on November 7th 2017
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Rom-Com
Source: Blog Tour Host
He’s a powerful billionaire CEO who built the family business into an empire. The money doesn’t matter to him, but the company is his life. And then his eccentric mother wills it all to her tiny dog.
I’m Vicky, the dog whisperer. (Not really, but that’s what my elderly neighbor always says.) When she dies, she surprises everybody by leaving a corporation worth billions to her dog, Smuckers. With me as his spokesperson.
Suddenly I go from running my Etsy store to sitting in an elegant Wall Street boardroom with Smuckers in my lap. And my neighbor’s son, Henry Locke, aka New York’s most eligible bachelor, glaring across the table at me.
Rumor has it Henry’s a business genius who’s as talented in the bedroom as he is in the boardroom. Sure, he’s gorgeous. Sex-in-a-seven-thousand dollar suit. But…
He’s arrogant and infuriating. He refuses to listen to me when I insist I didn’t con his mother. He thinks he can bully me, buy me off, control me, even seduce me.
Henry may have the women of Manhattan eating out of the palm of his hand, but I'm so over entitled rich guys who think they own the world.
No way will his wicked smile be charming ME out of my panties.
His wicked...devastating...impossible-to-resist smile.
Oh well, who needs panties anyway?
I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Let me tell you a story about a girl who underestimated a book. She took a certain book at face value and saw it as a mere romantic comedy. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. The girl absolutely loves romantic comedies. But then she read it and got so much more than what she expected. The story had amazing characters, fantastic banter, and sizzling sexual tension, but there was also angst and drama in the mix. The girl fell in love.
When Vicky Nelson adopted Smuckers, the dog of the old lady who believed she was a dog whisperer after the old lady passed away, she never expected to act as a major stockholder of a multi-million company in behalf of said dog. But she does as it turns out the old lonely lady living in a shabby apartment is actually from a wealthy and powerful family.
Henry Locke worked his heart out to make their empire grow into the powerhouse it is. When his mother leaves more than half of the company to a dog and some scammer, he’ll work even harder to get it back. Even it means he has to seduce her. He’ll just have to make sure he doesn’t fall in love with her.
There’s something about Vicky he can’t resist, but there’s a mystery to her, something she wishes to never be known by anyone, especially not Henry. Vicky knows the more she gets involved with Henry, the more possible it is for her secrets to all come out.
Annika Martin gives us a gem of a book wrapped in a seemingly absurd yet hilarious premise. An old woman bequeaths the family business to her dog, who is then represented by a girl the old woman believed to be a dog whisperer. But then there’s mystery surrounding the heroine’s past, drama, and an issue a lot of women have suffered through. That certain aspect is very timely with what’s happening today.
And my goodness, the author knows how to throw in her punches out of nowhere. Amidst the humor are heartwarming (and breaking) scenes that honestly put tears in my eyes. I sniffled in a few scenes here and there and my heart hurt.
I wanted a strong heroine, and I got that from Vicky in spades. She raised her sister on her own and went through a lot at such a young age, but she’s still so strong and resilient. Her pain didn’t break her, although it made her keep a wall to protect herself.
“Nobody will fight for you quite like you will fight for you.”
I wasn’t a huge fan of Henry at the start of the story, but he ended up completely converting me. This man had a lot of layers to him, and I loved all of it. Good lord what he did to win Vicky back. I’m still swooning, y’all. Excuse me while I go pick up my heart on the floor.
And their chemistry! I loved the barbs they threw at each other and loved it even more when clothes are thrown off. The build up to the inevitable sexy timez got me all hot and bothered. And the sex. Wow.
I would have wanted a little bit more before the story ended. It felt a bit rushed (although there were some super swoony bits there and a resolution I’ve been waiting for in that part), so that’s why I rated the book 4 stars.
Tropes: Enemies to Lovers, Inheritance, Boss/CEO
POV: First Person, Dual POV
She glares at me now. “I can’t believe you tried to strip poor Smuckers of his vote. Do you have no decency?”
“When it comes to protecting this company?” I say. “No.”
Her gaze intensifies. “Just no?”
“None at all,” I say. “No decency whatsoever. Nada, if you will.”
Her pretty lips part. It’s shock. Maybe a little bit awe.
I give her an amused smile, adjusting my jacket sleeve over my cuff just so. The suit was tailored by a man who charges three hundred bucks an hour and is worth every penny.
“Uh,” she says. “You think you’re all that? You’re not.”
“Oh, I am all that,” I say. “I very much am. And for the record, I will crush you in the end.”
“Smuckers had this medication once,” she says. “We tried to hide it in his food, and he spit it out. No matter what we did, he’d spit it out.” She puts one finger on the paper with the new amendment and slides it back across the desk. “Smuckers doesn’t like when people try to fool him. That’s his message for you.”
“I have a message for Smuckers.” I put my finger on it and slide it back across to her. “Smuckers needs to know that we have a private investigator on this case. Smuckers might not have very nice food to eat if you ended up in prison.”
Finally she looks scared.
Brett swoops in. “I say we settle this. One-time offer from me personally.” He writes the number—$4,500,000.00. “This offer expires in two minutes.”
My heart pounds. She needs to take offer. We’ve shown how close she can come to losing everything.
She looks at the paper.
She’s all alone caring for that sister of hers. She’s poor—we have her banking information; we know it for a fact. She has every reason in the world to take it. Yet she hesitates.
“This is our last offer,” Brett says. “After this, we’ll take the company from you, and you’ll get nothing.”
She raises her brown eyes to me. It’s me she’s really dealing with. I like that she knows that.
“You know what Smuckers hates even more than being fooled?” she says.
My heart pounds. She almost lost everything to me, and now she’s going to tell me a dog story?
“He hates being threatened,” she says. “And bullied. He really, really hates it.”
“Well he’s going to have to get used to it,” I hear myself saying. “He’s used to bubbles and bows and sunny parks but he’s in the jungle now. There are animals who are faster and stronger and smarter than he is. Animals who will dominate him easily—savagely, even.”
“Then you don’t know Smuckers very well.”
“Oh, I know all about Smuckers, and I’d suggest he practice rolling over. Baring his belly for the superior predator.” I lower my voice. “Begging sweetly for mercy.”
The color heightens in her face. This shouldn’t be fun.
But oh, it is.
I keep going. “Smuckers may think he can request packets and bylaws and get up to speed, but he can’t compete here. He doesn’t have the skills.”
“Smuckers thinks owning fifty-one percent is the best skill to have,” she says.