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Review by Sarah Smith
Oh my holy god, this book is AMAZING! I am a huge fan of Rosanna's Handyman Series and absolutely LOVED A Good Man, the first book in this series. I have been waiting on the edge of my seat for book #2, and it was worth the wait because this book delivers. It has a feisty heroine, a sweet and protective hero, and a forced proximity enemies-to-lovers trope that is my personal catnip.
Eli Zorn has a home renovation series with his two other brothers and is the landscaper expert. When they're tasked with demolishing his landscaping mentor's old cabin to build a whole new house, Eli is eager to get to work. But then Bernie comes along and throws a wrench in their plans. She's chained herself to the inside of the house (she's Eli's mentor's niece) in protest of the demo. She will stop at nothing to disrupt her uncle's plans and expose him for the person he really is.
This of course kicks things off in a very unpleasant way for Eli and Bernie. There's conflict from the get-go, but there's also an undeniable attraction between them. Their banter is so cute and funny. I was seriously smiling the whole time I read their conversations.
Eli offers to stay at the cabin to keep an eye on her when filming is disrupted by Bernie's protest--and when a massive thunderstorm comes rolling through (I freaking ADORE when weather forces the love interests to be together!), they start to actually enjoy each other's company. And even though they're on warring sides of this issue, the two of them slowly start to bond and find common ground (the were both bullied as kids, and Rosanna handles this sensitive topic with such respect, I applaud her).
I don't want to give too much away, but the slowburn in this romance is incredible. And their love scenes are off the charts hot. There is a steamy scene involving work boots!! COME ON NOW that's crazy hot.
There is so much heart in this story too. Eli and Bernie have some emotional conversations that bring them closer together. Rosanna Leo always strikes the perfect balance between heart and heat in her books, and this one is no exception.
Highly recommend this romance to anyone who loves slowburn, steam, heart, and enemies to lovers tropes! Do yourself a favor and preorder it NOW!!
Review by Sexy Sirens Book Blog
Simply put, this is an around great contemporary romance in a great series. While it can be read as a stand-alone, if you haven’t read book 1 of the Handymen series (A Good Man), I Strongly Suggest grabbing it up and reading it first as the characters and storyline do overlap and it will make for a much better reading experience.
The author has written a very well written romantic storyline with characters that are down to earth and very believable. In it have the quiet protective Eli and a headstrong stubborn sassy Bernie. They meet when Eli and his brothers show up on a demolition job site and find Bernie chained to a beam inside the home, protesting it being torn down. She is determined to save the only safe haven she knew as a child. While Eli can sympathize with her story, in more ways than one, he has a job to do and the legal rights to do so.
From this point the story took me one heck of an exciting journey. A journey packed with quick witted banter between two characters that have overcome a lot in life. The story is a slow burn romance that will warm your heart and have you rereading it time and time again.
2 Thumbs Up and 5 Stars.
Review by The Smut Report
In this edition of The Handymen, we meet the delectable Eli and the complicated Bernie!
Eli desperately wants to be featured in the top landscaping magazine and follow in his mentor’s footsteps. So when his mentor offers his lakefront property as a feature on their show, Eli and the Handymen snap it up. However, despite the property being legally owned by Eli’s mentor, Peter, Peter’s niece has a strong emotional claim and exposes Peter’s true character. So, if they keep the property on the show, Bernie loses her childhood safe haven–but Eli gets his feature. If they don’t, Bernie still loses the house, but at least everyone feels less slimy. Contracts are contracts though…and it’s kind of a huge mess.
This is a true impossible situation. (If you read any of my posts you’ll know that I LOVE IMPOSSIBLE SITUATIONS.) Plus, these two have truly difficult pasts and they are loaded up with heart-wrenching baggage. But just like the first in this series, you will find that heavy baggage does not mean helpless or powerless.
I love it when a couple faces a problem together, and that’s exactly how this book unfolds. If you struggle with bullying and sexual assault triggers, you might have a hard time at a few points–especially because much like in real life, sometimes there aren’t really neatly-wrapped, happy endings to scarring events. If that’s something you absolutely have to have, you won’t necessarily find it here. But you will find two people who share common wounds and support each other as they find ways to create a new, healthier, stronger, and giving future together.
You might also find Bernie to be a bit of a pot-stirrer, on purpose or inadvertently. I really liked that as a natural counterpoint to Eli’s more charming, chill nature. I found her to be someone who learned how to be unapologetically true to herself no matter what, and her true self happens to be a bit bold and brassy.
All in all, an excellent read.
I voluntarily read and reviewed a complimentary copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Review by Happily Ever After or Bust
I. LOVED. This. Book.
The snark. The tension. The laughter. The *steamy* sex. The healing. Ugh, my heart.
Bernie Nolan is taking back her life. The first step? Stopping at nothing to prevent her uncle and The Handymen crew from demolishing her family's summer home. Including, but not limited to, handcuffing herself to the house and resisting the very sexy middle Zorn brother as he tries his best to convince her to leave. Eli just wants to build his garden. He wasn't looking to get stuck in the middle of his old mentor's family drama. He definitely wasn't looking to feel a pull towards the woman in ponytails and handcuffs in the middle of the floor he's supposed to be demolishing. But the more time Eli and Bernie spend together, the harder it is to resist the attraction between them. Soon Eli has to decide whose side he's on and what - or who - really matters most.
Bernie is the epitome of the prickly heroine. After years of being bullied by her cousin and his friends, Bernie learned to fight at a young age and hasn't stopped since. She isn't about to trust Eli Zorn just because he's always been her favorite Zorn brother and her nickname for him is Panty Melter...or that he's even sexier in person. Bernie fights Eli at every turn, until suddenly she doesn't have to. As Bernie slowly lets Eli in, she'll have to fight against her own fears if she wants to keep him.
Eli is supposed to be the even-tempered Zorn. The negotiator. So why does Bernie push every single one of his buttons - the good and the bad? There's just something about Bernie that he can't stay away from. And when Eli learns Bernie's history, he can't simply push it aside; he knows firsthand the impact bullying can have on your life. Throughout the book, Eli is also forced to confront how his own perceptions of people differ from the experiences of others and reconcile what those differences mean for him and those around him.
Though Rosanna Leo doesn't shy away from heavy topics in An Irresistible Force, she also brings what I've come to recognize as her trademark sense of humor to Eli and Bernie's relationship. They get goofy and laugh and have fun together. Plus I love the playful family dynamic between the Zorn brothers that started in A Good Man and continues into An Irresistible Force!
I could go on, but honestly I'm surprised you're still with me. Especially since you should be off reading this book! Because it's worth it. And there's wall sex. With work boots on...only work boots.
I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.
Review by Behind Closed Doors Book Review
An Irresistible Force is the second book in the Handymen series written by author Rosanna Leo. Each book in this series tells the story of a different couple and can be read as a standalone romance. However, I do recommend reading the books in order. I believe it will give you a better foundation to understand and appreciate this storyline. Just know that it is a suggestion.
An Irresistible Force tells the story of Eli Zorn and Bernadette “Bernie” Nolan. Eli is the landscaper on the home improvement show called Handymen along with his two brothers Michael and Trent. The show’s next episode will be helping Eli’s mentor, Peter Nolan, who is an expert in landscaping. The Handymen are planning on demolishing Peter’s old family cabin and building a new one in its place. The only problem is Peter’s Niece, Bernie. She disagrees with the plan and has pleaded with Peter to not do this. The cabin holds a lot of memories for her, so she decided to handcuff herself inside the cabin.
I really enjoyed the storyline, and I had a hard time putting my book down. It was emotional, heartwarming, and even funny at times. I loved how the author approached the topic of bullying, as well as how Eli and Bernie confronted their past. Oh, and I just loved how the story ended!