Audrey Carlan’s Calendar Girl series has been charting extremely well, and its appeal is immediately obvious: one steamy novella for each month of the year, now all available so readers can move from one to the other as needed – or wanted … And wants, desires, are definitely at the core of the first book in the series, January.
Mia Saunders is in need of a lot of money – not to spend on herself but to pay back a debt of her father’s that has put his life at risk. As we meet Mia he’s in a hospital in Las Vegas, recovering from an attack by the men who are calling in the debt. While it’s clear that her father is a no-hoper, Mia isn’t prepared to give up on him, nor on her little sister, who she believes is in danger from the same men.
That may sound like a set-up for a crime novel, but instead it’s the catalyst for Mia to go to her aunt, who runs a successful escort service. Her aunt tells Mia that she could send her on short jobs but the real money is in month-long attachments – thereby establishing the premise for the twelve novels. It’s a great device, holding, as it does, the promise of more novels for fans, complete with a different male protagonist each month.
Mia’s first client is the handsome, charming screenwriter Wes who needs her to be his companion through a whirlwind month of business dinners and parties. He hopes that her presence will keep at bay the women who constantly try to seduce him – given that he’s a power player in Hollywood, as well as a fine physical specimen, he’s a prime target.
It seems like an easy enough gig – and her aunt has told Mia that sex with the client is at her discretion. It’s not part of the official deal. It doesn’t take Mia long, however, to realise that sex with Wes would be a very welcome addition to her month-long stay in his house …
And that’s where we come to the, ahem, meat of it: Calendar Girl: January is hot. Its power is in the sex scenes, which are really well constructed and, shall we say, effective. While the story might not be meaty enough for some, it’s enough to keep the reader hooked into the adventures of Mia and Wes – and to want to find out what happens to Mia when February comes around …
Calendar Girl: January is available now (as are all the books in the series).