Sunday, June 29, 2014

Selling Scarlett: A Book Review

I was sent this book to review via Mark My Words Book Publicity, who sent me a list of e-books from which to choose.  As I was looking these books up on Goodreads to see what they were about, this one definitely stood out to me.  The summary explains that the main character needs money and decides to sell her virginity to meet this need.  I was like, “WHAT?!?”  I obviously HAD to know why she needed so much money and what the reasoning was that made her think it was worth it to sell her virginity.  So I was definitely intrigued and saw that it was classified as a new adult novel, which I do enjoy reading.  However as I started reading it, I noticed that some of the sex scenes tend to go farther than a typical new adult novel, so I looked back on Goodreads and saw that some people did categorize this as erotica.  Now, I have never read a book classified as erotica before; I have always shied away because I usually like my books to have more of a mix between action and romance, and I have always had the impression that erotica is simply about the sex.  Anyway, this book does have graphic sex scenes so please make sure that you are aware before reading, however, there is a very interesting plot too to balance it out!

Title: Selling Scarlett
Author: Ella James
Series: Love Inc., #1
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance (also listed on Goodreads as Adult Erotica)
Publisher: Barkley’s Books
Publication Date: April 13, 2013
Pages: 348
Out in Paperback?: Yes; May 28, 2013
My Rating: 4/5

Goodreads Summary:

Elizabeth DeVille doesn't belong at a party like this - one where the gowns cost more than her Camry and cigars run higher than her grad school utility bills. Dragged out of seclusion by her best friend Suri, Elizabeth is merely playing dress-up, rubbing elbows with a crowd that banished her troubled family years ago.

Hunter West is tired. Tired of parties, tired of pretending, and tired of trying to right a wrong that haunts him every day. Bourbon heir and professional poker player by day, by night Hunter is gambling with his life in a high-stakes game of crime and blackmail.

When Elizabeth stumbles into Hunter's den of vices, she's a light in the darkness, a flame in the void. And, just like everything he touches, Hunter mars her in a record time. To rectify the damage done, Elizabeth needs money she doesn't have, and she's come up with a foolproof way to get it.

Follow Elizabeth - code-named Scarlett - to the lush Nevada brothel where she'll auction her virginity and risk the only thing that's not for sale: her heart. The highest bidder is a familiar face, with wicked hands and the devil's mouth. And a secret so dark that it could cost her life.


This book is written through two alternating perspectives, Elizabeth and Hunter.  Elizabeth is a woman whose mother is in and out of drug rehab, which over the years has greatly reduced their fortune; this leaves Elizabeth with hardly any money from their bottled water empire.  Elizabeth is a great character; I feel like in the beginning of the novel she comes across as a little more outgoing and bold due to some early events at a party that was at Hunter’s place and before we really get to know her story.  However, about halfway through the novel, Elizabeth tends to come across as thoughtful and caring with a sweet personality, a very likeable character.  Elizabeth has had a crush on Hunter for a very long time; however, she believes that Hunter doesn’t know her.  Hunter, a playboy-type personality, spends his days (and loads of money) at a brothel run and owned by his best friend.  Hunter first comes across as that typical character that is all about having different women and spending too much money (I feel like I usually do not care for that attitude), however, throughout the novel, Hunter’s character really develops as we learn more about his background and childhood, turning him into a really likeable character!


As I mentioned in the introduction of this post, there are graphic sexual scenes and situations throughout the novel.  In the beginning, as I first started reading, I was really hesitant.  I was a little unaware of this and was taken off guard.  I felt like the first maybe 40% of the novel was really focused on Elizabeth’s crush on Hunter.  It definitely gave me the impression, after a party scene at Hunter’s place, that this novel was going to be too focused on the sex and that the plot was going to suffer or be underdeveloped.  It felt like the plot of the story was simply going to be there to link together the sex scenes, which is something I knew I wasn’t going to enjoy.  However, after about halfway through the novel, I really started to get into the plot!  The plot began developing more, as Elizabeth made her way to the brothel for the auction, and more storylines began to emerge.  Overall, this novel turned out to be very interesting with a definite mystery and suspense aspect that kept me wanting to read more!

Writing Style:

Overall, I really enjoyed Ella James’s writing style throughout this book!  I enjoyed the dual perspectives from Elizabeth and Hunter, and I also loved the development of the characters throughout the novel.  Most of all, I enjoyed the suspense created throughout that kept me wanting to read more!

Have you read this book?  Have you read either of the other books in the series?  They seem more like companion novels, and I am trying to decide whether to continued on with the other books!

FTC Disclaimer:
This item was sent to me for review from Mark My Words Book Publicity.  This is not a sponsored post.  All opinions are my own.  No affiliate links were used.

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