Cover FAIL. ~ Cover FAIL. ~ Cover FAIL. ~ Cover FAIL.Never, ever in my life have I wanted to abuse my librarian status until now. I have had to fight the urge to want to pull a cover switcheroo for this book. Don't ask me what I would have replaced it with, but I would have found something...Before I even started writing this review, I took a cruise through the first page of reviews on GR and saw a few mentions of how bad the cover for this book is. However, I was surprised to see that no one mentioned some of the initial thoughts that came to my mind when I first saw the cover.I'm starting to wonder if anyone else got this vibe? Or perhaps this vibe?*shudder* at ugly stripper cop. Btw...I'm thoroughly happy that it wasn't a fireman on the cover. I have been forever traumatized by an event involving a fireman stripper at a bachelorette party. Not that you needed to know this, but I tend to throw out useless information every so often in a review.Or did this picture enter anyone's minds? Yes, I likened Lacey's hand to a crab claw.No? It was just me? Sigh. I must spend way too much time analyzing book covers.This is where I should mention that I'm a huge advocate of "don't judge a book by its cover." Some of my all time favorite books have some of the worst covers ever (Georgina Kincaid and Tairen Soul would be the perfect examples). So, I went into my read of LL with no preset notions of what the book would be about. I'd seen many people praise this for being such a wonderful read, which made me excited to get started....and it was...okay? Decent even. Enjoyable. Pleasant. Not sure if it lives up to the hype though.Liberating Lacey sort of straddles the line between contemporary romance and erotica, not really picking a side to fall on. In many cases before, this combo has worked for me. In the case of this particular book, it left me sort of unsatisfied.There wasn't enough plot for the book to be considered contemporary romance. The "big obstacle" to the couple getting together wasn't really much of an obstacle at all. A man who lives a basic life feels he may not be enough for the wealthy and sophisticated woman he might be interested in. That's it. There wasn't any huge interference or things to get in the way of the couple getting together...everything was really all in one person's head. I actually do like stories where the man feels like he's not good enough for a woman. But I need some sort of tension to come from somewhere. Maybe there's a friend who constantly puts the idea in his head about why the couple wouldn't work out (okay, so there's a very tiny bit of this but not at a conflict level). Maybe there's an incredibly embarrassing moment that happens, forcing one person to back away. The few small blips in this story were just that - blips and nothing more. There was no real conflict.There wasn't enough in the sex department for the book to be what I'd want out of an erotica. The book is called Liberating Lacey. Maybe it's my bad that I thought this chick was going to get turned into a sex goddess. The sex bordered on vanilla with some playacting to make it seem racier than it actually was. This would have been perfect for a contemporary romance...the right amount of steam without going into hardcore territory, but then there would have needed to have been more plot and character development for it to be a CR. There really were a couple of sensational scenes (the rain scene and the bathroom scene did in fact rock my world), but rest of it I found myself skimming. I expected more from what I thought was an erotica book. The playacting actually made me feel somewhat embarrassed for the couple. My thoughts as a whole :It was a nice read. The emotions were sweet, the sex was about a medium on the steam level, and I got a pleasant HEA. Would I recommend the book? I absolutely would to people who would like to experiment with some erotica without having to commit to anything too "out there." This would be a great starter book for erotica/romantica.And this line, did in fact, make me laugh out loud :How did he do that, look as if nothing had happened when she felt like a boneless, skinless, chicken breast?