In Light My Fire (Man of the Month #11) by J. Kenner, Griffin Draper, aka Griffin Blaize, has been fortunate so far that his work writing and creating his podcasts and webseries has let him stay out of the limelight for the most part. It’s not easy going out in public since he suffered fourth-degree burns at age twelve and after years of treatments and procedures. Griff’s ever-present hoodie and gloves hide the majority of the scars. But when he spends time with actress Beverly Martin, working on a screenplay together, he finds himself wishing he either dared show her the real him or that he looked like the perfect Hollywood guys she’s used to. Then Beverly makes it clear that she’s interested in Griffin as more than just a friend or a work partner. And although he’d give anything to make that happen, he’s not sure being thrown into her quickly expanding social circle will work for him.
‘He hated that he cared so damn much. Hated the scars. Hated wanting to hid them. Hated knowing that he was now the center of a media shit storm, and that everywhere he went reporters were going to try to get a picture.’
Beverly was pretty much infatuated with Griffin from the first moment she laid eyes on him. Wickedly smart, funny, handsome, and so damn strong after all he’s been through. Who wouldn’t admire the man? But Beverly knows that if she wants a romantic relationship with Griff, she’s going to have to earn his trust and find a way to convince him that he’s more than just the scars he hides. Little by little, she begins to do just that, with things moving nicely from friendly to fantastically steamy. But her budding acting career throws them into the spotlight, making Griffin rethink things. Beverly knows it’s up to her to lay things out in a way that will make him understand what she needs from him. Then it will be up to him whether he’s willing to step outside his comfort zone and give them a real chance at love.
“Yeah, I get that it’s hard and people stare. But being different–even being damaged–isn’t the same as having something wrong with you. From where I sit, you’re pretty damn amazing.”
The term “wounded hero” makes my heart melt. And add in a beauty and the beast theme? Completely sold. That, in a nutshell, was Light My Fire, J. Kenner’s eleventh book in her hot as hell Man of the Month series which this time featured Griffin and Beverly.
‘The kiss was slow and deep and colored by the depth of the attraction they’d been battling. But there was no more battle now–there was only surrender.’
Oh, have I been waiting for Griffin’s book for what seems like forever! Basically ever since we met him in Wicked Grind, his sister Kelsey’s book in Kenner’s Stark World series. I mean, how can you not want to learn more about a talented man who survived fourth-degree burns down one whole side of his body and has become a hit in Hollywood with his podcast, voice work, webseries, and then a screenplay? And it turns out Griffin, aka Mr. November, honestly was a *nice* guy. He was a friend to everyone at The Fix on Sixth, sort of a fixture there, always working on his many projects while at the bar. Talented in her own right, actress Beverly also became a central figure at The Fix with her job emceeing the Calendar Contest–which was highly entertaining in each of the books, I must say.
I think if you’ve been following this series then you’ll be sold on Griffin and Beverly’s story because you’ve read about the loaded glances between them and the sparks they gave off that everyone around them noticed. If you’re reading this as a standalone, then it might seem to move along kind of fast. But either way, Beverly and Griff were a solid couple who had such a cute, sweet (and passionate) thing going on between them. Who knew that he was hiding such a mischievous side? Or that she would be brave enough to stake her claim on him and challenge him to let the world see who he truly was–inside *and* out?
It was a tad frustrating in the middle of the book with Griff doubting himself, worrying about what people would say about his appearance. But I got it. It couldn’t have been easy to think about facing his fears in the world of physical perfection such as Hollywood. But what I did love was Beverly’s acceptance–and adoration–of who Griffin was. I think it will make readers so happy to see the honesty in her actions and emotions, which was exactly what won our hero over.
I can’t believe there’s only one more book to go in the Man of the Month series. *sniffle* But could it be that J. Kenner has saved the best for last? As much as I loved Beverly and Griffin’s heartwarming romance, it sounds like Brent and Elena’s story just might be the icing on the cake.
Publication: June 26th 2018 | Martini & Olive Books | Man of the Month #11
I don’t do relationships.
I’ve lived my life hiding my scars, revealing myself only the in the scripts I write and the characters I voice.
Few people know the real me. I’m too careful. Too afraid of getting burned all over again.
Enter Beverly Martin. A movie star. A woman so beautiful and caring she makes my heart ache. She says she wants me—and her touch almost makes me believe that a girl like her could love a man like me.
But being with her would mean letting the spotlight of fame shine on me, too. And I’m not sure I can do that—even if walking away means losing the woman I love.
Each novel in the series is a STANDALONE romance with a guaranteed HEA!