This was an interesting exploration of what it must be like for a man to fall in love with someone who is a lot younger than him and to have to allowThis was an interesting exploration of what it must be like for a man to fall in love with someone who is a lot younger than him and to have to allow her to grow up so they can be together. There is nothing dirty here. While Leon does fall in love with Bea when she is a young teen, he doesn't act on it. In fact, he deliberately stays away from her. When he realizes she knows about his sexual escapades as a younger man, it shames him. He doesn't want her to see that side of him. When she turns eighteen, Leon is eager for them to begin their life together, but what Bea perceives as a betrayal leads to a broken engagement and a three year separation. When Bea turns 21, she is a college graduate and she's ready to take up her role in the company that Leon's father and her father forms together. Leon is back in her life, and he seems to want to have a hands on role that she isn't at all interested in. Not knowing what he did, and believing he was romancing her just to get control of the company. Leon gets kidnapped, and it has a profound effect on his psyche that leads to further problems between them, but also opens the doors to truth-telling so they can have the relationship that they both want.
I liked this book a lot. While Bea is younger, she's not callow or facile. She has a maturity despite her young age. It was interesting that the age gap is presented realistically. Leon is 35 and she's 21, and there is a huge gap in interests between those ages. Bea plays the age card to make Leon back off, but what she doesn't realize is how deeply in love with her he is and can't easily let go of her. I like that Leon does feel a bit of chagrin about the age difference. It seems as though men are cavalier about being with much younger women and it's no big deal. I think it very much is. I liked seeing the evolution in Bea's view of things. She comes to realize how much she means to him when it's almost too late, but fortunately, she listens to some good advice that makes her willing to take a chance on Leo.
This is a good HP, with plenty of passion and intensity, and the drama isn't contrived. Baird has been one of those authors that I have read plenty of, but I tend to take for granted. She's a good writer. ...more
Like all of Maisey Yates' books, she takes the tried and true Harlequin Presents format and gives it an unexpected and welcomed depth. In this book shLike all of Maisey Yates' books, she takes the tried and true Harlequin Presents format and gives it an unexpected and welcomed depth. In this book she's tackled the taboo but alluring subject of step-siblings getting together. And I would say she did a great job with it.
Elle and Apollo seem to have everything to hate about each other, despite the fact that their parents are married. Apollo has set his mind on revenge, and Elle doesn't even know the whole story. All she knows is that Apollo has seemed determined to torment her from day one, and that she is so attracted to him, it scares the life out of her. When they get into an elevator together after a contentious meeting, they give into an angry and fiery passion for each other, and end up with the consequences of a baby on the way.
Apollo still wants revenge, but he also wants to take care of his baby, and he's not against doing both. Elle doesn't trust Apollo, but she wants to do what's best for her baby. They have to put their vitriol aside long enough to do right by their baby. Apollo needs to convince Elle to marry him, but Elle is pretty sure that's a bad idea, at least until Apollo can show that he is a devoted husband, fat chance. That's the rhythm of this novel.
Disguised behind the titillating subject matter is a deep story about relationships and putting the past behind you to embrace a better future. Setting aside what you used to know about a person and learning who they really are and how to best love them. I really appreciated that aspect of this story. One shortcoming is that the book does seem to lose momentum towards the end with the dramatic intensity dipping down, but I did truly love the fact that Apollo shows deep love for Elle, for who she really is. He is faced with losing her and he realizes that she's what he wants, not revenge. I love that realization the hero has about loving the heroine. Elle grows as a person as well. She's very independent and no pushover, and I liked that about her. But she also has some emotional vulnerabilities that have crippled her to some extent. Elle has wanted her father's love and respect for so long, but she's never been able to obtain it. It's surprising that Apollo can give her that unconditional love, but she realizes that for their whole relationship, she was pushing him to show her that very thing.
If a reader is just look for pure taboo titillation, this is not the book for you. If you want a deep story with that alluring forbidden love angle, with some good old enemies to lovers thrown in, then check this book out. It's not my favorite by Maisey Yates, but it's still very good. ...more