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Title: Beautiful SecretMy Review:
Author: Christina Lauren
Series: Beautiful Bastard #4
Published by: Gallery Books
Release Date: April 14th 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Reading Challenges: Lenoreo's 2018 Beat the Backlist Challenge
Find it: Goodreads ✩ Amazon ✩ B&N ✩ Google ✩ Kobo ✩ iBooks ✩ IndieBound
When Ruby Miller's boss announces he's sending her on an extended business trip to New York City, she's shocked. As one of the best and brightest young engineers in London, she knows she's professionally up to the task. The part that's throwing her is where she'll be spending a month up close and personal working alongside and staying in a hotel with Niall Stella, her firm's top urban planning executive and The Hottest Man Alive. Despite her ongoing crush, Ruby is certain Niall barely knows she's alive until their flirty overnight flight makes him sit up and take notice.
Not one for letting loose and breaking rules, recently divorced Niall would describe himself as hopeless when it comes to women. But even he knows outgoing California-girl Ruby is a breath of fresh air. Once she makes it her mission to help the sexy Brit loosen his tie, there's no turning back. Thousands of miles from London, it's easy for the lovers to play pretend. But when the trip is over, will the relationship they've built up fall down?
4.5 stars — I loved it loved it loved it. There was something so sweet and sassy and bold and vulnerable about it. It felt a little different too, probably because our characters were a bit odd, and they occasionally followed a different path than I was expecting. As a romance reader you come to predict certain things, and while some things went as expected, sometimes our main characters took a more meandering path and that was kind of fun.
Ruby was hilarious!! She seemed very down to earth, and I loved that while she had nerves and was silly and crazy, she was also very aware of who she was and what she wanted. She had confidence in some things, and she didn’t shy away from hard conversations. I was all team Ruby for most of the book. I appreciated her struggle between understanding that Niall wouldn’t move at the same pace and feeling insecure regardless of that understanding. I appreciated that she didn’t let anyone walk all over her, and she pretty much embraced herself and who she was. For someone younger, she felt very self-aware. My only gripe is that after the conflict and stuff, I wasn’t impressed when she yet again rubbed Niall’s bad choices in his face in the resolution. I mean, part of it was trying to explain herself, but it also felt like one extra dig, you know? I thought Niall suffered enough.
Niall was freaking ADORABLE. I think I heard of this book on a list of beta heroes, and OMG Niall is so my kind of hero. He was even more beta than I was expecting! Sometimes I think I’m going to get a beta hero, and then they just turn out to be an alpha in disguise. And while once he opened up and got over some roadblocks, he could be aggressive in bed, it was his personality out of bed that just had me swooning all over his awkwardness. I felt so bad for the number that his ex-wife did on him, but I did appreciate that he didn’t shy away from acknowledging his own mistakes in that relationship. I groaned and squirmed when he made missteps, but he was just so freaking earnest and wanted to change and be better. And I felt like I truly saw that growth.
The two of them together lit my book on fire. Which is funny since their sexual escapades took a rather circuitous route. I appreciated their journey, and holy hell were so many of their encounters ridiculously hot. And I really felt like we got to see them connect on a deeper level. So many times I find that missing, but I really felt all of their connections in this one. And my heart ached for the struggles that they went through, but I understood how their journey progressed as it did…it made sense for them and the growing they each needed to do individually.
I ADORED the brief glimpses of friends. It makes me desperately want to read more books in this series. Max, Will, Bennett, and Chloe were awesome. I seriously laughed and laughed and have wishlisted all those books. And I loved Ruby’s conversations with her BFF London, please tell me she has a book too!! I do wish Tony had gotten more of a comeuppance, but sometimes reality doesn’t work like you want it to.
So yeah. LOVED this. Just everything I was looking for. But damn, I really hate reading paperbacks now. Gonna have to see if I can find more books by these authors at my library.