by Elle Kennedy
Book 4 in the Briar U series
College was supposed to be my chance to get over my ugly-duckling complex and spread my wings.
Instead, I wound up in a sorority full of mean girls. I already have a hard time fitting in, so when my Kappa Chi sisters issue the challenge, I can’t say no.
The dare: seduce the hottest new hockey player in the junior class.
Conor Edwards is a regular at Greek Row parties…and in Greek Row sorority beds. He’s the one you fall for before you learn that guys like him don’t give girls like me a second glance. Except Mr. Popular throws me for a loop—rather than laughing in my face, he does me a solid by letting me take him upstairs to pretend we’re getting busy.
Even crazier, now he wants to keep pretending. Turns out Conor loves games, and he thinks it’s fun to pull the wool over my frenemies’ eyes.
But resisting his easy charm and surfer-boy hotness is darn near impossible. Though I’m realizing there’s much more to Conor’s story than his fan club can see.
And the longer this silly ruse goes on, the greater the danger of it all blowing up in my face.
RATED: 18+ CATEGORY: MOOD:
Steamy New Adult Sweet & HOT
The Dare by Elle Kennedy is the fourth book in her Briar U series, and centers around the Briar U playboy, Conor Edwards, and Taylor, a Kappa Chi member who doesn't fit in with the rest of her sorority sisters. When she is dared to seduce one of the star hockey players, Conor Edwards, she is pleasantly surprised that not only does Conor not laugh at her, but goes upstairs, and pretends to have the best sex he has ever had. And he doesn't want to stop the ruse. But as they continue to play this game to get under her bullies skin, ****** finds it hard to resist Conor's charm, and learns there is much more beneath Conor Edward's handsome surface.
NOOOOOO!!! I wanted to love The Dare. I really, really did. An insecure, curvy woman who catches the eye of a handsome, secretly insecure, popular young man? What's not to like? Right? RIGHTTTTT? Sadly, The Dare just gave off lukewarm vibes. Don't get me wrong. I liked the characters. Conor and Taylor are cute together. The chemistry is there, just not as much as the other couples in the series. The story was okay. Just okay. A bit ... boring? A bit of a mess? We essentially get two characters who have the same hang ups of self-worth. Very relatable, but when both characters are dealing with it, and tend to act out the same way - pushing people away - it's predictable and boring.
The Dare wasn't my favorite in the series by a long shot, but if you love this series, give the book a shot.
Conor and Taylor faking sex
Conor declaring his love very publicly at the university grip-and-grin
Taylor hanging out with Conor and his roommates
Conor's lap dance
Conor and the guys taking Taylor shopping
Conor and Taylor having a meet the daughter dinner with the Coach
Conor not giving the money
Conor and Taylor's first time
Conor's conversation with his step dad
Guy: "Wanna dance?""
he then asks, leaning toward my chest like he's speaking into the box at a fast food drive-thru.
Taylor: "Sorry, they don't dance."
Taylor: "Jail? Give yourself more credit, buddy. With your face and body, you would've made a killing in porn."
Conor: "You like my body?"
Taylor: "Elementary education. I want to be a teacher."
He raises one eyebrow, then scans me with a look that's almost ... hungry.
Conor: "That's hot."
Taylor: "What's hot about it?"
Conor: "Every guy fantasizes about banging a teacher. It's a thing."
Taylor: "Boys are weird."
Hunter: "Hey, Coach. The guys were wondering if we could get an update on the mascot situation."
Coach: "The pig? You idiots are still on about the damn pig?"
Hunter: 'Uh, yeah. In the absence of Pablo Eggscobar, some of the boys are experiencing withdrawals."
Coach: "Jesus Christ. Yes, you're getting your damn pet."
Coach: "Almost forgot. Word's come down from the higher-ups that our attendance is required at some alumni grip-and-grin Saturday afternoon."
Groans and protests erupt.
Matt: "What, why?"
Foster: "Oh, come on, Coach."
Gavin: "That's bullshit."
Bucky: "What's a grip-and-grin? Sounds like we're supposed to be jerking them off or something."
Coach: "Essentially. Listen, I hate these things, too. But when the provost says jump, the athletic director says how high."
Alec: "But we're the ones doing the jumping."
Coach: "Now you're getting it. These things are all about kissing ass for cash. The university counts on these little dog-and-pony shows to support things like athletics and building you princesses fancy training facilities. So get your suits pressed, comb your hair, for fuck's sake, and be on your best behavior."
Jesse: "Does this mean I'm going to be getting my ass pinched by rich cougars?"
The whole room laughs when Jesse raises his hand to speak.
Jesse: "Because I'm cool with taking on for the team, but my girlfriend is the jealous type and I'm gonna need a note or something on letterhead if she asks me about this."
Bucky: "I'd like to go on record stating I find this premise sexist and exploitative."
In a flat tone that suggests he's well sick of our shit, Coach digs his fingers into his eyes and recites from what I assume is Briar's code of conduct.
Coach: It is university policy that no student shall be required to behave in an unethical or immoral manner, or that which may conflict with their sincerely held religious or spiritual beliefs. The university is an equal opportunity institution based on high academic achievement and does not discriminate on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, economic status, religion or lack thereof, or the temperament of your girlfriend. Satisfied, everyone?"
Bucky: "Thanks, Coach!"
Bucky says with an exaggerated thumb-up. Dude is going to give him an aneurism one of these days.
Hunter: "Con, man, leave the poor girl alone."
Conor: "Get lost, Captain. I'm wooing my woman."
I swallow a laugh.
He winks at me and squeezes my hand in reassurance. Then, to my complete dismay, he drops to his knees. Oh God, everyone who wasn't staring at us before is sure as shit staring at us now.
Conor: "Please, Taylor. I'm begging. Put me out of my misery. I'm ruined without you."
Matty: "What in the actual hell is happening?"
Hunter: "Shut up, Matty. I'm dying to see where this goes.
Conor: "Fair warning, my roommates can be a bit excitable."
Taylor: "Like trying to hump my leg excitable, or easily startled and afraid of loud noises?"
Conor: "A bit of both. Just smack 'em on the nose if they get out of hand."
Conor: "Hey, like my junior high teacher Ms. Dillard always warned, if she catches you writing notes in Geography, she'll read 'em out loud to the whole class."
Taylor: "Ms. Dillard sounds like a sadist. And so are you. What if I'd been texting about my horrible period cramps?"
Next to Alec, Gavin blanches.
Gavin: "Give 'er the phone back, Con. Nothing good could come of this."
Conor: "Could you jackasses try not embarrassing yourselves in front of the company? Sorry, they're not housebroken."
Taylor: "I like 'em."
Matt: "See that, Con. She likes us."
Gavin: "Yeah, so fuck you."
Conor: "You don't think I'm gross. Otherwise you wouldn't be letting me snuggle up in your lap."
Taylor: "This is not considered snuggling."
Conor: "Sure is, T."
Taylor: "Sure isn't, C. And, what, you're saying you're going to abstain from sex for the foreseeable future? Because I don't buy that."
Conor looks aghast
Conor: "Abstain? Hell no. I'm gonna try to seduce you at every turn."
My eyes widen as I watch him change his status to in a relationship.
Taylor: "Hey, I didn't say yes."
Conor: "You basically said yes."
Taylor: "I was at a seventy percent at best."
Conor: "Welp, might as well prance that last thirty, because we're blowing up, babe."
Oh my effing God. The little bubble above the notification icon starts blinking. Ten, twenty, forty.
As I understand it, hockey is basically a bunch of first graders fighting over a little black puck while the referee tries to keep them from killing each other. It's cute.
Conor: "You're getting that outfit."
Taylor: "Yeah, I like this one. With that said, I'm up to my knees in here, you maniacs. Let's try to restrict it to two outfits each, shall we?"
Bucky: "Aww, come on, we haven't even discussed evening wear."
Hunter: "Or scarves. How many scarves do you think you need?"
Foster: "Is statement jeweler something we should be looking at?"
Bucky: "What's your cup size?"
Conor smacks Bucky on the back of the head.
Conor: "You don't get to ask my girlfriend her cup size, dickhead."
Sasha: "Society tells boys to divide and conquer, and tells girls to save ourselves for some younger version of our father. Just doing some quick math in my head and ... yep, that comes out to a bunch of hypocritical bullshit. Your self-worth is not tied up in your vagina or how many girls came before you."
Taylor: "No pun intended."
Conor: "How 'bout a beer?"
He yanks it from my hand and shoves the door closed.
Coach: "Don't be a dumbass tonight, Edwards."
Conor: "I'm twenty-one. You know that."
Coach: "Don't care. Only thing going down your throat is water or juice or my fist."
Conor: "Sounds delicious."
A death glare hits me square in the eye.
Coach: "Edwards. I don't know why I've been cursed with sitting through this dinner with one of you knuckleheads - I assume I ran over a unicorn or set fire to an orphanage in a past life - but if you act like an idiot tonight I'm going to have you doing bag skates every day until graduation."
Taylor: "What is that supposed to be?"
Conor: "A frog."
He admires his genetic abomination, so sweetly proud of the grotesque creature that were it alive it would wheeze in agony before throwing itself in front of a moving car.
Taylor: "It looks like a turd with warts."
Conor: "The fuck, Marsh. You're going to give him a complex."
Taylor: "He needs a good mercy kill, Edwards."
Conor: "I was halfway to Boston and I couldn't get your face out of my head. So I turned around. Couldn't go through with it knowing what I was doing to us. Because the worst thing about all of this, the worst thing I could have possibly done, was lose your respect. Nothing else matters if you hate me."
Taylor: "If that were actually true -"
Conor: "Damn it, T, I'm trying to say I'm in love with you."
I blink and suddenly Conor is yanking off his shirt.
Taylor: "What do you think you're doing?"
He kicks off his shoes.
Taylor: "Stop it."
His socks go next. Then he drops his pants in the middle of my living room and pushes his boxers down his legs.
Taylor: "Conor, put your fucking pants back on."
And yet my eyes can't pry themselves from his dick. It's just so ... there.
Without another word, he strides out the front door.
Taylor: "Get back here, you lunatic."
When I hear his footsteps on the stairs, I grab his discarded clothing and chase after him. But the jackass is fast. I don't catch up to him until he's across the parking lot and standing on the grass that abuts the road.
Conor: "Get your phones out, people. Don't see this everyday."
Taylor: "You've lost your damn mind."
I watch him twirling, gorgeous and ridiculous. He has a body you only see in airbrushed fantasies, but it isn't supposed to be wiggling around on the front lawn.
Taylor: "Oh my God, Conor, stop. Someone's going to call the cops on you."
Conor: "I'll plead temporary insanity due to a broken heart."
A car rolls up, and from the drivers side window Chad Jensen pokes his head out.
Coach: "What the hell are you doing running around with no pants on? Put your damn cock away!"
Conor: "Hey Coach. What's up?"
When he realizes my mother is in the passenger side, he offers a sheepish smile.
Conor: "Doctor Mom, good to see you again."
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