Author: Katy Evans
Series: Million Dollar #1
Heir apparent to her father’s company, Lizzy Banks needs a man. The perfect man. But when the rich “fundbabies” she usually rubs shoulders with prove impossible to hire, she takes a chance on a raw beast of a man salvaged from the wreckage of a bar brawl.
James Rowan earns a modest income as a YouTube daredevil, but he can’t refuse Lizzy’s million dollar deal. As she polishes his rough edges, creating a sophisticated gentleman fit for the highest circles of society, not only does she bring out the perfect man—it’s like she’s making the man of her dreams. How can she resist?
Though Lizzy loves seeing James in his clothes—and out of them—he isn’t the kind of man you bring home to Daddy. Her father’s disapproval and the pressure of the campaign have her eyeing the straight and narrow, but Lizzy’s finding it awfully hard to resist the devil on her shoulder…
I have already talked about the power of covers. This one is PUUUUURFECT and what made me get the book. The blurb is nice, I guess, but it is nothing special for this genre. So good choice putting some eye-candy to make it easier for doubtful readers. I wasn’t planning on reading this book so soon, but I got an ARC for the second one in the saga and I hate reading outside the meant order.
This time we dance with the big fishes of the fashion industry thanks to Lizzy, daughter of the owner of Banks LTD; one of the most successful fashion companies in the USA. They are about to launch a new line for sohpisticated gentlemen, so she needs to find the perfect model. Sadly, the billionaries out there who could embody the spirit of the campaign are too self-centered and too rich to be conviced. Luckily for her, she meets Jimmy, a YouTuber who earns a few bucks doing stunts in from of a camera. He is very male all over, but too rugged and wild for the campaign. But, one million dollars is enough to convice the daredevil to be transformed into James, the ultimate Banks gentleman!! Obviously, one thing leads to the other and sparks start to fly all around them…
I must say I was utterly surprised by the book and the style of the author. It is very enjoyable, with a nice story that develops little by little, good characters to make us company and a slow brewed romance full of stomach butterflies. The main strength of the book is in the characters and their exchanges; because the story, even though it is really nice, doesn’t have any twists or unexpected outcomes that would have stoked the flames of storytelling. It has no need of them. It is perfect in its simplicity. Overcomplicating the plot would have ruined the good vibes that engulf the whole story.
Thankfully, the slow pace of the story comes with a slow romance. I would have hated if the fake gentleman part were a a snail and the romance a speedster. Thanks to that, I have shipped for them like crazy, enjoying every kiss, every caress, every smirk and grin, every getting to know each other before jumping naked into a bed. It has been intense. One of the best couples that I have met lately in books. I wish I could get more of them, but I guess it is a one time deal. They are not only great when they are worshipping each other. Their banter is also remarkable, but it is not crazy fun banter. I would classify it as sexy banter. Good humored banter. The one that shows without a doubt that they are friends before being lovers. Another perfect ingredient for the story.
I really liked that for once the male character wasn’t the billionarie. Romance with billionaries tend to be way boring. More like buying affection than earning it. Lizzy is not like that. She enjoys many luxurious commodities, but she is not a spoiled kid. Not in a long shot. She works very hard to be a fundamental part of the company and doesn’t take anything for granted. I guess that was what made Jimmy crush on her, because they couldn’t be more different from each other. The daredevil is… Do I sound too lame if I say dreamy? He has the whole package: looks to kill, good ethics in life, cute bad-boiness… I could expend too long saying nice things about him. When he is taking his first leassons to become a gentleman he is just plain adorable. Yes, he can count me as one of his conquests *sigh*.
The book could have been perfect, but there are several details that barely make sense. Thankfully, the rest outshine them and the reading is not hindred by those holes in the plot. The biggest and most annoyiug one is the secret. Yes, Lizzy wants to keep James’s past a secret, because her father wouldn’t approve of it. How does she get it? I have no idea. Jimmy was a fairly popular YouTuber in Atlanta and the adds with his face were crazy big. A shave is not enough to conceal who he really is, as it is explained in the book (several people recognize him). If Lizzy’s father or LB made a background of him they should have found the truth way sooner. Or some media would have exposed the lie. We could say they were lucky, but I think it goes beyond that.
There are also a couple of characters that I don’t know what to think about them: Jeanine and LB. The former is Lizzy’s best friend… or not? I blame her for the big debacle. I’m not sure it was an accident about her spilling the beans just before the big event. That was weird. Wasn’t Kim supposed to be the big bad wolf? In my opinion, the lawyer stole her spot! And LB… he is suddenly great? How? It doesn’t make any sense. He doesn’t lift a funger to help Lizzy, but somehow he always has the best interest for her in mind? Even when he places bets against her? Or when he stays quiet during the final speech? Yeah, yeah… he is golden.
This has been my first book by Katy Evans and it will not be the last. Let’s hope the next book of this saga is as nice or even better than this one!