A happily ever after that finished too soon…
This was one of those times for me where I procrastinated reading a book. Why? Well, firstly I had never heard of Suzi Jennings… which isn’t really surprising since Tangling with the London Tycoon (TwtLT) is her debut. Secondly, because I’m a prissy arse! The premise of the book isn’t anything new – brooding guy meets girl, they work together, they fall in love… they deny that they are in love and end up having to go their separate ways only to come full circle and have a happily ever after. So, if you are a romantic at heart you should by all means love the premise. And, I did. I actually really enjoyed this book, the story-line and the characters… once I got into it.
TwtLT isn’t a slow starter, to her credit Jennings actually gets straight to the point and the characters cross paths within the first few pages. So, no it’s not a slow starter – however, for some reason the first two chapters just felt like work to read. I hate that feeling. And, please know that I am not bashing Suzi Jennings in the slightest – I ended up really getting into the story and was really disappointed when it ended.
‘She was in danger. Past and present trapping her in a nightmare that made no sense.’
Rosco and Kitty are really strong characters and the give and take between them is enjoyable. One of the things I love most about this duo is that one individual never overshadows the other, and actually the way in which they develop through each other is really rather cunning on Jennings’ part. Is Rosco an alpha male? Well, there are times that he really has that presence and then there are other instances when he is a bit ordinary, this also happens with Kitty – but, bearing in mind that this is a debut, it’s actually OK.
‘That’s who I am. An unwanted child. The daughter of a suicide statistic.’
One of the biggest problems I have was the character voices. So, here’s the thing – Rosco is Irish, but was brought up in England and thus only has an Irish twang and Kitty is British, however their voices don’t convey that. At first Rosco has some one liners that are considered Irish-isms and that kind of works, but the more you get into the book it feels forced and fake. Maybe if you’re not British and aren’t familiar with the Irish voice you won’t notice this, but it was very apparent to me. At first I actually believed that Jennings was American and that is why the feel of the story is very American. If that makes sense.
‘…they brought us together…’
Rosco’s and Kitty’s stories aren’t far-fetched, which in my opinion is what made the storyline work for me. Ok, so I am a MASSIVE fan of dark romances, and there were times when the darkness was insinuated but it never really comes through. At first I was a little disappointed, but then the more I thought about the book after I’d finished the more I appreciated that although there was baggage on both of their parts, it was nothing too sinister.
‘…violent, then surreally quiet…’
When I read the blurb I thought that book was going to be steamy. Is it steamy? I guess it is – mildly so. I mean, there’s innuendo, but that’s all there is. Look, I read a lot of books in this genre… in case you hadn’t noticed… So, I kept turning the pages in the hope that the sexual tension between Rosco and Kitty would erupt into searing hot lava… or even just a grand firework display. The build up is there and it definitely gets you going, but it just gets to the cusp and then it fizzles out… I was expecting Rosco to really convey his broodiness and intensity into this dominant, alpha sex mastery, but it was weak. At best it was timid. Don’t get me wrong, sex scenes don’t have to be graphic and filthy in order to be amazing – but in Jennings’ case the passion and heat always seemed to remain restrained and reined in. I feel a little cheated is all… Suzi Jennings left me with a serious case of reader blue balls!
“A real woman appreciates a good sexy sway to a slow tune.” She shifted quietly, placed her cheek against his. “You’ve got that nailed.”
All in all, it was a pretty light read – which is why I ended up really enjoying it. The story development is really well done, even if the ending seems somewhat rushed. To me it’s obvious that this is a debut, and I am hopeful that every work following Tangling with the London Tycoon will keep getting better and better. The question right now is – should you read Rosco’s and Kitty’s story? I think it would be a damn shame if you didn’t. Is it a 5 star? No, I’d give it a 3 at a push maybe a low 3.5.
About the Book
London publishing tycoon Rosco Redmond closely guards his family, his business, and his privacy. When his sister’s wedding brings the paparazzi baying at his door, wedding photographer Kitty Mayfair unwittingly becomes his decoy girlfriend. But the mysterious Kitty has secrets of her own.
Despite the sexy hint of an appealing Irish brogue, Kitty’s new boss is bent on micromanaging his sister’s wedding and the crazy fake relationship she’s been dragged into. The only thing they seem to have in common, is that neither of them believes in happy-ever-afters. But the more time Kitty spends with the tycoon, the more she begins to suspect there’s a lot of fire beneath his cool facade.
With the past complicating their present, and the zoom lenses of photographers everywhere they go, the commitment phobic control freak and the globe-trotting free spirit clash and ignite.
Her mouth formed a soft pout of concentration. Beautiful without the artifice of makeup. Too late, he forgot he was only there to watch her work.
She had already removed her beret but now started to undress as she moved, apparently oblivious of him.
She slowly unwrapped her woolens in obvious response to the heat of the room. The belt at her slender waist, a wide green textured-leather affair with an oversized silver buckle, was cinched tighter as the buckle was eased and then released.
He swallowed, suddenly thirsty as his body responded with an unwelcome increase of tension.
Next, she dropped the belt gently onto the floor beside her camera bag, with barely a glance.
The woolen wrap-coat flapped open, and she pushed it aside, her hands spanning her waist as she looked critically at the furniture in the room.
She drew a curtain and moved a chair. Unhurried. Proficient.
Standing back, still lost in her set-up plans, she shed the coat completely and let it fall in a raspberry red pool beside the belt.
She reminded him of a Christmas present, red and green, multi-wrapped to frustrate and excite the lucky recipient.
He groaned. That was the sort of Redmond thinking he never indulged in. The sort of thinking his father would have said aloud and laughed, the center of attention. Drinks all around, live-for-the-moment sort of thinking.
Kitty’s next layer of clothing was some sort of see-through, loose-weave top, falling off one shoulder and doing nothing to hide the skintight black leggings and tank top beneath it.
He couldn’t take his eyes off that smooth, slender shoulder. A sudden desire to know what that creamy skin felt like wound his tension up another notch.
The camera came off next—a heavy professional model and perfect for the job, Rosco was forced to admit. Kitty looped it carefully over her head and checked it thoroughly.
Suddenly, that quiet sense of concentration was replaced by one of frenetic energy as Kitty set up the equipment she needed. She motioned for Amanda to stay in the chair where she was, then she stood back to assess her composition and nodded briskly.
She looked excited and totally immersed in her work. The muscles in his right leg started to cramp, but he resisted massaging the familiar, old-injury ache, a sure sign of tension he refused to acknowledge. He couldn’t take his eyes off the action.
Kitty stalked backward on those impossibly high heels toward the coffee table, her eyes never leaving Amanda. With quick, fluid movements, she peeled off her last layer of decent clothing, then scooped up her long dark hair and twisted it into a haphazard knot. It settled low on the creamy skin of her neck, above the skintight black-clad length of her.
There was nothing between her body and Rosco’s imagination.
About the Author
Suzi Jennings lives in New Zealand and writes international stories of love and laughter. It all started in childhood when she discovered reading, scribbled stories about princesses in castles, and grew up to spend way too much money on books.
She writes contemporary romance where family secrets, powerful friendships and enduring loves heal hearts and forge happily-ever-afters. Her characters are feisty, flirty, fun – and talkative! It’s a match made in keyboard heaven as Suzi is more than happy to listen.
When not writing she can be found on Pinterest, sipping creamy lattes, still dreaming of castles she’d love to visit.