Updated: Jan 18
Someone Like You
by Lauren Layne
Published by Loveswept
Book #3 of the Oxford Series
Lincoln Mathis doesn’t hide his reputation as Manhattan’s ultimate playboy.
In fact, he cultivates it. But behind every flirtatious smile, each provocative quip, there’s a secret that Lincoln’s hiding from even his closest friends—a tragedy from his past that holds his heart quietly captive. Lincoln knows what he wants: someone like Daisy Sinclair, the sassy, off-limits bridesmaid he can’t take his eyes off at his best friend’s wedding. He also knows that she’s everything he can never have. After a devastating divorce, Daisy doesn’t need anyone to warn her off the charming best man at her sister’s wedding. One look at the breathtakingly hot Lincoln Mathis and she knows that he’s exactly the type of man she should avoid. But when Daisy stumbles upon Lincoln’s secret, she realizes there’s more to the charming playboy than meets the eye. And suddenly Daisy and Lincoln find their lives helplessly entwined in a journey that will either heal their damaged souls . . . or destroy them forever.
RATED: 18+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Steamy Rom-Com Feel Good
You gotta read the book before you read my review! Spoilers ahead! The GIF above makes sense, I promise!
Someone Like You by Lauren Layne is the third book in the Oxford series, and centers around fan favorite, Lincoln Mathis, Oxfords Sex and Dating editor, and Daisy Sinclair, identical twin of Emma, his friend, and boss's wife. Throughout the series, it's been heavily hinted that Lincoln has some secrets, but I don't think anyone could have imagined anything so brutal. And while we don't get a whole lot of back story on Daisy before this book, we do know that she has changed quite a bit since her marriage, and eventual divorce. No doubt about it, Someone Like You is the darkest of all the Stiletto/Oxford Books.
In terms of originality, this story has got it ... especially compared to the rest of the series. Despite the heartbreaking circumstance of Lincoln's almost-marriage, and Daisy's escape from an abusive husband, the story is wonderful, and it flowed beautifully. It helps that it's separated into parts, to help account for the small time, and location jumps.
I have always really liked Lincoln's character. Incredibly charming, always kind, funny, and doesn't give a crap what anyone thinks. But in the past two Oxford books, it's been heavily hinted that Lincoln has his secrets. All it takes is meeting Daisy Sinclair, Emma's maid of honor and twin sister, for him to recognize he isn't the only one who has his guard up. The fact they recognize it in one another, allows him to be himself, and within 48 of meeting her, shows her his biggest secret, and source of his pain. His fiance, Katie, who is brain dead after crashing her car texting Lincoln a couple of days before their wedding. That is when we find out, Lincoln's legendary playboy status is just a mirage. He really is a heartbroken man, devoted to the woman who was supposed to be his wife. Loyal to a fault. We go from believing he loves women (and sure, he is a good guy ... he likes everyone), to learning how fiercely he loves. It makes it kind of hard not to fall for the guy.
Daisy is an interesting character. She has always been described in the past as beautiful (which she is), charming, bubbly ... a sunny personality. A southern belle. We quickly learn she isn't just all of those things ... she is also a bit broken. Lincoln see's this in her, and recognizes a kindred spirit. When in Daisy's point of view, it's clear her marriage was awful, but we don't learn the true extent of it until Lincoln does ... when he see's her ex go to hit her. And while the physical abuse only happened a few times before she divorced him, the mental and emotional abuse was near constant. It's no surprise she has a hard time trusting men. The only thing I dislike about her, is her name. I know. It's silly. But I have twin daughters ... for the life of me I don't get why their parents named one Emma and the other Daisy.
It's obvious these two are perfect for each other from the moment they meet. They just click. They see themselves in one another, and it makes them instantly comfortable with one another ... which they both needed. Their witty banter, and the fact they were able to let each other in behind their walls, it was natural they would eventually fall for one another. They needed each other to heal from their past pain. Lincoln protecting Daisy when her ex came by and went to hit her, and how gentle and kind he always was with her, helped her trust a man again. And Daisy's understanding and patience with Lincoln mourning the death of his fiance ... well, lets just say its the first time in the Stiletto/Oxford books that I ugly cried. Even when he panics and breaks her heart, she understands, tells his to be happy, and leaves. When he went to Kate's grave to say goodbye I totally lost it.
One of the best things about this book was the epilogue. It was written in a way where it could have concluded the series, and in a small way, it does. as the next two books centers on a different group within Oxford, but we still see the originals every so often. Lincoln and Daisy are happily married, and Daisy had just given birth to boy/girl twins. They are over the moon happy. When Daisy has a moment and wonders if he is ever sad he isn't doing this with Katie, his answer is simple, in that he couldn't imagine marriage and having babies with anyone but Daisy. They are both so happy, I ugly cried with happiness. We also learn a bit about the other couples. Jake and Grace have a son now, Riley and Sam have had their second daughter, Cole and Penelope are happily married, and by the way they were mooning over the twins, I wouldn't be surprised if babies were in their future, and Jackson and Molly are expecting their first child in a couple of months. While in romances you know there is always a happily ever after, I love hearing little updates. Its one of the reasons I love series novels so much.
In the end, Someone Like You is everything that was promised. I know fans of t he series were not so patiently waiting for Lincoln's story, and Lauren Layne delivered ... as she usually does. This story is equal parts heartbreaking, and heartwarming, and is my favorite of the Oxford series. Probably my favorite of the Stiletto/Oxford series combined! I love it! You just have to read it .... the whole series! Do it!
Top 3 Favorite Moments
1. The famous Britney Spears "Oops I Did it Again" striptease when Daisy was drunk.
2. Lincoln beating the shit out of her ex-husband when he he went to hit her.
3. Lincoln "word-fucking" Daisy. Who knew words could be so hot.
4. (bonus!) Lincoln and Daisy FINALLY having sex for the first time
5. (bonus!) The office sex ... why is the office sex so good in the Oxford series? Ugh.
6. (bonus!) Lincoln going to Katie's grave, and saying goodbye to her.
7. (bonus!) Lincoln gathering all his friends into the office to help him find a way to get Daisy back
8. (bonus!) Britney Spears "Oops I Did it Again" being used when Lincoln was "Say Anything-ing" Daisy to get her back.
9. (bonus) That epilogue though. Epic.
Where to Buy:
Favorite Quotes: Explicit 18+
Emma: "Lincoln, you know that I love you like a brother, but if you make a move on my sister, I will end you."
Lincoln: "I hope Cassidy knows how lucky he is. You're so delicate and gentle."
Lincoln: “I’m like the stamen.” Emma: “The what?” Lincoln: “The stamen. The pollen-producing part of a flower, Sinclair. Don’t you watch the Discovery Channel? Animal Planet? I just saw a fascinating documentary on bees. See, when the bees land on a flower, their little feet pick up pollen from the stamen-“ Cassidy: “Mathis. Are you talking to my fiancée about semen?” Lincoln: “Stamen. Not semen. Honestly, is sex all you people think about?” Riley: “Yes. And you know, actually, the stamen israther sexual. I saw that bee documentary too, because these are the sort of things you do when you’re nursing a never-satisfied baby, by the way, and the stamen is the flower’s make reproductive organ. Sexy, right?” Emma: “Guys, it’s my wedding weekend. Can we not talk about flower boners?” Lincoln: “Fair enough, bride. What do you want to talk about? Cassidy’s boner?” Cassidy choked into his champagne. Emma: “There will be no boner discussion.”
Daisy: “You must be Lincoln Mathis, The Manwhore of Whom I Should Beware?” Lincoln: “Which would make you Daisy Sinclair, Delicate Flower to Whom I’m Not to Speak.”
Lincoln: “Which, by the way, my speech is awesome, so sorry in advance for making you look bad.” Daisy: “I’m not worried. Rumor has it you got your best man gig in a game of paper football.” Lincoln: “Hey, at least I had to work for it. All you did was share a womb.” Daisy: “Bet I can get more people crying than you tomorrow.” Lincoln: “Their tears are all yours to be manipulated. I’ll be playing the laugh angle.” Daisy: “Hiding your private pain behind jokes. Nice.” Lincoln: “Directing conversation to someone else’s private pain to avoid your own. Nice.” Daisy: “I think we’re going to get along just fine, Mr. Mathis.”
Daisy lifted her glass along with the rest of the room, even as her eyes narrowed on Lincoln. They’d had a dead. She had tears, he had laughs. And then he’d gone for both. That son of a bitch. Hell, even Cassidy looked like he was swallowing a lump in his throat as he went to man-hug his friend. Lincoln caught Daisy’s eye over Cassidy’s shoulder and winked. She let out a little laugh as she sipped her champagne. The bastard. – Daisy
Daisy: “Is it always like that with you?” Lincoln: “It’s like I tried to tell your sister. I’m like the stamen.” Daisy: “A flower penis?” Lincoln: *laughs* “Someone knows their flower parts.”
Daisy: “Does it get old?” Lincoln: “Does what?” Daisy: “Being gorgeous. And irresistible.” Lincoln: “I don’t think anyone’s ever managed to make those two adjectives sound so undesirable.” Daisy: “My immunity to your charms bothers you?” Lincoln: “It does not. It’s rather refreshing, actually.”
Daisy: “I hung it up!” Lincoln lifts a teasing eyebrow. Daisy: “Or you hung it up.” Lincoln: “If it makes you feel better, I turned my back while you stripteased your way out of it.” Daisy: *horrified laugh* “I did not” Lincoln: “I can’t say for sure, what with my back turned and all, but there was quite a bit of humming of what seemed to be Britney Spears.” Daisy groans into her coffee. Daisy: “If this mug were bigger, I’d try to drown myself.”
Daisy: “He really comes every month?” Brenda: “Like clockwork.” Daisy: “You don’t seem happy about it.” Brenda: “I think it’s lovely, but it’s not about me. It’s about Katie. And my daughter would never ever have wanted this for the man that she loves.”
Lincoln: “I figure wine’s my best chance of your sister not deballing me when she finds out you slept in my bed last night.” Daisy: “Don’t worry. I already told her that yes, we left together, but I didn’t violate you.” Lincoln: “You say that because you didn’t see the Britney striptease.” Daisy: “Thought you said you kept your back turned for that.” Lincoln: “Ahh-“ Daisy punches Lincoln in the arm Daisy: “Mathis.” Lincoln: “I may have caught a glimpse before my Gentleman kicked in. In my defense, you whipped that dress over your head fast.”
Lincoln: “Hey baby girl.” The baby girl’s diapered butt rested on his forearm and his big palm around her tiny dark head, but the screaming didn’t stop. Julie: “What do you know. The only single female on the planet that’s not instantly in love with Lincoln Mathis.”
Julie: “All right. There has got to be a statute of limitation on that little mishap.” Mitchell: “Mathis? What say you?” Lincoln: “I say someone above the age of twelve putting a frozen pizza in the oven with the plastic still on definitely deserves a lifetime of reminders on said mishap. And my God, does this baby never stop crying?” Sam: “No, never.”
Lincoln: “She looks more like Riley every time I see her. Acts like her too, with all that noise.” Sam: “Please don’t say that. You forget that I knew Riley all through high school. I don’t think I can handle if my daughter has even a tiny sliver of her mother’s spirit.” Julie: “Spirit. Is that what we’re calling it?” Riley: “What would you call it?” Julie: “Um … vigor?” Riley: “Vaguely sexual. I like it.”
Emma: “Lincoln Mathis. Would you mind telling me what part of stay away from my sister I was unclear on? You realize that I’m about five steps away from a vast array of sharp knives, right? Lincoln: “Ahhh-“ Cassidy: “She did warn you, man.”
Cassidy: “Daisy. Glad you’re here. Can I get you something to drink?” Daisy: “Sure. White Wine?” Lincoln: “No whiskey? Jack Daniel’s, perhaps?” Lincoln starts humming Britney Spear’s ‘Oops! … I Did It Again while Daisy gives him a ha ha look.
Lincoln hops up onto the counter and pats the spot beside him: Lincoln: “Come, Wallflower. Let us look down upon our people.”
Text message exchange: Lincoln: Wallflower. Took your advice about keeping The Ladies away. You’re right, nobody like a guy with a rash, no matter how I swore it wasn’t itchy. Daisy: Tell them that there’s nothing to worry about – that the medicated cream you use shouldn’t cause any irritation unless they’re part of the 2% of the population that’s allergic. Lincoln: tried that the first time. Unfortunately for me, she was a dermatologist. Took it as a turn on. Daisy: Is it hard then? Being so handsome you literally can’t keep them away? Lincoln: So hard, Wallflower. Last night I cried about it.
Daisy: “I haven’t been having dirty fantasies about Lincoln.”
Whitney: “Lincoln. Oh gawd, a great name to go with all that yummy. Sex dreams then. Don’t lie to me, Sinclair, a woman doesn’t spend time with him and not have the most primal part of her wonder about what it would be like.”
Daisy said nothing as she pulled chicken out of her meat drawer.
Whitney: “I knew it. Awake Daisy might have the lust locked down, but sleeping Daisy wants some.”
Daisy: “Sometimes I don’t know why we’re friends.”
Penelope places a plate in front of Lincoln with a chocolate donut with rainbow sprinkles.
Lincoln: “I love you. Leave Cole and marry me.”
Cole: “Don’t even think about it, Tiny.”
Lincoln: “Give up now, Sharpe. I’m irresistible. Right, Pen?”
Jake: “Mathis, your attack squirrel is humping my calf.”
Lincoln: “Toss her an egg roll.”
Jake: “A whole egg roll? That’s as big as she is.”
Lincoln: “So bite it in half, give her the rest. Eh, bite off two-thirds. Give her the last bit.”
Jake: “How about I cut it like a thirty-something man instead of gnawing on it like a hungover frat boy?”
Cole comes over, picks up the egg roll, takes a bite and offers the rest to Kiwi.
Cole: “There you go, baby. Who’s your favorite uncle now?”
Lincoln: “She is hot. But I’m not interested.”
Jake: “Since when?”
Lincoln: “Since now. Seriously, are we here to eat Chinese and play poker, or should I turn on Adele and pour us some rose?”
Jake: “You say that like it’s not a regular thing for you.”
Cole begins singing ‘Rolling in the Deep’ with Mitchell joining in harmony
Lincoln: *laughs* “Jesus. I need another beer.”
Lincoln: “You wanted to see me?”
Cassidy: “Yeah. Come in. Close the door.”
Lincoln: “Should I be nervous? You only ever close the door when you bone Emma in here or fire someone.”
Cassidy: “Would you just … shut the door. And shut up, nobody’s getting boned or fired.”
Cassidy: “What’s with the ball?”
Lincoln: “We were playing Horse in Cole’s office.”
Cassidy: “I thought I got rid of the balls after one of you morons lobbed one across the entire floor, knocking over Jo’s coffee, which then spilled on our very expensive phone system and shorted out her keyboard.”
Lincoln: “Replacement. And speaking of Jo, her stomach’s like a basketball. And not a miniature like this one either. Full-size basketball. You see her lately?”
Cassidy: “No. I’m editor in chief of this magazine, spend eight-plus hours a day trying to stay on top of you hooligans, but no, Mathis, I had no idea my receptionist was six months pregnant.”
Mathis: “Six. That all? I was thinking like … ten.”
Cassidy: “Do us all a favor and don’t tell her that. Give me the ball.”
Lincoln: *tossing ball from hand to hand* “Why?”
Cassidy: “Because you’re driving me fucking nuts.”
Lincoln: “First of all, if I were in a dating place right now, I wouldn’t crash and burn. Second of all, you know by now that I was never a playboy, only playing the part. And third … dude, Cassidy … are you sending me to a farm?”
Cassidy: “Yes, Lincoln. I’m sending you to a farm. Thought you and Kiki-“
Cassidy: “ – Kiwi could sleep in a barn with the pigs. Jesus. I was thinking something more intermediate. Something more medium town, with a touch of Southern to keep things interesting.”
Lincoln: “North Carolina. You want to send me to Charlotte.”
Cassidy: “Strictly optional. If there’s another city you’d prefer, I’m open to it so long as it gets you away from the Northeast and bad memories. But I’ll throw it out there that Daisy’s big old mansion has a fully furnished guesthouse, fancy kitchen, private-“
Lincoln tilts his head back and laughs
Lincoln: “You’re either trying to set me up, or you’re trying to assign me a babysitter. I’m not sure which is worse.”
Cassidy: “It’s neither. Look, I’d never think to play matchmaker so soon after your loss. Neither would Emma. Even if I did, it wouldn’t be Daisy.”
Lincoln: “Why not Daisy?”
Cassidy: “Because she’s just as damaged as you are.”
Daisy: “You know you’re welcome to stay here. There re right bedrooms. You and Kiwi could each have your own.”
Lincoln: “No can do. Ki’s a cuddler.”
Daisy: “Ah. Big spoon?”
Lincoln: “You North Carolina girls can’t be that different from New York City girls.”
Daisy: “Can’t we?”
Lincoln: “You’re a southern girl, and I had you in my bed in one night.”
Daisy: “Doesn’t count. You may have had me in your underwear, but you never got me out of mine.”
Lincoln: “Thirty minutes. That’s how long it took us to get the conversation to underwear. We’re weird together, Wallflower.”
Lincoln: “I owe you an apology.”
Lincoln: “For pulling back. After you left, but before Katie died, I know I just sort of … quit responding to your texts.”
Daisy: “Ah. I understood.”
Lincoln: “yeah. Yeah, see, I figured you understood. That’s the thing about you, Daisy, you seem to understand everything.
Daisy: “You say that like it’s a bad thing.”
Lincoln: “Not a bad thing, no. But it’s the reason I had to pull back.”
Daisy: “Because I understood things?”
Lincoln: “No, because you understand me. And it’s been a long time since anyone has.”
Whitney: “We did good, Daiz.”
Daisy: “Oh did we?”
Whitney: “Hey, I cut a lime. Lincoln, baby, did you see me cut that lime?”
Lincoln: “I sure did. None of this would have been possible without you.”
Daisy: “You okay?”
Lincoln: “Sometimes I wish I liked you less, Wallflower.”
Lincoln: “So at what point do I get to learn where I’m headed?”
Daisy: “Soon. Take a right up here.”
Lincoln: “That’s into a parking lot.”
Daisy: “It is? You sure you’re not CIA? Those are some keen observational skills.”
Lincoln: “You sure you didn’t have sarcasm piped straight through the umbilical cord? Because your twin has the same smart mouth.”
Daisy: “Were you actually any help?”
Lincoln: “I said the words engine, belt, and torque steer, so most definitely. You think I should have charged them?
Daisy: “I’m not going to lie, it kind of works for you.”
Lincoln: “What does? Car talk, huh? You like that, Wallflower? Your engines revved?”
Daisy: *laughs* “Save it. But admit I was right. Those women ate up the whole everyman mechanic routine. Don’t worry. I won’t rub it in.”
Lincoln: “Don’t worry. I won’t rub it in either.”
Daisy: “Rub what in?”
Lincoln: “That your plan backfired. The whole dirty towel in the belt thing really did it for ya, huh?”