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King of Hearts (Hearts #3) by LH Cosway REVIEW

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King of Hearts (Hearts #3) by LH Cosway REVIEW

Welcome to the City, London’s most prestigious square mile, where finance reigns and Oliver King is a rising prince.

I used to rule the world.

There might be wolves on Wall Street, but there were crocodiles in Canary Wharf. Some of us craved money. Some of us craved power.

I liked money, and power had its advantages, but what I really wanted was to excel, to surpass the men who came before me. I never cared much for love and romance until I met Alexis.

I could feel it the very moment she walked into the interview, with her outspoken charm and vivacious personality. She cast all the others in shadow, made me laugh when life held no humour. Our friendship should have remained professional, but it wasn’t long before the lines started to blur.

You know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men? Well, I never foresaw where my plans would lead, and only in my darkest hour did I finally see the light…

You can have all the money and prestige in the world and still be the poorest man alive. And love, well, I hate to use a tired old cliché, but love can be the thing that truly sets you free.

Review

Oliver King. We met him in Hearts of Fire, he was an alcoholic, he was distraught, an emotional and physical mess. Homeless. This is the story of Before and After.

This book filled me with happiness, knocked me down, trampled on my heart and then gradually lifted me back up again – I am sitting here welling up at the thought of it. It was simply beautiful.

Set in the hustle and bustle of Canary Wharf, one of London’s major business districts, Alexis Clark is an East End barmaid who decides to put her administration diploma to good use and applies for a job at one of the top investment banks in the UK.

Oliver King finds Alexis refreshing, she has no filter, says inappropriate things and makes him laugh and offers her the job the very next day.

King is a very educated man, is at the top of his game and is highly charming, which is why Alexis decides to keep him at arms length and despite the attraction between them they become friends and decide to attempt to resist the temptation to tear each others clothes off.

The sexual tension at this point was through the roof, it’s not long before King makes claim.

“I felt like a small animal being preyed upon by an expert hunter. He’d caught me out, and I was under no illusions that he was going to make this easy for me.”

This first half of this story is a friends-to-lovers theme which had me smiling, laughing and falling in love with these two characters, but with nervous dread as to what was to come.

When the events occurred that led to King’s destructive downfall, I was so upset, I was sad for the woman who loved him so fiercely, and I was in agony for the broken man that he became.

But never fear, because L.H Cosway has written a wonderful and loving character in Alexis and it is her job to save the man who gave her confidence and affection and unconditional love. When she receives a letter from the travelling circus, she is determined to give him back his crown and title of King of her world, as she is his Queen.

This was an emotional and uplifting story, I absolutely loved it. I loved that it was set in my city, and that Alexis was so relatable; she was funny and kind with a sense of humour and a heart of gold.

King was absolutely charming, he was sexy and confident and adored Alexis. It was heartbreaking to see such a strong man fall.

“Shame. Pain. Loss. Fear. More shame.
So much fucking shame I could barely breathe with it.”

His recovery was tough but King was strong, and along with the people he loved close by, he found the path to happiness once again.

The writing was stunningly beautiful, and the emotions that this story brought out of me has definitely placed this book on my top 10 favourite shelf of 2015.

ETA – I forgot to mention the epilogue! It was so clever, and lovely. It was told in King’s POV and covered his perspective of all the best bits. So, so good.

This is a standalone contemporary romance written in Alexis’ POV. It is not necessary to have read the previous books in this series, but I highly recommend them, or at least to have some insight to King’s character in Hearts of Fire.

ARC gratefully received from the author in exchange for an honest review

Excerpt

What he said made me curious, so I went on, “What do you do to deal with the stress?”

He gave me a wan smile, and there was something in his expression that struck me as sad somehow. Rubbing at his chin, he answered,  “Hmmm, when I’m stressed out…a nice glass of top shelf whiskey usually does the trick.”

“That makes sense,” I said and walked around his desk before taking a seat in front of him.

“You know, I always thought it was poor people who did drugs, to escape the bleakness of their realities. Now I’m thinking maybe the practice is most common at the top and the bottom of the ladder. Perhaps the best place to be is somewhere in the middle.”

“Not necessarily. I’m at the top. Do I look high to you?” The deadpan way in which he said it made me laugh.

I leaned forward and teased, “I’m not sure. Let me have a look at your pupils.” Surprising me, King rose from his seat, walked around his desk and came to kneel in front of me. Before I knew it his face was mere inches from mine. “Go ahead,” he said, voice low. Whoa, Oliver King’s face right up close…I wasn’t sure what to do with that.

I guess he didn’t realise the effect he had on this very non-gay lady, because he seemed entirely unselfconscious. His eyes were beautiful, his lashes long and golden, his skin smooth with a hint of stubble around his jaw, and his lips were just…I had no words.

Sculpted and masculine was probably the only way I could think to describe them. I realised I was staring at those lips a little too closely when my eyes flicked back to his. A moment ago he was smiling, but now that smile was transforming into a thoughtful frown.

I cleared my throat. “Your pupils look fine.” King exhaled a small breath and I watched as his attention went from my eyes to my cheeks, nose, chin, and then finally to my lips. He looked like he was about to say something when suddenly Gillian’s voice filled the room. “Mr King, Jenson Gellar is on the phone. Shall I put him through?”

About the Author

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L.H. Cosway has a BA in English Literature and Greek and Roman Civilisation, and an MA in Postcolonial Literature. She lives in Dublin city. Her inspiration to write comes from music. Her favourite things in life include writing stories, vintage clothing, dark cabaret music, food, musical comedy, and of course, books.

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More in this Series

six-of-hearts-hearts-1 hearts-of-fire-hearts-2 king-of-hearts Hearts of Blue thief-of-hearts-hearts-5    

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