I am a slut. No worries. I’ve come to terms with it, and you will too. I’m not one of those girls who thinks she’s too plain, too fat, too skinny, too shy … no, I don’t have that kind of luck. I’m the girl who knows she’s just right for everyone. — Denver
A reputation as a manwhore–with–a–heart–of–gold tends to precede me. But, I don’t do girls with issues, that is until this girl. It’s this girl I want to fix. This girl I want to protect. And maybe … more. — Ransom
Being in love with the same girl your entire life isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. She uses me in every way imaginable. How does she see me? I am her perpetual one-night stand. No strings, no attachments. Just mind-numbing sex … for her anyway. — Greer
Feeling like the life is being choked out of her in the small town of Anaconda, Montana, Denver Dempsey craves the escape that college offers … even if that means leaving her “best friend with benefits” and looking for a new way to forget. Thinking she’s found the perfect hookup in Ransom, Denver’s outlook on college is bright. That is, until Greer shows up looking for a second chance, and Ransom’s interest turns to hatred.
Love. Hate. Triangle.
Who’s using who?
I never thought writing a review for a book that I adore and love could be so difficult. But I have to admit, I have had a lot of problems coming up with what I want to talk about first when it comes to Used and I have to be careful so as not to spoil this book for anyone reading the review. Out of all of the books I have read, this one just stands apart. Yes, there is a hot guy or several and yes there is drama. Denver has more drama in her life than I care to imagine and in those regards it is like several books I have read. But the story sets Used apart from the others. It can turn a city girl into a cowgirl with the turn of the page and make every cowboy you see turn into a Greer or Ransom in the blink of an eye. You suddenly will start seeing big black trucks and wondering who is behind the wheel and some of you will even have to Google what an eight track tape is…which of course will completely break my heart and point out once again how old I am… but if the track fits the scene, you gotta turn it up and ride with it!
So did all of that happen for me? Well, yes and no. I am a small town mountain girl so horses and cows really were nothing new to me; I’ve got several pairs of cowboy boots and hats to match. I think if I dig into storage, I could probably produce an eight track tape, but finding that black truck with the stereo to play it on may be a bit more difficult. I didn’t have to look up pole bending and I tend to think of myself as a small town girl trapped in the big city and cowboy butts do indeed drive me nuts. What Used did for me was something different, it took something I dearly love and turned it into an amazing ride.
Denver and Greer have grown up together. They know everything there is to know about each other. They are best friends and best friends with benefits. But Denver knows that she can never be what Greer deserves. She can’t do a relationship. But that’s the thing; Greer is so in love with Denver that it doesn’t seem feasible to him to not win over her heart. That’s why Denver has chosen to go to a different college than Greer. She wants him to be able to find what she can never be. But Greer is not giving up that easily. That’s why he follows her to school but she doesn’t know it until she is there and getting ready for her fresh start. A new beginning to become the person she wants to be without the reputation she has always held following her.
So one of the first people she meets when she gets to college is this amazing bull rider by the name of Ransom… The attraction is there between the two of them, but he is a man-whore. But really is Denver any better being a slut? There lies the problem… Ransom doesn’t want any part of a woman like her… but that attraction is there and no matter how much he wants to be away from it, it isn’t going anywhere. So wait… so Greer is in love with Denver who is attracted to Ransom… oh my…
Let’s just look at these characters a little closer. Denver is smart, witty, full of sass and incredibly talented. She has a gift on a horse that few possess and she excels at it. She doesn’t know just how special she really is. She knows she is good at what she does, but that is all on the outside. Denver is so broken on the inside, but growing up in her environment, I think any of us would be broken. The daughter of a woman who flits from husband to husband is trying enough for any girl, but when the husbands and boyfriends want so much more from Denver, it is just crazy. It isn’t hard to see how she has ended up the way she has, so incredibly damaged.
Greer… ah Greer… he is the amazing best friend and neighbor of Denver. He will do anything for her and he knows that she is the one for him. Greer is sensitive to the environment that she has been subject to. He knows about the life she was raised in and he wants to do everything for her. She is his world and when he decides not to go to be a calf-roper at Wyoming for college and instead follows Denver to MSU, he knows where his heart is. But the difficult part for him is going to be proving that he can be everything she needs.
Then there’s Ransom… Ransom knows what it is like to be the best in his event. He knows how to handle a bull like nobody’s business. Top that off with his good looks and shining personality, Ransom just seems like the perfect package. Well, except for the fact that he is a man-whore on campus and doesn’t do damaged girls, but Denver… Denver has changed everything for him. He is willing to break all of his rules to watch over, protect and love Denver.
This book is a page turner and so hard to put down and yes, as I told the author, I had to put it down because of prior commitments and that crazy thing called a day job and I hated every moment of it. I wanted to consume this book and devour each and every word in it.
The thing about it is that you don’t have to like cowboys or the rodeo to appreciate this book. The characters will make you fall in and out and back in of love with each one of them. I loved each of the characters for very different reasons. I loved that Greer was so in love with Denver that he would do anything for her. I loved that Ransom wanted to protect her. I loved that Denver was a sassy girl who didn’t take crap from anyone.
This book just made me want more and more and I actually have now read it three times since receiving it. This book is just that good. I can relate to Denver. She’s got spunk and sass and I think all of us live a little in her. She has a horrible past, but she is determined to make the future hers. That’s how she ended up at MSU, so she could get a fresh start. My heart just ached for her and her past, but it also held so much hope for her and her future.
Two guys, both think there is something there and both for very different reasons. This book stole my heart like no other. The beauty of this book is that it will continue on. I know I will get more of these characters and their story. I have so much love for this story and I am so very excited that there is more of it to come. For those of you worried now that I have added that last sentence, there is no cliff hanger at the end of the book, but there is definitely more of the story waiting to be told and I cannot wait to get my hands on it. I am already getting ready to read this one again, it is THAT GOOD! No, it’s better.
Lynetta Halat has such a great writing style and it just captures me. I don’t want to put the books down and this one seriously drove me over the edge to actually do it… I was dying! I even had this great little set up at my desk so people couldn’t see me sneaking in chapters at work… Yes, that good.
I just completely adore Lynetta Halat and she amazes me more and more each time she writes a book. Her books are beautifully written and so full of love and character and completely balanced out with angst and heartache. But Used definitely sold me on a new standard of greatness. I am so in love with this book that five stars will never do it justice. This book deserves all 10 stars that I am going to give it. It exceeded all of my expectations in a good book and has set such a high standard for which all books must follow.
Whether it’s the eight seconds on the back of a bull or the time to beat in tie-down roping or digging in with your heals and making every turn count… this book had every aspect of a great read all between the covers. When you read Used, hold on to your hat and get ready for a great ride! It is a ten out of five star read and I CANNOT WAIT for more!
Shut Up, and Kiss Me
After a few minutes, Greer stretches out beside me and searches for my hand. Only his hand touches mine, but my whole being tingles. He threads his fingers through mine and runs his thumb over my palm. Something in me twists and splinters, shooting chills all through my body. My breath hitches in my throat because I can’t breathe around the knot that has formed there.
“You feel it too,” he says simply.
I close my eyes tighter, suddenly embarrassed by the fact that I’m not slick. “Yes,” I admit in a whisper.
“Look at me, Denver.”
Turning my head to the side, I open my eyes to find his blue-eyed gaze roaming over me. His eyes find mine, and we just take each other in. I want to say something, but I can’t think of one darn thing that sounds intelligent or even … sexy. Do I even want to be sexy for him? Yes. Yes, I do. I see stupid girls flirt with him all the time. I don’t want to be that girl, but I do want him to see me as a girl and not just his friend. Ironic, since I’ve spent my whole life telling him not to treat me like a girl.
“I want to kiss you so bad … but if I kiss you, it will change everything,” he says in that gravelly voice.
“Change is good,” I whisper.
Rolling to his side, his mouth is centimeters from mine. I can’t make myself move although I’m aching with want. But I haven’t been kissed—ever. And I haven’t kissed anyone since that time on the monkey bars in seventh grade when I stuck my tongue in Brian Thomas’s mouth on a bet. I shocked the shit out of him, and he didn’t even kiss me back. When the bell rang, he jerked back and hit his head hard, sending him to the nurse for the rest of the afternoon. Not my finest moment.
“I don’t want to lose my best friend,” he tells me.
I bring up my other hand and run it over his jaw. “You’re not going to lose me. No matter what. We’ll still be friends.”
“Relationships ruin friendships. We’ve seen enough of that.”
I shiver with that truth. “True. But we’re different. We’ve been together since before we were born. I can’t live without you, so I won’t hurt our friendship.”
Bringing our entwined hands up, he kisses my knuckles. “Me either. We’ll take it slow, all right?”
“All right, my golden boy,” I whisper.
The effect of my words is instantaneous; the blue in his eyes intensifies to boiling. He leans in, his lips brushing mine softly. “Denver,” he whispers against me. “I’ve always wanted to make you mine. Ever since I understood what that meant. I’ve never seen anyone but you.” And even though his eyes burn with passion, I hear a little tremor in his voice. Now, him always putting off those girls makes a whole lot more sense.
“I thought we were taking it slow,” I chastise, but I delight in knowing that he feels something more for me.
“I just want you to know that I don’t take this lightly. You’re the most important person in my universe. And I’ll do anything to protect us.”
His declaration unleashes a torrent of need in me, and I no longer want him to kiss me—I need him to kiss me. “Greer, will you shut up and kiss me, please?”
Since the dawn of time, Lynetta Halat has lived to read and has written innumerable stories and plays. A lover of good books, bad boys, and kickass tunes, she’d always dreamt of penning books that people could connect with and remember. She also has a secret penchant for wringing the emotions out of unsuspecting readers, and she collects reader’s tears in much the same way that wine connoisseurs collect their favorite vintage.
Her first novel, Every Rose, was the perfect catalyst to launch her into the world of publishing, effectively burrowing her way into the hearts and minds of readers throughout the world. Everything I’ve Never Had was her follow-up adult romance novel. Now, she has penned Used, a New Adult Romance that she hopes sinks its teeth into you and doesn’t let go.
Her love of the English language prompted her to pursue a Master’s degree in English from Old Dominion University in Virginia, where she also minored in snark and interpretive dance. She lives somewhere along the Mississippi Gulf Coast with her adorable husband, two amazing sons, and two loveable dogs. When she’s not writing riveting stories, she likes to focus on her macramé art and her scouring of eBay, where she buys locks of hair from her favorite rock stars, most especially Bret Michaels and Dave Grohl.