No Man’s Bargaining Chip
Devon Carter was her first; now newly wed Ashley wants their passion to last. But her dreams of true love are crushed by the discovery that their marriage is another of Daddy’s business deals. Her strategy: act the part of perfect wife and make Devon love her.
But Devon misses the bubbly, no-holds barred woman his wife used to be. Who is this Ashley with the steely demeanor of a society wife? And will he find a way to rekindle the fire in her eyes…especially now that she’s pregnant?
Devon is courting Ashley but only because he has to. He wants the funding for his new resort and has made a deal with Ashley’s father. Devon marries Ashley, he gets the funding he so desperately seeks – oh, but Devon’s not allowed to tell Ashley anything. Devon figures that she’s really a beautiful woman and he really doesn’t mind all that much that he has to marry – they’re compatible and have great sex – what more could you ask for in a marriage. Well, duh!
Ashley is so in love with Devon. She’s just head over heels for the man and when he proposes she’s pretty sure her life is a total fairytale and now complete. She marries Devon and is happier then she’d ever thought she’d be…until she finds out the truth. That the man she loves is not in love with her at all and it was all a set up for a business deal. Ashley is devastated but even in her sorrow is willing to hold out hope that Devon will love her if she becomes the person he wants her to be. Apparently she is too emotional, blurts out things when they come to mind, is just too impulsive. Ashley tries her best to become the person that Devon wants but in the process makes herself miserable. When Ashley becomes pregnant she knows that some things need to change.
Where to start with this review? When the book started I was a bit disgusted with Devon. He was so nonchalant about playing with Ashley’s feelings. Yes, he did want to tell her up front what was happening but it didn’t make up for the he was manipulating the situation. Now I honestly believed that he enjoyed her company – even though he thought she was too impulsive but it just really didn’t make up for everything that was going on behind the scenes.
Ashley I thought was oblivious. She wasn’t unintelligent, just kind of in her own fairytale world that made Devon her very own Prince Charming. To be fair to Ashley Devon really gave her no indication that everything was false so maybe I would have acted the same in a similar situation. When she found out about the ruse my heart broke for her. To see her dreams crashing down upon her was horrible but the fact that I felt so strongly about her feelings really told me that the author had done a good job writing it all as I was completely invested.
Skip to weeks later and Ashley has turned into a force to be reckoned with. She didn’t become some kick-ass heroine – she just went back to being the vibrant woman she had been before – without worrying what others would think. She gave Devon a piece of her mind and boy was it good! lol I very much admired her strength in the situation.
As with all Harlequin romances we know that there was an HEA and Devon groveled. Did he grovel enough for me? Meh. lol I guess so. lol Can there ever be enough groveling? His friend Rafe said it perfectly when he was giving Dev advice about how to get Ashley back:
…”And then get on your knees and grovel. Trust me. The first time on your knees sucks, but if she takes you back, you’ll spend the rest of your life on them anyway so better get used to it.”
Loved that! :)
The story was sweet and interesting and sexy and I very much recommend this one. I've not read the first two but I just might look those up. I'm thinking the next book is about Devon's friend Cam and if so then I'm all in. That's one book I'd love to read.
Rating: 4 out of 5