Visual Effects by Joyce M. Holmes

If there was a perfect theme song for this book it would have to be “Hot N Cold” by Katy Perry. The main female lead had a tough time admitting to herself whether or not she actually liked her possible love interest.

What’s it About?


Drey Winston is a fierce competitor who enjoys challenging her mind and body. But when it comes to her heart—no one ever gets close enough to compete for it. Having grown up believing she was an unwanted burden to her parents, she prefers to keep her feelings well hidden. Just when her hard-fought goals are finally within reach, the audacious Jesse Devlin comes along to breach her carefully guarded defenses.

After a disastrous marriage early in life, Jesse Devlin prefers strings-free relationships. Confident and outgoing, he gets along well with women, but his natural charm can’t seem to penetrate Drey Winston’s aloofness. While attempting to win her over, he’s the one who ends up losing his heart. Can this commitment-phobic bachelor convince the stubbornly independent woman he loves that his feelings—and hers—are the real deal?

First Impressions

When this book first started, I was absolutely in love with the premise. I can’t particularly say why, and I’m sure it reveals a creepy aspect of my nature, but I am obsessed whenever a couple starts off as enemies. Drey initially dislikes Jesse because she sees him as the ultimate man-whore player. For him, Drey serves as the perfect challenge. Ahhh, it’s just the most sensual form of extended foreplay. As the two try to make amends and become friends the novel once again morphs into another one of my favorite romance themes: friends who become more. However, it’s at this point in the story when they start to take their relationship to the next level that my frustration level kind of reached a boiling point.


Hot and Cold

It sort of seemed to me like Drey was constantly transitioning between whether or not she wanted to pursue a more intimate relationship with Jesse. Every time she would show a little interest in doing so, Jesse would try to either make a move or garner her interest in him further, but this would cause her to pull away. Drey would then call him out for trying to make a move on her, even though she initially wanted him to.


In addition to going hot and cold in her feelings towards Jesse, Drey also sort of latched onto the idea of Jesse as a heartless player who sleeps with a different woman every night. In my opinion, it was kind of an unfounded assumption. Jesse shows on numerous occasions that he has a heart when it comes to family, as well as his feelings for Drey, yet she continues to push him away. Honestly, after a while I was kind of surprised that he kept coming back for her.

The Biggest of Secrets

I must say I loved the continual bickering back and forth between Drey and Jesse. Once they set aside their initial hostility they sort of fall into this sexy and friendly flirtation which is just to die for. It flowed so easily between them that you could tell they had an unlikely, yet honest friendship.


Towards the end of the novel however there is a huge secret which Drey refuses to share with Jesse, and I must say this was when I experienced even more frustration to the point where I had some trouble liking her character. I simply couldn’t understand why she was so hesitant to trust Jesse. Aside from their initial time as enemies, Jesse has shown a lot of caring and concern for Drey. There was sort of an attempt to link her hesitancy at pursuing something with him to her rather frazzled relationship with her parents, but I felt like this explanation never really came full circle. I guess I still don’t know why she pushed him away soooo many times.

*A copy of this book was provided for an honest review*

Series: Nope

Should you read it? This novel really does come together for an adorable ending after a rather rocky journey. If I could have just one wish, it would be that Drey would have chased after Jesse at least once. But alas, he was always the one going after her.

Smut Level: There’s one steamy scene near the middle of the book, but unfortunately Drey immediately pulls away from Jesse afterwards.

Get it on Amazon: Click Here. $5.99 Kindle Price. The Wild Rose Press, Inc. 257 Pages.




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