REVIEW: “Mister Romance” by Leisa Rayven

Leisa Rayven gives us “Mister Romance” a delicious slow-burn romance with a complex heroine, provocative hero, and a compelling storyline.  Eden Tate’s an investigative journalist who’s reduced to writing “click-bait” pieces for the entertainment news website where she works.  Her sister drops an interesting morsel of gossip during breakfast.  Asha heard from her friend about a mysterious man known as Mister Romance linked to well known society women.  It turns out the women pay for his “attention”.  It’s all very hush-hush and who-you-know word of mouth.  Eden is a cynic and believes that “True Love” is something people have been brainwashed into believing.  Romance is a waste of time and serves no purpose.  She gets her fix, orgasms, via regular one-night-stands.  There’re no chaotic entanglements, no broken hearts or messy break-ups.  Romance novels are for suckers and the one person who makes you feel whole is just a myth.

Max Riley’s the elusive Mister Romance.  He has many different names and identities to fulfill his client’s fantasy.  However, Max isn’t a traditional escort, he doesn’t have sex with the women for money.  In fact there’s a list of rules regarding kissing, places where touching is allowable, and limits on intimate touching.  Again, there is absolutely no sex.  There’s a steep price tag for merely submitting a questionnaire to see if he’ll “date” you.  After that there’s an even higher price to pay for a “date”.  Max is an interesting and shrewd character.  He’s savvy enough to catch onto Eden’s undercover ruse.  Eden finagles a co-worker to hack a few bits of information about Max.  But Max is better, he calls Eden’s personal cell-phone, shocking the heck out of her.  Max keeps her on her toes, however Eden’s able to out negotiate him.  Or is he really just a conman?

Max knows that Eden is a journalist looking to crack wide open this scandalous news story.  She’s painting him as a man conning lonely, gullible, and wealthy socialites out of money with promises of romance.  Max chastises Eden for being so willing to ruin the lives of these women for the sake of making headlines.  He also criticizes her for not being a good journalist going into the story with her mind already made up.  A good investigative reporter would have an open mind.  Max proposes a deal.  Eden must have three dates with him, and if she falls in love with him she’ll pull the story.  If after three dates she’s still a cynic about romance he’ll cooperate fully with a full interview with his blessing.  Eden takes the deal.

Max is a tricky devil who shows up in Eden’s life before she even knows the clock has started running.  There’re some bumps in the road when Max’s real life intersects with Eden’s.  Eden believes Max’s using her grandmother in his games which infuriates her.  There’s another misunderstanding which Max apologizes for, but he doesn’t realize just what Eden’s accusing him of.  When he finds out what it is he is furious.  Both Max and Eden are swimming in unfamiliar waters and are out of their depths.  Max knows he’s falling in love.  But for Eden, she can’t even admit that she just has feelings for him out loud.  Eden was hurt by a man before, terribly, and has never recovered.  It’s because of him that she’s closed herself off from becoming attached to anyone, other than her grandmother and sister.

Max is being patient and even though Eden still doubts and distrusts him.  None the less he gives her all of the information she needs to completely expose him.  After he does this Eden is torn as to what she wants to do; advance her career or protect Max.  However all of that becomes irrelevant when tragedy strikes bringing Eden’s world to a standstill.

Leisa Rayven kicks off her Masters of Love series with a bang!  This book is angsty, fun, tear producing, romantic, and crackling with slow-burn sex appeal.  Max and Eden have rich backstories making them wonderfully complex characters.  The side characters are interesting and leave you yearning for them to find their romantic beginning.  “Mister Romance” has quirky and cute elements and an extremely satisfying finish.  I’m now hooked and now on the look out for the next installment of Masters of Love!

I’m giving “Mister Romance” 4 Lightning Bolts and a Gale Warning.

 

This novel was provided, voluntarily read, and honestly reviewed

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