CEO Callum Malone has it all: power, Italian suits, a house on one of Sydney’s stunning beaches and a new life without a woman in it. Just the way he likes it, ever since his nasty divorce.
Landscaper Ava Gibson is in no position to turn down a job, even if it is for her despised ex-brother-in-law. But when resentment gives way to underlying attraction, Ava is finally forced to confront her truth… she’s falling for him.
Will Ava be able to keep her growing desire in check? Because the irresistible Cal doesn’t want her to…
Source: ARC from Tule Publishing via NetGalley
This quick, feel good read is a great slice of summer escapism dealing as it does with a wealthy Australian businessman, his beautiful house and garden, and the woman who has been in love with him for the last five years – three of which he was married to her sister. But Callum isn’t married anymore and Ava’s carefully constructed act of disdain towards him is failing fast. Especially when Callum starts to realise there’s more to Ava the Terrible than he ever imagined.
I first became intrigued by the Malone brothers in The Millionaire, as part of the Hot Aussie Heroes series. In that book older brother Chris found the love of his life, but it also included a bit about his twin brothers, one of whom is a champion surfer, while the other is the responsible brother who stayed home to take care of the family business. Callum is the latter one, and I loved that he isn’t bitter about it. His other brothers might have been free to run off and roam the world, but Callum is sensible and down-to-earth, despite all the money.
Something which Ava has been trying to deny for years. She’s a smart woman who runs her own business, but falling in love at first sight with her sister’s man was never in her plans. It doesn’t help that even after the divorce she believes Callum to be a callous heartbreaker because she still loves him – no matter how much she doesn’t want to.
Okay, if I’m honest, the whole love-at-first-sight, persisting utterly against her will isn’t my favourite type of romance, and I think Callum’s sudden tumble was also a bit too quick to be true. Ava knows nothing about Callum until she starts working on his garden and he’s only ever known her nasty side, so the swift rush into love didn’t really do much for me. However, if you like that sort of thing this book is full of cuteness and friendly fun.
Short but kind of sweet, I enjoyed this return to the Malone brothers. It was a little swifter in places and lighter on details than I’d like, but overall it’s a nice, relaxing read. I look forward to reading Cooper’s tale some time soon.
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