Rusty Nailed (Cocktail #2) by Alice ClaytonRusty Nailed by Alice Clayton
Published June 2014
Series: Cocktail #2
Genres: Contemporary Romance
three-half-stars
Format: eBook
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Playing house was never so much fun—or so confusing. With her boss on her honeymoon, Caroline’s working crazy long hours to keep the interior design company running—especially since she’s also the lead designer for the renovation of a gorgeous old hotel on Sausalito. So with her hotshot photographer boyfriend gallivanting all over the world for his job, she and Simon are heavy-duty into “absence makes the heart grow fonder” mode.

Neither has any complaints about the great reunion sex, though! Then Simon decides he’s tired of so much travelling, and he’s suddenly home more. A lot more. And wanting Caroline home more, too. Though their friends’ romantic lives provide plenty of welcome distraction, eventually Caroline and Simon have to sort their relationship out. Neither wants “out of sight, out of mind,” but can they create their own happy mid-ground cliché?

Caroline and Simon – our beloved Nightie Girl & Wallbanger duo from Book #1 of the Wallbanger series – have been an item for over a year now, and things are going great for the two of them. Simon is often travelling for work, which leaves Caroline enough time for her busy work, for baking and for quality time with her girlfriends. But maybe absence makes the heart grow fonder, and that’s the secret of their relationship?

However, the tables will soon turn; especially when Caroline’s boss Jillian announces she will soon leave for an open-ended honeymoon, leaving Caroline to deal with her business…

Well, as any Alice Clayton book, I enjoyed this one thoroughly. Not only because Caroline and Simon make the most awesome couple (and the best sexy times), but also because their respective friends take up a very important part in the story and they are just as entertaining as Simon and Carolines. And Clive, the house-cat.

There are a few things happening here and there, but nothing mindblowing. I kept reading Rusty Nailed hoping some crazy would happen – something that would really change the course of the book or propel Caroline and Simon to the next level – but nothing really happened.

I don’t know whether this is the last book in the series dedicated solely to Simoline, but if it where, then I would definitely think that this story is lacking closure. Sure, Simoline are on the best way to the “white picket fence” they were both running away from during book #1, but I want to see actual results!

Also, I don’t think there has been much character development. Sure, Caroline has become more mature in learning to deal with a complete business and has learnt to make the right choices in her life (on a personal and on a professional basic) while it has also become clear to Simon that what he has with Caroline is something good and that there is no need to hide it, but I don’t really feel that it goes above and beyond that.
We learn a lot about Caroline, but Simon is kind of left aside and not really “active” in this book (not counting the sexy times of course).

So all in all, this book was really nice to read, but it ended a bit prematurely and I still have the need to read more about Simoline – not because they fascinate me more than any other romantic-couple (which they don’t) – but because this story was a 4-episode marathon of Friends that just dragged along and never really gets to the point.

The one who became boss
The one who went to a school reunion
The one who found a house

Ahem.

(Alice’s words, not mine)