Absolutely. Fabulous. Cover!
His Billion Dollar Baby
Can her love melt this CEO’s heart?
No-nonsense physical therapist Gwen Radley has scraped for everything she has, so she surprises even herself when she gives into the advances of a sexy ex-patient the night before he returns to Afghanistan. Then she learns she’s pregnant, just as the news arrives that her soldier has died.
Grieving over his brother’s death, billionaire Carter Anderson questions Gwen’s motives when he accidentally learns about her pregnancy. In his experience, women can’t be trusted, so he doubts Gwen’s insistence she has not interest in his family empire – especially after she moves in with his mother. When her therapy expertise has them collaborating on a lucrative business project, Carter sees her in a new light. But his suspicions persist, leading them both to wonder if he will ever embrace his brother’s baby – or the love that’s blooming between them.
This book has a lot going for it–the premise has promise, the characters have some depth, and did I mention the cover? Such lovely abs. 🙂 The idea of falling for the brother of your deceased baby daddy–especially when your relationship with that brother starts off so totally wrong-footedly and you seem to have nothing whatsoever in common with him–soooo much potential for delicious drama! (I was actually glad that Gwen and Ben didn’t have a closer relationship, because that that much drama would have put it over the top. Pregnancy hormones + survivor guilt + falling for someone new and moving on so soon after guilt = total overload. I think Ms. Nolan made the right choice here having her pregnancy be the result of a single uncharacteristic night for the two of them.)
Gwen is a really strong character. She is a self-made woman, rising above her foster system background and making a solid life for herself. I loved how she is so devoted to helping others and that she really knows her job (physical therapy, with an emphasis on military wounded) well. She is determined to raise her baby herself, yet still manages to accept help when she really needs it with grace. I liked her a lot.
Carter is a bit tougher to love at times–a disastrous first marriage has left him bitter, and he tends to see all women as variations of his ex. He is also naturally suspicious of anyone who might be out to take advantage of his family’s wealth and good nature. His attitude is understandable, up to a point–but once he let his guard down and opened himself up to a real relationship with Gwen, it felt as if he was much too quick to do another 180 degree turn and once again see only self-serving motives behind all of her actions. In fact, the entire argument on which their relationship climax hinged had a forced feel to it. I found myself going back and re-reading their conversation more than once because their responses to each other’s comments just didn’t feel genuine–their reactions seemed so out of whack with what had actually been done and said that reading that scene gave me a “wait–what the heck just happened here?” feeling afterwards.
I’ll give Carter this, though–he does grovel with style. Tiny baby shoes will melt this particular heart every time. 🙂
Overall, this novel made my two-hour wait at BWI a lot more enjoyable than it otherwise might have been. I’ll definitely be interested to see more from this author in the future as she continues to develop her contemporary romance-writing muscles.
Rating: 3 stars / C
I received a complimentary copy in exchange for an honest review.
Lea Nolan writes books for young adults featuring bright heroines, crazy-hot heroes, diabolical plot twists, plus a dose of magic, a draft of romance, and a sprinkle of history. She also pens smart, witty contemporary stories for adults filled with head-swooning, heart-throbbing, sweep-you-off your feet romance.
With a master’s degree in women’s studies and public policy, and an undergraduate degree in history, she spent twenty years as a health policy analyst and researcher, writing hundreds of fascinating reports and articles tens of people enjoyed. Today, she teaches graduate courses in health policy, law, and financing, and takes on the occasional consulting gig.
Born and raised on Long Island, New York, she loves the water far too much to live inland. With her heroically supportive husband and three clever children, she resides in Maryland where she scarfs down crab cakes whenever she gets the chance.
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Giveaway: Giveaway Extravaganza to maximize winners that includes: (2) $25 gift cards (winner picks either Barnes and Noble or Amazon); (3) green shamrock necklaces; (10) magnets with the cover image.