About Last Night
About Last Night appealed to me because the hero is a college professor, and I loooooove smart men. Sadly, I should have checked to see if the heroine matched him in the I.Q. department…she didn’t.
Miranda Carter and Colin Jacobs grew up together in a small town in Maine, the best of friends through snowball fights and skinny dipping. After some years away, during which she suffered a serious accident, Miranda has moved back home to start a second career as a dog trainer. But this time around, Colin looks a lot less like just her buddy, and a lot more like the answer to her libido’s prayers. Inspired by a women’s magazine and her post-accident attitude of carpe diem, she decides that if she wants him, she must go and get him. She emails him to stop by her place one night, saying she has a surprise for him (herself, naked), and arranges the best seduction scene she can.
Colin has no idea what Miranda’s up to, but he’s a little nervous. Miranda’s all grown up now, and the teenage feelings he had for her, but never acted on, have grown as well, and he’s still determined not to act on them. But he can’t let a friend down, so he stops by her place on his way home from the college, where he’s a professor. Shocked speechless with amazement and lust when he sees her…plan, he nevertheless puts a stop to things at the last minute. He doesn’t want to be a substitute for his dead brother, Derek, who was once Miranda’s boyfriend, he explains to her. Then he walks out.
On the way home he stops to get some fresh air, wondering if he did the right thing, when he’s run over by a bicyclist and thrown into the river. When he wakes up the next day in the hospital, he can’t remember anything from the previous evening, just that Miranda had asked him to stop by. Once Miranda realizes he’s lost his memory, she decides to rewrite history for him: she tells him he made love to her, then left after they had an argument. Thinking it’s already begun, Colin allows himself to be drawn into a steamy affair.
Now, as Miranda’s friend Penny points out, this relationship is built on a lie. Miranda knows it, and even feels guilty about doing it, but she’s just so sure that she and Colin are right for each other (hey, the hot sex they’re having proves it!) that she allows it to stand uncorrected for a long time. All he needed was a little push, she persuades herself, and this was that push. Uh-huh. If the roles had been reversed, and Colin had lied to Miranda to get her to sleep with him, would that be okay, too?
For his part, Colin is left wishing he could remember more of that evening so he could know why he set aside his doubts about getting involved with Miranda, and why he acted so badly. He even apologizes to Miranda for the argument they never had! He’s hot for her, no question, and has loved her for years, but isn’t she still hung up on her issues about Derek? Doesn’t she really want to be with Derek instead of with Colin? Colin wanted Miranda back in high school, too, but Derek asked her out first, and even now that Derek’s been dead for ten years, Colin still doesn’t want to steal his brother’s girl.
In hindsight, Miranda was right: Colin was never, ever going to act on his attraction to her, not even when she pranced naked in front of him and said she’d wanted him since high school. He was possibly the least assertive romance hero I’ve ever read. Still, he’s a grown man who should be allowed to refuse sex. There’s a secondary romance between Penny and Colin’s friend Travis that mirrors the main story; Travis has been crazy for Penny for years, but she won’t go out with him because she fears she’s too low-class for him. Instead of manipulating her, though, Travis works at winning her over. I much preferred the secondary storyline.
I never got over Miranda’s deception and was disgusted that she manipulated one of her closest and dearest friends just because she wanted to sleep with him. The rest was rather pedestrian; Colin and Miranda had known each other for so long, they were like an old married couple by the middle of the book. Travis and Penny were fun, but nothing seemed to drive this story, not even a sexual harassment charge filed against Colin by one of his students. Even with some Blaze-quality love scenes, this book wasn’t that interesting.