PART-TIME LOVER promises full-time satisfaction…
What do you get when you mix a charming British hero, a temporary marriage of convenience, and a smart & sassy heroine? PART-TIME LOVER, the brand new, standalone rom-com from #1 New York Times bestseller Lauren Blakely! Get your copy of PART-TIME LOVER now!
✮✮✮PART-TIME LOVER is here! Grab your copy today! ✮✮✮
I’ll say this about Christian — he made one hell of a first impression. When I first saw the strapping man, he was doing handstands naked on a dock along the canal. His crown jewels were far more entertaining than anything else I’d seen on the boat tour, so I did what any curious woman would do — I took his photo. I might have looked at the shot a few dozen times. Little did I know I’d meet him again, a year later, at a secret garden bar in the heart of the city, where I’d learn that his mind and his mouth were even more captivating. But given the way my heart had been trampled, I wanted only a simple deal — No strings. No expectations.
Our arrangement worked well enough until the day I needed a lot more from him…
Let me just say, this whole part-time lover thing was her idea. I’d have gone all-in from the start, but hey, when a gorgeous, brilliant woman invites you into her bed, and only her bed…well, I said yes.
But then, one hysterical phone call from my brother later, begging me to find myself a wife so grandfather’s business stays in the family, and I need a promotion with Elise. Turns out a full-time husband suits her needs too, and a temporary marriage of convenience ought to do the trick, until we can simply untie the knot…
As long as no one finds out…
As long as no one gets hurt…
As long as no one falls in love…
But our ending was one I never saw coming.
*ARC received as a part of a blog tour. The thoughts are entirely my own and in no way biased.*
Part Time Lover, follows the story of Christian and Elise and how the two fall in love in unconventional circumstances. They first meet on a cruise when Christian is doing naked handstands on the deck. They make plans to go out on a date, but aren’t able to, because of a mixup. They meet a year after that and then start dating, even though they both decide it’s not serious and they’re just having fun and enjoying each others’ company. But, circumstances arise and Christian needs a wife to save his grandfather’s company and prevent it from being sold. So, Elise agrees to help and they decide to stay married for a few months after which Christian and his brother will be able to save the company. But, when their time is up, are they ready to let each other go?
Now, I’m sure that you’ve read the ‘marriage for convenience’ trope a million times, but there are a few things that make this one so much better than those. Number one, Christian needs a wife, but he isn’t paying Elise to be one. He actually doesn’t even want Elise to be dragged in the middle of all this, but Elise insists, because she likes Christian and she wants to help as she knows how much this company means to him.
Also, they aren’t lying to anyone. All of Christian and Elise’s close friends and family – the people who matter – know that they’re getting married only for the sake of the company and nothing else. I absolutely loved this. Most of the books with such a trope have the couple lying to everyone in their life and hiding the truth behind their relationship, but not here. They’re both upfront about it. It’s really a refreshing change.
Of course, there’s also no hate to love or dislike to love trope and the heroine does not think that the hero is just a spoilt brat who is doing all this for money. Elise understands Christian’s motivations and she doesn’t make a fuss about it.
Elise is a smart, no nonsense woman who doesn’t put up with anyone’s shit. She’s witty and sassy and blunt. I really liked that about her. Like, she always has the right comeback for everything, especially where Christian is concerned and that was absolutely awesome. She’s also really helping and caring by nature. She agrees to be Christian’s wife after only meeting him a few times because she cares about him and she wants to help him.
Christian is a dreamboat. He’s smart and suave and sexy and says all the right things at the right time. He’s carefree and funny and lives life as it comes. One thing that I love about him is that though he is persistent, he is always respectful and he knows his boundaries. He never oversteps and though he desperately wants more with Elise, he respects her wishes when she says she’s not looking for anything serious and goes with the flow.
Their relationship is great. Flirty and witty banter with a lot of one liners and smartass comebacks are the foundation of their relationship and that is awesome. They have great chemistry and it translates really well on page. You can’t help but root for them.
But, I did find it boring in parts, and skimmed here and there, because I felt like the author was dragging the story a little. At times it felt like in the interaction between Elise and Christian, she was trying too hard for both of them to come across as funny.
But, overall, it was a nice read and I enjoyed it.
A year ago
I stroll up the hilly yard toward my house, passing my brother, Erik, who stands close to the porch. “Did you scare them all away? Admit it—they cringed in terror, scary movie—style.”
I slash an arm through the air. “Whole boatload of them. Tears, shrieks of horror. Wailing.”
He cringes dramatically.
“Toss me a towel, will you? Or do you want to continue to admire your more fit and handsome younger brother?”
Erik scoffs and throws the towel over the porch railing, away from me.
I shrug. “I’ll just go inside, and you can check out my arse.”
“You can count on me never ever checking out your arse.”
I grab the handle on the sliding-glass door and head inside to one of my homes. You can’t beat a home on the water. But then, a flat in Paris is hard for me to say no to as well. Good thing I get to have both.
I grab the pair of boxer briefs I left on the couch and tug them on as Erik follows me inside.
“Seriously. How did it go?”
“Exceptionally well. I landed a date tonight.”
“Bastard. You’re not supposed to get dates when you flash the tourists, and especially not when your beloved brother is only in town with you for a few days.” Most of the time Erik’s in London, where we were raised.
“Jealous much?” I ask, heading for the fridge and pouring a glass of cold water.
Erik flexes a bicep, then another, posing like he’s Mr. Olympia. “I’ve scored plenty of dates with this fabulous physique. Just none lately.”
“That would be because you’re married, you tosser.”
He flashes a dimpled grin. He’s so ridiculously in love with his wife, it’s nearly disgusting. He could be the poster child for man-who-falls-arse-over-elbow-for-a-woman. That’s something I can’t say for all the men in my family.
“I’m like Grandfather, happy as a clam.”
I furrow my brow. “How does anyone know clams are happy? Is there a study on clam happiness? We all assume they’re rays of sunshine, but how do we know?”
He scratches his chin. “Good question.”
“I bet they aren’t happy at all. I bet they feel nothing. Is that what happiness should feel like? Nothing?”
He sighs. “Aren’t you philosophical today?”
“Maybe. It happens every now and then.” I take a drink of the water. “But what can you do? Sometimes deep thoughts stray into my brain, and I can’t help it.”
“Best to get them out of your head if you have a date tonight.”
“Perhaps she likes thinkers,” I suggest.
“So who is she? Did you exchange numbers on the dock? Or did you, I don’t know, play charades with your appendages swinging in the breeze?”
“Yes. I can do Morse code with my dick.”
“Such a useful skill,” he deadpans.
“We did it the old-fashioned way. Picked a spot to meet and a time.”
He raises his chin. “And why her? Of all the ladies on all the tours you’ve ever flashed, you haven’t asked one out before. Not that you’ve told me about anyway.”
I let my brain rewind to the petite brunette with the big sunglasses who ogled me unabashedly from the side of the boat. She was pretty, that much I could tell even from fifty feet away.
But pretty alone isn’t enough. Pretty is a dime a dozen. I’ve dated women who aren’t pretty, but are witty, clever, and keep me on my toes. I like those traits just as much. Perhaps more. But I’m not opposed to pretty either.
“She was bold. She called out bravo. She said it louder than anyone ever has.”
“So she knows how to read your Morse code.”
“She’s welcome to read Morse code on me anytime. Come to think of it, she can even treat me like I’m fruit at the market.”
Erik laughs. “In some countries, they don’t let you touch fruit at the market.”
I gesture to my body, from my chest down to my legs. “In the fine country of Christian Land, it’s highly encouraged for the bold brunettes to touch the fruit.”
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“Characters that are as bold and carefree as they are vulnerable and introspective, banter that’s rife with wit, humor, and innuendo, and a teasing, agonizingly slow-building romance make Part-Time Lover a gripping love story. From start to finish, Part-Time Lover will have you laughing and swooning and falling in love with love.” -Yvette, Nose Stuck in a Book
“Jam-packed with Blakely’s keen attention to detail, her fabulous sense of humor and a sexy, sweet, consuming romance, Part-Time Lover was a heart-fluttering, full of hope joy to read.” -Red Cheeks Reads
“…a beautiful, compelling, alluring story of opening up your heart again to love and all the possibilities of it.” –Bookish Aurora
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A #1 New York Times Bestselling author, and #1 Wall Street Journal Bestselling author, Lauren Blakely is known for her contemporary romance style that’s hot, sweet and sexy. She lives in California with her family and has plotted entire novels while walking her dogs. With fourteen New York Times bestsellers, her titles have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal Bestseller Lists more than 95 times, and she’s sold more than 2.5 million books. In June she’ll release PART-TIME LOVER, a sexy new standalone romance. To receive an email when Lauren releases a new book, sign up for her newsletter! laurenblakely.com/newsletter