Under His Skin
by Sidney Bristol
It’s like Sidney got into my head! One of my fav dream guys is a rock star… I want a guy who can sing. I wanted Brian! I loved how he loved Pandora. *melt* Under His Skin is the story of two damaged people, Pandora and Brian. Some of the scars are on the outside and some are emotional wounds.
I adored Pandora. She likes cheesy musicals and zombies. She’s funny and smart… But she doesn’t see that. She is recovering from a really bad relationship, verbally and physically abusive, and she’s trying to put her life back together. The girls from the So Inked tattoo parlor met her at a low point in her life and gave her a fresh start. But Pandora still doubts her value and her talent as an artist.
♦ Sometimes Pandora wondered how she fit in, besides the common factor that they were all heavily tattooed and working hard to make a place for themselves. Maybe that was the deep-down reason she’d entered the contest. She wanted to show people she was good at something. That she deserved her machines.
She’s the one female on a stage dominated by males. Her ex-fiance/ex-boss is competing too and does his best to tear her down emotionally. He is described so well I could visualize him and hate him for hurting her. Each of the artists get a volunteer to ink. Brian walks onto the stage and to her chair. He’s the only survivor of a plane accident that took his entire band and he wants a tattoo to memorialize them. I could feel his grief, pain and guilt. His agony and confusion at living when everyone else in the crash died. I wanted to hug him.
Pandora recognizes him, not only as the rock star but also as the guy she met, and had a crush on, at the beginning of his career. She is determined to create a fitting tribute to his lost band mates. He has to reveal his scars from the accident and she is able to work some of them into the art.
♦ He wanted a tattoo to remember his band, and to send their memory to rest. The contest faded from her mind. Every day she touched people’s lives, helped them celebrate and commemorate life, but rarely did she have the chance to do a tattoo that meant something to her. Brian might not know it, but she promised herself that this would be one of her best tattoos.
She tells him he has one last chance to “tap out” before she sets to work. <g> He is determined, so she begins to create a beautiful piece of art. While they’re working Brian remembers where he’d seen Pandora before. She was a regret from his early career. A blast from the past. He had always wondered how she was and wished he’d followed up on the possibilities between them. He’s determined to see what can happen now.
I loved Brian. He’s a strong, sexy, vulnerable, alpha male who fights for what he wants. He sees Pandora. He likes who she is and her bravery, spunk, attitude and heart. He has to pursue Pandora because she doubts that he could really want her. I related to some of Pandora’s insecurities. I think most women are very critical of themselves. And her fears felt very real. He’s a ROCK STAR for goodness sake! And she’s a quirky artist who loves zombies and tattoos… What could they have in common besides HOT chemistry? I enjoyed seeing their relationship develop. The two of them have to fight past his grief and loss and her doubt in herself and disbelief that they could build a future. I was eager for them to overcome the obstacles in their path and reach for the hope of love. I cheered as Pandora’s support helped Brian begin to heal and his belief in Pandora let her see herself as valuable.
This story has delicious, intimate scenes between the two of them. *fans self* There’s also danger and mystery because someone is threatening the tattoo parlor and stalking Pandora. There’s humor and a sense of family with the girls who make up the So Inked. I loved Kellie, Autumn and Mary and can’t wait for their stories.
Here are some of my fav lines.
Under His Skin is a story about 2nd and 3rd chances. It’s about hope. It’s about finding something worth fighting for and holding on to it. It’s about believing in yourself. I loved this story and can’t wait for more!
The Queen of Tarts
A man moving on from tragedy… Brian has no intention of allowing the feisty tattoo artist to leave him after one taste. He hasn’t had enough of her inked curves. The packaging might have changed, but Pandy is the woman he hasn’t been able to excise from his memory. He’s ready to put together a new life, one that includes her. But he’s not the only one vying for her attention. Someone else wants her, dead or alive.