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Command Performance

Command Performance, October 2013
Uniformly Hot!
by Sara Jane Stone

Harlequin Blaze
Featuring: Margaret Barlow; Hunter Cross
224 pages
ISBN: 0373797745
EAN: 9780373797745
Kindle: B00CFX3C14
Paperback / e-Book
Add to Wish List


"Sexy one-night fantasy turns to forever love."

Fresh Fiction Review

Command Performance
Sara Jane Stone

Reviewed by Kay Quintin
Posted August 8, 2013

Romance Series

Maggie Barlowe has learned not to trust anyone given her past history with an alcoholic father. Now catching her fiancé with his pants down with another woman, Maggie's trust has again been compromised. Planning only a sex filled one-night fantasy, she heads to a manly auto show explicitly to pick up that fantasy. The hunky Hunter Cross is just the guy. Too bad he's a soldier as Mags would like to avoid anyone with a background like her father.

After a mind blowing one night stand of surrendering to hot sex with Hunter, Maggie is mortified to learn the next day he happens to be her army liaison for the book she is commissioned to write. Spending a week at her New York home with the hottest man she has ever encountered, blows her mind. Not only extracting information from him for the book but the extracurricular activities during the night of sex has Mags having second thoughts of her wisdom. Hiding the true circumstances of the cowboy soldiers and their mission, the reason behind Hunter's bullet wound is being kept from Maggie until Hunter is sideswiped by his feelings for the sexy woman. But what will happen when she finds out he has been purposely misleading her to make sure the outcome of her book is exactly the way he has engineered it?

This very hot and sexy book is a steaming read with an excellent story line. A beautiful woman who lacks trust and a soldier who is unable to promise the stability needed in her life because of his family obligations and his love of his risky job keeps them at odds. Sara Jane Stone has completely nailed her vision of what is going on in both of their minds and easily portrayed that to the reader. This author is extremely talented and kept my complete interest throughout the entire story. COMMAND PERFORMANCE is my first by Sara Jane Stone, but not the last! Thank you, Sara, for a great read!

Learn more about Command Performance


Subject: Chief Warrant Officer Hunter Cross

Mission: Keep Margaret Barlow distracted...using any means necessary!

Ranger Hunter Cross is the army poster child—excitement, danger and no strings in sight. And he's been in town exactly three hours before a curvy blonde named Maggie flashes him a look that says "You belong in my bed." It's a night of wicked satisfaction. And it's a night they can never repeat....

All Professor Maggie Barlow wanted was an orgasm—or three— from the dead–sexy Ranger. Having him as her official army liaison while she works on her new book? That wasn't in the plan. Especially when she learns that Hunter has orders to "control" her. Little does the army know that when it comes to their deliciously naughty nighttime activities, Hunter is at Maggie's complete command....

Uniformly Hot! The Few. The Proud. The Sexy as Hell.


"Goodbye, control," Maggie muttered, her hands trembling with a mix of excitement and nerves. "Hello, fantasy."

She stepped into the car show refreshment tent and paused, her fingers playing with the clasp on her purse. Fans blasted, but she still feared she might break into a sweat. And wouldn't that be attractive?

She forced her fingers to still. Sexy women, the ones who left men desperate to touch, possessed confidence, not anxiety. If she kept playing with that clasp, her bag might fall open and expose the box of ribbed–for–her–pleasure protection Olivia had given her in the car. Turning red with embarrassment wouldn't help her confidence.

Why shouldn't she feel confident? She was a careeroriented author and professor. And she knew she looked good tonight. She had big breasts and a trim waist—both of which were on display thanks to the backless green shirt Olivia had chosen. Wearing it meant Maggie had been forced to leave her bra at home.

She glanced down at the full D–cups pressing at the front of her shirt as if screaming to the room look at me! Had anyone noticed? Had one of these men caught sight of her and said, "Wow! I bet she would look great topless and bent over the hood of my car"? She scanned the tent and spotted a couple of men staring at her, their eyes never drifting above her chest.

"The shirt. It's working," Maggie murmured to her best friend.

Olivia stood half a step behind her, blocking the exit as if she feared Maggie might bolt at any moment. "Of course it is. Now all you have to do is walk to the bar and order a drink."

Maggie nodded, squared her shoulders and wobbled to the bar, silently cursing Olivia for insisting she wear the four–inch heels. Her feet ached for her sensible, everyday flats. But she needed the height advantage. Without the stilettos, all five foot three inches of her would be lost in the sea of towering males.

And there were definitely Men here. Capital M. At the tables, on the folding chairs, leaning against the makeshift bar—muscular, don't–mess–with–me Men. The type of guys she'd always admired from a distance, as if they were part of a display with a little sign that read Look, But Don't Touch.

Tonight she wanted to touch.

Some wore uniforms, but most were dressed in civilian clothes. Still, their military–issue haircuts gave them away. They might be wearing jeans and T–shirts, but they were soldiers. Not that this was surprising. It made sense that a car show near a military academy would be overrun with soldiers and cadets. Most men liked cars. The guys in this tent probably spent 50 percent of their free time rebuilding their engines.

Not Maggie. She'd never even changed a flat tire. Not once.

Her nerves kicked into gear again. Her fingers drummed against her thighs as she picked her way through the crowd. She fought to quiet them and focus. She was on a mission. And it had nothing to do with car parts and everything to do with hard–bodied males.

When they reached the temporary wooden counter, Maggie signaled the bartender. "Vodka tonic, please."

Olivia raised an eyebrow but didn't say anything before adding a glass of white wine to the order.

Their drinks arrived and Maggie took a long sip from hers. She couldn't remember the last time she'd ordered hard liquor. She rarely drank the stuff, always afraid she might have inherited her father's love of booze, and when she did have a drink, she generally preferred a glass or two of wine, or a beer on a hot summer afternoon. One sip of vodka and she was feeling warm and a little tipsy, which was surprisingly pleasant. It even dulled her desire to drive back down to Manhattan and hurl something at her ex. A few more of these and she might have the guts to follow through with Olivia's crazy plan.

"Liv, you do realize most of these guys are soldiers. Probably half either teach at or attend West Point." Maggie noticed she'd downed half her drink. "What if I end up having to deal with one of them while researching my book?"

"Relax, you won't." Olivia shook her head. "Anyway, I thought the men you were interviewing were based in Tennessee."

"They are, but the generals are in town."

Olivia reached over and patted her hand. "I promise I'll make sure he's not a general."

"But I could never date a soldier."

"It's only for one night," Olivia reminded her. "Why should you care what he does for a living if you're not planning on seeing him beyond tonight? Maybe you'll get lucky and find a mechanic. This is a car show."

Maggie drained the rest of her drink. "What if I pick a guy and he turns me down?" Her nerves—and the vodka—sent her stomach into somersaults. "What if I make a complete fool of myself? It's not like I have a lot of experience with men."

"Look at me." Olivia leaned closer. "You can do this. Now. Tonight. If you don't, then duty, responsibility, your need to be the best at your job—it will smother you."

Maggie held on to the bar with one hand as Olivia's words sank in. Her sense of duty had started smothering her years ago when her father began drinking. This was her chance to escape. If she didn't act now, she might lose the part of herself that craved orgasms. The part of herself that wished she'd told her fiance she wanted wild sex on his desk and so much more.

"You're right," Maggie said softly.

Olivia smiled and signaled the bartender for a second round. "Now, look around. See anything you like?"

Feeling the vodka pulsing through her, Maggie boldly scanned the refreshment tent. What was she looking for? Muscles. The kind that came from the hard work required to transform a man into a soldier or from lifting engine parts. But four out of five guys in here looked like they could bench–press her one–handed. And thanks to her breasts, she wasn't one of those hundred–pounds–soaking–wet women.

She took a second look and mentally eliminated about half of them. Too young. She wanted a man who knew things about sex. She wanted an orgasm that left her breathless, boneless and begging for more.

Her gaze landed on a green polo, tight but not too tight. And those biceps? They shouted touch me. Her eyes drifted over his shoulders to his face, framed by straight brown hair. She'd always liked brown hair. Staring at his profile—he was deep in conversation with an equally handsome but not quite as sexy man across the table—she could see his mouth curving upward in a half smile. Those lips. He had the type of mouth that begged a woman to say kiss me lower down, please.

Maggie clutched her drink and drew her gaze away from his face. Twelve months of unfulfilling sex had driven her mad if she was thinking about his lips kissing her there before she'd even said a word to the guy. She blinked and took in the rest of him. She could see the endless length of his legs stretched out beneath the table.

Her body tingled as she drank in the sight of him. With a long, sculpted body like that he must know how to do things, deliciously sinful, wild things that previously only existed in her fantasies. He turned and looked right at her, and then smiled. She tightened her grip on her nearly empty drink. Those eyes. That mouth. She'd bet her inheritance that man knew ten ways to give a woman the best orgasm of her life. If he looked at her like that much longer, she might come right here. Her thighs tightened at the thought. This man would say yes. He wouldn't turn her down. Not after that look.

Maggie blinked and turned to the bartender. "Cancel the vodka tonic. Just water, please."

The liquor had made her bold, maybe even a little reckless, but if she wished to remember every detail about tonight, she needed water. "Do you remember George Clooney when he was young? When he was on ER?"

"Oh, yeah." Olivia took her wine from the bartender. "He was on the show when we first started watching it in high school."

"Green polo, blue jeans at eight o'clock."

Olivia raised an eyebrow. "He's not your usual type."

"He has George Clooney's eyes. Bedroom eyes." Maggie reached for her water and drained half the glass. "Tonight, he's my type."

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