It was love at first sight…
When her Papa loses his job, indomitable Serafina Scott insists it’s her turn to take care of him – meaning landing a well-paying job…and fast. Which is how she ends up working for the Cinderella Project, a high-end matchmaking business, even though she’s certainly no expert on affairs of the heart. Until she meets Murdoch, the gruff builder restoring her extravagant new work place. He’s inscrutable, infuriating, and gorgeous…
Convincing them was a whole other matter.
Murdoch finds Sera confounding…and luminous. But beneath her firecracker exterior, she is dangerously soft-hearted, and the last thing she needs is a broken brute like him.
While Sera does her best to convince Murdoch that they are a match made in heaven, Murdoch makes it his mission to prove her wrong. Will it come down to who’s the most convincing…or who’s most willing to be convinced?
Source: Review copy from Tule Publishing via NetGalley
I’ve been a fan of Ally Blake for a few years and this book is full of her usual fare – a smart if slightly misfit heroine, a rugged hero and lots of quirky, fun goings on amongst the extended cast of characters to keep things interesting while the main pair resist falling in love.
Sera has several degrees but is a bit of tomboy. Her mother left when she was a small child and she was raised by her beloved father. Her childhood was full of cars and machinery and she would have been happy with that, except her father pushed her to go to university. She was pretty happy there too getting degree after degree, until her father’s health problems pushed her into the workplace. So you could say she’s a woman who likes to be comfortable and isn’t all that fond of taking risks – unless forced.
Which sort of explains her love life – she doesn’t really have one. Oh, she’s had boyfriends, but no one who makes her feel too deeply and never anyone who could rival her father for her deeper affections. And she’s happy with that. Or she was, until she met Murdoch and all her carefully tender ideas collapse in a heap. I like Sera, she’s smart and funny and determined when she sets her mind on something.
Murdoch I was less fond of. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a good guy who’s worked hard to make his business a success after his father died. In fact Murdoch gave up his dreams of being an architect so that he could look after his mother and keep his brother going through university. He’s also got a lovely strong relationship with Sera’s boss, despite the sad history that connects them. But he’s also really annoying.
This is a love at first sight story that takes a really, really long time for the characters to actually get together. Mostly because Murdoch has issues. Those same issues got really irritating as he goes around and around in his head about them, encourages Sera closer, then pushes her away. He’s also quite inconsistent, in that he’ll make a decision and then apparently forget all about it by the next page. It all got a little drawn out and torturous and annoying for me. I couldn’t believe how many chances Sera gave him. Then again, she has her own moments of less than stellar behaviour, so they’re almost as bad as each other by the end.
And yet, despite that, I still enjoyed this book. Probably because of the fun side characters – the match-making boss, Murdoch’s flirty friend, Sera’s teenage neighbour, Sera’s wonderful Papa. Even when Murdoch was deep in his emotional flip-flopping there was always something else going on to keep me entertained.
So overall this wasn’t my favourite Ally Blake novel, but if you’re looking for a fun contemporary with interesting and entertaining characters, then you might enjoy this. I’ll certainly be catching up on the first in this series soon, while keeping my eye open for more.
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