Book Review: Afraid To Love

Posted on May 1, 2014 by Nadene @ Totally Addicted to Reading in Reviews / 0 Comments

Learning to trust again is the hardest thing to do.

Ana Perrot is crazy. Crazy about sex, and pleasing her lovers. She is passionate and as fiery as her red hair. She eats men like air. She is also willing to submit to any man anywhere. But outside of the bedroom, Ana is an independent woman who lives her own life by her own rules. And, her biggest rule . . . she won’t do long term relationships. She refuses to fall in love . . . again.

Teddy O’Rourke is an easy going, laid back Tampa bartender at one of the most popular clubs in town. All about family and enjoying life including all the women that throw themselves at his feet, he has no problems finding willing partners. His football player body, his personality, his warm hazel eyes all ooze sex appeal. He is the perfect package in every way for a woman like Ana, well for any woman really. An ex-cop, his instincts tell him Ana is one hell of a woman, but she is wounded and scarred by the past. What are her secrets? What will make her trust him? Why is she so afraid to love?

A one night stand, that is full of surprises for Teddy, opens his eyes to new possibilities. A single man enjoying his freedom meets his match in the bedroom, and elsewhere. He sees a future with Ana, a counselor for troubled youth. But could she be persuaded to fall . . . and to trust again?

Afraid To Love

MJ Nightingale

After reading Fire In His Eyes I was eager to read Ana’s story Afraid to Love. I was introduced to her in Fire In His Eyes and I was quite intrigued by her. She was intent on helping her sister to have a fulfilling love life, but she had no interest in having a committed relationship. She has no problems attracting men, but she was more interested in satisfying her sexual needs. Her actions stemmed from an experience she had had when she was in her twenties.
Ana was the type of woman who knew what she wanted and was not afraid to go after it. She is strong and independent, but was not afraid to be submissive when it came to sex. She like it when her lover takes control in the bedroom. It was easy to connect with her as underneath the tough exterior is a woman who has experienced a lot of pain.
One fateful night Teddy O’ Rourke walks into her life and things will never be the same for her. She started to experience things that she did not want to. Teddy wanted more from her than she was willing to give. He knew she was hiding something, but he had no intention of giving up on her. It was clear that he too had secrets that he was not so keen on divulging, I loved Teddy, he is quite charming, sweet and sensitive. He was not afraid to express his feelings.
Afraid to Love is a story that tugs on your emotions. It made me laugh and it also had me shedding some unexpected tears. It’s been a while since I have read a book that made me cry. I could not get enough of Ana and Teddy. This is a story that pulls you in and stays with you for days, even after it has been completed. 
I enjoyed this book so much that I would recommend it to readers who love contemporary romance that is hot and sizzling.

Purchase Links

Excerpt One

“My name is Ana,” she said coolly as she leaned in and nodded in answer to his question, batting her eyelashes just a tad. He smiled.  Teeth white, and straight.
He knew her sudden bashfulness was a ploy.  He knew the game.  “What will it be, Ana?”  He said her name slowly, drawing out each sound, each letter.
“Let me have Sex on the Beach,” she answered.  Then looking him straight in the eye. “I like sex on the beach,” she added.
He smiled at her again, and without looking at the ingredients began to make her drink. “Too sandy,” he chuckled, and then turned to go get the remaining ingredients to fill her order.
She watched his behind as he worked facing the wall of liquor behind him, and heat pooled in her loins.  This man was truly a fine specimen.  Thirty, she thought. And that was okay with her.  She was thirty-four, so the age difference wasn’t too bad.  She liked them a little younger anyway.  They were easier to control and more readily agreed to her conditions, her rules.
Before she was prepared for it, he turned back towards her, and the sight of him almost took her breath away.  He gave her one of his dazzling smiles, revealing dimples in his cheek, and a slight cleft in his chin.  Bar towel in one hand, he wiped the counter in front of her again.  Next, he placed a napkin down in front of her, and placed her drink on it.  Her mouth had suddenly gone dry. She leaned in to take a sip of the refreshing cocktail, not picking up the glass, but leaning low to give him a better view of her cleavage.  She wanted to turn the tables back to her side again, regain control.  She was glad she had worn this dress; it was red.  The green amulet swinging enticingly between her breasts was small enough to not distract from the view she was offering.  She felt his eyes on her like lasers.
“Delicious,” she purred licking her lips then straightened up suddenly.  She caught him ogling her breasts like a school boy, and he blushed.  Gotcha, she thought as she watched his Adam’s apple bob while he swallowed, hard.
“So the beach is too sandy for you. How about a big bed?” she asked innocently, but then leaned in again to take another sip.  She kept her head tilted to the side not breaking eye contact.  There was definite electricity.


Book Trailer

Ten fun facts about the author

1.)  I am a great cook.
2.)  I have travelled to 18 different countries.
3.)  I enjoy horse back riding.
4.)  I drink coffee all day long.
5.)  I wanted to be a stand up comedian.
6.)  I have twin sons.  My husband and I went through hell and back to have them, both having infertility issues.  (Subplot in one of my books).
7.)  I am Canadian and my husband is a New Yorker.
8.) My grandmother who is 90 teaches me how to use the computer.
9.) I teach high school.
10.)  I wish I didn’t have to wear a bra.  I’m stacked. (You don’t have to include the last statement, haha.  Nah, go ahead and include it.  I am sure many women can relate.)

Fire In His Eyes (Book #1)

Purchase Links

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU | B&N


When I received this book in exchange for my honest opinion, I was not sure what to expect as this was my first time reading M.J. Nightingale’s work. Fire in His Eyes got my attention at the very beginning. It started out with the female protagonist, Monica, having a traumatic experience at age seventeen that would have a devastating effect on her life.
Fast forward thirteen years later we see Monica being encouraged by her sister to get her groove on. She had lived a life that has been void of passion, however, all this was would change the night she met Victor.
Initially I liked Victor but after a while he became quite tiresome. My respect for him went down a notch when, after being intimate with Monica he told her that he not looking for a committed relationship and that she should not fall in love with him. I thought he was selfish. It was obvious that he had secrets, which he was not willing to share with Monica. He did not want her to fall in love with him, but then he did not want her to be involved with anyone else. He keeps saying that he does not want to hurt her which I thought was ironic as that was exactly what he was doing. I found him to be indecisive as it was clear that he did not know what he wants. 
At first it was easy to emphatize with Monica based on what happened to her as a teenager. Over the years with the help of counselling she was able to move past the pain and trauma. However, her naivete and weakness revealed itself when she met Victor. I was quite taken aback that she had been willing at first to have unprotected sex with a man whom she had just met, especially in light of what she had been through in the past. However, she redeemed herself when she told him she had changed her mind. She allowed Victor to have too much control over and allowed him to treat her like his regular booty call. She was so in love that she was willing to accept any treatment from him. There were times when I wished I could hold Monica and try and shake some sense into her. Well, it was a relief when these two finally came to their senses.
The love scenes were hot and sizzling which makes this book suitable for readers 18 and over.

This may not have been one of my favorite reads for 2014 but it was ok.

About the Author

MJ Nightingale has spent over two decades teaching students how to write, and now she is doing it herself.  Originally from Canada, she graduated from University with her Bachelor of Arts and then went on to get her Bachelor of Education Degree in Secondary Education. 
            Reading has been a part of her life since she was a child. She has been an avid lover of classical English and American literature, but romance has always held a special place in her heart.  She devours historical romance novels all summer long, and any type of fiction; thrillers, crime, suspense, and drama.  This is her second published book, and she has one more book, Afraid to Hope, coming out in in the summer of 2014.  All three, Fire In His Eyes, Afraid to Love and Afraid to Hope, are erotic romance standalone novels and are part of her Secrets & Seduction Series.
            She is also working on a new series The Bounty Hunters for 2015.
            She currently lives in Florida, where she continues to teach, with her wonderful husband of nine years, and her sons.  She plans on pursuing her writing career full time very soon. 

Contact the Author

**MJ Nightingale would love to hear from her readers.  She can be reached at
And you can also visit her author page on Facebook at:  to see what is coming next by MJ Nightingale.

Nadene @ Totally Addicted to Reading
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