Tonic by Staci Hart Release Date: October 13th Genre: Contemporary Romance
Joel Anderson doesn’t take anything seriously.
Not his relationships, which have been few and far between since his brutal divorce. Not the drama of working in a tattoo parlor, which seems to be around every corner. When things get him down, he smiles and cracks a joke. But he’s not the kind of man you cross, or you’ll find yourself at the wrong end of his fists. Annika Belousov takes everything seriously. Like her job as a reality television producer, given that she typically has something to prove. Or her love life, which is defined by a series of requirements — affluent, ambitious, accomplished, to name a few. Definitely her family, who worked their whole lives to afford her every opportunity, a sacrifice she doesn’t take lightly. When she’s tapped to produce a reality show at Joel’s shop, she doesn’t think twice, just goes in for the kill, as if there were any other way. The second Annika walks into Joel’s shop, he makes it his mission to crack her open, but she’s not having it. He’s all wrong — too crass, too hairy, too un-serious. But it doesn’t take her long to find out there’s more to him than smirks and tattoos. And what she finds could put her career and his heart on the line. Not that Joel cares. Because for the first time in a long time, he’s found his tonic.
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Review by: Amy C
How could you make me question my love for Tricky with Joel Anderson?? Staci you have ruined me !! I absolutely fell in love with the writing and style of Staci's books long ago but I swear she just keeps getting better and better. Her writing is clean and without judgement. It's so easy to read and so clear that your focus is purely on the characters themselves. All drama and crap floats away and you're left with feelings. Nothing but the beat of your own heart and the souls that she has created. PURE GOLD!
Joel Anderson may be my new book love. He was so confident and true to himself. Maybe his age and perseverance through life had something to do with that, or not. His character and simple way about him made him shine. I could feel the pull towards him through every page I read. And Annika... For reals this woman. I wasn't so sure about her icy exterior in the beginning but seeing them together made everything clear. She was his light and he her flame. He needed to burn away her icy front to see how purely perfect she was for him. He needed to be her strong bear for her to allow her front to drop. Perfectly imperfect for each other.
The storyline was great, the characters were amazing and the whole book gets a complete and absolute YES, YES , YES from me!!! I loved seeing characters from previous books play cameos in this story because they are all a family and it felt right. The Braun, the tattoos and the muscle against the soft, the delicate and the fierce was just fantastic!!! Completely recommend this book and pretty much anything Staci Hart puts out because not only is her writing without a doubt amazing, she's just as cool of a person as her characters are!
5 STARS COMPLETELY!
Review by: Stacey
Wow Staci!!!! I loved Tonic!!! 4.5 stars for making me say something I never thought i'd say.... I LOVE a hairy man....yes I fell in love with Joel & he is nothing like my type but I loved him one the less!!!! Joel is a sexy, cocky, quit witted, tattooed and HAIRY man!!! But I saw past that and so did Annika....Tonic is a refreshing, and amazingly addictive read! She had he loving the ice queen and rooting for them the whole time!!! I loved Staci's style of writing and how she made someone so cold and icy let her walls melt when Joel entered and he saw through all that and truly saw his princess!
I can't explain how addicting and consuming this book was but all I can say it get on this series and you will love each one more and I can't believe it but I love Joel more than all the others that she seamlessly weaves them all back on this story!!!!
If you haven't read Staci Hart you have too and your totally missing out!!!
Review by: Gina
I was so excited for a new Staci Hart novel! I've just loved all the books I have read by her so to have a new one, just made my day/ Joel is a character, in the previous books but this story can be read as a standalone. I was really intrigued with the characters! I wanted to know their inns and outs, their background, just everything! Both were really mysterious and just captured my attention from the beginning. Annika was an interesting choice for Joel. They had that opposites attract and sort of the enemies to lovers thing going on, which was really fun to read!
I thought the story was well written. It had the traditional style I'm use to see from Staci Hart, humor, angst, and some very steamy scenes! I'm not sure how I feel about the reality show aspect to the story. Because of it, it did create drama within the story but I have such a negative take on reality tv that it sort of put a damper on the storyline. With that aside, it was a wonderful story with amazing characters. The characters, themselves, made the story for me. I am looking forward to what will be next from this author!
“Let me see it.”
“What?” I blustered, caught off guard. “Stand up and turn around. I want to see it.” I was too surprised and caught up in the moment to refuse, so I stood and turned, laying my palms on the armrests as I faced the back of the chair.
One hand rested on my hip.
My heart stopped as I wondered what the hell I’d gotten myself into. I glanced over my shoulder, my gaze bouncing between his face —turned down too much to read —and his reflection in the speckled, antique mirror, which I couldn’t see much of either. His free hand moved to the waistband of my tailored pants, and his fingers hooked and tugged, pulling the band down low. His thumb ran over where I knew the tattoo was, and I felt his breath. Every place where we connected spoke to me of ownership. “You got this done here? In New York?” His voice was rough. Mine wasn’t much better. “Yeah. In Brooklyn.” “Let me cover it up for you. Give you something you’re proud of. Your skin …” He paused, and I wished I could see his face, read his mind. “This shouldn’t be here, not on you. Let me … I want to …” He had moved closer, his hand on my hip pulling me back into him slightly enough for me to not have noticed that the backs of my thighs were touching his, my back arched just enough, his breath hot. And then, he disappeared. I stood, finding my hands were trembling, wondering where I was and how I’d gotten there. The shop was mostly empty —no one had seen, not that it would have looked like much from the outside. But from where I stood, I felt every single deliberate move like a telegraph, telling me exactly what he wanted to do without him having to finish the sentence. His back was to me when I turned around, his face down —I couldn’t see it in the mirror over his cabinet of ink and needles as he dug around in the drawers, seemingly for nothing in particular. “Let me know if you want me to draw something up.” “Okay, I will.” I paused, not knowing what else to say, feeling like I should say something. But there was nothing that I could say. “Well, have a good night, Joel. I’ll see you tomorrow.” He nodded, glancing at me in the mirror. “See you, Annika.” I tried not to bolt out of the shop, but once outside, I admit it —I took off. I hauled up the stairs and into the office to grab my bag, grateful that Laney was already gone, and I texted my driver, asking him to pick me up a few blocks away so I could walk, put some distance between me and Joel, get the energy out of my body, through my legs and feet, into the pavement.
About the Author:
Staci has been a lot of things up to this point in her life -- a graphic designer, an entrepreneur, a seamstress, a clothing and handbag designer, a waitress. Can't forget that. She's also been a mom, with three little girls who are sure to grow up to break a number of hearts. She's been a wife, though she's certainly not the cleanest, or the best cook. She's also super, duper fun at a party, especially if she's been drinking whiskey.From roots in Houston to a seven year stint in Southern California, Staci and her family ended up settling somewhere in between and equally north, in Denver. They are new enough that snow is still magical. When she's not writing, she's reading, sleeping, gaming, or designing graphics.