Review: ☆If I Were You☆ by Lisa Renee Jones

How it all started…

One day I was a high school teacher on summer break, leading a relatively uneventful but happy life. Or so I told myself. Later, I’d question that, as I would question pretty much everything I knew about me, my relationships, and my desires. It all began when my neighbor thrust a key to a storage unit at me. She’d bought it to make extra money after watching some storage auction show. Now she was on her way to the airport to elope with a man she barely knew, and she needed me to clear out the unit before the lease expired.

Soon, I was standing inside a small room that held the intimate details of another woman’s life, feeling uncomfortable, as if I was invading her privacy. Why had she let these items so neatly packed, possessions that she clearly cared about deeply, be lost at an auction? Driven to find out by some unnamed force, I began to dig, to discover this woman’s life, and yes, read her journals—-dark, erotic journals that I had no business reading. Once I started, I couldn’t stop. I read on obsessively, living out fantasies through her words that I’d never dare experience on my own, compelled by the three men in her life, none of whom had names. I read onward until the last terrifying dark entry left me certain that something had happened to this woman. I had to find her and be sure she was okay.

Before long, I was taking her job for the summer at the art gallery, living her life, and she was nowhere to be found. I was becoming someone I didn’t know. I was becoming her.

The dark, passion it becomes…

Now, I am working at a prestigious gallery, where I have always dreamed of being, and I’ve been delivered to the doorstep of several men, allof which I envision as one I’ve read about in the journal. But there is one man that will call to me, that will awaken me in ways I never believed possible. That man is the ruggedly sexy artist, Chris Merit, who wants to paint me. He is rich and famous, and dark in ways I shouldn’t find intriguing, but I do. I so do. I don’t understand why his dark side appeals to me, but the attraction between us is rich with velvety promises of satisfaction. Chris is dark, and so are his desires, but I cannot turn away. He is damaged beneath his confident good looks and need for control, and in some way, I feel he needs me. I need him.

All I know for certain is that he knows me like I don’t even know me, and he says I know him. Still, I keep asking myself — do I know him? Did he know her, the journal writer, and where is she? And why doesn’t it seem to matter anymore? There is just him and me, and the burn for more.

4 Erotically Suspenseful Stars

Everything I do is calculated and with purpose. You’ll learn that sooner of later.

If I had read this book when it first came out a couple years ago, it would have easily been 5 stars. Having had quite a few books in this genre under my belt, I can’t say that it was an all encompassing 5 star read, but it was definitely a very strong 4 stars. I loved the combination of suspense, romance, and mystery here. I can tell you I was definitely hooked from the first few pages.

It all starts with a diary…

Art major at heart but high school teacher by day Sara leads an ordinary life…more or less. But then everything takes a dramatic turn with a few stolen glimpses of a very erotic journal. After her friend purchases a storage unit that has among its contents, journals. But these are not ordinary journals. These are the journals of one woman’s erotically gripping journey with a man that equal parts terrifies and draws her to him like a magnet.

After reading page after page, Sara finds herself not only gripped by every word and experience of the journal’s owner, Rebecca, but she feels compelled to find out what happened to her. She doesn’t believe a woman would just dissapear and leave such personal items behind. Something must have happened to her, right?

This is how she finds herself standing inside a gallery where Rebecca works and face to face with it’s enigmatic owner, Mark. But it’s another man entirely that captures her attention irrevocably; Chris Merit, playboy and renowned painter.

Within every wall lies a mystery and every word written and said brings questions. Sara soon begins to question everything as her life spirals more and more into a dark pleasure she has never before experienced.

She knows that Mark is hiding something, but what? And Chris is certainly not at all what he seems to be either.

But will her quest for answers lead her to a danger that she doesn’t see coming?

I definitely enjoyed this book, but it really left me with more questions than answers. I’ve very glad that I waited to read when all the books have been released, because that cliffy at the end would have made me stabby kind of angry. As it was, I’m very curious to see how it all ends and the secrets all revealed.

I was glad that Sara wasn’t the typical virgin ingenue that I find in my books lately. Chris was the character that really stole the show for me. Still waters run deep with that one, and you can definitely tell that he hides some dark secrets and I for one can’t wait to find out what they are. I was also very intrigued with Mark and the history that he so obviously has with Chris.

Jumping straight into book 2 now and hopefully getting some answers soon.

**ARC gifted to Dirty Girl Romance blog in exchange for an honest review**

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