To Be Alone With You by Jodie Slaughter

Tuesday, April 13, 2021

by Jodie Slaughter
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Adult
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: March 7th 2021
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Star Quotient: ★★★★
Kiss Factor: ✷✷✷✷

I never thought that I would enjoy a book set during pandemic times as much as I enjoyed To Be Alone With You or even find it a gentle read, but here we are. My reaction to television shows that acknowledge COVID has been to fast-forward or outright skip episodes, so I was a teensy bit hesitant going into this book. Then I read all the rave reviews about Jodie's writing and I knew I had to give it a try, especially when the book has a cover as gorgeous as this. For a short story, To Be Alone With You packs quite the punch. It's intense, emotional, and I could drown in Jodie Slaughter's writing forever!

To Be Alone With You truly is a work of art depicting my favorite tropes including the age-gap romance, mutual pining, and forced proximity. The way Jodie Slaughter smoothly incorporates these tropes into the story and makes it all cohesive is inspiring. The basic premise is that Naomi is staying at Ira's house when the pandemic breaks out and is forced to remain at his quarters as stay-at-home orders sweep the country. Naomi and Ira have history - she confessed her feelings to him 10 years ago but he turned her down. She has never truly gotten over her feelings for him and now being forced to quarantine with him is threatening to unleash those emotions in her again. There is a softness to both Naomi and Ira's characters that I enjoyed. These are two very realistic characters with their own baggage and I was surprised at how deeply the author was able to delve into their characterizations. Naomi, especially, will be relatable to many readers as she's trying to figure out her life and her career. I also think readers will have no trouble falling for Ira's character. The man is a swoony sculpting god with a very artistic and sensual soul. How can you resist that?

The romance here is so so good. As I said, there's some tension and history between the two, and that chemistry between them only heightens as the two are forced into close quarters. They are both yearning for each other but just a bit stubborn to immediately act on their feelings. And when Naomi agrees to model for Ira, that chemistry reaches scorching-hot levels. The sex in To Be Alone With You is steamy, passionate, and emotional. You can see the two open up to each other through these scenes and I swear it felt like I was a peeping Tom because of how intense they were together. There is also a gentleness to their relationship that's really hard to explain. But as an example, at one point in the book, Ira talks about wanting to tuck Naomi in bed until she felt refreshed because she looked tired and weary. Isn't that so ridiculously swoony? I shipped them hard, friends and I would not be opposed if Jodie Slaughter wrote about Naomi and Ira again in the future.

I've been delving a lot into indie romance in the past year or so and I am of the opinion that self-published romance authors, especially Black romance authors, have mastered the art of a great novella. To Be Alone With You is the perfect example of such a novella. This is only my first book by Jodie Slaughter, but I will most definitely be re-visiting her other books after loving the soothing quality to her prose!

CWs: pandemic

Relationship disclosure: Jodie Slaughter and I are mutuals on social media.

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