Author: Joanna Shupe
Series: The Fifth Avenue Rebels: Book 3
Pub Date: May 24th, 2022
A hard-hearted tycoon.
A romantic dreamer.
An engagement set up to fail.
The charismatic and vivacious Katherine Delafield should be married by now. Her father arranged an engagement to the much sought-after tycoon Preston Clarke ages ago. The only problem is Preston refuses to acknowledge it. But this isn't going to stop Katherine from living life to the fullest as she ditches all silly notions of love and marriage and sets out to sample all the excitement New York City has to offer . . . the more scandalous the better. Because no matter what happens, she and Preston will never marry.
After his family nearly lost everything, Preston is done letting his late father control his life—including choosing his bride. But when a mysterious lover at a masquerade turns out to be his would-be fiancée, Preston's resolve begins to crumble. He hadn't expected Katherine to be so charming. Or beautiful. Or passionate. And seeing her out on the town with other men is driving him crazy.
What happens when the wrong bride turns out to be the right woman after all?
Katherine Delafield has been living with her life on hold for far too long, so when the man she was supposed to marry drops the bomb that he never had any intention of honoring the betrothal arranged by their father's, it sets Katherine off into a tailspin.
Determined to finally start living, Katherine throws all caution to the wind and attends a notoriously naughty masquerade to have "a bit of fun" and falls giddily into the hands of a handsome, masked stranger who quite literally charms the pants right off of her.
OF COURSE, that masked stranger is soon revealed to be the same ruthless tycoon who burst her bubble days earlier...Preston Clarke-- (Woopsie Daisy!)--and the sparks truly start to fly!
Preston swore that the daughter of his most hated enemy would never be his bride, but after their one night of passion leaves him reeling, becoming her lover instead would be a fantasy come true. Fortunately for Preston, Katherine can't stop thinking about him either and if she's going to embark on a "No Strings Attached" affair with someone, Preston certainly fits the bill.
Neither expects that between romps in the sheets a true friendship will grow or that hearts would become engaged, until betrayal tears them apart and a meaningless affair turns to heartbreak.
While at times, Preston's single minded obsession to succeed at any cost--including pulling the rug out from under Katherine's dream project--made me feel like reaching through the pages and slapping the man silly, his efforts to win back Katherine were truly endearing and made the redemption arc of his story incredibly sweet.
Another big win for Ms. Shupe and another impressively wonderful installment to The Fifth Avenue Rogues series, without a doubt.
I'm both impatient for the next novel, where we finally get the see the not so subtly hinted about romance between Katherine's best friend, Nellie Young and twice-jilted Duke of Lockwood unfold and sad that it will bring an end to this marvelously wicked and entertaining series.