Publisher: Harlequin Desire
Release Date: October 2, 2018
Received From: Review copy from the author
“Just for tonight.”
Until their chance reunion takes a sharp turn… toward twins.
Tech billionaire Benjamin Bennett can’t resist a steamy weekend with Sloane Sutton–his crush on her goes way back. But when he tracks her down, she’s pregnant–with twins! Now their fling needs trust to survive. Benji wants a wedding; his family claims she’s a gold digger. But Sloane won’t be bought–or married. Can they find common ground…and a shot at forever?
ROMANTIC ORIENTATION: heteroromantic
TROPES: secret baby, childhood crush, class disparity, sibling’s best friend, billionaire hero, age gap
TAGS: adult, contemporary, romance, black characters, POC characters, black author, POC author
WARNINGS: ableism, vomiting mention, pregnancy, hospitalization, binary language, slutshaming, misogyny
This book has several tropes that can be catastrophic if not done well–billionaire hero, secret baby, class disparity–but luckily for all of us, Reese Ryan weaves these elements together in such a way as to produce an engaging romance and an overall exciting story!
The way in which Ryan pulls this off is simple–her two main characters. Sloane and Benji are not afraid to call each other out when the other does something they won’t tolerate, or which strips them of their autonomy. When he finds out Sloane hasn’t told him she’s pregnant, Benji firmly expresses his hurt and anger, while still engaging with her feelings and trying to understand why she might’ve kept this secret. When Benji makes executive decisions, especially involving money, that disregard her wishes, Sloane doesn’t hesitate to express her own disapproval and upset. And even as they butt heads at times, they are a united force who cares deeply for each other. Benji chooses Sloane and their babies over his family when said family reacts badly to the news, while Sloane does what she can to help Benji mend the rift between himself and his family. The two of them make an excellent team and work so well together.
One thing I loved about this novel was how domestic it was, but also, how low angst it was. And I don’t mean “low angst” in that there was no conflict–obviously there’s going to be some kind of trouble, especially in a story with these tropes. However! Instead of a nearly complete lack of angst throughout most of the novel, resulting in a big blow-up at the end, Ryan, blessedly, spreads it out. There are little moments of drama and angst throughout the whole novel, building a believably complex relationship and a wonderful balance. With the problems spread out, giving the characters a chance to talk through them and work them out, it makes the end more satisfying. Instead of there being a big betrayal of some kind, there’s simply the kind of complications that come along with being in a relationship. It was really nice to see the angst play out in that way.
All in all, this book was a really lovely read and I enjoyed it immensely! I will definitely be seeking out more of Reese Ryan’s work!
Reese Ryan is a multi-published author of romantic fiction featuring complex, deliciously-flawed characters. She challenges her heroines with family and career drama, reformed bad boys, and life-changing secrets while treating readers to an emotional love story and unexpected twists.
Past president of her local Romance Writers of America chapter and a panelist at the 2017 Los Angeles Times Festival of Books, Reese is an advocate for the romance genre and diversity in fiction.