Friday 7 February 2014

The Boss's Fake Fiancée by Inara Scott

Melissa has recently started working for Garth's company.  She'd moved back to the area after her last relationship had broken up due to her ex-boyfriend's infidelity.  This was particularly crushing for Melissa because she'd moved away from all her family and friends to be with and work for the boyfriend, Mark, and came home to find him cheating on her with her only friend in the area. It's taken Melissa a long time to get over it, but she loves her new job and is pretty attracted to her new boss, who is known as 'the human calculator' because he shows so little emotion.  Garth is brilliant at his job, but intensely private and is the first to admit that he doesn't do relationships.

Melissa is getting ready to watch Garth's new presentation at an event when she spots Mark.  He has the cheek to approach her and pityingly ask her how she is coping.  To annoy Mark, Melissa hints that she and Garth are in a relationship.  Unfortunately for Melissa, Mark embellishes the story, and passes it off to the press, and within a day or two there is a story proclaiming that the Human Calculator has become engaged to Melissa.

Garth has very few people in his life that he cares about - one of them is his grandmother, who brought him up after the death of his parents.  Garth's grandmother is elderly, and is fighting off pneumonia. She is overjoyed at the thought of him getting married and he doesn't have the heart to tell her the truth until she is stronger.  He is also hoping to land a funding partner and avoid any type of scandal so he persuades Melissa to play along as his fiancée.  Although both of them are clear that they don't want a relationship, neither is prepared for the level of attraction they feel.

I only realised after finishing the book that it's book 2 in a series, so I think it reads pretty well as a standalone.  I have a guilty weakness for marriage of convenience and fake fiancée scenarios, even though the ending is usually assured and they are often formulaic!  However, this was quite a fresh take on it.  I liked the fact that both of them genuinely weren't on the lookout for a relationship, having both been burned in the past and not wanting to mix business with pleasure so they both fight it. In Garth's case there were also a few other factors preventing him from pursuing a relationship with anybody. I was really enjoying the book but I felt it was let down somewhat by the ending, which seemed unlikely and unrealistic, I couldn't imagine most people behaving like that, and it seemed particularly out of character for Garth.  I thought it would have been far more romantic and likely if it had been much more private.  On the whole, despite the slightly disappointing ending, if you enjoy fake fiancée stories, this is probably worth a read.

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