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If I Were You

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Author: Lisa Renee Jones

Published: September 13th 2012 by Lisa Renee Jones (first published August 22nd 2012)

Format: ebook , Second , 384 pages

Isbn: null

Language: English


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How it all started… One day I was a high school teacher on summer break, leading a relatively uneventful but happy life. Or so I told myself. Later, I’d question that, as I would question pretty much everything I knew about me, my relationships, and my desires. It all began when my neighbor thrust a key to a storage unit at me. She’d bought it to make extra money after watc How it all started… One day I was a high school teacher on summer break, leading a relatively uneventful but happy life. Or so I told myself. Later, I’d question that, as I would question pretty much everything I knew about me, my relationships, and my desires. It all began when my neighbor thrust a key to a storage unit at me. She’d bought it to make extra money after watching some storage auction show. Now she was on her way to the airport to elope with a man she barely knew, and she needed me to clear out the unit before the lease expired. Soon, I was standing inside a small room that held the intimate details of another woman’s life, feeling uncomfortable, as if I was invading her privacy. Why had she let these items so neatly packed, possessions that she clearly cared about deeply, be lost at an auction? Driven to find out by some unnamed force, I began to dig, to discover this woman’s life, and yes, read her journals—-dark, erotic journals that I had no business reading. Once I started, I couldn’t stop. I read on obsessively, living out fantasies through her words that I’d never dare experience on my own, compelled by the three men in her life, none of whom had names. I read onward until the last terrifying dark entry left me certain that something had happened to this woman. I had to find her and be sure she was okay. Before long, I was taking her job for the summer at the art gallery, living her life, and she was nowhere to be found. I was becoming someone I didn’t know. I was becoming her. The dark, passion it becomes… Now, I am working at a prestigious gallery, where I have always dreamed of being, and I’ve been delivered to the doorstep of several men, all of which I envision as one I’ve read about in the journal. But there is one man that will call to me, that will awaken me in ways I never believed possible. That man is the ruggedly sexy artist, Chris Merit, who wants to paint me. He is rich and famous, and dark in ways I shouldn’t find intriguing, but I do. I so do. I don’t understand why his dark side appeals to me, but the attraction between us is rich with velvety promises of satisfaction. Chris is dark, and so are his desires, but I cannot turn away. He is damaged beneath his confident good looks and need for control, and in some way, I feel he needs me. I need him. All I know for certain is that he knows me like I don’t even know me, and he says I know him. Still, I keep asking myself — do I know him? Did he know her, the journal writer, and where is she? And why doesn’t it seem to matter anymore? There is just him and me, and the burn for more.

30 review for If I Were You

  1. 5 out of 5

    ~ Becs ~

    5 big shiny stars I’ve read a lot of good books lately and only given them 4 stars. To give a book 5 stars, it’s got to totally consume me, to get deep under my skin and this book definitely did that. I need to feel the intensity of the character’s passion, the ferocity of their feelings and the depths of their despair and it’s all here in this book. It owned me. It would be easy just to sit here and rain down superlatives but I’ll try to be more constructive. The problem with picking up the first 5 big shiny stars I’ve read a lot of good books lately and only given them 4 stars. To give a book 5 stars, it’s got to totally consume me, to get deep under my skin and this book definitely did that. I need to feel the intensity of the character’s passion, the ferocity of their feelings and the depths of their despair and it’s all here in this book. It owned me. It would be easy just to sit here and rain down superlatives but I’ll try to be more constructive. The problem with picking up the first of a trilogy is that you know, if the book is good, that you’re going to be left with questions unanswered and find yourself desperate for more. The book is good. I am desperate for more. All that remains is to wait patiently for the next book and patience is a very overrated virtue. This book is marketed as Fifty Shades of Grey meets Basic Instinct. I definitely see the 50 shades analogy and its similarity to Bared to You but I can’t see the Basic Instinct comparisons yet although I guess they may come in the final novels. Fifty Shades gets such a bad rap among reviewers these days, I really don’t want to put anyone off – this is really very good and it’s a different story and I was enthralled by it from beginning to end so don’t let that comparison put you off. Please give it a chance. The book is written in the first person POV and in the present tense. It’s the style used in 50 Shades and I was at first a little unsettled by this but it didn’t last long and I was soon sucked and the words sailed past as I got absorbed in the story. It actually worked well to differentiate between what is happening now and what has happened in the past as revealed by Rebecca’s journal entries. So, Sara, a school teacher, has found some journals and other items belonging to an Art gallery manager called Rebecca which contains vivid descriptions of her dazzling yet destructive affair with a dominant and controlling man. They’re highly emotive and erotic and Sara decides she must return them to Rebecca. She goes to the art gallery where she works but Rebecca is AWOL and the owner, Mark, offers her a summer job replacing Rebecca after he sees her interacting with prospective clients at the gallery. Sara is an arts graduate and it has always been her ambition to work in the arts field but is she now living Rebecca’s life? Mark, her new boss, is controlling and dominant and Sara feels sure he is the man Rebecca has written about in the journals. She meets Chris Merit, an artist she has admired for years, and their attraction is instant. Quite clearly, Mark and Chris can barely tolerate one another and Chris begins to behave highly territorially towards Sara around Mark. She eventually embarks on a passionate affair with Chris and they certainly set the pages aflame with their first encounter in Christ’s apartment. It was smoking hot! Most of this instalment of the trilogy is given over to the amazingly passionate relationship that develops between Chris and Sara. They’re both from highly privileged backgrounds and both feel damaged by this and agree that their relationship is just sex and nothing more and agree not to discuss their pasts but the intensity of their feelings shocks them both. Chris’s feelings for Sara are threatening his control and that’s not something he wants to give up easily. Sara is teetering on the edge of indecision – she’s taken aback by the intensity of their affair but not 100% sure she can trust him. Their relationship, certainly in the second half of their book, eclipses Rebecca’s storyline but it’s an underlying theme. Where is Rebecca? Who is the unnamed man in her journals? Who is the man watching Sara at Rebecca’s lockup? We’re left with a truly WICKED cliffhanger which has left me salivating for the next instalment in this trilogy. I can’t wait. Lisa – WRITE FASTER!! So, please don’t be put off by the Fifty Shades comparisons – this book is its own story. If you like deeply passionate love stories, darkly enigmatic heroes and an intriguing mystery then you should give this book a go. Thanks go to Jill for the awesome rec! For more of my reviews, please visit my Sinfully Sexy Book Blog

  2. 5 out of 5

    Stacia (the 2010 club)

    Something has happened to Rebecca, and I have to prove it. That's why I'm here. No other reason. That's right, girl. Stick to your guns. Or not. Well, at least you lasted a day or two before you cracked. Way to stay strong. I almost didn't read this book. The summary blurb really made me not want to read this book. 2.5 stars. What is it with everyone these days trying to sell their book as the "next" something? Whether it's the next Harry Potter, the next Hunger Games, etc. Everybody se Something has happened to Rebecca, and I have to prove it. That's why I'm here. No other reason. That's right, girl. Stick to your guns. Or not. Well, at least you lasted a day or two before you cracked. Way to stay strong. I almost didn't read this book. The summary blurb really made me not want to read this book. 2.5 stars. What is it with everyone these days trying to sell their book as the "next" something? Whether it's the next Harry Potter, the next Hunger Games, etc. Everybody seems to want to cash in on being the next big thing by being the next version of the last big thing. Here's the problem I have with this : if the book is TOO much like the book it's being compared to, it's going to be game over for me. I don't want to read a copy of another book, especially if it's going to read like fanfiction of another fanfiction (in case you're the last person on the planet to know this, Fifty was fanfiction). Then on the other side : if the book is NOTHING like the book it's being compared to, then I'm going to wonder why the book was compared in the first place. So, either way, this comparison strategy is something I'm not a fan of. I didn't intially want to read this because it's yet another book being compared to Fifty. Been there, done that, don't really want to be sucked into reading another copy of Fifty again. Yet, here we are. I requested the galley out of morbid curiosity, my friends were reading it, and I said, "aw hell, let's do this..." Yes, I am that easy. Light spoilers ahead. No big reveals, but I will be talking about a few plot issues. The mystery element is what had me curious. I've read my fair share of erotic books (don't ask to see my GR erotic account, you'll be terrified at some of my bizarre choices), yet I don't seem to recall reading anything that tried to sell itself as a mystery within an erotica. It's too bad that the mystery took a backseat to the Chris and Sara drama. First off, I had a hard time understanding why Sara took such an interest in what happened to Rebecca. There wasn't any huge indicator that something horrible had happened. A lot of what she was thinking was a guess. But okay, fine...we'll go with the fact that Sara was so intrigued by the mystery of Rebecca that she not only had the desire, but also the time (so convenient that she happened to be a schoolteacher off for the summer) to go play amateur detective. Unfortunately, there wasn't much digging going on. I guess that's what happens when a hot guy gets in the way and wants to get you naked. All of your plans go right out the window. Now, I can't say that I wouldn't do the same thing in a similar situation, because hot guy plus hot sex is probably more fun than chasing slivers of evidence around. BUT...here's where the Fifty nonsense comes in...she let hot guy push her around, even when she didn't want him to (at least that's what we were hearing in her head - how much she didn't want to give up her control). Can I just say that this must go far beyond grade-A "best sex of your life" sex if after one night, you're letting someone else win the power struggle. Maybe if this had been a dom/sub situation left in the bedroom, it would have been okay. But it wasn't. This was "hey girl, you think you're going to make a decision and I'm going to override you," type of stuff. Never mind that Sara has no clue who the possible culprit in a possible crime is. Obviously, she wasn't suspecting Chris (that was left up to us as the reader to speculate), but since she knows he has ties to the guy who she IS suspecting, she probably should have considered any tie to be a lead. When faced the with the decision to get to know someone who has ties to a potential criminal, you can either : 1. Get naked for the hot artist guy who has control issues. 2. Spend more time getting to know him in a very public setting, before deciding whether or not he is trustworthy. Preferably in a place with cameras, just in case you find out something awkward. Oh wait, but there were cameras. Who knew? Our upstanding man Chris tried to get naughty with Sara in front of some cameras (which she didn't know about) in order to send a message to another male in competition for Sara. You know, the message of the "back off" kind. OH HAI THERE Fifty uh Knight uh Chris. You're a gem. It's so nice to meet a guy who thinks he can claim his prize when he's not even officially with the girl yet. "Are you one of those dark, messed up, arrogant assholes?" "I'm worse." Girl, he's been telling you all along that he's bad news. I get being intrigued by the "dangerous" guy, but you have lost all of your brain cells for not proceeding with at least a little more caution. In another scene he said, "losing control and you taking it from me are two different things. You won't ever take it from me." That right there is a cautionary red flag in my book. The fact that she refers to Chris as her "poor damaged artist" after spending next to no time with him is mind boggling. I half expected her to call him Fifty Shades of Fucked up. So what else ruffled my imaginary feathers? Oh, the usual suspects. References to a person being like a drug addiction and the lovely nickname baby. Because the first 100 times I've seen it before in other books weren't enough. Yay! Come on, you say...there had to be something good, right? There was! Chris was not perfect (aside from the obvious "might be a killer" and stalking aspects). I thought it was awesome that he couldn't cook. I love me some men who can cook, but at least this guy had a flaw outside of being wealthy, artistic and hot as an exploding firecracker. I also did like that there was a mystery element. As stated earlier, I wish there had been more to this, but I did find myself coming up with a few semi-lame theories. Without the mystery element, this would be an extremely weak erotic story with no strong plot to carry anything. Maybe he's right. Maybe I am playing with fire, but I cannot stop myself. Beyond reason, I will push him until he reveals everything. Yep. And that's why I'm going to read book 2. Because pushing might escalate into shoving. Personally, I hope someone goes psycho killer on everyone's ass, but I know it's just wishful thinking on my part. But this isn't supposed to be about me. Rebecca. Remember how this all started. Hopefully, in the next book she'll remember to follow through on this. This book was provided from the publisher through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Candace

    This is a book that I've seen around for a long time. I've wanted to read it, but never got around to it until now. I have to say that it was worth the wait. This story has completely monopolized my thoughts since I started this series. Part romance, part mystery, 'If I Were You' tells the story of a schoolteacher turned investigator by chance. When Sara's best friend, Ella, gifts her the contents of a storage unit that she purchased at an auction, Sara becomes obsessed with finding out what happ This is a book that I've seen around for a long time. I've wanted to read it, but never got around to it until now. I have to say that it was worth the wait. This story has completely monopolized my thoughts since I started this series. Part romance, part mystery, 'If I Were You' tells the story of a schoolteacher turned investigator by chance. When Sara's best friend, Ella, gifts her the contents of a storage unit that she purchased at an auction, Sara becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to the original owner of the belongings. Amongst the belongings, are the personal journals of a woman named Rebecca. She pours her heart out in her journals, revealing her most private desires and chronicling her sexual interactions with an unnamed man she referred to as her master. It is clear that Rebecca came to dread the sexual games she shared with this man and decided to leave him. Then, the trail goes cold. When Sara decides to try and track Rebecca down to return her belongings, she soon finds herself stepping into her shoes. Sara is hired by the domineering Mark to fill in for Rebecca at the art gallery where she worked. While trying to navigate this new and intimidating world of the wealthy elite, Sara begins to question whether or not Rebecca has fallen into harms way and who might be involved. Sara also begins a sexual relationship with the famous artist, Chris Merit. From the start, he makes it clear that he isn't the "happily ever after" type of guy. However, the two grow inexplicably closer and soon boundaries are crossed. Despite the fact that they're both keeping secrets, they cannot seem to stay away from each other. I thoroughly enjoyed this suspenseful story. I'm dying to know what happened to Rebecca and who was involved. This story kept me guessing the entire time. It keeps you hanging, so I'll be continuing the series immediately. The upside of waiting so long is that I won't have to wait for the next book to be released.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Jones

    I'm returning to the Inside Out world with Riptide and Mark Compton in a new seductive erotic mystery: THE BRILLIANCE TRILOGY! Readers will be able to read this series without having read the Inside Out series, but if you've missed Mark, Chris, and Sara, you will be seeing a lot of them in this trilogy! ABOUT BOOK ONE It all started with a note, just a simple note hand written by a woman I didn't know, never even met. But in that note is perhaps every answer to every question I've ever had in my l I'm returning to the Inside Out world with Riptide and Mark Compton in a new seductive erotic mystery: THE BRILLIANCE TRILOGY! Readers will be able to read this series without having read the Inside Out series, but if you've missed Mark, Chris, and Sara, you will be seeing a lot of them in this trilogy! ABOUT BOOK ONE It all started with a note, just a simple note hand written by a woman I didn't know, never even met. But in that note is perhaps every answer to every question I've ever had in my life. And because of that note, I travel thousands of miles. I look for her, but find him. I'm drawn to his passion, his talent, a darkness in him that somehow becomes my light, my life. I know he has secrets. I don't care. Because you see, I have secrets, too. I’m not Aria Alard, daughter to an Italian musician, as he believes. I’m Aria Stradivari, daughter to Alessandro Stradivari, a musician born from the same blood as the man who created the famous Stradivari violin. I am as rare as the mere 650 instruments my ancestors created. Instruments worth millions. 650 masterpieces, the brilliance unmatched. 650 reasons to kill. 650 reasons to hide. One reason to not to: him. BUY A RECKLESS NOTE (book one) Amazon → http://mybook.to/RecklessNote Apple → https://apple.co/37kJZMH Nook → https://bit.ly/2sSxFnU Kobo → https://bit.ly/30KXC54 PRE-ORDER THE REST OF THE SERIES → https://bit.ly/2SdujFA LIMITED EDITION TOTE BAGS & SIGNED BOOKS I have a very limited stock of these amazing Brilliance Trilogy tote bags! You can buy one by itself, or along with a personalized signed copy of A Reckless Note! Check them out here → https://bit.ly/2KD82wm

  5. 4 out of 5

    Shelby *trains flying monkeys*

    DNFing this bitch at 31% I'm looking around for things to clean instead of reading. That's a bad sign. I can't take anymore. Get this: There is something very sexy about a man like Mark Compton in control, but sexy or not, it's also quite uncomfortable for all kinds of reasons I've found better left under the rug. Comfortable is overrated, a voice in the back of my head screams. I want to smack her. Sara friend and neighbor gets into buying up storage buildings. She buys one that has some art wor DNFing this bitch at 31% I'm looking around for things to clean instead of reading. That's a bad sign. I can't take anymore. Get this: There is something very sexy about a man like Mark Compton in control, but sexy or not, it's also quite uncomfortable for all kinds of reasons I've found better left under the rug. Comfortable is overrated, a voice in the back of my head screams. I want to smack her. Sara friend and neighbor gets into buying up storage buildings. She buys one that has some art work and journals of a woman that um are some kinky shit. Well said friend heads off to Paris to marry a dude she just met a couple of months ago and leaves everything in the building to Sara. Sara decides she needs to hunt down Rebecca, the woman in the journals because she is worried about her. She goes to an art opening and is offered a job by the guy that owns the place. Mark Compton. Meanwhile she is making goo-goo eyes at an artist that has work exhibited there. She takes the job thinking she is just doing it to find out what happened to Rebecca. Yeah right. It looks to all appearances that something is funky with the missing girl? I would be freaking the hell out. Not taking her job. I swear I think this bitch should have watched Single White Female a couple more times. I'm not reading the rest of these craps books but I do hope Rebecca comes back and kicks her ass. What happened to the best guys being funny? Making you smile? Being smart? Not this crazy bull shit excuse for men? I did receive an ARC copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Aestas Book Blog

    GAH!!!! NONE OF MY QUESTIONS WERE ANSWERED!!!! and I literally mean none of them *lip quiver* I feel a little cheated... I mean, it was a really good book - it totally hooked me into the story, made me care about the characters, got me all hot and bothered, and filled my mind with approximately 4 bajillion questions and theories and then... left me hanging!!! O_O I don't really know what to say. I feel like I know about as much now as I did at the beginning of the book :| "People aren GAH!!!! NONE OF MY QUESTIONS WERE ANSWERED!!!! and I literally mean none of them *lip quiver* I feel a little cheated... I mean, it was a really good book - it totally hooked me into the story, made me care about the characters, got me all hot and bothered, and filled my mind with approximately 4 bajillion questions and theories and then... left me hanging!!! O_O I don't really know what to say. I feel like I know about as much now as I did at the beginning of the book :| "People arent always what they seem...The art does not always mimic the artist. You never know the real person until you slide beneath their surface." The story follows Sara, a high school teacher whose passion in life is art and ends up getting possession of a storage locker that belongs to a mystery woman named Rebecca, whose journals Sara finds and reads. The journals are erotic and mysterious telling the story of Rebecca's spiral into a relationship with a dangerously sexy and controlling Dom. The story is addictive - draws you RIGHT in. Its a deliciously thrilling and dangerously erotic mystery with a dual storyline going on between the current day life of Sara and the life of Rebecca as read in her journals. These are the beginning lines of the book: "Dangerous. For months I've had dreams and nightmares about how perfectly he personifies the word. Sleep-laden, alternate realities where I can vividly smell hi musky male scent, feel his hard body against mine. Taste the sweet and sensuous flavor of him -- like milk chocolate with its silky demands that I indulge in one more bite. And another. So good I'd forgotten there's a price for overindulgence. And there is a price.... It started out as any other erotic adventure with him. Unpredictable. Exciting. I barely remember how it all went wrong. How it took such a dark turn." See what I mean? You kinda just need to know more! The more Sara discovers about Rebecca, the deeper and darker the mystery gets. New journal entries lead to more questions which in turn lead to a plethora of possibilities. Since the last journal entry was rather ominous, Sara decides to try and find Rebecca, but, having no idea where to start, she goes to the art gallery where Rebecca worked as a starting point. There she meets the gallery manager, Mark Compton, who is sophisticated, powerful, controlling, arrogant, and alluringly sexy who offers her Rebecca's job while she is 'away'. On the same day, Sara also meets one of the famous artists whose work is displayed at the gallery, Chris Merit - he's a rebel, tattooed, doesn't play by the rules, gorgeous, raw, mysterious and with a dark side that he keeps trying to warn her away from. Drawn to him and intrigued by the gallery manager, Sara slips deeper and deeper into Rebecca's world. And the more she is drawn into the mystery of unraveling Rebecca's life, the more her own life starts to entwine with hers. This book was HOT - those journal entries were scorching!! I can see how some people have compared it to Fifty Shades. I wouldn't compare it personally, but it definitely had Fifty-ish vibes in certain places but the story stands completely alone. The relationship that Rebecca talks about in the journals is a BDSM one with some mystery guy. We can suspect who he is, but honestly the evidence could point in any number of directions so we don't really know. And the heroine made some choices and decisions along the way that I didn't fully see as being understandable, so that did disconnect me here and there from the story a little, but I just tried to be understanding and so it wasn't a huge deal but I still did go 'hmmmm' a few times... for example: (view spoiler)[ 1) When her best friend elopes suddenly with two hours warning and goes off to Paris on a honeymoon with a man she has never met and then she doens't hear from her for over a week except for one garbled phone call, personally, I'd be worried, but she didn't seem to think anything of it :S ... 2) I never understood why she would read bits of the journal here and there. If she was so interested in finding Rebecca, why wouldn't she read every work cover to cover right off the bat? ...and finally, 3) I didn't really like how she would get so upset with Chris over pretty much everything. (hide spoiler)] I totally loved the hero (or, rather, one of them? again, I'm not really sure). He had that delicious flawed aspect with just the right amount of mystery to him to make me love him and yet wonder about him. "Be warned, Sara. I'm no saint. If I take you upstairs, I'm going to strip you naked and fuck you the way I've wanted to since the moment we first met." The ending is a HUGE cliffhanger . Literally the story just stops at an "omg" moment... I will say that I've never been fond of cliffhangers and I think I would have been more fine with this one had I had a few more questions answered (or any for that matter). Either way *sigh* yes, I will totally be going on to book 2.... I NEED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS!!!!!! I have a feeling that when all three books are out, these may end up on my favorites list, but for now, I'm just a frustrated mess... *runs off to find herself a guaranteed HEA book* For more of my reviews, visit Aestas Book Blog And come join the Aestas Book Blog Facebook Page

  7. 5 out of 5

    I ♥ Bookie Nookie (bookienookiereviews.blogspot.com)

    ALL I HAVE TO SAY IS 20-FREAKING-13??? THAT SHOULD BE ILLEGAL! If you are my friend it is a prerequisite that you tell me when there is a cliffhanger – I mean a real cliffhanger with no closure and I have to wait 5 flipping months to find out what the heck happens next! GAH! Okay, now that I have my tantrum out of the way I can honestly say IF I WERE YOU was amazing – yes, AMAZING! For all of you who may be avoiding this book because of the FIFTY SHADES OF GREY reference in the book's description ALL I HAVE TO SAY IS 20-FREAKING-13??? THAT SHOULD BE ILLEGAL! If you are my friend it is a prerequisite that you tell me when there is a cliffhanger – I mean a real cliffhanger with no closure and I have to wait 5 flipping months to find out what the heck happens next! GAH! Okay, now that I have my tantrum out of the way I can honestly say IF I WERE YOU was amazing – yes, AMAZING! For all of you who may be avoiding this book because of the FIFTY SHADES OF GREY reference in the book's description, just get that out of your head right now because there really are very few similarities. Well, yes, there is a heroine who is innocent to the world of BDSM and is intrigued by the thought of it. Yes, there is a hot hero who is wealthy and has a big secret, but that’s where I think it ends. Lovers of “FIFTY” will love it and the critics of “FIFTY” who love romantic suspense with BDSM undertones will love it. Meet the mysterious cast of characters: Rebecca Mason is the missing gallery salesperson and author of the erotic journal that initially intrigues Sara about the world of BDSM. Sara McMillan is high school teacher by trade who is also somewhat of an art expert finds herself in “Wonderland” also known as the Allure Art Gallery in a quest to uncover answers to the perplexing disappearance of the journal’s owner, Rebecca. In a fantastic twist of fate, Sara acquires a job at the prestigious gallery, affording her the opportunity to get to know more about Rebecca and her life. As the story unfolds, Sara becomes cognizant of the fact that nothing is as it appears. It seems that everyone she encounters who knew Rebecca adds another level of complexity to her new life and further complicates what was started as a simple inquisition has now turned into something else all together. Mark Compton, sexy gallery owner and über dominant…don’t worry, I’m not giving anything away, because this fact is glaringly obvious from the get-go. There is not much else I can tell you except for he is as enigmatic, if not more so than any of the characters. Chris Merit. Oh boy, Chris Merit…I love him. I loathe him. No, I really love him, but I hate his mood swings, but that is what makes him interesting and real. The accomplished artist is confidently controlled when it comes to just about everything…everything except for Sara. He sets his sights on her right away and his dark and brooding persona draws her into his web. I am not happy at all about the serious cliffhanger, but I am only mad because I am dying to know what happens next. If you love a good mystery that is sexy and exciting, then you have to read this first book in the INSIDE OUT trilogy, IF I WERE YOU – don’t be mad at me when you love it because I warned you the next book isn’t out until February JUNE 2013. Lisa Renee Jones, I beg you to write faster! ✳✳ Reviewed on I ♥ Bookie Nookie Reviews ___________________________________________________ If you like this type of book, you might enjoy one of these groups. Check us out! Menage Readers Erotic Enchants Bookie Nookie's Erotic Lending Group

  8. 4 out of 5

    KatLynne

    5 Big Stars Lisa Renee Jones' If I Were You is the first book in The Inside Out Trilogy. I found it to be extremely suspenseful and captivating, while giving me an incredibly seductive, sexy read! I was enthralled from the very first page! Sara McMillin is a high school teacher on summer break. Art is her true love, but she’s settled for a career that ensures a big enough pay check to make ends meet. Her life is pretty uneventful until her good friend and neighbor, Ella, thrust a key to an abando 5 Big Stars Lisa Renee Jones' If I Were You is the first book in The Inside Out Trilogy. I found it to be extremely suspenseful and captivating, while giving me an incredibly seductive, sexy read! I was enthralled from the very first page! Sara McMillin is a high school teacher on summer break. Art is her true love, but she’s settled for a career that ensures a big enough pay check to make ends meet. Her life is pretty uneventful until her good friend and neighbor, Ella, thrust a key to an abandoned storage unit into her hands and ask her to dispose of the contents. It strikes Sara as odd that anyone would go to the trouble of packing all their possessions away with such care and then completely abandon them. Driven to find this missing woman, Sara becomes absorbed in Rebecca Mason’s dark, erotic journals. They are mesmerizing, filled with Rebecca’s thoughts, her feelings and fears concerning the man or men in her life.Seeking answers, Sara visits the prestigious Art Galley where Rebecca worked. A situation arises and she is given a chance to walk into the world she’d only dreamed about. Taking a summer position leaves Sara feeling alive for the first time in years. I quickly learn Sara is smart, knows her subject matter well and has the kind of backbone I admire in a heroine. Also, there seems to be skeletons in her closet and somewhere in her past she was once broken. This is my first book by this author and it won't be my last. Ms. Jones took me on a journey that is gripping, sensual, and one of the best I’ve read this year. There is secrecy surrounding every aspect of the story, keeping me in suspense and questioning the motives of every man I met. Was the man in Rebecca’s journals Sara’s new boss at the Art Gallery, the sexy, controlling and magnetic Mark Compton? He’s rich, powerful and has the classic good looks women are drawn to. There’s also something raw and sexual about him, almost a predatory feeling. Without a doubt he has that “animal magnetism” that Rebecca referred to in her journals. And what about Chris Merit! This very talented man is dripping sexual charisma. "Unlike Mark, he is not classically good looking, but more raw male hotness." While he is utterly divine, he’s also dark, damaged and surrounded by mystery. The chemistry between Sara and Chris is explosive and soon we have two damaged people together, each struggling with their own ghost from their past and a relationship that is fragile and fraught with many unknown elements. The affair between these two develops rather quickly as they are drawn to each other like magnets. There are scorching hot love scenes with one in particular involving a huge window overlooking the Bay area. It is quite memorable! Just as quickly, the heart becomes involved and I wonder as they get to know each other better, will there be heartache ahead? The ending left me gasping and my head is full of questions. Who is this mystery man Rebecca wrote about in her journals? Is it one man or possibly more? Could it be someone I haven’t met? Is there a rich boyfriend? Or could it be one of the artists whose work is on display? Could it be Mark Compton, or Chris? Is she in danger or just away having the time of her life? If I Were You easily stands on its own merit. There are a few similarities to FSoG, but for me this one is so much better. One of the biggest things they share is the cliffhanger ending. While this is a brilliant marketing device, it’s very detrimental to my well being. I’m a very impatient reader. I want a finale, a finish, a conclusion at the end of a book. I am one of those readers who would have taken the great Charles Dickens’ weekly or monthly installments and saved them all until finished before I commenced reading:) Knowing this ends with a riveting cliffhanger, one that left me breathless, would I recommend reading this book now? Absolutely! I give it a full five stars due to the power this book had on me and my unwillingness to put it down. As the author fed me tidbits of information throughout, I needed more. Hopefully, the second or third installment will reveal my much sought out answers. I know I will read this one again. I also know I will run, jog, drive across town, or simply hit that “one click” button, doing whatever is necessary to ensure the next installment is in my hands the minute it is released. Yes, that's how anxious I am. I must know and I can hardly wait! Thank you to my GR friend, Jill, who recommended this to me! As I've said before, I covet your recs:) The expected release date is August 24, 2012 and I highly recommend this to all those who love a dark, sensual, hot romance surrounded by a mystery that is so intriguing that it easily vied for first place. Book 1: If I Were You - 5/5 Stars Book 2: Being Me Book 3: Revealing Us Thank you Netgalley and Lisa Renee Jones for the chance to read this early. It was awesome!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Debra

    HOLY MOTHER OF CLIFFHANGERS !!! When I finished this story last night (or should I say this morning?) around 3 A.M., I really *really* wanted to go to sleep but I just HAD to start the next book because I was pretty much like this... Yep, that's how desperate I was to find out what would happen next. Other than this being a real page-turner for me, I really enjoyed reading this book! It was captivating, intriguing, seductive and had all the right ingredients to keep me up late at night so I co HOLY MOTHER OF CLIFFHANGERS !!! When I finished this story last night (or should I say this morning?) around 3 A.M., I really *really* wanted to go to sleep but I just HAD to start the next book because I was pretty much like this... Yep, that's how desperate I was to find out what would happen next. Other than this being a real page-turner for me, I really enjoyed reading this book! It was captivating, intriguing, seductive and had all the right ingredients to keep me up late at night so I could finish reading it. Okay, so there were certain similarities to Fifty Shades et cetera, but really, this series is in a class of it's own and it managed to very positively surprise me with it's originality and interesting setting within the world of art. Sara was a very likeable heroine and it was interesting to see how Rebecca's journals kept influencing her life. And then there were the two male main characters, Mark and Chris. Complete opposites but in a way, they were also very similar to each other, with both of them being utterly powerful, controlling and charismatic. One of them seems to be the mystery man in Rebecca's journal and (view spoiler)[I think/hope it's Mark so that Sara gets her HEA with Chris (hide spoiler)] . And in the end, there were so many mysteries left unsolved... "Do you know what happens when you push a dragon? They burn you alive, baby. You're playing with fire." To be continued... 4.5 STARS

  10. 4 out of 5

    Tough Critic Book Reviews

    The next "it" book. I'm pretty sure amazeballs just exploded amazejuices all over the pages! At first I had a big OS moment, thinking I had been seduced by yet another synopsis. I just couldn't get into the first couple of chapters. But by chapter 5, it got into me. It got into me fast...hard! I'm so glad I didn't give up on this book. I'm giving this book a standing "O" (it's only fair that I return the favor). OH! OH! OH. MY. GOD! I've been seduced by something dark, thrilling and totally addict The next "it" book. I'm pretty sure amazeballs just exploded amazejuices all over the pages! At first I had a big OS moment, thinking I had been seduced by yet another synopsis. I just couldn't get into the first couple of chapters. But by chapter 5, it got into me. It got into me fast...hard! I'm so glad I didn't give up on this book. I'm giving this book a standing "O" (it's only fair that I return the favor). OH! OH! OH. MY. GOD! I've been seduced by something dark, thrilling and totally addictive! A few of the reviews suggest that this is a Fifty Shades mini-me (insert bullshit sneeze here). You can't say that every book that contains a little kinky fuckery is doing it Fifty Shades style! It had its own way of doing "it". The plot is totally fuckable original. If I Were You just barely scratches the surface of what I know is to come. It was word lubricant getting me primed and ready for something big, something huge!!! Something thrilling! You don't know if you want to scream, YES...NO...NOW! It blurs the line, seduces the soul, and leaves you begging for more! READ ON! Reviewed at http://toughcriticbookreviews.blogspo...

  11. 4 out of 5

    Fathima

    WHAT IN THE FUCKING CAPITAL !!!!!! THATS NOT HOW YOU END A BOOK AND LEAVE THE READER HANGING LIKE THAT !!!! ITS LIKE BEING DENIED AN ORGASM AFTER YOU'VE COME SOOO CLOSE TO IT ! I need to get my shit together , its late and I'm gonna get me some sleep , If possible EDIT : 08/26/2012 Cue * Nine Inch Nails - Me I'm not * OH HOLY MOTHER OF ALL THINGS SANE AND INSANE !!!I'M IN LOVE WITH THIS BOOK .... THE STORY : Sara McMillan is a boring high school English teacher . That is , until WHAT IN THE FUCKING CAPITAL !!!!!! THATS NOT HOW YOU END A BOOK AND LEAVE THE READER HANGING LIKE THAT !!!! ITS LIKE BEING DENIED AN ORGASM AFTER YOU'VE COME SOOO CLOSE TO IT ! I need to get my shit together , its late and I'm gonna get me some sleep , If possible EDIT : 08/26/2012 Cue * Nine Inch Nails - Me I'm not * OH HOLY MOTHER OF ALL THINGS SANE AND INSANE !!!I'M IN LOVE WITH THIS BOOK .... THE STORY : Sara McMillan is a boring high school English teacher . That is , until she finds the journal of Rebecca Mason . Life takes an unexpecting turn for Sarah , when she decides to find out , Who and where the hell is Rebecca Mason ??? You see , Rebecca's journal is no ordinary 'I got up today , went out , had fun , worked , ate , came back home and slept ' journal . Its her account of a time spent with a man who promises her pleasure through pain . Rebecca's journal becomes Sarah's choice of poison as she starts seeing things from her point of view and starts living her life by walking in her shoes .. not literally people by getting a job in the same art gallery where Rebecca used to or still works. Its here where the book starts going through this unforeseen twists and turns that are enough to keep you turning the pages and gobbling it all up till you reach the very end . THE SETTING : This book finds its base in San Francisco , amongst the rich and highly famous . Art , wine , fun and everything nice easily available to those who need it . THE CHARACTERS : Saran McMillan : Sarah , like I mentioned earlier , is a school teacher who has given up on her dreams just to get her bills paid .. her words , not mine . Sarah as a character is someone who you could easily associalte with . She has dreams , aspirations to become something in the field of her interest , ART . An interest or passion that she had to give up on when life hit her hard and bad . On the surface she at most of the time appears to be someone calm , but in reality she is all but a whirlwind of emotions . She masks her fulfillement of dreams behind the 'I need to know what happened to Rebecca Mason' facade . Dont get me wrong , its not she's the bad guy here , but she's clever . She has an undying curiousity that makes her the target of all things dark and dangerous . Her thoughts merged with Rebecca's journal definitely had me thinking that I'm the one going through all stuffs happening in this book . Chris Merit : Ah yes , the famously infamous Chris Merit , painter/artist extraordinaire . Dark , edgy , dangerous , conflicting , scrumptiously sexy , tattooed , hot , alpha-ish , funny , complicated Chris had me drolling for the the most part . Oh lord , the things I'd do to this man if I ever find him * Ahem ahem * ... moving on The man is just too hot to handle yet too broken and damaged . A man who believes its important for one to control over things in life , yet enjoys every moment . A man who lives to break rules , a smart ass with a smart mouth and fingers * le sigh * So in love with him , I'd marry him and have his babies Mark Compton : Ugggh , say what you will but I dont like him at all .. Owner and manager of the art gallery where Rebecca and now Sarah work . He may be sexy as hell or whateva but he seems like a guy too full of himself . Sexy , commanding , dressed to kill , bossy , raw and everything carnal this man is what woman and girls should stay away from . Atleast I would or maybe not THE ROMANCE SEX : Boy oh boy , the sex in this book is definitely off the charts hot and steamy . I mean c'mon with a guy like Chris Merit in da house what did you expect !!! Sarah , Chris and their insanely hot sex-to-survive routine had me going gaga over them . This book is an excellent combination of hot and heavy romance , sexy characters and a mystery deeper than the depths of the ocean . No one is who they seem and everyone's keeping secrets they dare not talk about . With a cliffhanger enough to make you go insane , this one's a must read for me . Highly Intense , Highly mysterious and awesomely sexy , If I were you is definitely the next 'IT' book that will leave you panting for more !!!!

  12. 5 out of 5

    R.E. Hunter

    This book. THIS BOOK!!! That's it. That's my review. I can't form coherent thought. All I can do is think of a ridiculous string of profanities that I want to yell while jumping up and down and running around in a circle waving my arms like wacky inflatable arm flailing tube man! If I Were You was effing amazing. AH-MAAAAAZING! I know there are people comparing it to Fifty Shades and I can see the similarities, what with all the HOT SEX, but really, this story is completely different and I loved This book. THIS BOOK!!! That's it. That's my review. I can't form coherent thought. All I can do is think of a ridiculous string of profanities that I want to yell while jumping up and down and running around in a circle waving my arms like wacky inflatable arm flailing tube man! If I Were You was effing amazing. AH-MAAAAAZING! I know there are people comparing it to Fifty Shades and I can see the similarities, what with all the HOT SEX, but really, this story is completely different and I loved every second of it.  It's a slow build. Sara finds these amazingly erotic journals and is determined to find the woman they belong to and make sure she's okay. You will be right there with her, questioning and wondering who the dominating man in the journals is. But as the story progresses, she loses herself in this woman's world and gets caught up in the absolute pure, unadulterated sex that is Chris Merit. There are no words for this man. I love him, I love him and Sara together. Just LOVE! And believe me, you will get caught up right along with Sara. I tore through this book in one day. I just couldn't get enough. So much so that I completely lost track of the page count and then BAM! The story ends and I'm left trying to pick my jaw up off the floor wondering if that just happened. Did the author really just do that to me?!?! This book is definitely cliffy! But oh it is so so soooooo worth it. A book hasn't gotten under my skin like this in a long time. I can't stop thinking about it. I might have to go back and read it again right away. But I have a feeling that this is only the beginning... If I Were You is just a preview of the awesomeness that is to come in this trilogy and I can NOT wait!!! 9/11/12 Edit I just happened to come across this picture and all I could think of was ::sigh:: Chris Merit. YES, I'm still thinking about this book almost two weeks later! So here is my Chris Merit <3 More reviews at thebooklistreviews.blogspot.com

  13. 5 out of 5

    Lana ❇✾DG Romance❇✾

    4 Erotically Suspenseful Stars Everything I do is calculated and with purpose. You'll learn that sooner of later. If I had read this book when it first came out a couple years ago, it would have easily been 5 stars. Having had quite a few books in this genre under my belt, I can't say that it was an all encompassing 5 star read, but it was definitely a very strong 4 stars. I loved the combination of suspense, romance, and mystery here. I can tell you I was definitely hooked from the fi 4 Erotically Suspenseful Stars Everything I do is calculated and with purpose. You'll learn that sooner of later. If I had read this book when it first came out a couple years ago, it would have easily been 5 stars. Having had quite a few books in this genre under my belt, I can't say that it was an all encompassing 5 star read, but it was definitely a very strong 4 stars. I loved the combination of suspense, romance, and mystery here. I can tell you I was definitely hooked from the first few pages. It all starts with a diary... Art major at heart but high school teacher by day Sara leads an ordinary life or less. But then everything takes a dramatic turn with a few stolen glimpses of a very erotic journal. After her friend purchases a storage unit that has among its contents, journals. But these are not ordinary journals. These are the journals of one woman's erotically gripping journey with a man that equal parts terrifies and draws her to him like a magnet. After reading page after page, Sara finds herself not only gripped by every word and experience of the journal's owner, Rebecca, but she feels compelled to find out what happened to her. She doesn't believe a woman would just dissapear and leave such personal items behind. Something must have happened to her, right? This is how she finds herself standing inside a gallery where Rebecca works and face to face with it's enigmatic owner, Mark. But it's another man entirely that captures her attention irrevocably; Chris Merit, playboy and renowned painter. Within every wall lies a mystery and every word written and said brings questions. Sara soon begins to question everything as her life spirals more and more into a dark pleasure she has never before experienced. She knows that Mark is hiding something, but what? And Chris is certainly not at all what he seems to be either. But will her quest for answers lead her to a danger that she doesn't see coming? I definitely enjoyed this book, but it really left me with more questions than answers. I've very glad that I waited to read when all the books have been released, because that cliffy at the end would have made me stabby kind of angry. As it was, I'm very curious to see how it all ends and the secrets all revealed. I was glad that Sara wasn't the typical virgin ingenue that I find in my books lately. Chris was the character that really stole the show for me. Still waters run deep with that one, and you can definitely tell that he hides some dark secrets and I for one can't wait to find out what they are. I was also very intrigued with Mark and the history that he so obviously has with Chris. Jumping straight into book 2 now and hopefully getting some answers soon. **ARC gifted to Dirty Girl Romance blog in exchange for an honest review** For more reviews visit

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jill

    3.5 stars Sara McMillan becomes enthralled reading a stranger's journal that her neighbour got from a storage sale. The journal belongs to Rebecca Mason and details Rebecca's pull into a darkly erotic and possibly dangerous relationship. Deciding that her possessions and journals should be returned, Sara tries to track down the missing Rebecca. She finds out that Rebecca works for Allure Art Gallery, San Francisco's largest and most prestigious gallery. But when told that Rebecca is on leave, Sar 3.5 stars Sara McMillan becomes enthralled reading a stranger's journal that her neighbour got from a storage sale. The journal belongs to Rebecca Mason and details Rebecca's pull into a darkly erotic and possibly dangerous relationship. Deciding that her possessions and journals should be returned, Sara tries to track down the missing Rebecca. She finds out that Rebecca works for Allure Art Gallery, San Francisco's largest and most prestigious gallery. But when told that Rebecca is on leave, Sara a high school teacher, offers to fill in at the gallery over her summer break. Since Sara loves art, has an Art degree and has interned at an Art Museum, she's hired. Working at Rebecca's job, Sara may be able to find out more about Rebecca and where she is. Chris Merit is an artist whose work is displayed at Allure. Soon Sara is drawn into a relationship with the artsy rebel, who hints at a dark and twisted past. But she also attracts the attention of Mark Compton, Allure's manager. Both these men are attractive, successful and hiding secrets. This is the first in the Inside Out Trilogy, a combination of romance, erotic themes and mystery. If I Were You has a lot going for it, but by far the mystery was the real drawcard for me. The journals were written with just the right amount of intrigue, suspense and eroticism that had me wanting to know more of this mystery woman, Rebecca Mason. The romance between Sara and Chris didn't work as well. As in a number of romances, I really couldn't see why Chris (who can have his pick of any woman in the world), chooses Sara specifically. Their relationship felt rather abrupt and quick. The 'dark' part of the hero did feel a little contrived, often talking about his dark side, without ever giving any real indication, until near the end of the story where a piece of his disturbing past is revealed. I'm surprised that If I Were You is promoted as Fifty Shades of Grey meets Basic Instinct. Though I've not read FSoG I know enough about it and I couldn't really see the connection, nor with Basic Instinct. However, the author must know what she's doing and perhaps this comes into play more in the next books. Comparing If I Were You to FSoG though could also be seen as a bit dicey and a turnoff for a number of readers. If I Were You is much more akin to Bared to You (Bared to You) meets Scandalous (Scandalous). Where this book has the advantage is in the gripping mystery woven into the story. The journal entries are dark, edgy and hints at some kink and possible danger that Rebecca may have gotten into. Readers are left with some burning questions at the end of this book. Who really is Rebecca Mason, the writer of the journals? Where is she now? Is she really missing? Is her non-appearance (or disappearance) suspicious? Who is the man she refers to in her journals? Could it be Mark? Chris even? Or is it someone else altogether? This was a very difficult novel to rate as certain aspects worked very well, others didn't. So if I could divvy if up like this - Mystery 4.5/5 Sex scenes 4/5 Writing 3.5/5 Plot 3.5/5 Characterisations 3.5/5 Hero/heroine 3.5/5 Romance 2/5 Overall, I'd give it 3.5 stars. I'd recommend it to readers of erotic contemporary romance, readers who enjoyed Bared to You and possibly those who enjoyed FSoG. Kudos Ms Jones for drawing me into this mystery so deftly that despite my lack of enthusiasm for the actual romance, I did find the mystery compelling and enough to draw me into the next book to find out more about Rebecca Mason. Steam: 3.5 ARC courtesy of Lisa Renee Jones via NetGalley

  15. 4 out of 5

    Penny

    If I Were You for me is a book that pretends to be something it is not, it pretends to have a wow factor, when in actuality it doesn't have it. There are many places where this book when wrong for me: - I didn't like the female main character, I found her incoherent and painstakingly easily manipulated. - The story dragged for me, so I started to lose interest and it became a little tedious. - There is no real advance in the plot, is somewhat static, contradictory and deceitful as it might look If I Were You for me is a book that pretends to be something it is not, it pretends to have a wow factor, when in actuality it doesn't have it. There are many places where this book when wrong for me: - I didn't like the female main character, I found her incoherent and painstakingly easily manipulated. - The story dragged for me, so I started to lose interest and it became a little tedious. - There is no real advance in the plot, is somewhat static, contradictory and deceitful as it might look like the story is progressing when it really isn't. - There is predictability to the way it ended; also, there is no real closure which obviously causes people to immediately want to get their hands on the second installment; but for me it just wasn't satisfactory or fulfilling. - The romance part of the book was a huge miss for me too, there was no love here, and since love is such an essential element for me, this lack evidently also influenced my bad rating. That’s just my opinion, I do realize that I am in the minority.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lady Gabriella of Awesomeness (SLOW)

    I know I'm going one amongst the minority when I say this ! But I honestly can't STAND to read another word from this predictable 'mystery-slash-good old erotica' novel anymore :P No seriously, you're going to have to shoot me.In fact I freakin insist. Honestly, I think I'm quite done with reading books with the exact same concepts. One damaged billionaire? Check. ! An Art Freakin gallery ? Check ! One annoying sex crazy YET virginal heroine.....? Double Check !! To me, this book was nothing but anot I know I'm going one amongst the minority when I say this ! But I honestly can't STAND to read another word from this predictable 'mystery-slash-good old erotica' novel anymore :P No seriously, you're going to have to shoot me.In fact I freakin insist. Honestly, I think I'm quite done with reading books with the exact same concepts. One damaged billionaire? Check. ! An Art Freakin gallery ? Check ! One annoying sex crazy YET virginal heroine.....? Double Check !! To me, this book was nothing but another sad attempt to recreate BDSM hits, '50 shades' or 'Knight' or 'The Blackstone' affair series....or...or....or.....' . :P LOL. Take your pick. Honestly I can't give you a reason on why I even bothered to finish it to its boring end when from the very beginning I found myself unable to connect with the lead characters or the story's 'mysterious marketing manager-Rebecca'. Or ANY other character at all..*shrugs* Besides that,there was defiantly something about the writing style that I just wasn't comfortable with. To me,this book was a lost case from the very beginning. If I was a person that DNF-ed a book,I would have.But since I'm not,I just stuck my butt down and finished it...so I guess thats unlucky me ! ... I really cant seem to pin-point where this book went wrong for me...it just did.And now all that's left here in the end, is my one big frowney face and hours and hours of my precious reading time,wasted.....And I think by the end of all this blabbering, you can pretty much guess ,how really happy I am right now :/ BECAUSE GOD HELP ME ,I DIDN'T UNDERSTAND ANYTHING FROM THIS BOOK.... So yea...if ur waiting for a recommendation ,dont bother, I ain't giving this one, but honestly this whole review is solely based on MY OWN opinion, so with all that 5 stars AND 1 star reviews out there, I honestly can't say predicate which side of the bridge you might actually end up swinging... All the very best to all my GR buddies that decide to pick this book anyway....for your sake ,I really do hope u end up loving it anyway...but beware my darlings...THERE'S A CLIFFHANGER AHEAD ! ;D Happy reading ;) Adios !

  17. 4 out of 5

    Tessamari ♥Many Waters...♥ ~ Sweet Spot Book Blog

    A Strong 4.5 Stars He shoved me against the wall and then tore down my panties. His lips pressed close to my ear, his breath hot on my neck, as he said, ‘you know the rules, you know I have to punish you.’ **Fans self** Holy hell. This book exceeded my expectations. The storyline was unique for it was two stories woven into one. We have Rebecca’s journals, which are the catalyst for the whole thing, and then there’s Sara’s side. Aside from Rebecca’s journal entries, this tale is told in Sara’s A Strong 4.5 Stars He shoved me against the wall and then tore down my panties. His lips pressed close to my ear, his breath hot on my neck, as he said, ‘you know the rules, you know I have to punish you.’ **Fans self** Holy hell. This book exceeded my expectations. The storyline was unique for it was two stories woven into one. We have Rebecca’s journals, which are the catalyst for the whole thing, and then there’s Sara’s side. Aside from Rebecca’s journal entries, this tale is told in Sara’s POV. Sara’s meek little life as a school teacher is about to change when she finds Rebecca’s journals from an abandoned storage unit that her neighbor, Ella, purchases for profit. The journal entries immediately draw Sara’s attention. The entries are filled with Rebecca’s mysterious erotic love life. They are very personal and very private. Why would Rebecca just leave these lying around? Did something happen to her? These are the questions that drive Sara to look for her. Following a small amount of clues that she gathers leads her to the Allure Gallery, where Rebecca was last known to work. What she didn’t expect was to be hired as Rebecca’s fill in after she encounters the Gallery’s manager at a function. Sara has always dreamed of working in the Art Industry. This is perfect way to not only make her dream a reality, but to also learn more about Rebecca. While at the Gallery, she meets the most interesting people, particularly Mark Compton, her manger, and Chris Merit, a well known artist. Both men are sexy as sin, but are opposite in many ways. Mark is dominating, intimidating, curt and demanding. He’s got this dangerous air about him, but oh is he alluring. Is he the mystery man mentioned in Rebecca’s story? He certainly fits the bill. “Nothing has changed, Sara. I’m still not the guy who’ll give you a white picket fence.” ~ Chris Merit Then there’s Chris. Sara and he instantly hit it off. Chris is controlling, but in an extremely sexy, panty dropping way. He’s charming, and even though he’s a rich and famous artist, he’s very humble. Sara, as well as myself, fell head over heels in lust for this man. He seems to be very protective of Sara when it comes to Mark. Chris certainly has a way of marking his territory when it comes to her. Chris and Sara ultimately begin a torrid sexual relationship. Their chemistry was off the charts. Holy hell, it’s HOT. However, is their relationship purely sexual or is there something else brewing between them? Can Sara trust him? In regards to its similarities to Fifty Shades, I don’t really know what to say. Yes, Chris & Mark are Doms. Yes, the heroine has moments of clumsiness and she definitely doesn’t believe the effect she has on her male counterparts. Yes, the setting in San Francisco adds a little bit of an allure and mystery to the story. And a big YES: The sex scenes are unforgettable and blisteringly hot. But aside from that, that’s it. At least that’s all I could find. Or maybe I was just too busy enjoying the story itself to even care to look for similarities. I don’t know. I don’t care. I absolutely loved it. This first story in the trilogy left you with a huge cliffhanger and multiple questions that have yet to be answered: What happened to Rebecca? Who is the mystery man mentioned in her journals? Where is Ella? (Something about her jetting off like that didn’t sit right with me). Who was the creep at the storage facility? Is Chris going to ultimately push Sara away because he isn’t relationship material? Gahhhh! There are so many freaking unanswered questions, I can go on and on about it. To say I want the next book now is an understatement. Thank you Lisa Renee Jones and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review this book :)

  18. 4 out of 5

    Rebecca

    I don't want to be a grumpy reviewer but it's happening. SPOILERS in this review. I don't know how to review it. I'm gonna sliiightly rant I think but I don't know. I didn't hate it. I liked the story, I just felt that it was abandoned about halfway through because Sara got distracted by the pretty Mr Merit. I'm a bit like, huh? I hate stupid characters. Sara in particular drove me insane. So Sara finds some journals, and they belong to Rebecca- a woman she has no knowledge about apart from what sh I don't want to be a grumpy reviewer but it's happening. SPOILERS in this review. I don't know how to review it. I'm gonna sliiightly rant I think but I don't know. I didn't hate it. I liked the story, I just felt that it was abandoned about halfway through because Sara got distracted by the pretty Mr Merit. I'm a bit like, huh? I hate stupid characters. Sara in particular drove me insane. So Sara finds some journals, and they belong to Rebecca- a woman she has no knowledge about apart from what she has read in the journals. Sara then goes in search of Rebecca because she is worried about what happened to her........Now. I don't know how I felt about this, she is a teacher and has the summer off. Finds some journals, then goes on some humanitarian mission to find out what happened to her. Random... BUT at this point in the book, I didn't care. I was intrigued enough to continue despite feeling Sara was being stupid. She discovers she works in an art gallery and gets offered a job (Lucky Sara!!) Naturally owner boss guy is hot and dominant and silently demands she drinks the coffee he made, which she does because y'know.... she wants to please and seek his approval even though she knows she shouldn't because she is a STRONG WOMAN, dammit -_- THEN comes another hot guy in the form of one of her favourite artists!!!! Who also has an inexplicable interest in the new girl. A guy who is one of them annoying as fuh martyrs being all..... "Oooh I'm a bad man, you should stay away from me" Then "Come away with me for the weekend, I can't be without you" Then "I'm a jerk, stay away from me. You deserve better" Then "I've never felt this way before, let me stay with you, I miss you" This is basically Chris throughout the book. Who I liked in the beginning!!! But the plot just basically got left behind whilst Chris and Sara were having all the sex. And Sara! Well done for resisting so much, you waited like....what...a few days? Before you forgot alllllllll about Rebecca and starting thinking with you slutty brain. Turns out all woman need is a pretty face to forget all there troubles. She is even toying with the idea that these men had something to do with her disappearance....I'm sorry, what book? So she is SO SCARED for this stranger she MUST go and check up on her but then once she is there, the job offer and pretty men take over everything. It's ok Sara, I'm sure we would all ignore everything else if we were basically controlled by strangers....even though you are aware/annoyed by it, you still do it. Good one mate. Bleugh, annoying. The writing wasn't my favourite kind either. "Air crackling between us" and things like that get annoying after a while. I know they want each other. I'm not gonna detail everything that annoyed me because to be honest I could do a chapter by chapter blow of Things That Irritated Bec. Hmmmm. no, I don't know. I'm mad because I liked the mystery element and wanted more from that. So I will be going straight into book 2 but God Damn there better be a plot.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Elyse Walters

    I just finished the audiobook...( the last little bit on my drive down to Carmel today) Thanksgiving Day. I LIKED THIS BOOK MUCH MORE THAN I EXPECTED!! why?? ... 1) I loved the intimacy of the 3 main characters *voices*! 2) I could visualize SF .. The streets - the dance clubs - the dancing - the girls living conditions 3) I liked their 3 very different personalities - and their friendships - hardships - challenges -

  20. 4 out of 5

    Christy

    Books should not be able to end that way... I hate cliff hangers when I know I have to wait months to find out what happens! This book left you with so many questions. It was great though, captivating story. I just loved Chris, can't wait for the next one... come on February!

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tee loves Kyle Jacobson

    ***THIS IS AN ADULT BOOK, 18 YEARS OR OLDER. CONTAINS MATERIAL NOT SUITABLE FOR YOUNG ADULTS*** OH MY FLIPPING GOD!!!!!!!!!! THIS BOOK IS SO MUCH MORE THAN FIFTY SHADES AND BASIC INSTINCT. Man where to begin with this review. I have read a lot of erotica and adult books lately but I have to say That Lisa has added some things to her story that stands out among the rest. I did not feel like I reading about Fifty and I sure as hell did not thing basic instincts because this story really has so many ***THIS IS AN ADULT BOOK, 18 YEARS OR OLDER. CONTAINS MATERIAL NOT SUITABLE FOR YOUNG ADULTS*** OH MY FLIPPING GOD!!!!!!!!!! THIS BOOK IS SO MUCH MORE THAN FIFTY SHADES AND BASIC INSTINCT. Man where to begin with this review. I have read a lot of erotica and adult books lately but I have to say That Lisa has added some things to her story that stands out among the rest. I did not feel like I reading about Fifty and I sure as hell did not thing basic instincts because this story really has so many dimensions to it I could not get my head wrapped around it. First the characters are so different from any I have read about. I know a lot of people have said no one can fall in love that fast, well to them I say they may not but other people do and it is reality. I have done some research into the BDSM world and I have talked to people who are in it and I can see the pull towards it and I can see how people fall in love so fast because it is like a drug and the adrenaline rush you get from it is like no other. To them it is like para gliding or bungee jumping the adrenaline brings you places you have never been before and before you realize it you are hooked and can't remember how it has happened. So now that I have bored you with a little back ground I will get to the real deal and this the story. Sara is a school teacher that is on summer vacation. She is looking forward to spending some quality time reading and enjoying her summer of tutoring students. One night her neighbor is over watching TV and enjoying Sara's company when her boyfriend calls her to go over to his house. The neighbor leaves and forgets her journal and Sara being curious reads it and is shocked to read what is in it. The next day the neighbor comes back to make sure she has not lost the journal and Sara is embarrassed because she read the journal. That is when her neighbor tells her it is not hers but it belongs to the woman who left her stuff in storage and is selling it. The neighbor is so excited about the paintings and the other journals and Sara tells her she can't sell someones private things.Her neighbor tells her she will make a lot of money by selling this things and has no intention on keeping them. Sara is so shocked by this but what can she do. Then the neighbor comes and tells her the next morning she is eloping with her boyfriend and she is on her way to Paris and Sara can have the storage unit and sell it or whatever but it is her's to keep. Sara is excited because she really enjoyed the journals. They were dark and dirty and there is something in those journals that call to Sara. She decides from that moment on she will find this Rebecca and return her things to her. Sara's first stop is trying to find out information on Rebecca and when she starts to dig in the storage unit she finds a brochure for the gallery she worked at. Sara is excited because she loves art and majored in it in college. Sara goes home and looks up information about the gallery and decides she will go to a unveiling of a famous painter that she loves for a charity. While there she meets this guy who she is so taken with. Their is something about this guy and he is so knowledgeable about art that they talk and before you know it they are talking about different artists. As Sara is looking for the Art gallery owner he finds her and they talk about Rebecca which he says she is on an extended vacation but Sara is not buying it. Then the oddest thing happens and Sara ends up selling a painting to a couple looking to buy a piece for their main party room. The owner of gallery is impressed by Sara and asks her if she would like to work for him and she agrees. See Sara has a secret that she is keeping and that is she has always wanted to work in the art industry but it does not pay the bills. So she has stayed away from it and became a teacher instead. She is not happy being a teacher because her passion is in the art world where Mark the gallery owner has offered her a great summer. After agreeing to work for him and start that Monday Mark asks her if Chris Merit who is one of her favorite artists she studied in school proud of her for selling his painting. She has no idea what Mark is talking about and he realizes that Chris never told her who he was. The guy she was talking to the whole time was Chris Merit and she never knew it. Sara will soon learn that their are lots of lies and secrets shrouded in the disappearance of Rebecca. As she reads the journals and delves deeper into the life Rebecca had she will find out Rebecca was a tortured soul and did things in the name of love. She allowed her heart to rule instead of her mind and her instincts. She should have followed her instincts because some things are better left alone. Will Sara follow the same path as Rebecca or will she carve her own path? Will she be forced to face her own demons? Will Sara's past come back to haunt her? Will she be caught up in a love triangle? Or will she chose Mark or Chris? As Sara will soon find out everyone has a past and the past can be a dangerous thing. Will she succumb to lust? Will she giver herself to a broken damaged man? This is such a must read for this summer I am going to re-read it a thousand times! I love the story line and the ending is OMG! I have no words for the ending except I NEED BOOK TWO RIGHT NOW!!!!!! PRONTO!!!!!!!!

  22. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth (Liz)

    Review posted at: Swept Away By Romance If I Were You is the first in a seductively mysterious new trilogy by author Lisa Renee Jones. This story had me intrigued at the first page and absolutely hooked by the third! Sara McMillan is a highschool teacher on summer break. Like many with an advanced education in the arts, she was forced to give up her dream of a career in the art field in order to make a living wage. While she enjoys teaching, it has never replaced her passion for the art world. By Review posted at: Swept Away By Romance If I Were You is the first in a seductively mysterious new trilogy by author Lisa Renee Jones. This story had me intrigued at the first page and absolutely hooked by the third! Sara McMillan is a highschool teacher on summer break. Like many with an advanced education in the arts, she was forced to give up her dream of a career in the art field in order to make a living wage. While she enjoys teaching, it has never replaced her passion for the art world. By chance, Sara is given responsibility for a storage locker her neighbor and friend, Ella, bought at auction, as Ella runs off to Paris to elope with her boyfriend. This locker and all of its contents, including a group of personal journals, once belonged to a woman named Rebecca Mason. As Sara begins to read these deeply personal, erotic and slightly disturbing journals, she becomes obsessed with finding this woman in order to return her belongings. On the path toward this goal, Sara discovers that Rebecca works at a prestigious San Francisco art gallery, Allure. While attending an event at Allure in the hopes of finding Rebecca Mason, who she is told is on a leave of absence, Sara finds herself surrounded by the art she adores and cannot help but enthusiastically assist a couple trying to decide on a particular painting. Witnessing this event are two different men. The first is Mark Compton, manager of the gallery. The second, Christ Merit, whose painting Sara has just inadvertently sold to an older couple. Left alone to speak with Mark regarding the whereabouts of Rebecca Mason, Sara boldly offers her services to fill in for Rebecca at the gallery for the summer. She is shocked, dismayed and thrilled when the domineering and cold Mark Compton hires her on the spur of the moment. Sara is torn because she knows this began out of concern for a woman she has never even met, a woman whose place she is filling within the same gallery. For Sara, though, this is the opportunity of a lifetime to also prove herself and possibly make a living in the art world she so loves. Sara also understands that, through one short meeting, she has become keenly aware of and interested in the artist, Chris Merit. Chris Merit, who, behind the easygoing and pleasant facade, hides secrets of his own and perhaps even danger. This will be quite the summer for Sara. What a fantastically evocative, sexy, thrilling, almost eerie read this was! I could not put this book down, and, in fact, read it in one sitting! The mystery surrounding the missing Rebecca Mason is really what holds this story apart. Lisa Renee Jones has done a superb job with the mystery/suspense elements. As I am not typically a fan of the way suspense and mystery are, of late, blended in with the romantic/erotic elements of a book, that says quite a lot. If I Were You handles this beautifully! The characters themselves are wonderful and believable and slowly begin to reveal themselves to the reader throughout the course of this book. The sexual tension between Sara and Chris, and even between Sara and her boss Mark, fairly leaps off of the page. If there is one small thing I might point out which brought me to a four-star rating rather than a five, I do feel that the author is not entirely purely comfortable writing explicit love scenes. Though the scenes were by no means badly written, and were, in fact, still quite sexy and provocative, I could almost feel a certain hesitation, lack of confidence and comfort with this aspect of the book. I don't know that I can explain exactly what I mean, but I do know that I could feel it while reading. I stress that it's a small thing, and perhaps entirely from my viewpoint only, but I want to be honest in mentioning that. I must say, though, when all is said and done, the first book in this new trilogy has a tremendous amount going for it! The cliffhanger left me breathless, and I eagerly anticipate the next installment! 4 Happy Stars! ***My thanks to NetGalley and Lisa Renee Jones for the opportunity to read this early. I very much enjoyed it!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Allison ❤️Will Never Conquer Her TBR❤️

    4.5 mysterious, captivating, sultry stars! Sara McMillan lives the life of an English teacher, five years celibate and just gets through life. Her mother has passed and she detests her father. When her friend Eva gives her the keys to a storage unit she won at auction, she's intrigued to find out all about the owner of all the personal effects in this unit.... especially the erotic journals she left behind. Rebecca Mason appears to have just disappeared...leaving behind her story of erotic pain, 4.5 mysterious, captivating, sultry stars! Sara McMillan lives the life of an English teacher, five years celibate and just gets through life. Her mother has passed and she detests her father. When her friend Eva gives her the keys to a storage unit she won at auction, she's intrigued to find out all about the owner of all the personal effects in this unit.... especially the erotic journals she left behind. Rebecca Mason appears to have just disappeared...leaving behind her story of erotic pain, control and surrender. What happened to her? Is she dead? Sara can't resist contacting her art gallery employer to find the trail that will lead to her. But these journals, they stir something in Sara. She's gone without sex too long. In the art gallery, Sara meets the owner Mark, who is impressed with her knowledge of art and offers her Rebecca's job in her absence. Mark is polished, controlling and very dominant. Does he have something to do with Rebecca's disappearance? Everyone is so tight-lipped about it. She meets a rebel type at the gallery, all jeans, leather jacket, biker boots at this black tie affair. Didn't he get the memo on attire at art shows? What she doesn't bank on is her attraction to this man.... And later finds out he's the multi-millionaire artist Chris Merit. He's an art legend and nothing like she imagined. Their chemistry ignites almost instantaneously. The book has an awesome balance of mystery, intrigue, and eroticism. In a genre infiltrated with the dominant alpha meets weaker heroine, the mysterious component of the story keeps you turning the pages. Where is this Rebecca? Both Mark and Chris have dominant, controlling characteristics...could it be one of them responsible for her disappearance? Maybe she's just on an extended vacation? But to leave all her belongings, beautiful artwork and personal journals behind? Chris stirs something inside Sara that's been dormant for five years. She fears giving up control for fear of being hurt...and what's with all his secrets? His perpetual warnings for her to stay away from him when he himself can't resist their pull? Moving on....

  24. 5 out of 5

    Robert

    So I may have what might be construed as a small erotica problem. Now that I’ve started reading this shit, I can’t stop. It’s like watching Basic Instinct. I know I’m not really supposed to be completely fascinated with Sharon Stone’s tits, but I just can’t really seem to help myself. And there might have even been a rather brief period of time where I considered being a cop (when I was younger), just so I could interrogate a nymphomaniac exhibitionist in the slight chance that she might not be So I may have what might be construed as a small erotica problem. Now that I’ve started reading this shit, I can’t stop. It’s like watching Basic Instinct. I know I’m not really supposed to be completely fascinated with Sharon Stone’s tits, but I just can’t really seem to help myself. And there might have even been a rather brief period of time where I considered being a cop (when I was younger), just so I could interrogate a nymphomaniac exhibitionist in the slight chance that she might not be wearing underwear and that she might just decide to cross her legs at the perfect moment and that I might be the one sitting directly across from her to witness the goods. Sorry, what were we talking about again? Ah, yes, erotica is a wonderful, escapist genre when I pretty much want to forget who I am for a few hours and read about well-endowed blondes who like sex even more than I do getting it on till the break of dawn. And every once in a while destroying a box spring or a headboard or ripping through a trailer or exploding through paint and plaster faster than The Hulk. As long as it’s fantasy, and not the teenage variety (Fifty Shades you can march right on off the stage), that’s based in some sort of reality, with characters that actually feel like real people, who just might be closet exhibitionists or sexaholics, then I’m okay with that. After all, when I pick up erotica, I don’t expect to read War and Peace, and frankly, that’s not what gets my motor running, unless the entire novel is conducted in a brothel with chesty broads and femme fatales and redheads and blondes and raven-haired cuties. Sara McMillan certainly felt real enough to me, although she’s certainly no Catherine Tramell. Even if she does have a wild side that comes out after Rebecca’s steamy diary, she’s grounded in reality, as a teacher, and then as an art enthusiast working at a gallery. Of course, it doesn’t hurt that she has Chris Merit, a talented, filthy rich artist who inherited millions and then made a few more of his own, plus Mark Compton, the controlling, test-enthused gallery owner pining for her affections as well. And then there’s the mysterious disappearance of Rebecca Mason, a journey without a definitive ending in IF I WERE YOU, and certainly one piece of a suspenseful puzzle that takes this steamy read beyond the bedroom. The journal entries were a nice touch. I mean, who doesn’t want to be someone else for a while? Just as long as you keep your thoughts in fantasyland and don’t start jumping out of bushes or making random dashes to New York or LA for no apparent reason, other than to magically appear at your favorite star’s hangout and accost her before she even leaves the restaurant. In that case, you should realize that you have broken the bounds of normalcy and seek help immediately. But all Sara does is awaken her inner sex demon, and frankly, I’m not seeing the downside here. I’d equate it to the dilemma of would you like a piece of chocolate or would you like two pieces of chocolate. Of course, the answer will always be: I would like two pieces of chocolate, please.

  25. 4 out of 5

    ~IreneOust~

    Now ... be honest! Tell me I am not the only one who thought of Darrell when we read that Ella found the journals in a unit she got at a storage auction ... But seriously now ... The journals that leave Sara with some unaswered questions ... such as "where is Rebecca?" and "who is the mysterious master she would do anything for?" Sara's quest for answers leads her to Rebecca's last place of work where she has a chance encounter with a sexy artist named Chris Merit which leads to a ste Now ... be honest! Tell me I am not the only one who thought of Darrell when we read that Ella found the journals in a unit she got at a storage auction ... But seriously now ... The journals that leave Sara with some unaswered questions ... such as "where is Rebecca?" and "who is the mysterious master she would do anything for?" Sara's quest for answers leads her to Rebecca's last place of work where she has a chance encounter with a sexy artist named Chris Merit which leads to a steamy "non-relationship" they both desire ... all the while Sara tries to look for clues to Rebecca's sudden disappearance ... If you are a fan of Lisa Renne Jones' work, you will enjoy this one! Sexy male lead(s), mysterious plot twists, lots of steamy sex which Lisa does extremely well ... perfection! ** WARNING: this book ends with a HUGE cliffhanger so make sure you have a sequel all ready to go & enjoy!

  26. 4 out of 5

    ☆ Sammy ☆彡

    4.5 Mysterious & Seductive Stars When her best friend is whisked off to Paris for a month long honeymoon, Sara McMillan is left with a storage unit full of a stranger's belongings. Sara is uncomfortable with the idea of selling the stranger's belongings so she vows to find the woman and return the contents of the storage unit to her. Her only clues to finding the owner, Rebecca Mason, are through some journals that were found in with the woman's belongings. After reading the journal entries and 4.5 Mysterious & Seductive Stars When her best friend is whisked off to Paris for a month long honeymoon, Sara McMillan is left with a storage unit full of a stranger's belongings. Sara is uncomfortable with the idea of selling the stranger's belongings so she vows to find the woman and return the contents of the storage unit to her. Her only clues to finding the owner, Rebecca Mason, are through some journals that were found in with the woman's belongings. After reading the journal entries and having no success in contacting Rebecca, Sara begins to wonder if something really bad happened to the woman. In her quest to find out what happened to Rebecca, Sara ends up being hired by the same art gallery that Rebecca is an employee of (but is currently on leave of absence from). My Cast Overall, I really enjoyed this book. All the mystery and suspense surrounding the art gallery, Rebecca, Mark, and Chris really pulled me into this story. There were some similarities with the FSOG books (creepy bosses, angsty hero with dark secrets, & a bit of BDSM) but I honestly think this book stands out on it's own. And I have so many unanswered questions! Thankfully the sequel, Being Me, was just released so that I can start getting the answers to all of my questions =D Memorable quotes: "Other people's perfection is a facade we create when we are second-guessing ourselves." *** "Life is too short and the world is too large and too full of the art you love not to see everything you can."

  27. 4 out of 5

    Dali

    Suspenseful and spellbindingly sensual, this story had me hooked from start to finish. "People aren’t always what they seem...The art does not always mimic the artist. You never know the real person until you slide beneath their surface." Art major Sara McMillin had once dreamed of being part of that world. Heartbreak and the prospect of an unstable income led her to become a high school teacher though. But when her next door neighbor and best friend Ella unexpectedly elopes and leaves her Suspenseful and spellbindingly sensual, this story had me hooked from start to finish. "People aren’t always what they seem...The art does not always mimic the artist. You never know the real person until you slide beneath their surface." Art major Sara McMillin had once dreamed of being part of that world. Heartbreak and the prospect of an unstable income led her to become a high school teacher though. But when her next door neighbor and best friend Ella unexpectedly elopes and leaves her with a storage unit that belonged to a woman whose love for an unnamed man leads her into the DBMS world she first embraces and later dreads is chronicled in descriptive erotic journals, Sara is not only captivated by what she reads but also driven to uncover her whereabouts. Finding it highly unusual that Rebecca would leave her very personal journals, all the contents in the storage unit and her amazing job at one of the biggest art galleries. Following the trail left behind, Sara manages to meet and impress the gallery’s fascinating and domineering owner gaining Rebecca’s old job and also catching the attention of the famous and equally captivating Chris Merit. While worrying about her best friend Ella who hasn’t contacted her since she left, trying to figure out what happened to Rebecca and who she was referring to as her Master in the journals, Sara finds herself amidst a bevy of sexy dominant males all vying for her attention who make her doubt herself and everything she knows. Will she find answers to any of her questions before she herself is immersed in an erotic world she never imagined? I’ll begin by confessing that I binge read this trilogy after I read the final book in the Careless Whispers trilogy. So I already knew what had happened to Ella AND about Sara’s happy ever after. On one hand, having this knowledge probably lessened my uncertainty and amount of questions I could have had if I had read this series first. On the other hand, I wouldn’t have read this series had Sara not appeared in the Careless Whispers series. The key words though are “binge read.” I was completely captivated by the skilled writing, complex characters and multifaceted plot. I could not put the book down. Even though I still had a lot of questions and there was enough testosterone to go around mainly because of the animosity between Mark and Chris, Chris was the one who I was fascinated with. While Mark is a thoughtful and observant boss, obviously attracted to Sara and a constant presence in her life, Chris is a tattooed rebel with a swoony, sweet and deliciously dark and sexy side. There’s obviously a lot of secrets the tortured artist is keeping. Chris first warns Sara off Mark, the gallery and himself but the attraction between them is too powerful for them to ignore. “This ‘crazy’ thing you’re making me feel is the best crazy I’ve felt in a long time. I’m not ready to let go of you. I don’t know what you’re doing to me, Sara, but please ... don’t stop.” For those of you who are looking forward to the DBSM element hinted at by comparing this series to the Fifty Shades of Grey books, I have to comment that it’s only present in the tidbits we get from Rebecca’s journal who was in a M/s relationship. The main characters only engage in very soft bondage. But those entries are sizzling hot! If I Were You is the first book in the Inside Out trilogy by Lisa Renee Jones who skillfully balances intriguing mystery with sensual romance. It is a contemporary romance, told by the heroine’s point of view that ends with a cliffhanger. * I was given an ARC of this book courtesy of the author via NetGalley. The excerpts are from that copy. * More reviews * Stalk us on FaceBook * As well as Twitter * Pinterest Board for Book Teasers

  28. 4 out of 5

    crίѕтίŋα•●♥Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ♥●•

    4.5 stars :D "Never say never, Sara." - Chris * * * “All I want is here and now, this piece of time. And please save the pillow talk for someone who wants it. Contrary to what you seem to think, I’m no delicate rose.” - Sara * * * “There is something happening between us and I pray I was wrong last night. I pray it’s not the beginning of two damaged people tearing each other apart. Some part of me needs Chris. Maybe we need each other.” - Sara

  29. 4 out of 5

    Arlene

    Sweet painful HELL!!! Who ends a book like that?!?!?!? Need the next one.... NOW!! "We stare at each other and his scrutiny is so intense that I feel as if he's crawling inside me and searching my soul for confirmation I've spoken the truth." Woah! This book was seriously intense and addicting! If I Were You by Lisa Renee Jones kept my attention from the first sentence all the way to the painful cliffhanger at the end. Jones sure knows how to deliver a dark and erotic story filled with a cast of Sweet painful HELL!!! Who ends a book like that?!?!?!? Need the next one.... NOW!! "We stare at each other and his scrutiny is so intense that I feel as if he's crawling inside me and searching my soul for confirmation I've spoken the truth." Woah! This book was seriously intense and addicting! If I Were You by Lisa Renee Jones kept my attention from the first sentence all the way to the painful cliffhanger at the end. Jones sure knows how to deliver a dark and erotic story filled with a cast of complicated yet alluring characters. This book blends a perfect mix of mystery, seduction, and intrigue to keep you reading late into the night and screaming for the sequel when you stumble across the last paragraph. I can't believe I have to wait so long for the next installment! In this story, we meet Sara McMillan who's come across a journal filled with erotic entries by someone named Rebecca Mason. Sara immediately becomes captivated by the painful yet sensual events that unfold in this notebook and when she attempts to seek out the owner, she discovers that this gallery director is missing. Eventually, Sara lands herself a job in the same gallery Rebecca last worked at with the intention of trying to find out what happened to her. Sara soon finds herself in the middle of a dangerous power-play between the elusive yet controlling gallery owner Mark Compton and the complicated and seductive artist Chris Merit. Trying to decipher who she can trust and why they each want to control her, only manages to lead her down a dark and dangerous path. The words Jones commits to page are nothing short of addictive and alluring. This author knows how to deliver hypnotic storytelling that leave us craving for more. I was definitely attracted to the cast of characters in this story. Both Mark and Chris prove to be equally elusive, yet captivating and I can't quite figure out who to fall for and who not to trust. I have so many questions about Sara and Chris's past, as well as the whereabouts of Rebecca and Ella that I can't wait to get my hands on the next book. If I Were You has shot up my list of most anticipated sequels. Most definitely enjoyed this tale of seduction and mystery.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Sheri

    After inheriting a storage unit from a friend, Sara becomes obsessed with some journals she finds in the unit and decides she needs to find the owner. During her search, she meets the man she thinks may be the subject of the journals as well as another incredibly sexy man she cannot seem to stop thinking about. I really like the characters in this story. We do not really know much about Sara, and I like how the author, rather than telling us her whole past right up front, made her past part of t After inheriting a storage unit from a friend, Sara becomes obsessed with some journals she finds in the unit and decides she needs to find the owner. During her search, she meets the man she thinks may be the subject of the journals as well as another incredibly sexy man she cannot seem to stop thinking about. I really like the characters in this story. We do not really know much about Sara, and I like how the author, rather than telling us her whole past right up front, made her past part of the secrets being unveiled through the story. She seems the shy, quiet "good girl" type, but as the story unfolds we find out she is able to stand up for herself and is not pushed easily. Chris is freaking awesome. I love him. He is Mr. Mysterious, sexy as hell, and carries a sexual tension with him everywhere he goes. The chemistry between him and Sara is fantastically erotic, but he has a way of putting her off balance that makes us as the reader never quite know where their story is going to go next. The rest of the characters at this point are rather remote thus far, but I'm sure hoping we will get to know more about them as the story goes on, particularly Mark. This book gives us a glimpse into the world of BDSM, but really it's just a tease. The excerpts from the diaries are a great addition to the book. They show a world of danger, pleasure, pain, love, confusion that Sara just has to find. They make her feel like something is missing in her own life and she will not stop until she finds out exactly what it is. I am very much looking forward to the continuation of this series.

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