty Rowdy Thing), I couldn't wait to catch up with the gang again. I obsessively hit the refresh button on my browser as I waited for the release of Dark Wild Night. Thankfully the dynamic writing duo of Christina Lauren never disappoints. The witty banter and their gallantry to not shy away from the intimate moments, kept me up until the small hours, devouring their words. I love, love, love this book. I love Loliver (Lola + Oliver) and the rest of the Wild Seasons crew.
Besties Lola, Harlow and Mia recently graduated from UCSD head off to Vegas to celebrate. They drink, they dance, they party, and they all get married. Lola and Oliver never consummated their nuptials. The annulment was carried out before the ink dried. Even though everyone around them can see the unresolved sexual tension radiating between them, the comic loving couple grow close nestled comfortably in the friend zone.
"Oliver is both my former husband and my current crush, but it will forever remain unrequired: our marriage was never really a marriage. It was that-thing-we-did-in-Vegas."
Lorelei Louise Castle, known as Lola, has had a whirlwind couple of months. Recently graduated, Lola is already balancing the success and recognition from the publishing of her graphic novel Razor Fish. A labor of love she has been nurturing for years. With the news that her novel has been optioned as a movie, Lola's life moves from busy to overwhelming.
"I've been writing and drawing Razor Fish since I was twelve, and every single second of the fun part, to me, has been creating it."
The ever stoic Australian born Oliver Lore is the owner of the comic book store Downtown Graffick, and Lola's ex-husband. His boyish charm and nerdy sensibilities come together in a tightly put together package of muscle and man. He is methodical and quiet in business and in love.
"'One of my many attributes. Along with hardworking, good at maths, and punctual." She shakes her head, swallowing a sip quickly so she can contradict me: 'Hey, at the top of that list should be the accent.'"
I am not a comic book fan, and I know very little about the sub-culture that inspires the many fan boys and girls. Even though Loliver relates to the world around them through the context of their favorite comic book characters, they are relatable and feel like real people...like friends. Your heart will ache for them as they struggle through the path from friends to lovers. And, your temperature will rise from their passion.
Lola not only feels passion for Oliver, but she is also passionate about her work. Her struggle to achieve a work life balance was one of the most relatable and raw experiences in reading this book. I cheered for Lola when she didn't automatically relent to her romantic feelings, but fought for her career and goals. And, I fell even more in love with Oliver as he tried to offer support.
The Christina Lauren team is know for their sensual writing. Dark Wild Night promises its fair share of taboo and libidinous acts detailed so perfectly it will leave you panting. But, one of my favorite parts of the books comes from the comic relief of Not-Joe. Not-Joe plays the stories fool (archetype not idiot...well maybe a little). His nonconforming absurdities had me LOL... literally. Sometimes so much I was worried I would wake the house up. I hope the writing team considers spending more time with this character.
"Not-Joe, Oliver's sole employee and a mohawked stoner we all feel a certain pet-owner level of fondness for,"
Dark Wild Night is a highly recommended and truly enjoyable read. There is passion and pain, laughter and lust. You'll even reminisce with old friends. The only problem is now I can't wait for the next installment, Wicked Sexy Liar.