Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Marriage Merger, by Jennifer Probst

3.5 out of 5 Stars

I received an ARC copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review...

Julietta Conte is the top executive for her family's business, La Dolce Famiglia bakery.  This business is her passion.  It's what drives her and she is perfectly content to pour all her energy into her job.  She's single and lives in a trendy Milan apartment, which she loves and her next conquest isn't some guy but taking La Dolce Famiglia to the next level.  This includes forming an exclusive partnership with her brother-in-law's friend Sawyer Wells, who will soon be launching his own empire of international boutique hotels.

Blissfully happy in her own marriage her sister Carina has been bugging Juliette to focus on her personal life and to make time for love.  She insists Julietta perform the same love spell she used before meeting her husband.  Fed up and having been badgered enough Julietta appeases Carina and performs the ritual which includes listing the qualities/characteristics she most desires in a husband.  Once the spell is complete she forgets about it and focuses all her attention on her upcoming meeting with Sawyer Wells, whom she knows nothing about.  

When Julietta arrives at Sawyer's office it's all business as usual that is until she lays eyes on him.  There is no doubt she is attracted to him as she can barely keep her mind out of the gutters and focused on business.  Will Sawyer hold the key to cracking Julietta's heart or will Julietta resist his charms and keep her business and personal lives separate in order to guarantee success for the family business?

This book held my attention and I was curious to see what was in store.  I definitely enjoyed the chemistry between Sawyer and Julietta and never felt it was forced.  I honestly thought they were a good pair and seem to balance yet challenge one another.

They enter a physical relationship under a verbal contract with the understanding its purely to satisfy a physical need.  While it may seem strange I thought this was perfect and what individuals who are professionally driven like them might actually do.  What made it even more fun is watching to see what would happen when Julietta realizes Sawyer can give her the one thing no one else before has ever been able to.

I found Sawyer's back story intriguing and his relationship with Wolfe made him a really likable character, even though I though he took way to long to acknowledge his feelings for both Wolfe and Julietta.  In the bedroom Sawyer takes on the alpha male role and his relations with Julietta take on very light BDSM tendencies which result in some pretty juicy sex scenes.

I would have enjoyed this story more if Julietta and Sawyer hadn't taken so long to develop more of an emotional relationship.  Their professional and physical relationship was leaps and bound ahead of any sort of emotional connection.  The emotional one didn't come until right before the story ends. 

In the end I thought The Marriage Merger was an enjoyable read it just wasn't one that really impacted me.  When it was over I wasn't wondering what would happen next for either of them, nor did I find myself thinking about the story or characters days later.  However, if you are looking for a fun, complete in a day beach read then look no further.  Or if you have already the other 3 books in the Marriage to a Billionaire series then you certainly don't want to miss this installment.  

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