Dec 3, 2014

*Review* Once Upon A Time by S.K. Hartley

I don't believe in fairy tales.
I don't believe in glass slippers.
I don't believe in Prince-Freaking-Charming.
Cinderella can kiss my ass.
I kiss frogs, sometimes even toads.
I've given up on meeting Mr. Right, instead it seems all I meet is Mr. Wrong, Mr. Very-Wrong and even, Mr. Lets-Not-Even-Go-There.
Fairy tales are for morons.
Well that's what I thought until Gabriel Black barged through my life,
turning everything upside down.

He's hot, sexy and a little rough around the edges.

But, there's a dark secret deep inside, I can see it, taste it and smell it.
Now I'm left wondering if he's my Prince Charming or my fairy tale villain.

Will I ride away safely into the night, dreaming of happily ever afters?
Or, will I stumble and fall in ridiculously high heels only meant for women with a death wish?
Once Upon A Time...
I met Gabriel Black.

A modern twist on the legendary fairy tale, Cinderella, but this isn't your average fairy tale.
* Intended for audiences over the age of 18. Contains sexual situations, adult language and one hot alpha male who stops at nothing to get what he wants. The heroine? Well, we'll just call her stubborn... for now. *
I grew up loving fairy tales. I laughingly joke that's why I'm so into romance as an adult. So when I first read the blurb for S.K. Hartley's Once Upon A Time I had a feeling I was going to like the book. Well it turns out that I didn't just like the book, I pretty much loved it. I highly recommend this hilariously dirty and still amazingly sweet take on the modern fairy tale.
Payton Miller used to believe in fairy tales. Walking in on her high school sweetheart going down on another girl during a college party quickly sent the notion of happily ever after's packing. Now Payton believes in hard work and establishing herself as an up and coming PR professional. A night out to celebrate landing her first client leads to a chance encounter with a devastatingly handsome hottie and a mind blowing one night stand. Payton writes it off as a one time escapade until she stumbles into her new clients office and finds a familiar face looking back at her.
Gabriel Black is a man who gets what he wants and right now he wants the sassy girl who rocked his world and instead of giving her name and number, left him with a slap. Payton may not believe in true love, but Gabriel is going to prove that explosive heat can lead to happily ever after's too.
What I Loved: Once Upon A Time is ridiculously fun and an immensely addicting read. S.K. Hartley mixes heavy doses of humor in with scorching hot romance and it made it hard for me to step away from the story (I finished it in one afternoon). Payton is so charming and flawed, and real I couldn't help but fall in love with her character. And Gabriel? Gabriel is just hotness personified. I will take him over some vanilla Disney Prince any day.
What I Didn't Love: Payton's struggle to maintain her distance from Gabriel for the security of her job got a little repetitive by the end of the story. I wanted her to be young and misbehave just a smidge more with her Prince Charming (but that may just be because I needed more naughty Gabriel scenes). 
Favorite Quotes:
“There was no such thing as a happily ever after kind of love. There was no such thing as fairy godmothers or magic pumpkins. Instead, there’s only villains, poisoned apples and a whole load of ugly sisters just waiting to pounce.”

“That voice… did things to me that should have some kind of warning label. WARNING: This voice turns women stupid.”
“This was the kisses of all kisses. The kiss that was described in all of the stupid fairy tales. True love’s first kiss.”

“You can tell me fairy tales are for morons until the damn cows come home but we both know it’s another one of your dreams. You want the fairy tale romance, the love and support of a man who really understands you.”
Once Upon A Time was a fun and refreshing take on fairytale romance. Payton and Gabriel are the perfect ying/yang couple with her sass and his smooth talking ways. I loved them and think you will too.

Happy reading.

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