He was someone who belonged in my wildest fantasies instead of a rest stop in the middle of Nebraska.
A sexy, cocky, Australian named Chance was the last person I expected to run into on my cross-country drive.
When my car broke down, we made a deal. Next thing I knew, we were traveling together, spending sexually-tense nights in hotels and taking unplanned detours.
My ordinary road trip turned into the adventure of a lifetime. It was all fun and games until things got intense.
I wanted him, but Chance wouldn’t make a move. I thought he wanted me too, but something was holding him back.
I wasn’t supposed to fall for the cocky bastard, especially when I knew we’d be going our separate ways.
All good things must come to an end, right?
Except our ending was one I didn’t see coming.
Author's note - Cocky Bastard is a full-length standalone novel. Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.
I needed a feel-good book, and this was it! So not what I expected, but so glad it wasn’t all the same!
This will be a dual review. One of the story, and one of the audio.
First, the story!
Simply put, it was great. I really had no idea what the story was about when I picked it up. I had done a promo tour for this back in the fall, and from the teasers, I thought this was going to be a book about a guy who was a playboy and needed to be redeemed. I thought he wouldn’t have any heart, just a “cocky bastard”. But I was wrong. The story was humorous, sexy, tender and had heart. I found the writing engaging and addictive.
The story is given to us in two parts and started out with a bang. I was laughing from the start. Chance, our sexy Aussie, meets Aubrey, our uptight, recently single, heroine, at a quick stop on the way to California. After playing with an Obama bobblehead and breaking it, Chance jokes with her about it. She gets pissy and throws attitude. He pays for the bobblehead and tells her,
❝ There’s some change in the bag. Buy yourself a sense of humor.❞
Yeah, he’s arrogant and she’s nasty and they fit together perfectly. When his motorcycle breaks down in the parking lot and she gets a flat tire, he offers to change her tire for a ride to California. This is when I got excited. A road trip with these two was guaranteed to be fun and funny!
❝What’s C.B. stand for anyway?❞
❝Those are my initials.❞
❝Let me guess…Cocky Bastard?❞
❝See…I would have told you my name, but since you’re so clever, I think I’ll just let you guess.❞
These two had some great adventures, including the goat. I’m not gonna explain that. If you’ve read this, you know what I mean, if not, then read it and tell me you didn’t laugh and swoon.
But, more than just funny, there was romance and surprisingly tender moments. Our C.B. was much more than the package in which he was wrapped. He had a heart of gold. This gets him in trouble, yet he gladly accepts his punishment and like the man he is, he seeks redemption.
This brings us to the second part… the AFTER the road trip. It is told in Chance’s POV, which I loved.
❝Sometimes, it takes losing everything to make you realize what you really need.❞
Seeing him fight for what he wanted and reading his inner thoughts actually made my eyes misty at times. I felt so sorry for him. Poor Aubrey, she was so torn. Having made a life for herself, she didn’t know what she wanted. I did wish she would have chosen a bit sooner or made some moves to show she was making a decision. It might have helped to have had her POV during this time, too. I loved their sexual tension and the build of their love story from beginning to end.
A fan of this writing duo, I will definitely read something from them again.
Audio Review! 1 Star for Audio
I decided to listen to this audio while I was driving home from visiting my daughter. It was a 3.5-hour drive, so I was looking forward to listening to an audiobook. Simply stated, save your money. There were so many issues with the audio, I cannot list them all here. But I will give a few.
1.) The narrators had a difficult time with the dialogue. I think this might be a case of when an audio is not a good option for a book. Too much dialogue forced these narrators to have too many voice and inflection changes that it became seriously annoying!
The female narrator had a lilt at the end of her sentences which made her sound like she was whining. Throw in other character voices and an Australian accent, and I wanted to throw my iPhone out the window.
The male narrator had a naturally deep voice, so when he raised his voice and slowed down his tempo to “sound like a woman” he sounded more like a preteen boy, or demented man, I haven’t yet decided which.
2.) When I got home, I was exhausted and thought I would read the book along with the audio — so basically I just followed along. This was a BIG mistake. What I found were numerous inconsistencies from the audio to the book.
Audio says Chance’s sister is 22 years old. The book reads she’s 28.
Audio says his sister “looked like a woman now”. The book reads “she looked like a mum.”
I wish I could say this was all there was, but that’s not the case. Eventually, I turned off the audio and just read the book. I found I enjoyed it much more that way.
Frequently, I will highlight an audiobook. [link to the others] If you have these books in your Kindle library, Amazon has a COOL program where they will match the books in your Kindle library with discount audibles for those books. When you upgrade your Kindle books with audio, you will be able to switch seamlessly between reading and listening here’s HOW IT WORKS. When you click HERE, Amazon will find your audio upgrades for your Kindle books.
About Penelope Ward
Penelope Ward is a New York Times, USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestselling author. She grew up in Boston with five older brothers and spent most of her twenties as a television news anchor, before switching to a more family-friendly career. She is the proud mother of a beautiful 10-year-old girl with autism and a 9-year-old boy. Penelope and her family reside in Rhode Island.
Vi Keeland is a native New Yorker with three children that occupy most of her free time, which she complains about often, but wouldn’t change for the world. She is a bookworm and has been known to read her kindle at stop lights, while styling her hair, cleaning, walking, during sporting events, and frequently while pretending to work. She is a boring attorney by day, and an exciting smut author by night