Author: Charleigh Rose
Release: June 13, 2019
Genre: New Adult Romance
Cover Design: Letitia Hasser @ RBA Designs
When I moved to River’s Edge, dating was the last thing on my mind.
I definitely didn’t expect to fall for him.
Popular. Star athlete. Cocky as hell.
You know the type.
But as time passed, I realized there was more lurking beneath that gorgeous exterior.
Secretive. Angry. A little bit broken.
The more I peeled back his layers, the deeper I fell.
Until I slammed headfirst into his sea of lies.
I blew my shot.
Pissed everything away—college, lacrosse, my future—only to end up right back where I started in River’s Edge.
I was content to revel in my misery, spending my days drowning in a bottomless pit of booze and girls.
Until I saw her.
Beautiful. Sarcastic. Perpetual bad attitude.
The pretty little distraction from the shit show that was my life.
But the sins of my past were closing in on me, and I learned the hard way that nothing gold can stay.
Bad Influence is Jess and Allie’s story, and it’s the perfect title for their book because these two are impacted by a large amount of outside pressures that play into how they choose to act and live as well as how they view themselves and respond to the demons that always seem to be chasing them.
Before I go further with my review, I have to be honest…I always struggle with manwhore heroes; I’m not sure if it’s because there are too many romances out there with these cookie cutter playboys as the leading male or if the depth of their character is too often one-dimensional, making me feel like there’s nothing to them but their next escapade. So when I first started learning about Jess and how he chose to live his life, I thought for sure that I wouldn’t like him…that even if he had redeeming qualities that my initial reaction to his behavior wouldn’t change, but I’m happy to say that Charleigh Rose proved me wrong and the more I got to know Jess and was allowed inside his head, the easier it was to understand the reasons behind his antics and why his self-destructive choices occurred. Jess’ external demeanor is his armor, his way to not feel too much or go too far inside himself, but when Allie comes into his life and demands that he shed his player facade, that’s when readers get to see the man Jess truly is and just how much they make each other better in so many ways.
Allie is definitely my kind of heroine. Like Jess, she wears a shield and it’s there to protect her from her past, from everything that could bring her down, shattering the already broken pieces of her heart. It’s her strength and bravery that Jess is attracted to and as their bond begins to grow, it’s clear just how much good they can bring to each other’s lives, and while there are still landmines that could bring them down, the fact that these two accept one another and see beneath their respective facades gives them more than a fighting chance to make it.
This couple is absolutely electric together, and their need and desire for one another resonates from the pages of their story. But their connection is not only physical, even though, at times, they might wish it was due to the baggage that they’re both struggling to carry and get over. Anytime emotions factor into a relationship, the stakes are raised and the potential for heartbreak intensifies, and these two definitely don’t need anything else to make them question who they are and what they want. But the bad influences can be countered as long as Jess and Allie hold on to the people they are when they’re together.
4.5 Poison Apples
“Did you hear that?” I ask.
Moving in slowly, he cages me in, bracing his right arm on the wall above my head, his left hand by my hip. He brings his lips close to my ear and I fight the shiver that rolls through me. “It’s probably just your admirer,” he says, his voice hushed and husky. I swallow hard, looking over his shoulder as he nuzzles closer, his nose skimming my neck, then down to my collarbone. My pulse pounds in my ears as he moves back up, his mouth brushing across my cheek, stopping at my parted lips.
“Is this convincing?” He asks. He’s so close that I can feel his breath on my lips, and I realize that I want him to do it. I want him to kiss me.
I give a slight shake of my head in response.
“No?” He smirks, knowing exactly what he’s doing to me. His left hand leaves the wall to curl around my hip and he presses his chest to mine. “How about this?”
“Almost,” I whisper. I wet my lips and the tip of my tongue nearly grazes his bottom lip. His expression goes from playful to heated in an instant, then he’s closing the final distance.
It’s soft at first, just a brush of his lips against mine, but soon he’s cupping my face with both hands, tilting my head back as his tongue sweeps into my mouth, his movements confident and skilled. Unhurried and unyielding.
My hands find his shirt, pulling him closer as his tongue fucks my mouth. Because that’s exactly what this is. This isn’t kissing. Or maybe it is, and I’ve been kissing the wrong boys.
Jesse groans, fitting a firm thigh between my legs, and the need bubbling inside me threatens to boil over at the sensation. But all too soon, he pulls back, leaving me breathless.
“Was that convincing enough?”