Read with: iBooks for iPad
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Silhouette Intimate Moments, #914
Hero: Cullen Logan
Heroine: Rachel Sinclair
Date of Publication: February 1, 1999
Started On: December 20, 2011
Finished On: December 21, 2011
Fiona Brand is an author whose name gets associated with that of Linda Howard. I have always heard that she has a similar writing style to that of one of my favorite authors of the romance genre and that is one reason why I picked up Cullen’s Bride to sample her writing. And of course a lot of raving reviews of the book by my Goodreads friends had me buying my very first Fiona Brand and indulging in it as soon as I could.
27 year old Rachel Sinclair returns back to the small town of Riverbend after a divorce that had completely shattered with plans to turn her life around. Now the owner of a hair salon, Rachel doesn’t expect much trouble from her sleepy hometown until she experiences otherwise. To her rescue comes 33 year old Cullen Logan, Riverbend’s one time bad boy and outlaw turned military man and still an outcast in his hometown.
The attraction that flares up between Rachel and Cullen is an immediate and a strong one at that, one that Fiona weaves so cleverly throughout the story. Rachel might have grown up with 4 overprotective half brothers who had tried to shield her from the reality that is life. But Rachel is a grown up woman, a woman who is determined in her efforts to live her own life on her own terms. Even when all her survival instincts tells her to flee in the opposite direction whenever she is around Cullen, her heart and other emotions that would like nothing better than to be claimed by the big, tough and a little bit rough around the edges former bad boy wants nothing more than to embrace him heart, body and soul.
Cullen is haunted by the very thought of sullying up the beautiful and dainty Rachel with his touch, his distrust for himself something he has lived with for a long time. But the need that takes a hold of him whenever he runs into Rachel is one that grows in its intensity from one encounter to the next until its very explosive against-the-wall culmination that changes both Cullen and Rachel’s lives forever.
I love it when a book is filled with sexual tension that just grows exponentially until I can barely remember to breathe while reading. And Cullen’s Bride turned out to be a book that delivered extremely well on that aspect from the very sexy Cullen Logan who just seems to fill up the pages with his mere presence. He is what you would call a tortured and tormented hero whose childhood had been nothing but disappointment and his rebellious attitude as a teenager that had stemmed from his frustration with just how meaningless his life had been. The military had been the one place where Cullen had fit in and it had molded him into a more dangerous version of the man he had been, one that is more alluring because even with that iron-clad control of his, nothing can change the fact that underneath all that civilized demeanor lies a man who is wild in his passions for the right woman.
I loved Rachel from the very start. From the way she pets and strokes the huge bear of a man who sends all her emotions into a tailspin to the way she stands up for what she wants and believes in and because Rachel knows when to advance and retreat in her mission to win the love of the one man who is reluctant to do just that made me fall for her big time! She matches Cullen in every way and is exactly what he wants and needs, even protecting him from the unjust voices in her hometown from making him feel unwelcome.
Tying up this story of need, red-hot desire with a reluctant hero and a determined heroine is a tad of suspense that just makes it a well rounded tale of romance very hard to put down. The one thing that the Kindle version of this book could have used though was a good editor; seriously some out of this world editing errors throughout the book that kept hindering with my enjoyment of the story.
If you love a hot, tortured hero who just makes your toes curl, Cullen’s Bride is the book for you. I seriously dare you not to dream that you are Rachel the minute the heat is on!
She pushed the hair away, then began uncoiling and recoiling the silky mass with an unconscious, natural grace. Against the crude background of the alley, she was startlingly feminine and delicate, and with every movement of her arms and hair, her scent wove around Cullen—flowers and freshness and the subtle earthy warmth of woman It sank into him and hardened him with a primitive fierceness he hadn’t experienced since his early teens.
“I’m no Prince Charming,” he admitted flatly. “I’m big and hard, and so hungry it feels like I haven’t had a woman in years. I wouldn’t court you, Rachel, I’d just take you.”
She’d braced herself for a hard, plundering, ravaging assault, but the sweetness of his caress was butterfly-soft, and so beguiling that she ached for him to deepen the pressure. Her hands lifted and settled on the incredible warmth of his chest as she parted her lips and tilted her head to grant him easier access. She was as guilty of misjudging Cullen as everyone else was—he looked every inch an outlaw, but he was kissing her like an angel. A fallen, dangerously beautiful angel.
The passionate fury in every line of her body made Cullen go still. The sudden vision of Rachel locked beneath him, her legs wrapped around his waist, that wild gaze linked passionately with his as he pushed himself inside her, flooded his loins with a throbbing, painful heat. A groan rolled through him, and he broke out in a sweat. Sweet hell
He wanted her. Here. Now.
And God help them both, but she wanted him, too.
Rachel arched, deliberately parting herself more widely over him, inviting him deeper into her body. She heard his intake of air, felt the raw tremor that shook him. Sweat sprang out on his skin, making him glow copper in the half-light. His lips drew back, baring his teeth as he fought for the control she was intent on denying him; then, with a rough sound somewhere between a groan and a purr, his hips jackhammered, and he thrust himself all the way in.
Time stopped. Rachel registered the wild dilation in Cullen’s eyes, her own sense of unreality. She was backed up against a wall, her arms and legs wrapped around Cullen, and he was so deep inside her that her muscles quivered in reaction to his alien heat and hardness.
Rachel’s kiss reached inside him and twined around what passed for his soul. and when she took her mouth from his, she had it all. He knew he loved her with everything he was. Everything that he could be. There would never be another woman for him.
And he could never tell her.