In this How to Win a Monroe story…
I’ve always been drawn to heiress Avery Monroe, but I know how completely off-limits she is! We haven’t spoken since I rejected her kiss three years ago. Now her brother’s meddling means Avery’s spending the summer with me at my castle in Croatia. I’ve promised to protect her, but as I uncover Avery’s secret battles I can’t keep my true feelings hidden. Will our passion finally be unlocked?
|Title:||Off-Limits Fling with the Heiress|
|Series:||How To Win a Monroe (Book 1)|
|Category / Genre(s):||Harlequin / Mills & Boon|
|Trope(s):||Forced / Close Proximity|
Brother’s Best Friend / Best Friend’s Little Sister
|Point of View:||First Person, Present Tense, Dual Viewpoint (H & h)|
|Location:||New York, USA, Dubrovnik, Croatia and Toronto, Canada|
|Release Date:||14th September, 2023|
Delicious slow-burn romance
You know that feeling you get when you’ve finally arrived at your holiday villa, you sit down at the table at the terrace admiring the gorgeous view, relaxing as you take that first sip of cool, crisp white wine… well that’s the exact feeling I got while reading this book. It’s got that perfect blend of relaxed holiday vibes, a delicious slow-burn romance with enough sexual tension to rival the scorching holiday sun.
This book is the first in a new duo from Rachael Stewart about the Monroe siblings – a successful and rich brother and sister dealing with, among other things, grief over the death of their father. This book tells the story of younger sister, Avery and family friend, Gabe, who happens to be older brother, Aidan’s, best friend. Aiden appears very briefly in this story but gets his own story in the next book, My Unexpected Christmas Wedding. Each stands alone.
When we first meet Avery she’s at a low point in her life. She’s going down the wrong path and feeling lost and alone to boot. She’s young (20) at the start of the book and while she may act a bit bratty, I couldn’t help but fall in love with her. She was obviously misunderstood and a little lost – but she still kept her sass and spirit. When we jump ahead 3 years, I loved Avery even more. She had blossomed into a smart, independent and admirable woman but didn’t lose her cheekiness or her vulnerabilities. She had used her experiences to shape her rather than break her and boy did I cheer for her.
Our hero, Gabe, showed his hand from the moment he burst onto the page and marched Avery away from the trouble he was sure she was getting herself into. Overbearing, domineering, bossy and grumpy – oh how I loved him. He was such a good man and I love, love, loved the fact that he was genuinely loyal to his best friend, Aiden yet so tortured by his feelings and need for Avery. He really tries his hardest – poor soul. He really thought he could protect himself from love!
Avery and Gabe have a lot of similarities and shared experiences and yet it’s their differences that make them perfect for the other. They fit together so wonderfully – each bringing out the best in the other and helping them to see and experience the world in a different way. There’s also the slowly simmering, always just below the surface, sexual tension between the two that was so delicious. A look here, a touch there, a tease, a shared moment – it built until Gabe, Avery and me as a reader, just couldn’t take it anymore and everything…happened. It was satisfaction all round. There was just enough detail to keep up with the intimacy yet it wasn’t overly described. It fit the book to a T.
Rachael Stewart always crafts such a detailed, intricate and romantic tale and I adore her writing style. She brings me into the story and makes me love the characters from the first page. I was in Croatia, felt the sun on my face and watched as Gabe and Avery fell in love. Or Gabe realised and admitted that he was in love with Avery as she was with him. The end was everything I could have hoped for and we even get an epilogue – without any spoilers for Aiden’s book.
This is definitely another winner from Rachael Stewart. If you want your romance with some late summer vibes and the delicious push and pull of a slow burn – you’ll definitely want to get your hands on this book. 5 stars.
*I received this book in exchange for my honest review.*
Rachael Stewart adores conjuring up stories for the readers of Harlequin Mills & Boon and Deep Desires Press, with tales varying from the heartwarmingly romantic to the wildly erotic.
She’s been writing since she could put pen to paper as the stacks of scrawled on A4 sheets in her loft will attest to, and the lovingly bound short stories that her father would run off at work and proudly share out with his colleagues. Thinking it was a pipe dream to be published one day, she pursued a sensible career in business but she was really play-acting, achieving the appropriate degree and spending many years in the corporate world where she never truly belonged. Always happiest when she was sat at her laptop in the quiet hours tapping out a story or two. And so here she is, a published author, her full-time pleasure, a dream come true.
A Welsh lass at heart, she now lives in Yorkshire with her husband and three children, and if she’s not glued to her laptop, she’s wrapped up in them or enjoying the great outdoors seeking out inspiration.