cover image Talk Dirty to Me

Talk Dirty to Me

Dakota Cassidy. Mira, $7.99 mass market (448p) ISBN 978-0-7783-1619-0

Cassidy (The Accidental Werewolf) turns an implausible premise into a startlingly deep heartstring-tugger. When Dixie Davis returns to Plum Orchard, Ga. for her best friend Landon’s funeral, she finds her hometown still fixated on her mean-girl past. Her ex-fiancé, Caine Donovan, holds an especially big grudge. But Landon has left his phone-sex business to Dixie and Caine—or rather, to whichever one of them proves more talented on the phones. Dixie desperately needs the money; she also needs to prove that she’s no longer a manipulative queen bee. No one, least of all Caine, is making her return easy, and Dixie takes the abuse, thinking it’s her due. Caine has a hard time letting go of his anger, but he can’t help noticing that Dixie isn’t quite the same girl he remembers. With each altercation, Caine learns more about the new Dixie, and Dixie starts to value herself. While their reconciliation is passionate, the most powerful scenes are the ones where Dixie learns that she is worthy of being loved. (May)