Book Review: The Real Thing by Susann Oriel

The Real Thing by Susann OrielTitle: The Real Thing
Author: Susann Oriel
Genre: Romantic Suspense
Sensuality Rating: Steamy
Source: review copy provided by publisher
Published: September 8, 2014 Crimson Romance

Top art expert Gemma Gilmore can easily spot a fake from across a crowded gallery. So she wonders why the smoking-hot man standing alone in the far corner of the auction room isn’t bidding. She and her killer five-inch pumps vow to find out.

Mac Buchanan is on an undercover assignment that leaves no room for small talk and soft emotions. When one of the expensive paintings Gemma authenticated turns out to be a fake, he’s the prime investigator, and he’s determined not to let her breathtaking sex appeal whitewash a serious crime.

But even facing off over a $50 million art fraud case isn’t enough to contain their blazing sexual chemistry. Time and again, passion draws them together, but they’re driven apart by an ever-increasing web of lies, set-ups, and betrayals.

When the truth behind the fraud is revealed, will their relationship shatter or will they discover their intense connection is the real thing?

Reviewed By: Laura

Why I Read This Book: I love art, in its myriad of forms, so this story about an art authenticator being investigated for forgery piqued my interest. I also love the description of the characters in the blurb. Gemma is smart, sexy, and self-confident. Mac is determined, inquisitive, and apparently smoking-hot. I wanted to see what it was about these two that drove them together despite their seemingly opposite “teams”.

What I Liked: Reading about Gemma talk about art and her passion for it was soothing. It was clear that the author actually put forth some effort in getting the information correct. Sometimes, when the background and story outline is off, I completely lose interest in the book and characters. You wouldn’t want to live in a house with a shoddy foundation would you? This book had a solid foundation and a believable interaction between the main characters.

It was quite enjoyable watching these two play with one another, with regard to the investigation. He kept trying to bait her because he thought she was guilty. She continually tried to get information out of him and work around him because she was certain he was hiding something from her. This dance just amped up the sexual tension between these two. Watching them try to resist one another and witnessing the gradual change in their relationship was fun.

What I Didn’t Like: I feel like the resolution wasn’t as satisfying as it could have been. Maybe if there had been more interaction or exchanges with the forger and his accomplice I might have felt differently. It just seemed like it was all too tidy with very little digging.

And while I did like what we knew about our characters, I felt like we hardly got to know Mac at all. Gemma had more going on with all her co-workers, family, and ex-fiancĂ© drama, but Mac was kind of a standalone character. What little information we learn about his past was pried from him tooth and nail. While that can work for a while, it got a bit repetitive. While I don’t think you need to divulge your whole life story to everyone you sleep with, considering the passion between these two, it felt kind of skeevy to know so little about him.

Overall Impression: The Real Thing was an uncomplicated and delicious read. Max & Gemma really know what they’re doing with each other in the bedroom, even if they can’t really figure the other one out outside it. Not raunchy, but definitely rowdy in all the right ways. Enjoy!

Laura’s Rating:
3 1/2 Frogs

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About Brianna: Supermom by day, naughty reader by night. Addicted to chocolate, Twitter, her iPad, her Kindle, and 99¢ Kindle deals. You can follow Brianna on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and Instagram.


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