Updated: Jan 18, 2021
by Lauren Layne
Published by Loveswept
Book #1 of The Oxford Series
Hotshot sports editor Cole Sharpe
has been freelancing for Oxford for years, so when he hears about a staff position opening up, he figures he’s got the inside track. Then his boss drops a bombshell: Cole has competition. Female competition, in the form of a fresh-faced tomboy who can hang with the dudes—and write circles around them, too. Cole usually likes his women flirty and curvy, but he takes a special interest in his skinny, sassy rival, if only to keep an eye on her. And soon, he can’t take his eyes off her. Penelope Pope knows all too well that she comes off as just one of the guys. Since she’s learned that wanting more usually leads to disappointment, Penelope’s resigned to sitting on the sidelines when it comes to love. So why does Cole make her want to get back in the game? The man is as arrogant as he is handsome. He probably sees her as nothing more than a barrier to his dream job. But when an unexpected kiss turns into a night of irresistible passion, Penelope has to figure out whether they’re just fooling around—or starting something real.
RATED: 18+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Steamy Rom-Com Feel Good
My thoughts are rambling and full of spoilers. Ye have been warned!
Irresistibly Yours is the first book in the Oxford series, a spin-off series from the Sex, Love, & Stiletto Series. This first book features contractor-turned-Oxford co-sports editor Cole Sharpe, and newcomer to the Oxford team as co-sports editor, Penelope Pope. I gotta admit, out of the five Oxford books out there, this one is my second favorite, which is surprising considering the simplicity of this romance.
While being simple, it doesn't mean it's not a pretty great story. The flow of the book is perfect from the start, to the very end, and the content is unique enough keep my interest. All the characters remain pretty consistent from the Sex, Love, & Stiletto series, except for one tiny thing. Back in 'Love The One You're With', Jake described Cole as rich, and therefore didn't feel like he needed a steady job, and preferred freelance work. In this one, we learn Cole is not rich. In fact, he ends up competing for a job at Oxford because he needs the money to pay for his brothers group home expenses. Not a big deal for the average reader, but for someone who has a knack for remembering these small details, a little bothersome.
Penelope Pope is a breath of fresh air to this Stiletto/Oxford world. She isn't your average woman, and that's what I like about her. Most of the women are described as having classic beautiful curves, average height ... just your basic bombshell babe. Nothing wrong with that, but it can begin to feel a bit stale in the character department after a while. Very copy-and-paste. Then Penelope Pope is introduced. Described as barely five-feet-tall, skinny with barely any curves .... barely there boobs, but with big beautiful brown eyes and a huge as hell personality. But not in the over the top way. She is just pure kindness and understanding. She's passionate. Friendly and uncomplicated. On top of that great stuff, is a total nut about sports. She is the perfect new addition to this world. A great reminder that women are unique, and can be beautiful is very different ways.
I have always really enjoyed having Cole pop up randomly in the Stiletto series. His character is wit and charm, all wrapped up in a yummy package. So, of course I was already halfway in love with the guy before this book. Then Lauren Layne has to write him in such a way that I just fall for him completely. Ugh. Sorry real life husband. In all seriousness though, Cole is another great character in this world. We knew he was charming, and funny as all hell, but we learn he is a total sweetheart in this book. A gentleman despite being known as a player. He's also lonely. Yeah, he has friends. But the only family he has is his brother, who despite living in a group care home, has a rather busy social life, and sometimes Cole feels left behind. Add to that, he's single. He's not scared of commitment. He just hasn't found a woman he can stand to be with for more than a couple of months.
Honestly, one of the reasons I love this book so much, is two, truly kind people, fall in love. Simply. No grand schemes by either party, and no articles to write that would force them to confront a part of themselves they were hiding from. Just two people, who establishe