Series: Sins In The City #2
Genre: Erotic Romance
Author: Cara McKenna
Release Date: June 21, 2016
From the author of Crosstown Crush comes the second sexy novel in the trilogy that explores the illicit pleasures of ménage à trois.
At the edge of thirty, Clare is feeling restless. Even though she’s gainfully employed and pursuing her passion for photography, she can’t shake the feeling that something’s missing. Then she meets Mica. A perfect subject for her portrait exhibit, Mica is sexy, exciting, and everything Clare desires.
One night with the charismatic stranger is all it takes to leave her craving more. But the intensity Mica brings isn’t confined to the bedroom, and Clare wonders if this summer fling might turn more adventurous than she anticipated—especially as a curious energy starts to simmer between the two of them and Mica’s handsome roommate, Vaughn.
As the three-way tension mounts, Mica makes a sinful proposal. It’s an invitation Clare can’t pass up, and an erotic encounter she’ll never be able to forget. Caught up between two irresistible men, Clare is about to get all the excitement she’s been looking for—and then some….
Fuck, he was a maestro. The dirtiest, nastiest, most gifted conductor.
This book needs to come with a warning label.
Warning. Content is extremely hot and may cause severe uncontrollable arousal. Read at your ovaries risk. Author is not responsible for spontaneous ovary CUMbustion, sudden need to hump everything in sight, and consistent molestation of significant others. May also cause hot flashes, squirming, and a mild case of side eye if reading in public.
The one thing I’ve come to rely on from this author is her ability to write characters that are so real, it feels like they’re someone you’d easily meet in your daily life. There’s no artifice, nothing over the top, no crazy drama, no extras that you may find in most other books…and the best thing is it’s not needed. McKenna’s writing is very erotically charged, and yet it’s so much more than pure smut.
…she had no doubt he’d fuck the same way he seemed to move through the world- with perfect, fluid instinct. No hesitation and no shame.
Downtown Devil is not exactly what I’d call a conventional romance, yet it certainly has the romance. It’s a sinful indulgence that’s perfectly crafted with a combination of depth and steam.
Clare is a heroine that’s impossible not to like. She owns what she wants and makes no appologies for it. It’s so rare to read about a woman that truly owns her sexuality and enjoys it without making excuses or shaming. When Clare meets the enigmatic Mica, his sexual lure proves to be too much to resist. But when Mica introduces her to a darker side of her desires, it opens up a whole new door that Clare only envisioned in her fantasies.
Mica’s sexuality was a brushfire; Vaughn’s was a smoldering hearth.
The character development is what takes this from an erotic indulgence to something much more. The characters just feel real. You feel like you truly know them and not only that but you get them.
What Mica wanted, he made you want right back. Made his kinks yours. Made your body, your bed, your desires his territory.
I may have squirmed uncomfortably the entire time reading this, but I enjoyed every page. And while it may not have had crazy drama or angst that I’ve come to expect from most romance I read, it still took a turn I never saw coming and enjoyed thoroughly. It’s anything but predictable.
The sexual chemistry practically crackles off the pages, and the sex? Holy…DAMN.
He rode that sharp edge bordering consent, but every time, she liked what she found on the other side.
I haven’t read the first in this series but I had no problems jumping straight into this one and I’m definitely looking forward to future installments. And while it had the typical Cara McKenna HFN ending, it was immensely satisfying. If you’re looking for something a little bit different and a lot hot, you may just have found your next read.
DGR: Hi Cara! I’m so excited to have you here today and pick your brain on Downtown Devil and all things Sins in The City series.
Can we start with a quick introduction for those that maybe haven’t read your books yet? (which I suggest they rectify right meow!)
CM: Sure! I write steamy romance on through to straight-up erotica, often featuring working-class heroes and kink and the occasional taboo. Sometimes gritty and grimy, sometimes hot and sweet. Boinking, though—always with the boinking.
DGR: Can you tell us a little bit about your Sins In The City series?
CM: It’s a series, but all of the books are standalones. They’re linked by place and theme, but that’s all, so there’s no reading order. Each book follows a different set of protagonists as they embark on three-ways—all with two men and one woman—but the trios are otherwise unique. Crosstown Crush is about a married couple who bring in a second man to satisfy the husband’s unusual kink, Downtown Devil is about a young woman who falls for the world’s hottest barista and winds up going to bed with both him and his roommate, and Midtown Masters (out this winter) is about a pair of lovers-to-friends who do web-camming and decide to invite one of their clients to do more than just watch.
DGR: I love how real all your characters are. It’s like reading about someone you could easily know or meet in your everyday life. There’s no artifice or craziness needed. They are who they are. Is that an intent or something you enjoy writing?
CM: Oh, thank you! I don’t write “real” people intentionally. I mean, I’m glad that I do, but I don’t really think about it. They just show up that way! I like to say I write about ordinary people having extraordinary sex.
DGR: It’s not often I read a good romance with characters of mixed ethnicity. Personally, I wish there were more. What inspired you to write these characters?
CM: It’s a boring answer—I set the books in Pittsburgh, and Pittsburgh’s a pretty diverse city, so it felt both realistic and important to reflect that.
I’ve written a handful of characters of color over the years, but not a ton. I think before I was worried about “getting it wrong.” (I’m blindingly white.) But fear’s never a good reason not to do something, plus there’s room in every race and ethnicity for all types of personalities and experiences, so it’s a baseless worry to begin with. You can only get race wrong by not representing it, I think.
DGR: Personally, I had a very nice visual of a smaller version of Jason Momoa and Idris Elba as I was reading about Mica and Vaughn, the heroes in the book. Did you have a visual of these guys as you were writing them?
CM: Jesus, far be it from me to drive those two muses from your mind! Holy hell, sign me up.
I have a clear visual of Mica in my head, but not based on anyone in particular. Vaughn looks like Aml Ameen in my imagination, but I’m sure readers will picture whoever they like, and that’s awesome.
DGR: If I could describe this book in one word, it’ll be INCENDIARY. If you had to describe it in 5, what would they be?
CM: Oooh, let’s see… Hot, flirty, filthy, modern, fun.
DGR: Did you have a favorite scene to write in Downtown Devil?
CM: I think the most fun scene to write was the one where Mica gets Clare to have phone sex with him at ten a.m. in the middle of H&M.
DGR: You’re not afraid to cross certain boundaries in your writing, which I respect greatly. You always seem to push the envelope with each book. They’re erotic, but there’s so much depth to them…much like Mica. What can you tell us about his character?
CM: Not much more than made it onto the page! Mica was probably the least forthcoming character I’ve ever written. I knew exactly how he felt about everything that was happening, precisely how he’d react, the most basic details of his baggage, but that’s about it. I don’t even know his last name!
DGR: Mica and Vaughn are polar opposites, and yet together they’re the perfect balance. What would you say your favorite thing about each of these guys is?
CM: I like the fantasy that each of them offers. Mica’s that guy that you see in real life who’s simply too sexy to be real—you’d sell your mom’s kidney to somehow get taken home by him. And Vaughn is the other side of the coin. There’s no mystery with him, but sometimes a girl needs that. When the games get exhausting, you want someone you can just collapse against, and that’s its own kind of sexy.
DGR: Let’s not forget Clare. I love a heroine that isn’t ashamed of her sexuality and owns her decisions. If you had to describe Clare in a few words, what would they be?
CM: She’d floundering, but also driven. A little unsure, but mostly confident. A romantic and a realist. In short, she’s full of contradictions. Exactly how I remember feeling when I hit thirty—like you ought to feel like a grown-ass woman by now, yet there’s still so much you need to figure out.
DGR: Your books have some of the hottest sex scenes I’ve ever read. How on earth do you keep finding the inspiration to just keep writing them even hotter?
CM: Oh, thank you! And I have no idea. I was hugely pregnant for the first half of this book and fumbling my way through newborn-ownership with the second. I have no clue how I even finished it, looking back, let alone made it hot! But thank you all the same.
I always try to make sure there’s something edgy and uncomfortable and a little awkward built into a book’s sexual dynamic. I think that conflict is key to sex scenes that light up the page and push the characters to develop and grow. If a sex scene doesn’t change the characters involved in it, it doesn’t belong on the page!
DGR: Anything you’d like to leave the readers with?
CM: I guess just to say that this book’s for everyone who’s ever had a crush on the proverbial hot-barista. Maybe he’s a courier who comes by your office every day, or the bartender who leaves you woozy before your drink’s even mixed, or that blessedly shirtless jogger you always pass on your morning walk. Clare gets to do what most of us never will, and actually go home with that gorgeous stranger—and she winds up getting more than she ever bargained for!