Maria Rose's Reviews > Six Month Rule

Six Month Rule by A.J. Pine
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Six Month Rule is the second book in the Kingston Ale series by AJ Pine. The first book, The One That Got Away was a friends to lovers romance that was a hit and miss story for me, but I’m happy to say that this one was a winner for me from the very start.

Holly has a tried and true relationship plan – date a guy for six months, which is the honeymoon stage of dating, and break things off before anyone gets too emotionally involved. This has worked out well for her in the past and she sees no reason to change things now. It keeps her from getting hurt. Besides, she’s too busy trying to make partner at Trousseau, an event planning company, to worry about getting stuck in a long-term relationship. She just needs to prove to her boss that she can handle an international client and she’ll be set.

Will is in Chicago from England for six months to bring his client, a haute couture designer, to the attention of the American market. He’s the parent of a six-year-old daughter, Sophie, for whom he hasn’t been around enough and has vowed to change things for the better. She lives with his ex-wife, but he’s making a concerted effort to fly home every weekend to spend time with Sophie. He knows it will be exhausting, working full time in the US and making transatlantic flights home and back again, but she’s worth it.

When Holly and Will meet, it’s not quite love at first sight. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Holly is annoyed to be working with this uptight British man (who had the nerve to dish her shoes when they first met) but she’s got no choice if she wants to show her boss that she’s up for the challenge of an international client. But as is often the case, those initial sparks of annoyance are really masking an attraction that goes both ways and soon enough, they’ve come to an agreement – have a working with benefits arrangement for as long as Will is in Chicago and when he leaves they’ll amicably end their agreement. It’s a perfect way to spend their long hours together with no hard feelings at the end. But things rarely go as planned and soon enough Will and Holly find themselves in a mess of their own making.

I really enjoyed this story! The characters were refreshing and fun to read about. Will is the quintessential Brit, with a dry sense of humor, a solid character and, in this particular case, a loving and devoted parent. I loved seeing him with his daughter on his trips home and his singular goal of being there for her whenever possible despite his long distance job was quite lovely to see. Holly is a workaholic with a good heart. She’s been reaching ever closer to her goal of making partner at Trousseau and despite her disappointment at not being there yet, she’s not going to give up on her dream. I really appreciated how once Will and Holly got over their initial meeting, he clearly appreciated and respected her talent and was willing to work with her to achieve their mutual success. Holly is a confident and strong woman who knows what she wants. Well, until she realizes that what she really wants is to somehow keep Will in her life and the idea of him leaving for good makes her feel things she shouldn’t. It takes some bravery on both their sides to own up to their feelings for each other, and there are definitely some emotional times in the second half of the story as they come to grips with how deeply they are involved. Plus, these two are really hot together! There are some steamy scenes between them, and it’s easy to see how after a few months they’ll be hard pressed to give up what they’ve got between them.

We see a few scenes with Sophie, Will’s daughter, who is an absolute delight. While I’m not always a fan of children in romances, she definitely adds a lovely tone to the story with her insightful view of her father and how Holly makes him happy, on a visit to the US with her mother. She’s present just enough to remind the reader about Will’s role as her father without overtaking the story.

Overall, I found this story to be a wonderful contemporary romance. It’s got characters with heart, challenges for them both to overcome without going too far on the angst scale, sexy and fun scenes and a plot that is unique and appealing. It’s definitely one of my favourite reads so far this year. 5 stars.

Note: a copy of this story was provided by the publisher via NetGalley for review.

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Reading Progress

July 8, 2016 – Started Reading
July 8, 2016 – Shelved
July 8, 2016 – Shelved as: to-read
July 19, 2016 –
July 19, 2016 –
July 19, 2016 –
55.0% "I love these characters and I have no idea how they will get their happy ending - gah!"
July 19, 2016 – Finished Reading
July 26, 2016 – Shelved as: single-parent-romance
July 26, 2016 – Shelved as: sexy-as-all-get-out
July 26, 2016 – Shelved as: workplace-romance
July 26, 2016 – Shelved as: fully-reviewed-books
July 26, 2016 – Shelved as: best-of-2016
July 26, 2016 – Shelved as: 5-star-reads

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