Series: Knitting in the City #6
Author: Penny Reid
Release date: 15 May 2017
Main characters: Marie Harris, journalist and completely disillusioned with dating. Matt Simmons, a brilliant yet socially-awkward professor, who doesn’t seem to know what to make of Marie.
Still smiling, his gaze warm with good feelings as it moved over me, he tucked the box in his bag. “Marie, you are the sine to my cosine.” My eyelashes fluttered and so did my heart, but I managed to tease, “Are you saying we’ll never be on the same wavelength?” He moved his head to the side as though considering my words.
“More like, we complement each other. In basic trigonometry terms, cosine is the sine of the complementary or co-angle.”
“I took trigonometry in high school. All I remember is pi r squared.”
Plot: Marie Harris has been single since her long-term relationship ended. She’s tried the online dating services, but her latest date was the worst – the oddest dude on the planet. When she is asked to co-wrote an article about replacing human relationships with paid services, she’s more than motivated to try. It also allows her to enlist the help of AI scientist, Matt Simmons – the guy who showed up on her last date and who owes her big.
Initially put out that he has to show Marie his work, Prof. Matt Simmons is surprised by how easy it is to interact with her. People don’t often seem to know how to handle his directness and he doesn’t make it easy for them either. Marie takes him at face value and is genuinely interested in his work. Could be he’s found a friend at last…
Why you should read it: This book. This book is good. No, it’s great! This series doesn’t disappoint. I loved Marie and Matt. They’re beautiful characters – truly, the holy grail of characters. I loved Matt’s awkwardness – he’s super smart and also super drole when he’s at ease with someone. Marie is great too – her inner monologue was both hilarious and full of pathos. The misunderstandings between the two of them were realistic and not shoe-horned in to engineer drama. The book was a slow burn (which I love) – the sexual chemistry reached boiling point and then blew up! I finished the book and immediately wanted to re-read it. I actually feel a little bereft right now.
What you may not like: Not a thing, if you’re familiar with Penny Reid and her quirkiness and love it. I literally can’t think of a negative because I loved it so much.
Rating: 5/5 for a smart, (I felt smarter just reading it) sexy as hell story. It’s hopeful, funny and a great chance to check in with the other characters in the series.
Fancy an excerpt? Sure you do…
He was quiet for bit, we both were, and I felt myself relax more and more. His palm took a detour every so often, dutifully skipping my hip and sliding along my side, and then back to my leg. Soon, I was so relaxed I felt drowsy.
I felt fingers in my hair, moving the mass away from my neck with treasuring strokes just before Matt nuzzled the back of my neck, causing goosebumps to scatter over my skin.
“Mmm.” I smiled. “Hey. Jared said no tickling.” My voice sounded sleepy.
“Does this tickle?” Matt asked softly, nuzzling me again. I felt the brush of his lips—not a kiss, a brush—paired with hot breath against the bare skin of my neck and a zing shot straight down my spine, making my toes curl and a sudden hot ache twist in my lower belly.
I knew that ache. I hadn’t felt it because of another person’s touch in quite a long time. Nevertheless, no one ever forgets that ache.
My back arched instinctively, my bottom pressing back against his crotch, and I stiffened. I felt my nipples harden, strain beneath the cotton of my bra. I was now fully awake. No longer drowsy.
Not even a little.
Matt stiffened, too. His movements abruptly ceasing.
“Are you okay? What’s wrong?” he asked, alarm coating his words, and in the next moment his hand was suspended in the air above me. “Did I touch something I shouldn’t?”
I exhaled a short, nervous laugh, gripped by the urge to sit up.
“No. No. You didn’t.” I moved to the edge of the bed, righting myself, away from Matt, needing distance. “I’m good.” I gathered a silent breath and released it slowly because my pulse was racing.
Crap, Marie. Get a grip. It’s Matt Simmons. Professor Matt. The big kid. Why are you reacting this way?
“Did I . . .” These initial words were hesitant, and a moment of silence stretched before he continued, his tone comically teasing as he finished his thought. “Did I arouse you?”
I snorted, shaking my head, laughing at his silly tone. Turning at the waist to peer at him over my shoulder, Matt was grinning at me, twisting a make-believe mustache between his thumb and forefinger.
But then he stopped.
“I did, didn’t I?” he pushed, his hand dropping. He looked pleased, if not a little amazed.
I sighed, feeling a smidge embarrassed, and nodded. “Actually, yes. That’s a sensitive spot for most women.”
“The back of your neck?” He lifted himself to one elbow, his eyes darting to my neck with keen interest.
“My neck in general, actually.”
“Huh.” Matt frowned thoughtfully. “Where else?”
I pressed my lips together and gave him an incredulous look. “I’m not telling you that.”
“What if I needed it for research reasons?”
“What if I told you it was part of our questionnaire?” He tossed his legs over the side of the bed and stood, walking around to my side and offering me his hand. “You should give me a schematic of your body with the erogenous zones circled and rated.”
“Let me guess, you want them rated on a ten-point scale,” I deadpanned as I accepted his hand, stood, and stepped away to gain some distance and straighten my shirt.
He shrugged, crossing his arms, stalking after me. “Or exponential. I was going to say a Likert scale, but a logarithmic scale works, too.”
Chuckling, appreciative of his attempt to diffuse my embarrassment and awkwardness with the joke, I realized Matt Simmons wasn’t a bad guy. He might even be a good guy, just a little . . . peculiar.
And wants to replace romantic relationships with robots. Best not forget that detail.
Yeah, he’d make an interesting friend.
“Thanks.” I gave him a small smile.
“For what?” His eyes moved between mine.
“For the cuddle. Thanks for the cuddle, Matt.”
“Anytime, Marie.” He grinned down at me, his eyes dancing as he leaned forward and whispered, “Anytime.”
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Meet Penny Reid:
Penny Reid is the USA Today Bestselling Author of the Winston Brothers and Knitting in the City series. When she’s not immersed in penning smart romances, Penny works in the biotech industry as a researcher. She’s also a full time mom to three diminutive adults, wife, daughter, knitter, crocheter, sewer, general crafter, and thought ninja.
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