Title: Hard Wired (Cyberlove, #3)
Author: Megan Erickson and Santino Hassell
Release Date: February 13, 2017
Page Count: 3661 Kindle locations
Reviewed by: Renée
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
My FallenCon agenda is simple: sit on a couple of panels and let people meet the real me. Jesse Garvy—mod of a famous Twitch channel and, if I ever come out of my shell, future vlogger. I definitely didn’t plan to sleep with a moody tattooed fan-artist, but he’s gorgeous and can’t keep his hands off me. There’s a first time for everything, and my first time with a guy turns out to be the hottest experience of my life.
But the next day, I find out my moody fan-artist is Ian Larsen AKA Cherry—someone I’ve known online for years. And he’d known exactly who I was while shoving me up against that wall. Before I figure out whether to be pissed or flattered, the con ends.
Now we’re back online, and he’s acting like nothing happened. But despite the distance between us, and the way he clings to the safety of his online persona, we made a real connection that night. I don’t plan to let him forget.
Let’s get the obvious out of the way first. This is Hassell and Erickson, so you know the writing is phenomenal, the relationship building is realistic and smooth, and the character development is done perfectly. I would never expect anything less of the dynamic writing duo. And I will read everything they write from now until the end of time.
Hassell in particular, but Erickson as well, writes flawed MCs. I have no problem with this, because I’d much rather a realistic character (and aren’t we all flawed) than the perfect caricatures that some authors write. I need realistic fiction, what can I say?
But Holy Mental Exhaustion Batman. Have you ever met someone, and they are so high maintenance, and it’s literally exhausting to be around them? You know who I mean – that person who immediately forces you to think, “That one’s a lot of work.” Sigh. This was Ian for me. Did I love him? Yeah, I really did. But I dearly love my best friend, too, and I wouldn’t touch her with someone else’s hands if it came to a romantic relationship. So when it came to Ian, and all I learned about why he was the way he was, I wanted to hug him and then slap him. Rinse and repeat.
Jesse was super reliable, all kinds of awesome, and smitten with Ian at first sight. I couldn’t blame him. But he was a doormat, with his parents and with Ian. He finally stood up for himself, thank fuck. Seriously, these two just could not get out of their own way.
Cold-hearted bitch moment – life is hard enough with what happens to you that’s beyond your control. Don’t sabotage your own happiness, dumbass!
So I didn’t love this one as much as the first two. But I still liked the hell out of it. Santino and Megan can really write no wrong. Period. It was still an awesome story and those of you who are fans of this series won’t be disappointed.