by Kristen Callihan
Published by NLA Digital LLC
Book 2 in the VIP series
It started off as a battle of wits.
Me: the ordinary girl with a big mouth against Him: the sexy bastard with a big...ego.
I thought I’d hit the jackpot when I was upgraded to first class on my flight to London.
That is until HE sat next to me. Gabriel Scott: handsome as sin, cold as ice. Nothing and no one gets to him. Ever. He’s a legend in his own right, the manager of the biggest rock band in the world, and an arrogant ass who looks down his nose at me.
I thought I’d give him hell for one, long flight. I didn’t expect to like him. I didn’t expect to want him. But the biggest surprise? He wants me too. Only in a way I didn’t see coming.
If I accept his proposal, I leave myself open to falling for the one man I can’t manage. But I’m tempted to say yes. Because the real man beneath those perfect suits and that cool façade just might be the best thing that’s ever happened to me. And I just might be the only one who can melt the ice around his heart.
Let the battle begin…
RATED: 18+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Steamy Romance Sweet & Hot
Managed by Kristen Callihan is the second book in her VIP series, and centers around Kill John's uptight manager "Scottie" Gabriel Scott, and fun, and outgoing social media specialist and photographer, Sophie Darling. When Sophie is given a chance to ride first class, she is thrilled ... Gabriel, who she sits besides ... not so much. The crazy thing: she starts to like the grumpy, stuck up manager. The crazier thing: He starts to like her too. Opposites attract in this wonderful romance.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was original, fun, and sexy. I loved the banter between these two (two completely opposite personalities are always fun when they get together). And the chemistry - wowsa. After reading Idol and this book, I am convinced that Kristen's strongest writing talent is establishing intense, hot chemistry between characters. If I had to pick ONE problem I had with this book, it would be that it was a little bit too "insta-love" for me. But honestly, I quickly got over that, because the writing is great, the chemistry is hot, and the sex ... wow.
I really loved the characters in Managed. I haven't made it a secret in my other reviews, but I love a grumpy, uptight male character brought to his knees by a free spirited woman. Gabriel is all that. Add on top of that a British accent ... oh man. I'm in love. And I loved Sophie! Her character is so fun, her dialogue had me laughing, and it was a great mix with Gabriel's dry humor.
When I first started Managed, I wasn't sure if I was going to love it, but that quickly went out the window. Sophie and Gabriel's unconventional relationship was endearing, and at the climax, had me forgetting the predictability of this romance, and had me in tears instead. I highly recommend this series to you. I promise you, you will love Managed.
The ENTIRE flight. Epic banter. EPIC
Gabriel sharing a lunch during a busy work day
Jax covering for Sophie when she was caught doing the walk of shame
Sophie hanging out with everyone on the bus
Sophie and Gabriel eating apple crumble in bed together
Sophie and Gabriel finally admitting their feelings for one another while fighting after Gabriel comes back from fighting
That moment backstage
Finally hooking up!
The guys forcing Gabriel to go on vacation
Sophie helping Jax
Gabriel telling the guys he loves them
Gabriel going after Sophie by facing his fear
Where to Buy
Sophie: "Jesus. It's like looking at the sun."
Sophie: "Just stop, will you? You're too hot. It's too much to take."
Gabriel: "Are you quite well?"
Sophie: "No, you've nearly rendered me blind. Do you have an off switch? Maybe put it on low?"
His nostrils flare, his skin going a shade darker.
Gabriel: "Lovely. I'm stuck next to a mad woman."
Sophie: "Are you a duke? You talk like a duke."
His head jerks as if he wants to look my way, but he manages to keep his gaze forward, his lips compressed so tightly they're turning white at the edges.
Sophie: "Oh, or maybe a prince. I know! Prince Charming!"
A blast of air escapes him, as if he's caught between a laugh and outrage.
Gabriel: "You found me out. Prince Charming, at your service. Do forgive me for being short with you, madam, but I am on a mission of the utmost import. I'm looking for my bride, you see. Alas, you are not wearing a glass slipper, so you cannot be her."
We both glance at my bare feet and the red Chucks lying on the floor. He shakes his head.
Gabriel: "You'll understand that I need to keep my focus on the search."
Sophie: "You're freaky good looks made her blind to all but you, sunshine."
Gabriel: "If only I could stroke women speechless."
Sophie: "Oh, I bet you'd find that marvelous; all of us helpless women just smiling and nodding. Though I'm afraid it would never work on me."
Gabriel: "Of course not. I'm stuck next to the one afflicted with an apparently incurable case of verbal diarrhea."
Sophie: "Says the man who is socially constipated."
He stills again, his eyes widening. And then a strangled snort breaks free, escalating into a choked laugh.
Gabriel: "Christ. I'm doomed."
Sophie: "Don't you whhhat me with that proper British accent and think I'll fall for it. I don't care how sexy your voice is, it won't work."
Sophie: "You think if you sit there, looking petrified and tense, I'll offer a blowjob to distract you from it all."
My humiliation comes to a screeching halt upon hearing the word blowjob.
Sophie: "Well, it's not going to happen."
Ignore the cock. Ignore him. He's an idiot. Focus on the problem at hand,
Gabriel: "You are deranged. Completely deranged."
Sophie: "And you are a handsome but crafty bastard. Unfortunately for you, good looks aren't enough. I won't do it."
I lean in as close as I dare.
Gabriel: "Look, even if I wanted your mouth anywhere near me, why on Earth would I ask for a blowjob here? When the entire cabin can see. Who does that?"
Sophie: "Not me."
She shoots back with a disgusted look.
Sophie: "But nice slip of the tongue. You've obviously been thinking logistics."
Must not throttle headcase.
Sophie: "You pompous, arrogant -"
Gabriel: "Those words basically mean the same thing, sweets."
Sophie: "Dick-faced ..."
Sophie: "It's all right. Sunshine here got me so flustered, I nearly pulled out my credit card and offered to pay him for sex,"
I choke on my own spit.
Gabriel: "Bloody hell."
The flight attendant flushes magenta.
Attendant: "Yes. Er. Can I get you anything else?"
Gabriel: "Actually, I'm more of an asshole than a prick. Which means I'm rather an expert in dealing with bothersome little shits."
Sophie: "Well, maybe you'll find someone to properly cross dicks with later."
It's his turn to sputter on his drink, though he recovers nicely. With precise movements, he sets his glass down and crisply tugs each of his cuffs back into place.
Gabriel: "I'm fairly certain I've all I can handle with you at the moment."
Sophie: "Aw, a compliment."
He looks down at me and slowly blinks, the dark sweep of his lashes nearly touching his cheek. Then he shocks me into stillness when he leans in close enough that his lips brush the curve of my ear.
Gabriel: "Yes, chatty girl, it was."
Gabriel: "She's not my type."
Sophie: "You actually have a type?"
Gabriel: "Yes. Quiet, dignified, and discreet."
He turns all the way to face me.
Gabriel: "I beg your pardon?"
Sophie: "Pardon yourself. You said that to put me in my place. But I'm not biting."
Gabriel: "I've never met a person I couldn't manage."
Not bothering to take the mask off, I extend a hand his way.
Sophie: "Sophie Elizabeth Darling."
A set of teeth catch the edge of my hand and nip me. I'm so shocked I yelp, snatching my hand back. Lurching up, I whip off my mask to find him staring back at me with a bland look.
Sophie: "Did you just bite me?"
Gabriel: "That sounds like a rather juvenile thing to do."
Sophie: "It was a rhetorical question. You bit me!"
His lips quirk as if he's trying very hard not to laugh
Gabriel: "Best not to stick your hand in my face then."
Sophie: "I don't like you."
Gabriel: "Lie. You've told me repeatedly now that you find me blindingly attractive."
Sophie: "That doesn't mean I like you. Besides, your brand of pretty is like a weapon. You reel victims in with it, just like a vampire does. I wouldn't be surprised if you sparkle in the sun."
Gabriel: "I cannot believe I'm arguing with a woman who references Twilight."
Sophie: "The fact that you I'm referencing Twilight betrays you as a secret Edward-loving fanboy."
His snort is loud and scathing
Gabriel: "Team Jacob all the way."
Sophie: "That's it. We can never be friends."
Sophie: "You're one breath away from totally losing your shit. Accept the torment that is physical comfort."
Sophie: "Shhh. Just think of me as your friendly neighborhood cuddler."
Gabriel: "Are you telling me you'd do this for anyone?"
I snuggle down
Sophie: "No. That you're insanely hot is a huge factor. I get to cop a feel under the guise of civic duty."
Gabriel: "Oh, for fuck's sake."
Sophie: "Can it with the outrage. I know for a fact that most people would rather snuggle up to a hot dude. If it makes me shallow for admitting that, so be it."
Gabriel: "Your honesty is astounding."
Sophie: "I know. Now hush, I have feels to cop."
Sophie: "I think we should name our kids by number."
Gabriel: "Dare I ask why?"
Sophie: "Because we'll have so many, numbers seem easier. We can do like the kind in Stardust. Una, Secundus, Septimus ..."
Gabriel: "That seems inordinately cruel. Think of the shit they'll receive in grammar school."
Sophie: "They'll be too tough to be bullied. And I see you're warming to the idea."
I grin when he grunts.
Gabriel: "What color is your natural hair?"
Sophie: "That's an awfully forward question, Mr. Scott."
Gabriel: "Supposedly I'm fathering at least seven of your children. A fair enough question to ask."
Jesus on a motorcycle, he has a happy trail.
Gabriel: "This is a matter of business, Ms. Darling. Nothing personal."
Sophie: "Bullshit. Everything is personal. Especially business. You judge a person and decide whether you trust them enough to work with them or not. You've made your decision, Mr. Scott. Don't weaken it by pretending it's nothing personal."
Killian: "Bet that pissed you off, having to sit beside someone."
I grunt, unable to tell him the truth. Best fucking flight of my life.
Sophie: "God, it's like you're Darth Vader or something."
Gabriel: "Do you fear I might have cooties?"
Sophie: "I'm surprised you even know that word."
Gabriel: "I know quite a few. Which reminds me ... While I do enjoy anal play with a woman now and then, I have never munched an ass."
Sophie chokes on her beer, sending droplets of it across the battered table, as her cheeks flamed scarlet.
Gabriel: "You know, I'm not actually comfortable being an asshole to women."
Sophie: "Really? But you do it so well."
Dad: "Just remember, men love women who play hard to get. Extremely hard to get."
Sophie: "And yet you and Mom started as a one-night stand."
Dad: "Damn it, Margaret. You tell this child too much."
The rat bastard shoves the sandwich in my mouth.
Gabriel: "Be a good chatty girl and eat up."
Sophie: Your sarcasm smells of slain interns' blood and the souls of missing record execs.
Sunshine: False. That is what I eat for breakfast. Keep up, Darling.
Sophie: Aw ... terms of endearment already?
Sunshine: It's your name.
Sophie: A convenient excuse.
Sunshine: A legitimate answer.
Gabriel: "I don't ... I don't socialize."
Sophie: "Yet here we are."
Rye: "Sophie Darling. Doth my eyes deceive me or are you doing the long walk 'o shame?"
I push past him
Sophie: "I don't know what you're talking about. I always look this way."
Rye: "Ridden hard and put to bed wet?"
Sophie: "You're such an ass."
Sophie: "You're talking like a duke again. Which means you're feeling guilty."
Gabriel: "Know me so well already, chatty girl?"
Sophie: "Yes, I do."
She moves to pass me but pauses
Sophie: "You're not fooling anyone. And when you want to admit you were jealous, I'll be waiting."
With that, she walks away, her round hips swaying. I appreciate the view, even as I'm mentally kicking myself.
Gabriel: "It will be a long wait."
She flips me off without missing a step.
Hell, I do like this girl. Too bloody much.