Slick’s Review – Want It (Wolfshead Whiskey #2) by Elisabeth Barrett

I love when a story is so well crafted that I am riveted from the first word to the last and that is exactly what author Elisabeth Barrett has done in Want It. ~ Slick, Guilty Pleasures 

Brody Phelan has his hands full keeping the peace between his six brothers and cousins and managing the finances for Wolfshead, his family’s brewery and distillery. He’s gladly sacrificed his own happiness in order to help his family, but from the moment he sees feisty, curvy Juliette Costa he wants to claim her for his own. Too bad their clans are at war and Juliette sees him as the enemy.

Juliette wants one thing–to open up her own wine bar. Problem is she can’t get the project started while she’s constantly helping with her family’s business, dodging her relatives’ misguided efforts to fix her up, and cleaning up her brothers’ messes…which frequently involves some wheeling and dealing with the sexy, bearded CFO next door.

When their tentative alliance morphs into something deeper, things get complicated. Together, Brody and Juliette will have to decide whether they only want a business-with-benefits relationship…or whether they trust each other enough for something more.

I pretty much remember gushing over the first book in Elisabeth Barrett’s Wolfshead Whiskey series, telling all my friends about it, singing its praises, so I was thrilled when Ms. Barrett contacted me and asked if I’d be interested in reviewing book two, Want It. Want It is everything I look for in a romance; interesting well developed characters, some conflict to make it interesting but not so much as the romance gets lost, great secondary characters, mutual respect and admiration between the main characters, but also tons of heat, and most of all that satisfied feeling when you finish a book and know it is one you want to read again. This book was engaging and sexy with a bit of a Romeo and Juliet vibe without all the angst and death in the end.

For years Juliette Costa and Brody Phelan have worked together to try and keep their families from maiming each other or winding up in jail for being stupid. There has always been a bit of teasing banter between them, a mutual admiration for how they each deal with their family squabbles, but lately there has been something more, a heat neither one wants to admit and they are finding it hard to deny.

First off let’s talk about Juliette Costa who is a strong, smart woman with goals no one but her favorite female cousin knows. Working for her family’s business and constantly battling her father’s disregard for her intelligence and business acumen and her brother’s lack of direction and constant battles with the Phelan’s whose property borders their property, Juliette is tired of being looked over in the business sense and tired of cleaning up her brother’s messes. She is equally tired of being treated like an over the hill woman by her family whose constant meddling into her personal life has her working harder every day to move on with her business plans and out from under their watchful eyes. I honestly loved everything about Juliette and while she was a bit flawed, it made her seem more human.

It is hard to put into words how much I liked Brody Phelan; his ability to settled down his brothers and cousins with his cool demeanor, the fact that he took so much of the success of the business on his shoulders which it should have been spread equally among everyone, the way he cares for his mother and wants to see her happy, and the fact that he sees all sides of Juliette and admires the whole package from the start. Juliette likes to say he is kind which he dismisses regularly, but she is spot on, he is many things but kind if absolutely one of his best features.

The fact that their relationship was a bit forbidden only made the time they spent together that more exciting. While Brody absolutely refused to hide them being together from his family, he understood Juliette’s need to do so. I liked that they had a bit of a “working relationship” for years and that over that time they began to see each other as more than the enemy they were expected to by their families. While there was no doubt Body initially pursued Juliette for some sexy fun, I was impressed that once he realized he had real feelings for her, he didn’t shy away from them and in fact was very up front and honest with her about them. Juliette was a bit of a tough nut to crack, she had years of shutting people out of her life and while she made some mistakes, she owned up to them which I appreciated greatly.

There are a lot of secondary characters in these books, and while they do pop up now and again they don’t overshadow the main characters. I like that with each book we are seeing a bit more into the personalities of the Wolfshead men making me very excited about the future of this series.

I love when a story is so well crafted that I am riveted from the first word to the last and that is exactly what author Elisabeth Barrett has done in Want It. I feel like I am part of this story, that these people could be my friends; I want to celebrate their successes and let them cry on my shoulder when something doesn’t go right, but most of all I want to be the one to toast the love they’ve found with one another.

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