The Taming of the Billionaire (Billionaires and Bridesmaids #2) by Jessica Clare
I never thought I’d see it, let alone like it, but this is a kick-ass romance about a cat-lady.
If you can get past the first chapter (which features all of the cliched “slightly-dowdy-heroine who has a gorgeous-but-selfish-sister, a rollicking-bunch-of-loyal-girlfriends and an affinity for wearing cat-hair-covered-black-sweaters and leggings to a billionaire's house for dinner”), then you will love this story! I promise.
Edie, our heroine, is a sad sack of a cat-behaviourist who happens to be a bridesmaid in her friend Gretchen’s wedding to a reclusive billionaire. As such, she arrives at said billionaire’s house for an evening of getting to know the bridal party with her slinky but self-absorbed sister Bianca. Bianca accompanies her because Edie has a bum knee from a past skiing accident and cannot drive for long hours without cramping up. Yes, this is turning into a cluster-fuck, but just go with it, because it does get better.
At the dinner, Edie is overhears the groomsmen making coarse and snide remarks about making easy conquests of the bridesmaids. Please Note: all the billionaire’s friends are billionaires themselves of course, because everyone knows that billionaires only have other billionaires for friends - it’s some kind of rule in the romance world or something. (When did millionaires get all washed up for that matter? hmm..a question for another day I guess). This gets Edie started on her bitchy warpath and the evening is a disaster except for one hazel-eyed sexy billionaire named Magnus who wasn’t quite as crass as all the rest of his buddies.
Anyhow, to make a long story short, the plot hinges on Magnus’ brother Levi falling for Edie’s sister Bianca, and the subterfuge he needs to have happen to get Bianca to date him. In other words, Magnus has to be wingman for his bro and keep Edie occupied so Levi can score with Bianca. Okay, that now concludes all the fuckery that you have to put up with to get to the gold that this book possesses. What follows from here on out, is a classic love story of two semi-hot people who spend enough time in each other’s company slinging barbs back and forth that they actually start to have a sort of camaraderie.
The conversational writing that Jessica Clare gives us in this novel is top-notch. At first you might think that it’s a little put-on, what with the rampant f-bombs and ‘motherf*ckers’ thrown in, but once the characters are revealed, you’ll see that this is a very real and very funny way that people talk, unload, spar and outwit each other. Just like in real life. Magus and Edie give it to each other as good as they get it from each other and when the barbs die down, they actually start to develop quite a rapport, going so far as to even be supportive of each other when it comes to dealing with their immature and entirely annoying siblings.
Once Edie and Magnus make the leap to becoming physical lovers, the novel takes off like a rocket. The sex is supremely hot. There is mucho time spent and devoted to the art of cunnilingous, a God to which Magnus has devoted his religious life to. There is a mention of sucking dick, but this is totally a chick-focused love story, so Magnus gets a bit, while she is inundated into every position that it’s possible to receive oral pleasure. So if that is your ‘thing’, then this is definitely a book for you!
There is a masquerade party, some open air canoodling and a lot of indoor shenanigans, as well as some cats rescued along the way. Magnus turns out to be a hidden genius for inventing and developing video games (where his fortune comes from), and they even make a trip to a Comic-Con like convention where they enjoy still more love-making and a drunken recreation of the pretty woman bathtub scene.
Of course, it all falls to bits when Magnus reveals his part in the initial trickery that got Edie to begin to date him, and as we ache when the inevitable dumping comes, we can’t help but understand Edie’s need for personal redemption. Her need for Magnus to prove his love to her - but not by buying her something is a hard one. It got me thinking - if someone asked me to prove my love, how in the hell would I actually do that? Would I cite past behavior? Would I declare my feelings and have enough proof through my words? I really thought Magnus was up the creek by this time, but he manages to pull it out of the fire, because that is what billionaire heroes do!
Aaaaaaaaaand, this is where it gets schmaltzy again. Magnus gets someone to develop an app that matches old and hard to adopt cats with a series of cat coffee shops and yadda, yadda, yadda, it’s just so saccharine that I can’t stand it, except that it leads to some awesome “make-up and let’s live together” sex. OK, so I’m a sucker for a happy ending, but so what? I’ll admit that is part of what I love about romance books. They always end happily and that is what I like to depend on when I pick up my laptop to read.
Overall, this is an excellent escapist style of contemporary romance book. The sex is modern and fresh and very enjoyable for the female half of this couple. Anytime billionaires are in the mix, you know you’ll get to indulge in wickedly expensive homes, furnishings and cars, and The Taming of The Billionaire is no exception to that rule. Just know that Edie’s popcorn-ceilinged, cat-hair-covered townhouse will also serve to keep you slightly grounded. This is a very enjoyable sexual and romantic experience to read about on a lazy day at home.