Title: The Deal With Love
Author: Jamie Wesley
Series: One-on-One #3
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Length: Short novel
Available: 13th June
When filmmaker Christian Monroe runs into fiery—and frustrating—Elise Templeton at a party, the night quickly becomes the hottest one-night stand of their lives. But then her boss hires Christian to make a publicity film about Elise, and suddenly they’re in each other’s space. All day. Every day. And things are getting hotter…
Outside the bedroom, the two have nothing in common. Elise is focused solely on becoming the NBA’s first female general manager. And Christian learned long ago that being a work-a-holic—or being with one—is a recipe for disaster.
But the more Elise reveals her deepest desires and fears to Christian—something she’s done for no man, ever—the more Christian wonders how much longer he can keep his hands off the infuriating woman who rocked his world…
Source: ARC from Entangled: Lovestruck via NetGalley
Having really enjoyed both of the previous books in this series, I was really looking forward to this one, since both Christian and Elise felt like unfinished business from the last book (Slamdunked by Love). Alas, I would have liked this book a lot more if I could have disliked Christian less.
At times this is a fun book, flipping the commitmentphobe relationship to put Elise in the reluctant seat, while Christian is all for taking things further. But he’s also pretty judgemental, has very strict views on things and is not particularly understanding. It’s his way or the highway, and while I sympathised with his reluctance to get to know his father, the way he treats Elise at times is not particularly good.
She’s a determined woman stepping into a incredibly difficult and high-pressured role, becoming the only female general manager in the history of top level US sport. He knows this from the very start of their relationship, she tells him how much it means to her to succeed, he gets angry when people are rude about how she got there and her chances of staying – and yet he shows zero understanding of why she has to work so hard and might not necessarily have loads of time for him. He didn’t do well in a high pressure environment, so she’s not allowed to even try. She has to love him only or he will have nothing to do with her. A slight simplification, but man, he irritated me.
Elise, I liked. I loved that she got her job on her own merits, despite things being stacked in her favour (as if she would be the first!), and I loved how determined she was to succeed, and do it on her own terms. Sure, things with her dad weren’t always great, and the reason for the strain between them was pretty tenuous, but I loved how she dealt with things and set out to prove herself. She also has understandable reasons for wanting to keep Christian at arms length. No, she doesn’t always treat him kindly, but she never lies to him and tells it to him straight from the start, all the pouting he does is his own fault.
I have to admit the romance itself didn’t do much for me – partly because of Christian, but also because their one-night stand happens really early in the book and I didn’t really feel their chemistry. It does get better as things go on, and there is a cute goofy aspect to it all, but mostly my enjoyment of this book is down to Elise.
So overall, while I didn’t enjoy the romance as much as the previous books in this series, I really enjoyed Elise’s character and the way she handles herself. If you’re interested in reading a romance with a woman succeeding in a man’s world, give this a go. If you want something more light-hearted and fun, with a cute romance, maybe give the rest of the series a try. I do hope there’s more to come, though, I get the feeling a certain character in this book has his own story to tell.
The Deal With Love is out June 13th!
Visit Jamie Wesley for more details.