Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo
A contemporary Beauty and the Beast story that captures your heart with its wit and charm! That it is set during Christmastime makes it all the sweeter and wistful for its readers. I enjoyed the Grinch-like hero and the kindhearted young heroine who thaws his heart in time for the holidays. Though it had its ups and downs, with trials and errors as the two characters learned more about each other, the ending makes you believe in Christmas miracles again.
Isabel Simon needs the money desperately, which is the only reason she accepts a two-week assignment during the Christmas season as a personal assistant for a reclusive man in a mansion fit for a fairytale. If she doubted the wisdom of this decision before, it increases tenfold once she meets the man face-to-face. Handsome, with a lovable dog at his side, Derek Croft appears like a dream at first glance. However, his scowl and generally unpleasant disposition quickly dispels the notion that this holiday season will end in a happily ever after. Ready to leave him, and good riddance, Isabel is about to march right back out the door when Derek lays a new proposition at her feet - pretend to be his girlfriend to satisfy his parents and get more money that she would have as his assistant. Unable to resist the promise of money enough to care for her elderly grandmother, Isabel agrees, but if there's one thing fairytales guarantee, it's this: Be careful what you wish for.
I thoroughly enjoyed Isabel and Derek, and I wished the book was longer so that I could enjoy them for more than a few hours. A quick read, I completed the book in one day, and it was largely due to my need to know how the story ended. Given that it borrows elements of the original Beauty and the Beast story, it was fairly predictable, but that doesn't mean I wasn't just as eager to turn the pages! Isabel was a really nice, considerate person who I could easily see being my friend in real life. Derek was a grump but with a soft heart, especially evident when he interacted with his dog, Atticus. He got bonus points for being a fan of To Kill A Mockingbird. Though he messes things up several times with Isabel, my heart sighed with how he made up for it in the end. Truly romantic!
This was my first book by this author and will certainly not be my last! I highly recommend to anyone wanting a Christmas read with a fairytale ending.
**I received a free copy via NetGalley and this is my honest review.**