My Rating: 5/5 Stars
Without any doubt, Penelope Ward is in my top 5 book authors. She is brilliant and I’ve devoured her books one by one, without finding similarities, which is FANTASTIC how original she is.
“Neighbor Dearest” is a pleasant way of spending a lazy weekend reading and thinking that PERFECTION exists in this world. Once meeting Damien, you will be hooked and he will totally ruin you for any other book-boyfriends for a while.
The story follows Chelsea, Elec’s ex from Stepbrother Dearest. After their split, Chelsea is left brokenhearted and needs some time on her own. Leaving all memories of Elec behind, she moves in a new apartment, only to meet her noisy neighbor, Damien. He is an artist who does spray paint art and works on a mural on the property. She soon learns that Damien is in fact the owner of the condo, having a lot on cliches with him regarding noise and improper conditions of the apartment. She even has a whole in her wall that connects to Damien’s apartment. Secretly, he listens to Chelsea’s therapy sessions over the breakup had with Elec, and gives some pieces of advice as well. From this on, they form a close bond, becoming friends. Their encounters are frequently and after the time spend together, Chelsea is more and more attracted to Damien.
The sexual tension is huge, you can feel it in every page of the book, but Damien has some secrets of his own that prevent him from getting closer to her and expressing his true feelings.
The love story between Chelsea and Damien is intense. Penelope has a true way with words, especially in describing the love scenes. They are hot, sensual and with just the right amount of passion that you won’t forget anytime soon.
I liked Chelsea a lot. She is smart and funny, looking for a new start and hoping to heal her wounds that were inflicted after Elec dumped her. She is seriously heartbroken by the beginning of the book, and I really felt sorry for her. Kind of made me not like Elec so much, despite reading the first installment and knowing very well how things were. She seeks Damien company and advice, seeing him as a true friend. In the same time she is attracted to him, but fights to keep her feelings tempered, because another disillusion might be the end of her. Damien is my perfectly imperfect guy: smart, funny, gorgeous but guarded. It is clear that he is also attracted to Chelsea, but something is not letting him have a relationship with her. He uses their friendship status to be near her, also giving kind of mixed signals now and then.
After knowing why he back up all the time, I believe that I loved him even more. It was a totally serious reason from my point of view and I enjoyed seeing another side of Chelsea, one that fights for the love of her life. Shortly after that, Chelsea’s priority change, making Damien her present and future and leaving Elec in the past.
They shine bright like a diamond when they are near one another, and without even knowing, are the perfect couple, needing each other in order to heal older wounds and have a new beginning, full of love and trust.
Another element well developed in the book is the humor, almost like a trademark of Penelope’s. The dialogues are funny, smart and witty, being impossible not to become addicted to this type of writing. They are so well placed, so well written that you will be hooked in seconds. She is truly amazing and talented.
I especially liked the reference everybody did between Damien’s name and the Antichrist child from the Omen Movie. Not to mention his middle name, but I will let you discover that on your own.
The plot was not boring, always had its interesting moments, not for a moment dull or long. It was mixed with secondary characters that were a hit for me. Looking forward to Jade and Tyler’s story because I am certain their next. I can feel something is cooking in there and can’t wait to read about them. The double D’s were my favorite and I couldn’t picture the book without them, they just fit in perfectly.
I totally recommend this book for its wonderful writer and for its unique style of telling a love story. A smart mixture of love, tenderness, comical situations and steamy scenes, this book will keep you glue to it until the last word, really until the LAST one:)
“P.S. You were great in The Omen”