WHY I READ IT
I became a huge fan of Alice Tribue’s after being blown away by Unspeakable Truths. I jumped at the chance to read Contractual early. The blurb just hooked me and the teasers had me craving this book!
WHAT I RATED IT
WHAT IT’S ABOUT
They told me I’d be an escort; they made it sound so easy.
Really I’m just a high priced call girl.
Desperation brought me to this and it led me to him, my one and only client.
Hating him is easy, he reminds me of my shame.
Wanting him is wrong it fills me with guilt.
Loving him is a losing battle yet it’s become everything.
A gift and a curse, he consumes my every thought and I’d rather play my part in his bed than to spend one day without him.
Jackson Stone is, plain and simple, as a*s. He’s cocky, arrogant and selfish. He has spent his years building up an impenetrable wall and no one is getting in. When he grows tired of his hook-ups wanting more from him, he contacts a friend who owns an escort service. No-strings attached sex is all he wants… with a contact to prove it.
“I come back, Cecily, because despite the fact that you are just like every other gold digger I’ve ever met, you suck the best co*k and always take it exactly how I want to give it to you. And if the reason you do that is because you think that it will make one day want you to stay for more than just a few hours, then by all means keep believing that because if you should someday get a clue, I would miss the feel of your expert mouth on my d*ck.”
Sage Turner has officially hit rock bottom. She interviews for a position as a masseuse… but it turns out she is expected to do a lot more than rub someone’s back. Not ready to sleep with someone for money, she walks away, only to pick up the phone a month later when she is fired from her job and about to be evicted.
The first meeting between Jackson and Sage, to put it simply, does not go well.. Sage’s reaction to how Jackson treats her just breaks my heart. This is the last place she wants to be, but it’s here or the street for her.
“My legs give way and I collapse to the floor. I rest my head in my arms on the mattress above me and let go, wracking sobs overtake my entire body. What have I done?”
For Jackson, something about Sage sets off a spark in him, and he finds himself having thoughts and feelings towards her that are foreign to him and not something that he is ready to handle. His feelings are heading towards protective and not only has he never felt like that, he has no desire to. Jackson is cold and unfeeling and has no use for another woman to use him for his money.
Sage just rips your heart out time and time again. Every time she thinks she takes a step forward with Jackson, he reminds her who she is and what she is. He just says the nastiest words to her and I feel them cut through me each time. I start to suspect that Jackson says those things to remind himself what Sage is to him and stop himself from his feelings to grow deeper. But once they start to spend more and more time together, fighting their feelings becomes more and more difficult. Sage is not waiting for her white knight and watching her accept Jackson back over and over, no matter how many times he hurts her was hard to stomach.
“He treated me like the way any man would treat a woman who he just paid for sex. Like she means nothing, like she is nothing, and in that hotel room, in that overpriced hotel in New York City, that’s exactly what I felt like…nothing.”
There was not one part of this book that I could relate to on a personal level, but the writing is so flawless, so impeccable, that I was Sage. I felt each emotion as she did. I cringed when Jackson spouted his often used hateful words. I experienced her highs and lows. As much as I wanted Sage to have a happily ever after, I also wanted her to give Jackson his due. Seriously… I’ll be hard pressed to find a male character who had to work harder for my approval. Both of these characters are so deeply flawed and come from such horrible backgrounds. One of them will do anything in her power to rise above it while the other lets it control his life. This story was so much more than a play in Pretty Women. Yes, this was an unconventional way for two people to come together, but maybe they are the only two people who can save each other. Alice Tribue is fast becoming one of my favorite authors.