My review of Tawna Fenske’s latest opus, Frisky Business, is up on The Romance Reviews.
Follow the link and give it some love please!
If you aren’t in the mood to click the link, here’s a copy:
Frisky Business by Tawna Fenske (5 stars)
There he is again
No more rich men for Marley Cartman. Absolutely not. Thanks to her dad, her ex-fiancé, and the overbearing donors she schmoozes for a living, she’s had more than her fill. From now on, she wants blue-collar men with dirt under their fingernails. But when Marley makes a break to handle donor relations for a wildlife sanctuary, she finds herself drawn to the annoyingly charming—and disturbingly wealthy—chairman of the board.
The kind of man she doesn’t want
Judging by his hipster T-shirts, motley assortment of canine companions, and penchant for shaking up stuffy board meetings, you’d never guess that William Barclay the Fifth is a brilliantly successful businessman. Will has good reason to be leery of scheming women, and as he and Marley butt heads over the wisdom of bringing grumpy badgers to charity events, he can’t help but wonder if his new donor relations coordinator is hiding something other than a perfect figure beneath that designer suit…
I really enjoy reading Tawna Fenske’s books and short stories. I read the first one because I liked the way she communicated on blogs, and then on Facebook, but all the others I read because the writing was hella good. Her tales are funny and hot, two things that I think go great together. Fenske’s books are like peanut butter and chocolate but without any allergic reactions or sugar crashes afterward.
Nevertheless, I have never read a single one of the blurbs for her books without feeling either “yuck” or “meh” about the plot. Then I read the book and she has managed to make another plot work yet again and I really like it despite it’s wretched blurb.
This book was no exception.
When it’s implied that the worst thing about the hero is that he is secretly rich, and that the pretty heroine will have to get over having a rich lover as well as a rich daddy, that book is usually not for me. Cry me a river and get me a boat; I’m outta here. However, the blurb (albeit accurate) does nothing to convey the contextual fiber Fenske manages to lay down into that cupcake of a plot.
Marley Cartman, while entertaining the reader with her God Forsaken bad dates and canine poo on her shoes, also draws in the reader with a depth of character. She is not Daddy’s Princess. She is not rescued; she rescues others. She is smart, stands on her own two feet, and does the Right Thing. Moreover, she has a damn good reason for wanting to avoid guys whose wallets are even bigger than their egos, but she doesn’t allow that to pigeonhole her heart.
Will Barclay, while doing many things to prove to the reader he is a sweetie-pie, also manages to have Real Issues other than his moolah. He has trust issues out the wahzoo and they are not those whingy “is she only with me for my money?” trust issues either. He is genuinely terrified that a woman may not be what she seems and his heart will get broken. In fact, Will’s fears turn out to be the main barrier to the protagonists’ romantic relationship, rather than his lucre.
Happily, the hero pulls his head out of his own butt in time for a well-earned HEA. Nor does the heroine do any petulant crap to string out the final woo. There is even a place where a domineering twit gets her comeuppance, which is always a plus in a final chapter.
This novel get’s a solid five stars.
(The blurb gets negative one star, though.)