Lucas was an overweight guy working in his parents’ bakery. Every day was more of the same until he was pulled into a domestic dispute and impulsively stole a lottery ticket. The ticket won big. Lucas got himself into shape and he and his parents now live on a private island situated between NY and NJ. The first thing Lucas bought with his winnings, however, was $5 million worth of jewels that were used for a discreet piercing.
Phoenix is a thief with a purpose–seduce Lucas, drug him, and steal his dangling jewels. All so that he can get his mother into rehab. Phoenix wasn’t expecting Lucas to be so hot and to also have a heart. He also wasn’t expecting his own heart to get tangled up in his own con game.
Stealing His Dangling Jewels is Cox’s first foray into contemporary and, if you are familiar with his books, you would be aware that he generally takes sci-fi to the erotic extreme. I have read many of his books and have appreciated them for the sheer outrageousness and entertainment value that is a trademark for the author. The style of this particular book didn’t resonate with me as well and overall was just not an enjoyable read.
The book opens with us getting introduced to Lucas and then him winning the lottery. The story then jumps ahead 13 years where we catch up with Lucas on his island and then meet Phoenix. Phoenix had a rough life with a drug-addicted mother and on a special day, Phoenix’s life once again takes a hit. Determined to get his mother into rehab, he devises his plan.
Much of the book takes place on Lucas’ island. There is much page time devoted to the details of the decor of the island, the clothing worn, and the food served, which are all nuances I generally appreciate. However, while this all goes to show how out of his element Phoenix was, for a shorter book it was not advancing the story for me.
The plot itself, however, had many significant details that were overlooked and unaccounted for. Going into detail here would certainly give away too much and, while a few inconsistencies can be overlooked, when they are piled up one on top of the other it really deflated this story for me.
One area Cox has excelled in the past was with the chemistry between his characters. While there was attraction here, it wasn’t sparking off the page for me and the insta-love was completely rushed. The theft was the focal point here, there was a huge buildup to it, and then it was mostly anticlimactic. Later into the story there was Cox’s brand of erotica, sure, but with the plot falling down around the characters, I had lost interest by that point.
This book didn’t meet my expectations in storyline or chemistry, there were a fair number of typos, and from my view, it certainly wasn’t Cox’s strongest offering. If you have followed this author and are really interested in seeing what he does in the contemporary world that would then be the reason to seek this one out.