Laid Bare by Lauren Dane
Series: Brown Family #1
Published by Berkley/NAL Publishing Group on August 4th 2009
Genres: Contemporary, Erotic, Menage, Romance
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It's been ten years since clean-cut, sexy-as-hell police officer Todd Keenan had a white-hot fling with Erin Brown, the provocative, wild rocker chick next door. Their power exchange in the bedroom got under his skin. But love wasn't in the cards just yet...
Now, life has thrown the pair back together. But picking up where they left off is tough, in light of a painful event from Erin's past. As Todd struggles to earn her trust, their relationship takes an unexpected and exciting turn when Todd's best friend, Ben, ends up in their bed--and all three are quite satisfied in this relationship without a name. As the passion they share transforms Erin, will it be enough to help her face the evil she thought she had left behind?
I’m not really sure what to say about Laid Bare…or how I feel about it, exactly.
I started reading The Brown Family series (starting with Laid Bare) because of the way Lauren Dane seems to write her contemporary romances: there are multiple different series BUT they all (so far, at least) seem to be interconnected. And I am more than a tad OCD with a desire to complete everything.
Laid Bare is well written with some really hot sex scenes. That being said…it also had a bit of a strange set up for me: the heroine, Erin, and one of the heroes, Todd, met over 10 years ago. They had a serious relationship but it didn’t work out. When Erin and Todd meet again 10 years later, the thing(s) that caused their breakup have been settled. Todd is desperate for Erin and goes after her immediately. Erin and Todd both are still enormously attracted to each other and they rekindle their relationship. The relationship between Todd and Erin gets incredibly close and stays that way for at least 50% of the book. It’s only after the 50% mark that secondary character Ben becomes a primary character and [the other] hero of the book. It just felt…weird. It also made it difficult for me to become attached emotionally to Ben.
I think my favorite plot point in Laid Bare was the different ways Erin’s life and Todd’s life played out during their 10 year hiatus. Erin was heartbroken over the initial breakup but she went on to live a pretty sweet life [until…]. She was happy, successful and pretty fulfilled. Todd went on to marry (and divorce) a woman he didn’t love while still secretly pining for Erin. LOVE. Most Romances usually have the woman pining away for the guy while the guy is doing his thing. I loved that it was different in this situation.
The plot point I disliked the most was the horrible thing that happened to Erin during the 10 year hiatus. I don’t like the fact that Erin was basically broken by circumstances. I can see how the plot point did a lot to further the entire story and it wasn’t gratuitous BUT STILL. *sad face*
The MAJOR thing that I am having an on-going issue with is the lack of DP in my menage books!!!! What in the fricking frack is going on around here?! Why are there so many threesomes that don’t include DP?! Have I entered the DP-less twilight zone or something?? I see a Jett Mykles run in my future <-- Dat dare woman can write a smoking hot DP menage scene. All in all, Laid Bare is a pretty good romance that I enjoyed. I felt there was some strangeness in the structure that kept me somewhat emotionally detached but I enjoyed it. I will continue with the series (I really need to get to book four!).