Top positive review
Hot, hot, hot! Slightly nerdy cat lady falls for intensely focused Wall Street Tycoon
Reviewed in the United States on November 19, 2019
Anna Zaires manages to infuse the somewhat over-used trope of a financially challenged arts major falling for a driven Wall Street Billionaire with freshness and excitement and lots of steam. It’s hot and it’s emotional and I could not put it down.
I have to admit that for some reason I went into this book thinking it was a standalone, but around 70% I was starting to get an inkling that the story could not be wrapped up in the remaining 30%. On the product page this book is listed to have over 360 pages, but it felt a lot shorter; probably because I was so into the story and didn’t want it to end. Although it does end at an inopportune time in the story arc, it is not a cliffhanger as such.
By way of disclosure I will also say that I am a fan of Anna Zaires’ and have read all her previous books, which are either Dark Romance or Sci-Fi/Fantasy Romance and feature relationships that range from dub-con to non-consensual capture fantasies (which I loved). So I was just the tiniest bit apprehensive when Anna announced her foray into more mainstream contemporary romance with Wall Street Titan, since I loved the dynamics of her “forced” relationships so much and I wondered how the excitement and intensity of such a forbidden relationship would translate into a more conventional type of romance in which full consent is the basis of every interaction.
In a way this is also a classical Cinderella trope, although Emma isn’t exactly destitute, but she is a former Arts Major, working kind of a dead-end job in a bookstore all the while trying to establish herself as freelance editor. She lives in a dingy, dark and gloomy basement studio in Brooklyn with her three cats. Although coming from poverty, too, Marcus, on the other hand is a self-made Billionaire, who manages a successful hedge fund. He is driven and focused and has reached most of the goals he set out to do, but now he realizes that he needs a presentable trophy wife for social occasions. So, he goes about acquiring one in the same methodical fashion as he does everything else. In the normal series of events these two would never meet, but confronted with the up-coming birthday of a friend, Emma realizes she hasn’t had a boyfriend for ages and also quite a long dry spell, so she decides to check in to the dating app she signed up for ages ago. By chance they both end up at the same restaurant and mistake each other for their respective date. It’s mostly mutual dislike at first sight, if it wouldn’t be for that strange attraction they both feel…
Although it is also an “opposites attract” story, the two of them living in different worlds really, I liked that they had some things in common, too, like their difficult childhood experiences that shaped them both and that lets them connect on a emotional level. But they are also both wary: Emma, because she cannot let herself be anything but independent and Marcus because he is still somewhat hung up on the idea of the perfect wife, despite the off-the charts attraction he feels for Emma. Their sexual encounters are insanely hot, but their emotional investment is not on an equal footing. When Emma comes to understand that, she pulls back. Perversely that is when Marcus realizes that he is in much deeper than he thought and decides to go all in.
Can’t wait for the next installment to see how the chase turns out!