Title: Just the Sexiest Man Alive
Author: Julie James
Narrator: Karen White
Format: Unabridged Audio Book (10 hours and 12 minutes)
Published: Nov 1, 2010 (Penguin Audio)
ISBN: ASIN: B004ADTGHG
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Audible
Rating: 4 1/2 out of 5 Wine Glasses
No woman could resist him—except the one he wanted most...
Cool, Calm, Collected...
Nothing fazes Taylor Donovan. In the courtroom she never lets the opposition see her sweat. In her personal life, she never lets any man rattle her—not even her cheating ex-fiancé. So when she's assigned to coach People's "Sexiest Man Alive" for his role in his next big legal thriller, she refuses to fall for the Hollywood heartthrob's charms. Even if he is the Jason Andrews.
Confident, Famous, Irresistible...
Jason Andrews is used to having women fall at his feet. When Taylor Donovan gives him the cold shoulder, he's thrown for a loop. She's unlike any other woman he's ever met: uninterested in the limelight, seemingly immune to his advances, and shockingly capable of saying no to him. She's the perfect challenge. And the more she rejects him, the more he begins to realize she may just be his perfect match.
“I realized that the one person who could break my heart is the only one who should have it.”
Just the Sexiest Man Alive by Julie James is an immensely entertaining contemporary romance. It’s a stand-alone and a lighter read than the author’s FBI/US Attorney series. I’ve actually had the audio on my phone for months – and finally hit play over the weekend. OMG, what took me so long? It’s a charming romantic comedy and a perfect escape or beach read - exactly what I needed at the time! I listened to some of it while walking a local bridge and feared that someone would report me as deranged because I giggled and/or laughed out loud too any times to count and I might have also shouted yes a few times.
This is the story of Jason Andrews, an actor deemed to be the “Sexiest Man Alive” by People magazine, and Taylor Donovan, a labor attorney. Just the Sexiest Man Alive is an adversaries-to-lovers old-fashioned romance with a measured relationship build-up. It is not an insta-love tale. The characters have a lot of chemistry and their storyline is addictive. There’s even a deplorable villain.
Taylor is a focused woman when she arrives in L.A. from Chicago. She has her sights set on becoming a full partner in her law firm – and the EEOC suit she is litigating is to be a crucial steppingstone to her goal. I liked that Taylor is portrayed as a powerful, independent, smart, professional woman who has worked her way up the ladder with no funny business.
Jason is preparing for a legal role in a movie and uses his powerful connections to obtain the services of the best attorney available at the law firm to coach him to his best possible performance. Taylor’s firm nominates her for the role – she isn’t happy about not being able to focus on her case nor at having to cater to a spoiled Hollywood star.
In the beginning, I didn’t care for Jason. He was to put it simply: full of himself and a womanizer. Suffice it to say that Taylor wasn’t impressed with Jason’s celebrity stature nor did she take crap from anyone. I would cheer Taylor as she would effortlessly put him in his place with her quick wit and their snarky banter – much to Jason’s surprise. However, it wasn’t long before he started to grow on me to where, by the end, I was in love.
Supporting characters included Jason’s best friend, Jeremy, a screen-writer. His resume featured last year’s blockbuster hit: “a vampire/alien/zombie/warlock hybrid flick.” I really liked Jeremy and think he deserves to have his own story told. Taylor’s besties from Chicago were also featured most notably when they were treated to a surprise dream night on the town when they came to visit Taylor.
Following please find a few of my favorite quotes from Just the Sexiest Man Alive:
Jason boldly took in the way she looked.
“I take it you don’t often wear that dress in court.”
“Probably not a good idea.”
He grinned. “Yes, I can imagine it would be somewhat awkward standing before a judge who has a huge hard-on.”
“Is that the effect this dress has?”
Taylor’s eyes traveled downward, to the zipper of Jason’s pants, and he was momentarily caught off guard by her bluntness.
Her eyes sparkled, amused.
“You’re blushing, Jason. That’s cute.”
“The character I’m playing in the film is this driven, workaholic lawyer who has never lost a case. When I’m playing him . . .” He paused, his voice softening. Somehow they were now standing just inches apart. “I think of you.” When their eyes met, Jason grinned and added, “With a penis.”
“I have to be honest, I’m not exactly impressed with your case,” she said, cutting him off. “All you’ve got is a sporadic string of some very minor incidents. It’s not as if anyone slapped an ass or grabbed a boob.”
“You know, if you're trying to mark your territory, you could've just peed on me before I came over here and saved us both a lot of time!”
I’ve read that this book was Karen White’s first romance narration. You would never know it from her polished performance as it was stellar. Both her male and female voices sound genuine. She differentiates between the characters to where I always knew who was speaking. Her pacing is perfect and she exudes the proper emotions with finesse. Karen is one of my very favorite narrators. I’ve loved everything I’ve picked up that she’s narrated and Just the Sexiest Man Alive is no exception. Her voicing definitely added to my enjoyment of this audio.
The ending is warm, satisfying, flashy and a bit cheesy – but I’m not complaining. I’d listen to this audio again and my fondest wish is that this story would be made into a movie. If you are looking for a well-written, thoroughly enjoyable chick-lit romance with great character interactions including lots of hilarious moments, I’d highly encourage you to check out Just the Sexiest Man Alive too.
Cute and fun!