I received this book for free from Entangled Publishing, Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.Masquerading with the CEO by Dawn Chartier
Published by Entangled: Lovestruck on July 21st 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Source: Entangled Publishing, Netgalley
Amazon, Barnes & Noble
After catching her fiancé cheating on their wedding day, interior designer Kylie Edwards swore off high-powered men. But before she can drown herself in wedding cake, she’s dragged to a Vegas romance conference by her friends. At least she’ll be able to meet the hotel’s owner and pitch her new design idea. And maybe attend the elaborate masquerade ball, where business unexpectedly becomes pleasure with the hotel’s oh-so-hot head of security.Jake Royale's no security guy—he owns the hotel and casino. The masquerade ball gives him the perfect opportunity to drop his high-profile identity and blend in. To be seen as a man, not his money. But when one hot night with Kylie becomes more, Jake knows he’s screwed. Not only will his fake identity cost him the design that will catapult his casino back to the top, it might just cost him the one thing money can't buy...
Kylie Edwards discovers, on her wedding day, no less, that her fiance has been cheating on her with one of her best friends. Said best friend actually feels that she needs to come clean in the limo on the way to the wedding, in fact. Kylie doesn’t go through with the wedding, of course, but before she can wallow herself too deeply into a pit of despair, her two best friends drag her off to Vegas for a romance book convention. Apparently, it works out because Kylie needed to go to Vegas anyway to meet with the owner of a hotel about redoing the design there. (She’s an interior designer) While there, she meets Jake, who she mistakenly thinks is named Macon and is the head of hotel security, but is actually the owner of the hotel. Hijinks ensue.
This one didn’t work me. Kylie’s response to finding out that her fiance is cheating on her, besides calling off the wedding, is to swear off CEOs. Not only is the ex the CEO of something, but her dad is the CEO of the design firm where she works, and they don’t get along. I’m not sure why she works for him in that case, but she does and it has turned her off of high-powered men. I didn’t really understand that leap. Jake overhears her talking about that to one of her friends, so decides to let her continue thinking he’s Macon, the head of security. She’s very indignant over this when she finds out, despite the fact that she gave him a fake name as well, for reasons I didn’t understand. If she thought he was Macon, then she shouldn’t have been worried about him recognizing her name from the meeting she had scheduled with Jake, which would have been the only reason I could come up with for her lying about her name. When her friend asks her why she lied, she just shrugs and says “I freaked.” I don’t know what she freaked about, exactly.
A lot of this book was like that for me. There were a lot of things mentioned then discarded. Her ex shows up one night out of nowhere, Kylie stomps off in indignation, then he’s never mentioned again. There’s the fact that she works with a father she doesn’t get along with, but we never find out exactly what’s behind that, either. There’s a rival casino owner who’s stealing employees and is always over at Jake’s casino for nefarious purposes, but other than a throw away “turns out that’s illegal” line toward the end, we never actually find out what happens with that. Does that mean Jake blackmailed him to stop employee poaching? Did he have him arrested? We never find out.
I think the fact that this is a novella hurt the story. This story and these characters could have used more time to be fleshed out, which I think would have helped. As it was, the entire thing seemed very rushed.