All The Books I Can Read

1 girl….2 many books!

Review: It Felt Like A Kiss by Sarra Manning

on December 20, 2017

It Felt Like A Kiss
Sarra Manning
Transworld Digital
2014, 480p
Purchased personal copy

Blurb {from the publisher/}:

Ellie Cohen is living her dream. A great job at an exclusive Mayfair art gallery, loyal mates, loving family, and really, really good hair. Well, there’s the famous rock-star father who refuses to acknowledge her and a succession of ‘challenging’ boyfriends, but nobody’s perfect.

But when a vengeful ex sells Ellie out to the press, she suddenly finds herself fighting to keep her job, her reputation and her sanity. Then David Gold – handsome, charming but ruthlessly ambitious – is sent in to manage the media crisis . . . and Ellie.

David thinks she’s a gold-digger and Ellie thinks he’s a shark in a Savile Row suit, so it’s just as well that falling in love is the last thing on their minds . . .

After listening to You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me by Sarra Manning and loving it recently, I knew I had to read (or listen to) more of her books. This one totally sounded like my kind of story but I listened to the sample after hearing some negative reviews on it and yeah, unfortunately I found the narrator almost impossible to listen to. Her voice was just….not good. So I bought this on iBooks instead to give it a go that way.

Ellie is in her mid-20s and works for an art acquisitions expert. She’s always known growing up who her father was, although there’s never been any contact and neither has it been leaked to the press – until a vindictive ex-boyfriend does a tell-all for a tabloid and Ellie’s life is turned upside down. She’s besieged by packs of paparazzi who stalk her on the street, congregate outside her place of work and her flat, shouting things at her including lewd offers of money for nudes or partially nude photo shoots. It affects every facet of Ellie’s life – her boss wants to sack her for the disruption, everyone who ever knew her is coming out of the woodwork to give lurid quotes that aren’t even true, the public is judging her and worse, her father’s lawyer is gorgeous but thinks she did this for fame and fortune.

Poor Ellie. This book gives a very frank look at just how intrusive paparazzi can be when they’re after a big story. They harass Ellie constantly, following her, trying to get horrid shots of her all the while making her offers to take her clothes off. They’re so insistent, refusing to take her ‘no comment’ for an answer, telling her that she’ll end up doing what they want sooner or later so she may as well just give in now. There’s something a bit gross about a bunch of middle aged men following a woman around – to her work, to her home and then staying there. Ellie just wants it all to go away…..especially seeing as the only person she wants to hear from about this entire mess is pretty much the one person who has been silent.

Ellie and David were perfect in this book. Ellie is pretty shaken but she also wants to live her life – she doesn’t want to hide but she doesn’t want to be harassed either so she has to keep a low profile until it can blow over. David is uptight, ambitious and at first, forms some first impressions of Ellie that aren’t particularly flattering. When they’re forced into close proximity both are forced to reassess their early views of the other and there’s amazing sexual chemistry as well. I really love when two main characters have to spend time together either living together or on the run or whatever for some reason or other and they are forced to get to know each other on a much deeper level. It brings an entirely different level of intimacy because there are things that are learned and shared perhaps even without realising it. And the tension is great between David and Ellie – there’s something really big that stands in the way of them and it makes for some incredible angst.

There’s just something about Sarra Manning books that make me so happy. It’s like she’s tapped into precisely what I love to read about in terms of interactions between two main characters and writes books to my specifications. I love how all the books inhabit the same world – for example, Ellie’s boss is a main character from a previous novel, a lot of the characters are employed at the same magazine, or the magazine is referenced regularly, characters in different books share the same personal trainer, or visit the same bar etc. There’s not a huge amount of interaction but just enough for you to pick up little things or catch a glimpse into the lives of people previously featured. I love that because I always have a bit of a desire for ‘more’ after I finish a book. I want to see a couple in a few years time living their lives. And now because I know this, I will forensically examine every page of Sarra Manning’s novels in order to analyse every random character in case they pop up elsewhere! I still have quite a few books to read but at the moment it feels not enough! I’ve already read another one between finishing this book and writing this review!

I think what I really like is that the characters are all very flawed. Sometimes in romance novels, the flaws are very minor (more quirks than flaws) or non-existent but all of the characters here do and say very stupid, thoughtless, hurtful things, they make mistakes, they have character flaws that feel real and believable and normal. They are self-obsessed, have eating disorders, emotional intimacy issues, control issues, commitment issues, family issues, former addictions and probably other things that I have forgotten. But mostly I think what I love, is the resolution of the conflict. That always makes my heart happy.


Book #199 of 2017


One response to “Review: It Felt Like A Kiss by Sarra Manning

  1. Sounds like a good book. I enjoyed your review.

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