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Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Any Given Sunday by Mari Carr

Any Given Sunday by Mari Carr
Wild Irish Book 7
Publisher: Ellora’s Cave
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short Story (126 Pages)
Other: M/F, Ménage, M/F/M, M/M/F, M/M, Anal Sex/Play, BDSM, Spanking
Rating: Best Book
Reviewed by Holly

The child who is born on the Sabbath day, is bonny and blithe and good and gay.

Sean Collins is happy working at the family pub and sharing a house with the woman of his dreams. He and Lauren are equals in every way, including in bed, where they burn the sheets. Life is good. Even if he must hide a couple of secrets to keep it that way.

Lauren is madly in love with Sean. They share everything—almost. She can’t deny sensing…something. A certain feeling when she, Sean and their friend Chad are all together. But she doesn’t press. How can she when she’s not being completely forthright herself?

Chad is feeling pretty miserable, and renting a room in Sean and Lauren’s home has only made it worse. In a house filled with secrets, Chad’s are doozies.

When an opportunity arises to explore their deep desires, the trio plunges into a sex-filled, emotionally charged ménage. Long-buried feelings are revealed, changing their lives irrevocably. Whether for better or worse, only Sean, Chad and Lauren can decide.

Sean Collins and Lauren Chase have been friends forever, and are very much in love. The logical next step is to move in together, and that is exactly what they do. When they buy a house, they invite Sean’s best friend Chad Watterson to share it, at least until Chad and Lauren graduate and start their respective careers as psychologists.

Everything is perfect; or at least it should be, but Lauren, Sean and Chad are all hiding something, and none of them wants to open that door to address the elephant in the room.

The stalemate could have gone on forever, except for the research assignment that Chad and Lauren received. The assignment would stretch their boundaries, and possibly their friendship, to new levels, and only they can decide if it is where they want to take it.

When Lauren proposes an experiment, to push the limits on three successive Sundays, can Chad and Sean accept her ground rules? Can Sean come to terms with his feelings, for Lauren and for Chad? Can Chad accept what is offered to him, or will he walk away from all he really wants?

Leave it to Mari Carr to bring her Wild Irish series to a close with the hottest and most emotional story of them all. I looked forward to reading this, but it was a bittersweet feeling, knowing I wouldn’t read any more about Ms. Carr’s wonderful Collins clan. I should not have worried, as this book brings a perfect amount of closure to the series, and gives a bit of a glimpse into how the family has grown and yet stayed close. The characters in this are everything Ms. Carr has always embodied: complex and passionate and very down to earth. Real people, who could live next door, and who would be the friends you meet for barbecues and parties.

Lauren is a wonderful character. She wants both men, but rationalizes it away, at least at first. I enjoyed watching her open up, first to Sean’s sisters, and then to Sean and Chad about what she wants and needs in her life. She is intelligent, and determined to get what she wants. I enjoyed watching her grow into her sexuality, and I liked watching her surprise at experiences she discovered were enjoyable to her.

Sean is the baby of the family, and has watched his siblings each find happiness with their mates. But he is a realist as well, and knows that he has a darker side to him, one that tends toward Domination and being in control. He also has tried to erase feelings for his best friend, feelings he acted on once, years ago, and that weren’t returned. Now he is content to be just friends with Chad.

Chad is the conflicted one. Smart and determined to succeed, he can’t come to terms with his feelings for his best friend's girl. Especially when it comes out that she has feelings for him too. He is the one who tries to leave, and I cried at the emotions his confusion and suffering created.

Any Given Sunday is a fantastic reading experience, and it will make you laugh with the characters and the fun they have. It will also draw you in to the story and make you cry at the decisions they make along the way to the very wonderful and totally unorthodox happy ever after for all three of the characters. My advice for this one is to turn the fan on high, and keep the tissues handy.

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