The Temptation of Lila and Ethan: Ethan Gregory and Lila Summers
(The Secret #3)
On the surface, Lila Summers is flawless: good looks, expensive clothes, and a big, beautiful smile. But a dark past and even darker secrets are threatening to bubble over her perfect façade. She'll do anything to keep the emptiness inside hidden-which leads her into situations that always end badly. Whenever she hits bottom, there's only one person who's there to pull her out: Ethan Gregory.
Ethan set the rules a long time ago: he and Lila are just friends. He doesn't do relationships. Although his tattooed, bad boy exterior is a far cry from Lila's pretty princess image, Ethan can't deny they have a deeper connection than he's used to. If he's not careful, he could be in serious danger of becoming attached-and he's learned the hard way that attachment only leads to heartbreak.
When Lila falls farther than she ever has before, can Ethan continue to help as a friend? Or is he also getting close to falling . . . for her?
First response for The Temptation of Lila and Ethan by Jessica Sorensen is WHOA… I was not expecting it to be that heavy. Coming into this book you know that Lila has some issues and there may be more going on than meets the eye, but I was not expecting this… DAMN. Some people have some F’ed up parents but I think Lila’s parents take honors for the WORST PARENTS EVER!!! My heart truly breaks for Lila and her childhood, there was just so much wrong with it and she never really got to know what being a child was like or even what it was like to know your parents love you unconditionally or even at all. Within the first chapter we witness Lila just falling apart. She’s barely kept it together for so long but now everything is coming unglued and all she has left is Ethan. Ethan is almost as damaged as Lila, with an abusive father and his own secret that he has been keeping hidden for years. Ethan sees Lila going down a path he is all too familiar with and he refuses to lose her like he has someone in his past. He is determined to do whatever he has to do to make sure that does not happen again, but in helping Lila, he may do something he swore he would never do again…
I loved both Ethan and Lila, but that is no surprise, they first capture your heart in the first book in this series, as Ella and Micha’s best friends they are around a lot. They are both loyal and caring friends, they may have been side characters but they make their presence known. You wonder what is going on between those two but they are pretty closed lipped about it, even to Ella and Micha. Now they have their own book and their personalities are no less dynamic and there is more to both of them that you ever knew. It starts with Ethan as Lila’s sudo-savior, he’s always rescuing her from bad situations. Ethan has this overwhelming need to protect Lila even from herself. I freak’n loved Ethans determination to help Lila, to help her overcome her demons. Sometimes he’s a bit of an ass but when it comes down to it, he always does the right thing. Lila has always been so pampered she basically doesn’t know the basics of living and it’s a bit amusing to watch Lila learn things that most people have known since their teens or younger. Things like doing laundry or doing the dishes, getting a job, paying bills… You know living, but she has never had to do any of those things. There is no way Ethan is going to do those things for her; he gives her a swift dose of reality. While he is teaching Lila things, she is teaching him things, like how to care again. Ethan has long since closed himself off from caring about anyone, he feels like he has failed everyone he has cared about and doesn’t deserve it. His story isn’t as drastic as Lila’s but it has affected him all the same. These two end up being pretty perfect for each other, as different as they seem on the outside they are pretty similar on the inside. While they are busy fixing the other, they end up fixing a bit of themselves in the process.
The story itself is fast moving, I read this all in one sitting and could not put the book down. This is not surprising for a Jessica Sorensen title, she has a way of pulling you in and not letting you go until the end. You come to love her character and care what happens to them. In this book, it is such an emotional journey for both Ethan and Lila. They both have demons they are holding onto from their pasts and before they can move forward they have to come to terms with the past. Lila’s journey in particular is hard fought and amazing. I don’t want to give anything away but it about breaks your heart as she reveals things about her past and by the end while not fully healed she is well on her way to a better healthier life. Ethan’s back story the part with his parents makes you want to rally on his side, that is no way for a child to grow up and story you hear all too often. The other part of it, I was kind of ehh on, it was interesting but I didn’t always buy it. At times it felt forced, but it did add a bit of interest to the story. Overall, I loved this book, maybe not as much as Ella and Micha. I didn’t quite have the same book hangover afterwards but it is another excellent addition to Jessica Sorensens collection!