Series: Trophy Husbands #1
On a Wednesday afternoon, I ask Trevor Bentley to marry me. He might be the most arrogant, obnoxious man I know, but I need him to be my husband for a year.
There are reasons.
He’s not going to be a real husband. Just part-time. Yes, I have to live with him. And, okay, I also have to share his bed. And, sure, he’s the sexiest and most exciting thing to ever happen to my controlled, organized life.
But still… It’s only a part-time marriage. I’m not going to give him my heart. I know what I’m doing, and I’m too smart to fall for my husband.
I’m feeling warm and relaxed when I finally get out of the bathtub. I usually don’t walk around the apartment unless I’m covered up, but since Trevor isn’t here I just wrap a towel around me. My hair is piled up messily on my head, and I’m carrying my bath salts and soap.
I open the bathroom door and nearly run smack into Trevor.
I give a little squeal and immediately look to make sure my towel is in place. “I didn’t know you were home.”
“I just got back.”
“I was in the bath.”
“I know that.” He’s looking very sexy in that end-of-the-day way he has. Five-o’clock shadow. Slightly loosened tie and collar. Half-lowered eyelids.
God, the man is hot.
“I could smell you as soon as I walked in the door,” he adds, the slightly rough words doing nothing for my flustered state of mind.
“You smelled me?” I’m thinking all kinds of things at the moment, and none of them are suitable to share with the man in front of me.
He reaches over, and I swallow over a quick intake of breath. I think he’s going to touch me. I want him to touch me.
He touches my bath salts instead. “This stuff you put in your bath. I smelled it as soon as I walked in, so I knew you were in the bath.”
It’s perfectly logical. And kind of a disappointment.
His hand moves from the bath salts, and his fingertips slowly trail up my towel to the bare skin at my collarbone. It’s barely a touch, but it makes my skin flush and a pulsing begin between my legs.
“What did you think?” he asks, his voice a little thicker than normal.
“What did I think about what?” I have no idea what he’s talking about. My brain isn’t exactly functioning at the moment.
“What did you think I smelled?”
“I… I didn’t know.”
It feels like he sees.
It feels like he sees all of me.
I’m staring at his plum-colored tie because it’s safer than meeting his eyes right now. I don’t want him to know how I’m feeling, how his touch, his presence is affecting me.
“Are you planning to move out of the doorway? I need to use the bathroom.”
And that’s like a load of bricks on my breathlessness. I’m able to meet his gaze now with a cool expression as I step out of the doorway.
I’m on my way out of the room when he says, “We can return to this particular conversation a little later in bed if you want.”
The asshole knows exactly what I was feeling just now.
Fortunately I’m not feeling it anymore.
“I don’t think so.”
I turn my head and see him smirking at me, as if he thinks he’s already won.
He hasn’t won.
“Yes, I’m sure. The problem is that any kind of conversation with you involves your infuriating personality, and that just doesn’t work for me.”
“I think it does.”
“You think wrong. And I thought you had to go to the bathroom.”
“I do. We’ll resume this conversation at a later date.”
Marriage of convenience is such a tricky troupe–especially with contemporary romance, you have to really believe that the couple has valid and realistic reasons for taking what is clearly a drastic step in the first place, let alone maintain it for any length of time. The premise here is decent–Melissa works for her grandfather’s company, and he’s threatening not only the job that she loves but the lifestyles of her two younger sisters if she doesn’t find time to date and get in the vicinity of matrimonial bliss soon (though exactly why he wants this isn’t 100% clear–a “woman’s place” kind of thing, I guess? He’s not really the kindly and doting grandpa kind of guy…) and it’s really hard to argue with the results. Melissa and Trevor are fantastic together. I was on board with them making their “part-time” marriage real about thirty seconds after they married…but then we wouldn’t have had much of a book, would we? 😉 Plus, neither Melissa nor Trevor were in any place where they could be vulnerable in front of the other person, so…
Watching them grow closer together was absolutely delicious. The story is told completely from Melissa’s POV and Trevor keeps his feelings close for most of the book, which leaves us right there with Melissa as we guess–and hope–that he’s falling for her too. Even though you know a major implosion has got to be on the horizon, it’s devastating when it finally hits…OMG, it made my heart hurt. Fortunately, Ms. Adams managed to bring them back together in a way that was 100% believable and 200% sweet as heck. Bring on the happy feels!
Part-Time Husband was my first book by Ms. Adams, but definitely not my last! How soon until the other Trophy Husbands books come out? (Answer: not soon enough!) 😉
Rating: 4 stars / A-
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
Noelle handwrote her first romance novel in a spiral-bound notebook when she was twelve, and she hasn’t stopped writing since. She has lived in eight different states and currently resides in Virginia, where she reads any book she can get her hands on and offers tribute to a very spoiled cocker spaniel.
She loves travel, art, history, and ice cream. After spending far too many years of her life in graduate school, she has decided to reorient her priorities and focus on writing contemporary romances.