Review: If I Were You by Lisa Renee Jones

If I Were You by Lisa Renee Jones
Series: Inside Out (# 1)
Release Date: September 13, 2012
Publisher: Gallery Books
Pages: 357
Source: Book provided by NetGalley for review



When Sara McMillan finds a stack of journals in a storage unit, she’s shocked and enthralled by the erotic life the writer led. Unable to stop reading, she vicariously lives out dark fantasies through Rebecca, the writer–until the terrifying final entry.

Certain something sinister has happened, Sara sets out to discover the facts, immersing herself in Rebecca’s life. Soon she’s working at the art gallery Rebecca worked at and meeting Rebecca’s friends. Finding herself drawn to two dangerously sexy men, the manager of the gallery and a famed artist, Sara realizes she’s going down the same path Rebecca took. But with the promise of her dark needs being met by a man with confident good looks and a desire for control, she’s not sure anything else matters. Just the burn for more.


Review:  If you’ve never had a book that absolutely, positively consumed every waking minute of your life, then it is time for an introduction to Lisa Renee Jones and the Inside Out Series.

If I Were You is the first installment in the multi-volume set. Fortunately, I started the series well after its debut, which meant there was an immediate fix to the inevitable cliffhanger. This is not a quick snack; this is a full-blown gourmet reading experience.

The story line revolves around a school teacher named Sara who is given a stack of journals written by a woman named Rebecca. Within the pages of the journals, Sara gets a peek into the world of BDSM. In an effort to return the journals, Sara traces Rebecca’s steps to an art gallery. Her search opens up a multitude of opportunities as she finds herself trying to solve the puzzle of Rebecca’s whereabouts.

I found the book to be appealing for several different reasons. The most obvious reason is that the story line is fresh and innovative rather than a recycled version of anything I have read in the past. With many books in this genre, the authors have a tendency to be predictable; Lisa Renee Jones does not fall in that category. There was no clear indication of how the story would end, which certainly kept me guessing.

Take a unique story line, add characters that are complex and multi-faceted and then throw in an atmosphere of sexual desire amid a backdrop of fine art, wine and money. Now that is a recipe for success.

Once you open the first pages of the book, it is like getting on a train ride. There may be several stops along the way (other installments), but you commit for the entire ride. Whether you find yourself on Team Merit or Team Compton, you’ll appreciate the intensity generated by the characters. Thanks to such a well-developed story line, the author provides readers with a provocative tale that is oh-so-naughty while at the same time maintaining a high level of quality.

This is one of those books that you need to schedule time for on your reading calendar because it completely pulls you into the story. By the time I finished it (I had to pull out a timer to prevent complete immersion), there was absolutely no way I was going to be stuck with a cliffhanger. This is one book that will turn you Inside Out!