Book Review: Just One Night by Lauren Layne

Riley McKenna has an image to maintain. As the resident sex-expert at Stilleto magazine, she has written some of the most scandalous articles published between its pages. But her inexperience between the sheets threatens to come out when the magazine’s 50th anniversary issue delves into the personal lives of its writers. Her only option is to call on a favor from longtime friends, and the man who stole her heart, Sam Compton.

Sam Compton reluctantly agrees to her proposition for a one night stand in the name of research. But he knows that it is a very bad idea. No matter how much he’s attracted to her, Riley is still his best friend’s little sister. That doesn’t mean he’d let another man participate in her “research.” Soon one night becomes another and one more after that. Sam and Riley quickly realize that love doesn’t adhere to their rule of just one night.

This story captured my attention with the first paragraph, and I kept telling myself “just one more chapter” when I should have been doing something else. I never thought of Riley as a sex columnist except for when she or someone else brought it up. She struck me as a spunky, charming woman who could live next door to me (if I could afford an apartment in Manhattan). The scenes with her and her family, or with her friends,  drove home her realistic, multi-faceted personality.

Sam Compton also struck me as realistic, or at least the kind of guy I wouldn’t mind meeting. It did take me a few pages to stop associating him with Bill Compton of the Sookie Stackhouse series. But Sam is nothing like vampire Bill. He’s conflicted over the role he wants Riley to have in his life, and the reader gets to see exactly where he’s coming from in that respect.

The premise of the story, that Riley has been saving herself for Sam ever since an awkward college experience, is a bit far-fetched in my opinion. However the writing, the characters, and the attraction between Riley and Sam absolutely make up for that.

Just One Night is the third in a series. Reading books one and two isn’t necessary for enjoying this one, though.

This quick read would be great for anyone who enjoy contemporary romances.


Just One Night by Lauren Layne will be published by Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept on March 11, 2014.

*I received an advanced copy of this book in return for an unbiased review.

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