Misconduct by Penelope Douglas
New American Library
Release Date: December 1, 2015
About the book:
From the New York Times bestselling author of the Fall Away series who never fails to deliver a “powerfully written contemporary love story…”*
Former tennis player Easton Bradbury is trying to be the best teacher she can be, trying to reach her bored students, trying to forget her past. What brought her to this stage in her life isn’t important. She can’t let it be. But now one parent-teacher meeting may be her undoing…
Meeting Tyler Marek for the first time makes it easy for Easton to see why his son is having trouble in school. The man knows how to manage businesses and wealth, not a living, breathing teenage boy. Or a young teacher, for that matter, though he tries to. And yet…there is something about him that draws Easton in—a hint of vulnerability, a flash of attraction, a spark that might burn.
Wanting him is taboo. Needing him is undeniable. And his long-awaited touch will weaken Easton’s resolve—and reveal what should stay hidden…
I want to thank the publisher for providing me with an early paperback copy of Misconduct for an honest review.
Misconduct is a gripping page turner that you will not put down. I was addicted and couldn’t stop reading, I didn’t put it down until the very last page, and it is not a short read at 365 pages but I loved every single one. I thought it was going to be just a sweet, sexy-romantic book but it really is so much more than that. In this book you have a couple who have a large age difference but who both have struggled with a lot of the same issues. They can relate because they both want to keep themselves guarded and like control.
Easton is with her brother Jack at a business party on Mardi Gras. Easton hates these functions but loves her brother and wants to support him. Jack tells her to mingle and have fun. She then meets a man who keeps her on her toes and intrigues her. Their conversation is not boring and there is a sense of mystery in not knowing who each other is. Easton is also wearing a mask so that adds to the intrigue. The last thing Easton allows in her life is anything she can’t control, so no relationships but she still has needs.
They soon escape to the balcony where the chemistry ignites, and he asks her name. Easton tells him her first name but not her last. She can tell he has money and thinks he is a lawyer. He carries himself as a powerful man in the clothes he has and the way he conducts himself. She assures him that she is not after that. Soon they are interrupted and she finds out who he is. He is Tyler Marek a politician, not a lawyer like she thought, and that he wants to run for senate. She leaves as soon as she can.
Six months has gone by, now Easton has just graduated college and is starting a job at a local private school. She sets up an open house to meet all the parents before the year starts and give them the lesson plan. She soon notices that all the other parents have left but there is still one boy waiting. Easton asks him where his parents are. Christian tells her with a lot of attitude that his dad is running late from business but is meeting him there.
Soon Christian’s father shows up and Easton can’t believe what she is being dealt. His father is Tyler. Tyler asks if he knows her and says she seems familiar. Easton then remembers that he doesn’t know her last name and she was wearing a mask. She is so glad for this because the last thing she needs is that complication with her new job. The teacher next door calls in using her first name, Tyler hears it, shuts the door, and all bets are off.
She tells him she can’t do this, she is Christian’s teacher and that he needs to worry about his son. Tyler knows he has not been the best father but he is trying to change that and forge a relationship with his son. He doesn’t like it that anyone thinks that they know anything about his relationship with Christian.
They both walk away but keep finding ways to get pulled back to each other even if it is explosive. He questions her teaching and tries to go above her and she goes to his office and tells him off. The fireworks. WOW!!!
“It’s not often I let people speak to me the way I let you,” He confessed. “Nor should I enjoy it as much as I do.“
This only covers a quarter of the book so much more happens. What happened in Easton’s past to make her scared so that she feels she has to have control? Will Easton and Tyler risk everything to be together or will they risk each other for everything else? Is there a way to have it all or do sacrifices have to be made? You have to find out in this incredibly moving emotional book.
Misconduct was very unpredictable which I really liked, you thought you were going to get one thing and then got more. The family dynamics in this book, well they were so raw and real. I only wanted a little more from the epilogue since it is a standalone, other than that amazing. The chemistry and twists in Misconduct made me just fall for Penelope’s writing and I can’t wait to read more from her. I am giving this book 4.5 out of 5 stars.
Attendees laughed and danced inside, while the two of us, alone in the cold night with only a few other people lounging around the large balcony, carried on with our stolen moment.
“I should really get back, though,” I suggested, pulling away.
My brother was no doubt looking for me.
But he reached out and grabbed my hand, narrowing his eyes. “Not yet,” he urged, looking behind me toward the ballroom.
I stopped, not making a move to take away my hand.
He stood in front of me, his chest nearly touching mine.
“You’re right,” he whispered, his breath falling over me. “I don’t really like a lot of those people, and they don’t really know me.” His voice turned hoarse. “But I like you. I’m not ready to say good night yet.”
I swallowed, hearing the soft trickle of a slow jazz tune drifting out from the ballroom.
“Dance with me,” he commanded.
He didn’t wait for a response.
Sliding a hand around my waist, he guided me in, and I sucked in a sharp breath, my body meeting his for the first time.
Raising my arms, I put my right hand on his shoulder and my left hand in his as I let him lead me in a small circle, remaining in our own small, private space. Chills broke out down my arms, but I didn’t think he noticed.
I let my eyes fall closed for a moment, not understanding what made him feel so good. My hands tingled and my legs felt weak.
There was rarely ever a time when I felt drawn to a man. I’d felt attraction and passion, and I’d enjoyed sex, but I’d never opened myself up to someone long enough to connect.
Now I found myself not wanting this evening to end any way other than in his arms.
That’s where I wanted this to go. I didn’t need his name, what he did for a living, or his family history. I just wanted to be close to someone and feel good, and maybe that would be enough to satisfy me for the next few months until I needed someone again.
Shaking my head slightly, I tried to clear my thoughts.
Enough, Easton. He was good-looking and interesting, but I didn’t see anything in him that I hadn’t seen in any other man.
He wasn’t special.
Looking up, I asked, “You’re not enjoying the party, so what would you rather be doing right now?”
He shot me a small, sexy smile. “I like what I’m doing right now.”
I rolled my eyes, covering up how much I also liked him holding me close. “I mean, if not this?”
He twisted his lips, looking me over like he was thinking. “I’d be working, I guess,” he answered. “I work a lot.”
So he’d rather be doing work than schmoozing and drinking at a Mardi Gras ball? I dipped my head, breaking out in a laugh.
“What?” He pinched his eyebrows together.
I met his eyes, seeing the confusion. “You prefer work,” I stated. “I can relate to that.”
He nodded. “My work challenges me, but it’s also predictable. I like that,” he admitted. “I don’t like surprises.”
I instantly slowed, nearly stopping our dance.
I said the same thing all the time. I never liked surprises.
“Everything else outside of work is unpredictable,” I added for him. “It’s hard to control.”
He cocked his head and brought his hand up to my face, running his thumb along my cheek.
“Yeah,” he mused, leaning in while his hand circled the back of my neck possessively. “But there are times,” he said softly, “when I like to lose control.”
I closed my eyes. Jesus.
“What’s your last name?” he asked.
I opened my eyes, blinking. My last name? I had kind of liked keeping specifics off the table. I didn’t even know his first name yet.
“Easton?” he pressed.
I narrowed my eyes. “Why do you want to know that?”
He stepped forward, charging me slowly and pushing me backward. I had to keep backing up so as not to fall. “Because I intend on getting to know you,” he said. It sounded like a threat.
“Because I like talking to you,” he shot back, his voice thick with a laugh he was holding in.
I hit the wall behind me and stopped, glancing over at the people sitting at the table across the balcony.
He closed the remaining distance between us and dipped down until his face was a couple of inches from mine.
I locked my hands behind my back, instinctively tapping the wall with my fingers and counting in my head. One, two, three—
“Do you like me?” He cut me off, a playful tilt to his lips.
I couldn’t keep the smile off my face. I turned my head, but I knew he saw it anyway.
“I don’t know,” I answered casually. “You might be too much of a gentleman.”
The corner of his lips curled, looking sinister, and he threaded his hand around the back of my neck and through my hair, gripping my waist with the other and pressing his body to mine.
“Which means I’m still a man, only with more skill,” he whispered against my lips, making my breath shake. “And there’s only one place I won’t be careful with you.”
About the author:
Penelope Douglas is the author of the New York Times bestselling Fall Away series. She has her Masters of Science in Education from Loyola University in New Orleans and she currently lives in Las Vegas with her family.
3 Penelope Douglas Prizepacks!
(3) Winners will receive 5 books each.
Bully, Until You, Rival, Falling Away, and Misconduct!
U.S. residents only.