Anything But Vanilla - Madelynne Ellis I generally enjoyed this story. Probably closer to a 3.5 than a 3, but not enough to make it a 4 for me. I liked the idea of a woman sort of trying to mend a relationship between two men. I also liked that she sort of went with the flow where her sexual exploits were concerned.

We meet Kara and Jack/Zach right off the bat, having a quickie outside a club on Kara's wedding night. Well, it's actually the night she was supposed to get married, but she called off the wedding because she realized she couldn't marry the guy. And since she couldn't marry the guy, she's now technically homeless, since she lived with her fiance. The next morning, Kara's brother offers her his new house on Liddell Island. He thinks it needs to be fixed up since he just bought it, but he's getting ready to go for a movie shoot for several months. Seems like the perfect place for Kara's escape from her fiance and her mother and what has been her life.

Upon arriving on the island, she meets Ric Liddell, from whom Kara's brother purchased the property. He's sexy and charming and, after claiming feudal rights, he has her right there in the study. And then clams up. While Kara is a little taken aback that there's no post-coital snuggling or even flirting, she didn't expect roses and claims of love, so she retires to the guest room (it was too late once they were done for her to go over to the house). Which sort of confuses Ric. He's used to clingy, but that's not Kara.

Soon after, she crosses paths with Zach (as she finally learns his name) again. Sweet Zach who was trying to get Ric out of his system since Ric has an aversion to commitment and Zach really needs something to hold onto. Kara and Zach have definite chemistry, and they end up screwing behind his store.

So begins a sort of process of trying to get Ric to recognize his feelings for Zach even if he doesn't want to admit it. And lots of sex in the process. Oh, and a mysterious Robin who seems a bit obsessed with Ric. And will apparently do anything to get information about him. Sure would have been handy for Kara to have known exactly who Robin was at the first. Could have avoided a lot of hullabaloo!

While it was a generally enjoyable story, for some reason, the steam fell out for me about halfway through the story. Which is ridiculous because that's when it should have started heating up with who and how many the participants were. And I think this was more of a HFN than an HEA and I really wished more had been definitively resolved. But it was generally a good story.