Review: How To Misbehave by Ruthie Knox


Title:  How to Misbehave

Author:  Ruthie Knox

May Contain Spoilers

From Amazon:

What woman can resist a hot man in a hard hat? Beloved author Ruthie Knox kicks off her new Camelot series with this deliciously sexy original novella, in which a good girl learns how to misbehave . . . with all her heart.

As program director for the Camelot Community Center, Amber Clark knows how to keep her cool. That is, until a sudden tornado warning forces her to take shelter in a darkened basement with a hunk of man whose sex appeal green lights her every fantasy. With a voice that would melt chocolate, he asks her if she is okay. Now she’s hot all over and wondering: How does a girl make a move?

Building contractor Tony Mazzara was just looking to escape nature’s fury. Instead, he finds himself all tangled up with lovely Amber. Sweet and sexy, she’s ready to unleash her wild side. Their mutual desire reaches a fever pitch and creates a storm of its own–unexpected, powerful, and unforgettable. But is it bigger than Tony can handle? Can he let go of painful memories and let the force of this remarkable woman show him a future he never dreamed existed?


How to Misbehave didn’t click for me because of the length.  This 96 page novella is hot, but I never connected with the characters.  Ruthie Knox has a wonderful way of painstakingly developing her characters, and they were just getting interesting when the story screeched to a halt.  My favorite aspect of Ruthie’s writing was missing, and that’s the careful unraveling of her protagonists’ strengths and flaws; by the end of her two longer novels, I was so invested in her characters that I wanted, no, demanded, that they have their HEA.  The emotional depth was absent here, and though it is a fun, quick read, I was a bit disappointed when I reached the last page.

Amber is attracted to hunky construction worker Tony, but because she’s a good girl, she hasn’t acted on her attraction.  A tornado and a few hours in a darkened basement change things for both Amber and Tony, and desire blazes between them.  Tony tries to resist, though, because he isn’t one for a long-term relationship, and he knows that Amber won’t be happy with a one-night stand.  She convinces him otherwise, finally finding release with Tony after two previous disastrous sexual encounters.  Tony is a walking woman pleaser, and sure enough, Amber is devastated when he won’t even look at her afterwards.  Oh. My.  Talk about a heartbreaker!

Tony is suffering from guilt after a tragic incident in his past.  He has convinced himself that he doesn’t deserve to be happy, and so he keeps himself aloof and never allows himself to have a serious relationship.  He will just let his partner down, so why even risk it?  Without more buildup, he just seemed a bit whiny and self-indulgent.  His emotional flip-flop after meeting Amber wasn’t convincing and was too easily won.

While I wasn’t completely satisfied with How to Misbehave, I did enjoy the author’s writing style, and I am looking forward to the rest of the series, which is comprised of full-length novels.  This novella is only .99, so if you’d like a taste of Ruthie Knox’s writing style, this isn’t a back place to start. 

Grade:  C+

Review copy provided by publisher