★★★★★ 5 Stars ★★★★★
This book was recommended to me by a few of my fellow bloggers who, like me, love a ruthless bastard hero. The author is well-known for writing alpha male arseholes and so I immediately requested this from Netgalley and started reading as soon as I could.
Spanish born Dante Damaso runs his own international hotel chain and is on a business trip in Japan with his assistant Cleo, when he is forced to interact with the woman who has him feeling all of a fluster. You would never know it though, because on the outside he is cool and collected and a complete arrogant slave driver who shows a disdain for this seemingly flighty lady.
Ex-ballerina Cleo knows she only got the job because her brother is friends with her new boss, but she is very capable and is constantly trying to prove to Dante that she is up for the job. Unfortunately, she can’t seem to do anything right and he continues to be a controlling jerk.
Despite their disdain for each other, they seem to have a huge amount of sexual tension that they simply cannot ignore and so by night they are lovers but by day they are boss and employee, with an air of aloofness that is quite painful at times.
Once back in their home town of Cape Town, Dante insists that their ‘relationship’ is over, and Cleo is quite happy to stay as far away from him as possible.
However, things are never quite what they seem and life has a way of throwing a curve ball when you least expect it, so the events that occur after their return, force them to spend more time together.
The second half of this book was quite heart wrenching, and for anyone who has been in the position that Cleo and Dante find themselves in, or have been close to someone who has, then your heart will break and then some. I have to say that Natasha Anders dealt with this issue beautifully and I applaud her for being brave enough to write about it.
On a more uplifting note, Cleo and Dante come to terms with the fact that they in fact have real serious feelings for each other, and I loved watching it all come together.
“You wanted to make me laugh. That was sweet of you, Dante. Don’t deny it.”
Dante definitely redeemed himself in my eyes and he ended up being the perfect man for Cleo. I have to add that Cleo wasn’t a complete doormat and I loved the occasions that her sharp tongue lashed back at Dante, she was not easily trampled over, and stayed classy throughout.
If you love this trope, I highly recommend adding it to your TBR. I can see how some might think he is a little bit too mean, but for me that made it all the more delicious when he fell.
I am now going to download Natasha Anders back catalogue and immerse myself in some more sexy bastards.
Oh and his boat was named Arabella, how cool is that! Although, he named his boat after his first dog, so…
A Ruthless Proposition is a standalone contemporary romance, told in third person dual POV. Releasing January 26th, 2016
ARC gratefully received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review