REVIEW: No Reservations by Lilly Cain

(Bad Girls Know #1)
by Lilly Cain

PUBLISHER: Carina Press
RELEASE DATE: 29th October 2012
FORMAT: Ebook, 44 pages
GENRE: Contemporary Erotic Romance

Travis Morgan is thrilled to encounter the one woman who’s never failed to get his blood pumping. Seeing Alicia Davis again brings it all back: their fierce academic rivalry, and the fact that he never followed through on his erotic fantasies about her.

Alicia can’t resist Travis’s smoldering sensuality–or the opportunity to finally bed the man who starred in so many of her lustful daydreams in college. Unable to avoid the temptation to best Travis one more time, Alicia plans to submit to one night of pure pleasure and then leave Travis empty-handed and craving more. When Travis wakes up and realizes Alicia’s played him, the gloves are off, and the game heats up as they each try to emerge on top–by whatever means necessary… (Goodreads)


No Reservations is the sort of read that is very like an al a cart meal. It only gives you some mild satisfaction, but ultimately you are still hungry for more. Both can be linked to the size (or in case of the book, length) that is on offer. At 44 pages No Reservations is short read, and by short read, I mean I finished it before I got to work in the morning.

The trouble with this book is the fact you get no real feeling for either character. We are told that Travis and Alicia have a troubled history when they were at college. This was partially due to the competitive nature of their relationship and partially down to the belief that Travis spurned her invite for a meal. Both go on to live their lives and never really think about each other.

Years later, due to chance and circumstance Travis needs to get back to Boston for a boys weekend. Unfortunately, he has left making arrangements to the very last minute and can’t get a flight home. He then calls up Alicia’s company and she agrees to help him out, though at the time she doesn’t really know who he is. Its only when she meets him at the airport to hand over the tickets does the penny drop.

To fully understand what happens next, you need to get a bit of an insight into Alicia’s life post college. She is now divorced after her jerk of a husband cheated on her and was constantly undermining her. Alicia decides, in very poor judgement, to exact her revenge on both Travis and in a way her ex by sleeping with Travis, but renaging on giving him his ticket.

Travis tracks her down to an art exhibiton which he gave her the tickets to in exchange for the flight. After some discussion, they end up back at Alicia’s place for some between the sheets gymnastics. On the morning after the night before, Travis notices in a picture that she has a wedding ring. Due to some code of honour, he doesn’t date or fool around with already married women. This is due to the fact his ex-fiancée was already married. He leaves Alicia alone after finding this out.

Now here is where it gets a bit hazy for I can’t recollect how they met back up again in order to clear things up and make a go at things. This is a big failing of the book for it seems to go at a breakneck speed. Details are thrown in, in an effort to show why these two characters are the way they are.

Both come across as almost childish at times in the way they act and for once, in my opinion the female comes off worse than the male. Alicia has a huge chip on her shoulder and the fact that she decides to enact her revenge on Travis for apart sins of his sex is silly.

The saving grace of this book is the bedroom scenes. Man o man do they sizzle with so much heat and spice that I literally came down with a fever. Cain writes in such a way that you could almost be in the scene yourself. A sign of a good writer is when you can clearly picture the scene without turning the page in order to make more sense of it. (Yes, I have done that once with a book when I was confused about who is where and which part goes into which orifice, only to realise that there are no pictures in the book)


The book could have done with having the background of the characters fleshed out a bit better, especially with their time at college. I think then you would have a better understanding of the animosity that Alicia had for Travis. I understand that this could be classed as a novella, but even then it lacks any real hook apart from the bedroom scenes. However, saying that I would probably pick up a full length novel by the author to see if she could produce something that has a more fleshed out characters and a better plotline.


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A self confessed geek who likes all things paranormal (except zombies as they scare her) Genre wise she likes horror, paranormal romance, urban fantasy and historical fiction. [Gemma no longer reviews for BCC]


Laura February 2, 2013 at 6:52 pm

This is the problem I often have with novellas there’s just not enough time for the story to develop properly


Gemma February 4, 2013 at 3:13 pm

I think that the fact that it was only 44 pages really limited it.


Jen Greyson February 3, 2013 at 6:27 pm

Hmm. That’s too bad, but I think romances are super tough to accomplish as a short story…there’s just not enough space to really create tension or a relationship.


Gemma February 4, 2013 at 3:14 pm

That was the main issue with this one. Just not enough time to build the tension or the relationship. The bedroom scenes did sizzle though


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