How Much You Want to Bet?
By Chrissy Dionne
Mar 16, 2008 - 10:55:35 AM

Neil Sullivan thought she had the pool game in the bag - after all she’s beaten everyone else who’s been brave enough to accept the challenge.  The simple fact is that Gib threw her off her game with a heart stopping kiss.  Now she owes him two hundred dollars plus she has to treat him to dinner. She’s had a strong dislike for Gib and his mannerisms fit his overblown name perfectly and losing a bet which forces her out on a ‘date’ with him is just one more reason to resent him.

Gibland Winfred the Third may look every inch the GQ model but he’s definitely not as stuffy and perfect as Neil believes.  He’s got his quirks and secrets and has no qualms about using underhanded tactics to get what he wants - and what he wants is Neil. 


Since moving to Whistle Lake, Neil has worked hard to fit in and be less standoffish.  As the only woman working for Whistle Lake Construction it’s been a challenge to earn the respect of her coworkers now, thanks to Gib, she’s afraid she’ll have to prove herself all over again.  Never mind the loss of the precious tools she intended to buy with her winnings.  Going out with Gib is the last thing she wants to do but Neil isn’t about to renege on the bet either.  She’s determined to ‘get it over with,’ but Gib has waited too long to allow this opportunity to pass him by.  He’s determined to get to know her much better and not even her hostile attitude is going to deter him - in fact he loves her fiery disposition.


Neil has some deep-seated secrets that she’s had to live with for a very long time and certainly doesn’t want to have exposed now.  Being sociable without allowing anyone too close to her has so far worked and nobody in the community is aware of her real identity and relation to a famous artist.


Gib’s the first person to get close enough to possibly put the pieces together but she doesn’t intend to allow him to remain a part of her life.  Especially after she learns that he’s competed and won in the Eight-Ball Nationals three years running.  Gib has no intention of letting Neil get away with pushing him out of her life.  He’s got a battle ahead of him, Neil’s as stubborn as they come and isn’t about to give in graciously despite his soul-shattering kiss.


I developed a real fondness for Gib and Neil while reading HOW MUCH YOU WANT TO BET?  They’re both strong, stubborn characters so it’s a lot of fun imagining each heated scene between them - whether fighting or loving they do it with gusto.  It’s that level of intensity throughout this book that really brings it to life.  I especially loved getting a glimpse into the reason for Neil’s need to blend into the community without standing out too much.  Melissa Blue gives readers a fun tale full of passion, humor, a little sadness and some suspense - in short, all the traits that make a book worth reading many times over. 

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