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Faking It

Faking It

4.1 17
by Diane Alberts

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Faking It by Diane Alberts:
Derek Rory never meant to propose to his best friend's little sister. But when her boss tells a family-oriented investor he's Stephanie's fiancé, Derek can either play along or let her get fired. He's hardly one to turn away from a damsel in distress. If only that damsel wasn't adorable and sexy with a laugh that could melt any


Faking It by Diane Alberts:
Derek Rory never meant to propose to his best friend's little sister. But when her boss tells a family-oriented investor he's Stephanie's fiancé, Derek can either play along or let her get fired. He's hardly one to turn away from a damsel in distress. If only that damsel wasn't adorable and sexy with a laugh that could melt any cold business mogul's heart.

When a business proposal becomes a marriage proposal, Stephanie Miller tries to keep it strictly boardroom. But when things get hot under the table, it's all they can do to stay apart. As the tangle of lies drags them deeper into the underhanded world of business politics, Stephanie finds herself in over her head—not just with her job, but with her "fiancé." His eyes are cold, but his kisses light her on fire. If she's not careful, she'll end up faking her way into a real romance.

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Entangled Publishing, LLC
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Entangled Indulgence
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Read an Excerpt

Faking It

By Diane Albert, Adrien-Luc Sanders

Entangled Publishing, LLC

Copyright © 2013 Diane Alberts
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-62266-055-1


This was it.

This was her moment. The moment when Stephanie Miller — occasional klutz at best, walking disaster at worst — would make or break her career. She stood before the projection screen, her neatly-arranged slides the only light in the darkened office. Her boss sat behind his huge oak desk, and underneath his perpetual calculating sneer, he actually looked interested. Maybe even impressed. He'd listened without a word for the past twenty minutes. If she'd held his interest this long, it was a good sign. Once she pulled this off, she'd be given the Weyland Project account and a chance to truly prove herself as the senior investment manager that Inner State Medical needed.

Or she would if she managed to get through the last few lines of her speech without tripping over her tongue, or sticking her foot in her mouth.

She clicked on the last PowerPoint slide and pasted on her most confident smile. She'd been practicing it in the mirror for days, and had finally managed to edge it somewhere away from "uncomfortable constipation" and a little closer to "coolly intelligent." Or at least "somewhat less awkward and dorky than normal."

Close enough for government work.

"As you can see," she said, "I've researched potential investors and narrowed it down to the top three, with proposed targeting strategies for reaching C-level executives and key influencers in the top tiers of their organizations." Key influencers. She liked that. It made her sound like she knew what she was doing, and she straightened her shoulders as she crossed the room to Mr. Rodgers' desk. "You'll find the full details in my proposal package. I think, if we follow this roadmap, we'll secure the high-profile investor the Weyland Project needs to succeed."

She thrust the file folder at him. Be assertive, her corporate etiquette books had said. Show them you're not afraid to play with the big boys. So she assertively offered him the folder.

And assertively bonked him right in the nose.

He didn't move. Didn't so much as twitch one bushy brow. His hair, waxed into place in a dirt-colored pompadour the envy of Donald Trump, didn't even move in the thin breeze from the air vents. His flat gray eyes watched her unblinkingly over his steepled fingers, and her smile suddenly felt more like a frozen grimace. She cleared her throat and gingerly set the folder down on the desk in front of him, then backed away. Out of reach, before she could cap this off by knocking over his pencil cup or spilling scalding hot coffee everywhere. It wouldn't be the first time.

After a measured silence — no doubt deliberately calculated to keep her off guard — he tapped his fingers together and sat back in his chair. He didn't so much as look at the proposal. "Why should I choose you? You've never taken lead on a project. You're a temp, and your contract is almost over. Why should I trust you with an account this large? Or at all?"

"I might not be as experienced as others," she took a steadying breath, "but you won't find anyone in this office more committed to this project than I am. Helping others matters to me, and this is just the first step. If — no, when I get an investor to sign a contract with Inner State Medical, I'll be able to —"

"Save the world?" Mr. Rodgers snorted. "We all set out to save the world at first. Then we realize the world revolves around money. Nothing happens without money. Lots of it."

Like the money that goes to pay your overstuffed six-figure salary? How many of the underprivileged does your beach house in Boca Raton help? Stephanie swallowed back her retort. Not the best way to get the job. "Yes, sir."

"You're angling for a full-time position."

"I won't deny a little job security would be nice, sir. But it's about more than that. This project is important to me."

He watched her shrewdly. She could practically time his silences at this point. Fifteen seconds meant he was trying to keep the advantage over a subordinate. Twenty seconds meant he was angry and making a point. Anything longer than that and he wasn't even listening. These games were exhausting, but she'd learned to wait him out.

Finally Rodgers said, "Do you know how I earned my position, Stephanie?" He didn't wait for her to answer. He usually didn't. "By trusting my gut. It's never steered me wrong. My gut is telling me you might be worth a chance. I'll give you one shot at the Weyland Project." He pinned her with a sharp look. "One."

Stephanie suppressed a grin. "Thank you, sir. I won't let you down."

He picked up the folder and leafed through it, then tossed it back onto the desk. "But your list of investors is useless. Mr. Wheeler from Wheeler Enterprises will be in to discuss investment opportunities this afternoon. Impress him, and you've got the job."

Stephanie curled her hands into fists before she did something unprofessional. Like trying to raise the roof. Or high-five her boss. She settled for a smile. "Of course, sir. I'll be at my best."

"See that you are." He handed the file back. "Or you'll be finding a new job sooner than you think."

"Y-Yes. Understood, sir." She grabbed the folder and offered her hand. "Thank you."

He shook her hand with a careful, almost dainty touch, then dug in his desk until he unearthed a bottle of hand sanitizer. She had to bite back a nervous laugh. Here she was in an impeccable Calvin Klein dress suit, and he was trying to scrub off her cooties after a simple handshake.

"You're welcome. You may go now," Mr. Rodgers said.

He picked up his phone and started dialing. She'd been dismissed.

She left the room with as much calm dignity as she could manage, made her way to her tiny cubicle, then sank into her seat. She wanted to do a happy dance, but not with so many prying eyes around. She couldn't even call her brother to squeal in his ear — but that's what texts were for.

Aaron guess what I landed the project!!!! I'm meeting with an investor today!!!!!

Her phone buzzed within less than a minute.

It should be criminal for a grown woman to use that many exclamation points. We'll talk at lunch. The department head will skewer me for using FBI equipment for personal texts. Stop using this number.

She fought back a giggle. Giggling. God, she really was giddy.

If you'd answer your normal phone I wouldn't have to, Mr. Super Spy.

He didn't answer. She didn't expect him to, but she couldn't help grinning to herself as she stashed her phone in her purse and spun back to her laptop. Time to do a little digging. She only had a few hours to get as much intel on Mr. Wheeler as possible, and since she doubted Aaron would humor his little sister and fork over Wheeler's FBI file, Google would have to do. She couldn't afford to fail. Not for her own sake, or for the thousands of low-income Miami residents who couldn't afford decent healthcare. They needed access to doctors, vaccines, antibiotics.

And she would get it for them.

Her parents had been poor. They had struggled for years to care for her and her three brothers. They'd missed doctor's visits, sacrificed their personal lives, given up every minute of their lives and every single penny for their children — with not a cent to spare.

Yet they'd been happy. They'd always been happy, in their quiet little world that revolved around everything but Mr. Rodgers' all-important money.

Stephanie's brothers — with the exception of Ben, still in college — did everything they could to repay them. They sent back money. They bought their parents everything they might need. Easy enough for them, with steady jobs. Stephanie was the only one who hadn't been able to give back a single cent. She barely made enough to pay for food, work-appropriate clothing, and a tiny one-bedroom apartment in an area of town where walking home alone after dark could mean never making it home at all. She needed this job. To give back to her parents — and to the whole community.

Her phone buzzed. She picked it up and turned off the alarm. Twelve o'clock. Lunch time. She locked her computer, snagged her purse, and hurried down the hallway, past the elevator crowd and to the stairs. She hit the sidewalk running, but paused for a cautious glance up to the sky. Crap. Cloudy with a chance of pouring buckets. One day she'd learn the local weatherman was a filthy liar. She'd left her umbrella at home.

Her phone trilled the first few bars of "All the Single Ladies," and she pulled it out of her purse.

"I'm on my way now. About three and a half blocks away."

"I know. I'm tracking you on GPS."

Stephanie chuckled. "You never get tired of that joke, do you?"

"What's funny is you think I'm joking."

"You're a riot. Really. Not even going to congratulate me?"

"Don't need to. I already knew you could do it."

She could have burst with pride. This was the first time she was actually doing something on her own — without one of her overprotective, overbearing brothers helping her.

And she would succeed. She knew it.

A loud clap of thunder sounded, echoing in the phone. Stephanie practically jumped out of her skin and looked up at the sky again. "Either it's about to rain, or someone just broke the sound barrier."

"It's been thundering since before dawn. Don't tell me you didn't bring an umbrella."

"The weatherman said it wouldn't rain!"

"And you believed him." He laughed. "GPS says you're only seven minutes away. Maybe you can run it."

"You're bluffing. Your GPS doesn't say anything." A fat drop of rain splatted on her nose, and she swiped it away. "Except that I'm about to get drenched."

"Then you might want to get moving. And sis?"


"Hang up. The last time you tried walking and talking, you walked right into a wall."

The phone went dead before she could retort. She stared at it. He'd been away on one of his everso-classified assignments the week she'd been walking around with a swollen nose from slamming right into a revolving door.

Maybe he wasn't joking about that GPS thing.

Before she could stow the phone in her purse, it buzzed with a new text message.

By the way, almost forgot — we've got company for lunch. Old college friend is in town. He'd love to meet you.

She started to tap something back when a second message came in.

You're not running. Yes, I am watching.

She rolled her eyes and dropped her phone into her purse without answering. Sometimes, Aaron liked playing the creepy spy too much — right down to faking his little sister out.

He'd better be faking, at least, if he wanted to keep all his teeth.

And he'd better not be thinking about setting her up with this "old college friend."

She stopped at a traffic light and waited for the little walking man to tell her she could do a little walking, too. At her side, a rather imposingly tall man withdrew an umbrella from his laptop bag. She glanced at him enviously. Of course he'd had the foresight to bring an umbrella. In his crisp, expensive suit and with his glossy black hair meticulously groomed, he looked like the kind of guy who had enough common sense to pack an umbrella, look before walking into revolving doors, and use this scary thing called depth perception to keep from smashing a folder into his boss's nose.

The umbrella hid his face when he snapped it open, and she started to look away — until he tipped it back, and she caught a glimpse of the bluest eyes she'd ever seen. He was dark, almost swarthy, exotically tan, and a picture-perfect portrait of devastatingly tall, dark and handsome.

Seriously, Steph, you have to stop reading romance novels before bed.

She felt a little too warm. It had to be pushing ninety out, and he was probably sweating in that suit. It looked like it cost more than the rent on her apartment, and he was probably soaking stains into the armpits of his finely tailored shirt. Did men who looked like that even sweat? Or would he only sweat when he was conveniently shirtless, glistening and —

Down, girl.

He caught her eye. Crap. She was staring. He raised both brows; her face went hot, and she looked away quickly, lifting her chin with as much dignity as she could muster. She was calm. She was cool. She was in control.

She was soaking wet.

The sky opened up like a cup tipped on its side. Yep. She was cool and still standing there like an idiot with her chin thrust out and her shoulders square and her feet glued to the ground while everyone else tumbled off the sidewalk and into the street. The little walking man said go, and Stephanie just stood there, because that was what Stephanie did.

Christ, she was a walking disaster.

The rain cut off as quickly as it started. She glanced up, but the sky was as black as ... ...as black as the umbrella the blue-eyed man was holding over her.

She stared up at the umbrella spokes, then at him. "Uh."

One corner of his mouth twitched. Was it from a smile or a frown? She couldn't tell. "You missed the light."

"Um. I did. Yes. The little man was — not. Moving, I mean."

His brows knit. "... the little man." He had a soft hint of an accent she couldn't quite place, but it made every word sound lustrous and strange, as if he were tasting it before letting it roll off his tongue.

"On the light, I — oh God." She buried her face in her hands. "I'm sorry. I wasn't expecting to get caught out and I'm a little ... I say stupid things."

She expected him to laugh at her. But he only curled a rough, large hand against her upper arm. Even through her drenched suit jacket she could feel the warmth of him.

"Come. Before the little man stops moving again."

Was he making fun of her? She shot him a look, but his stern, elegant face was grave, somber, his eyes trained ahead as he drew her out into the street. The crossing signal had switched to a flashing red hand, warning them that the light was about to change. A few drivers honked their horns, but he moved with an unhurried, relaxed stride, as if he could command the entire street to wait for him if he wished.

He'd somehow managed to command Stephanie, at least. She hadn't even realized she was moving, skittering along and nearly tripping over her heels, until they were almost on the opposite sidewalk.

"Um," she said. "Thanks."

"It was nothing." He scanned the length of the street, eyes distant, preoccupied. "Would you like me to call you a cab?"

"No, I —" She'd started to say she couldn't afford a cab, but flushed and bit her tongue.

"I'm meeting someone. For lunch. Near here. I can run. I can't get any wetter than I already am."

His gaze returned to her. He didn't say a word. He didn't need to. His eyes said it all, dipping down her body and lingering on the way the thin linen suit clung to her chest.

Maybe I should just crawl into a hole and die right now.

"I mean — I — damn it." She couldn't help but laugh helplessly. "This is karma. It has to be. I got through a whole presentation without tripping over my tongue. Had to balance it out somehow."

Again that twitch of his lips. Did he not know how to smile? "Sounds perfectly logical."

"It sounds crazy. You don't have to humor me." She smiled sheepishly. "Thanks for the rescue, but I'm heading this way." She wiggled her fingers in the direction of the restaurant and ducked out from under the umbrella, pulling her arm from his grasp. Not the most graceful exit, backing away with raindrops plopping on her head and dripping down her nose, but better than standing there and finding out just how far she could shove a Manolo heel down her throat.

She turned her back on him and walked away as quickly as she could. A soft scuff of footsteps warned her just before he fell into stride with her again, and the rain stopped once more. She nearly tripped over her toes and stumbled to a halt, eyes wide.

"Look, it's really nice of you to play the gentleman, but ..."

"... but I am already going this way." He shrugged one broad shoulder. "But if you enjoy pneumonia ..."

"Point taken."


Excerpted from Faking It by Diane Albert, Adrien-Luc Sanders. Copyright © 2013 Diane Alberts. Excerpted by permission of Entangled Publishing, LLC.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Meet the Author

Diane Alberts has always been a dreamer with a vivid imagination, but it wasn't until 2011 that she put her pen where her brain was, and became a published author. Since receiving her first contract offer, she has yet to stop writing. Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a cat, and a Senegal parrot. In the rare moments when she's not writing, she can usually be found hunched over one knitting project or another.

She is a multi-published, bestselling author with Entangled Publishing, Swoon Romance, and Decadent Publishing. She has, as of this date, four books with Entangled Publishing, one book with Swoon Romance, and five older books with Decadent Publishing. Diane is represented by Louise Fury from the L. Perkins Agency.

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Faking It 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Muffet More than 1 year ago
I read this book with mixed emotions. Sorry I did not find it lame as some have posted. I found the characters were well developed and I felt their pain and happiness. I don't know much about writing a book but it seems to me Diane does. I feel like she sees the characters flaws and strengh. I enjoy and feel all the things one is suppose to feel when I read her books. Loved Derek and Stephanie . Loved this book. Get it what do you have to lose???
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great quick read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Quirky humor, emotional and sexy. Perfect love story. (162pgs)
MyBookAddictionandMore More than 1 year ago
This is a fun story about Stephanie and what she is willing to do to get a permanent job. She doesn’t want help from anyone in her family as she wants to make it on her own. However she is down to her last dollars and needs to impress her boss and a new client. In comes Derek, who is her brother’s old college roommate and the next thing you know they have a “fake engagement” to impress the client. Derek is impressed with Stephanie’s independence but wants to help her as well especially since it includes kisses. He needs to remind himself that she is his best friends little sister and that means “hands off”. The chemistry between them is hot and at first they try to fight it. She is such a sweet and generous person but knows that Derek is a man who could break her heart. I liked that Stephanie is a klutz and has flaws and that Derek thinks she is perfect for him. He has been going through the motions of life but not really living. Stephanie brings the human side out of him. He wants to help her but he ends up taking over and hurting her. Can she forgive him and get past their difference? I continue to enjoy books by Ms. Alberts. They are fun, fast-paced and sexy. This is a fun book to read! Rating: 4 Heat Rating: Mild Reviewed by: Donna McClaugherty Courtesy of My Book Addiction and More
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
So lame and boring
arlenadean More than 1 year ago
By: Diane Alberts Published By: Entangled Publishing Age Recommend: Adult Reviewed By: Arlena Dean Rating: 4 Book Blog For: GMTA Review: "Faking It" by Diane Alberts was a contemporary romance read. This novel is one of those novels that will leave you 'smiling and giggling to yourself with some of the things that are going on in this good read. We find this read of a fake engagement and the brothers best friend fail in love with the sister of the said brother. 'When Stephanie's boss insists on her posing as Derek's fiancée to lure in an important investor it goes against everything she believes in but she doesn't have much choice unless she wants to risk losing her job.' Will this work out as planned? This is where I say you must pick up "Faking It" to find out if it gets pulled off. In the read you will see that there is chemistry between these two but will Stephanie be able to 'help him be the man that he always wanted to be' bringing him out of the shell that he seems to be in? Now, for Stephanie, being immature and with all of her stubbornness, will these two opposites finally come together? I found the characters were all well developed and intriguing giving you a good read. If you are in for a quick romantic read with some hot steamy scenes then I would recommend "Faking It" to you.
shirley_frances More than 1 year ago
This was such an awesome story. It had all the elements I enjoy in a great read - interesting characters, humor, entertaining dialog, a bit of angst and a whole lot of chemistry. Stephanie was a wonderful character to get to know. She was smart, hard-working and determined to succeed. She had my attention from the start and soon I was relating to her as if she was my best friend. I enjoyed how she handled herself under pressure - especially when Derek pulled out the Latin mojo. Derek. *sigh* Derek, Derek, Derek. What can I say about him? He was my half Puerto Rican, sexy businessman so closed off emotionally he could rival one of our Forts here in the island. Completely understandable after learning what he went through, but utterly heart breaking. I loved him from the moment he appeared on the page with that air of arrogance and then I adored him even more after learning his story and watching as he learned to let go, smile and be himself. Although the concept behind the story has been done many times before, it was refreshing to see this time around that the heroine stood up for herself and made her own decisions. I also enjoyed the way that Diane Alberts brought Stephanie and Derek together. Through their flirtatious dialog and their banter, it was easy to see that their connection was real. This is the first book by Diane Alberts I have read, but it certainly it won't be last. Faking It was a funny, sexy and romantic. All in all, a wonderful read. I received this title from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange of my honest opinion.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
## This book was pretty good for the most part. The idea of the story was good, the writing style was top notch and the chemistry between the hero and heroine was delightful. However, there were a couple of things I didn't like. First, the extent of the heroine's klutziness was rediculous. I lost count of the number of times she stumbled, tripped, slipped, bungled and wobbled. And all the stammering, stuttering, babbling and jabbering was just too much. So annoying. How is this suave millionaire supposed to fall for someone like that? Second, I didn't like that she couldn't do anything without help. She kept saying she wanted to, but couldn't. I like capable heroines when I'm reading fiction. Third, the hero was the one who went behind her back and destroyed their trust yet she had to chase him down and beg for forgiveness. Backwards, for sure. Good but not great.
Aramen More than 1 year ago
Seriously??? Awesome.... Just....simply...brilliant... It was just perfect... To be honest??? The author had me at the GPS tracking system... :D Faking It was a perfect combo of great chick-lit book... There's romance..confusion...heat....drama....love... and everything ending at an airport... What else could you simply ask for??? I loved the characters... All the three main characters... Derek.. Stephanie and Aaron... Just. Perfect... They all had me laughing out loud or smiling every moment or the other... The plot was simple enough for you to guess most of the story but it was so well written that it keeps you intrigued till the very end... The only complaint? Epilogue could have been written better... Plus an end to Aaron would have been good too... You know... an end to HIS pain?? I mean,it's not good to see such a great guy in so much of solitude and pain... But the rest was just terrific... Would love to see so much more from this author..
glandavazo More than 1 year ago
Stephanie is a young woman, working as a temp at a firm. Her first big break in the business is to secure an investor for a huge project. This project means a lot to her because a project near and dear to her heart, helping the less fortunate with health care. She is determined to so a stellar job, all by herself without help from anyone, but her boss has a different plan.  Derek is a CEO of his own corporation. He is thriving in the business world, just like his father had groomed him to be. When Derek goes to Miami for a business meeting, he decides to see one of he old college friend for lunch, on his way there he meets her, without an umbrella and its pouring. Stephanie and Derek had no idea who one another was when they met. But soon after they realize that he is a close friend of her overprotective big brother. After a short lunch together they go their separate ways. But she forgets her purse and proposal file at the restaurant, Derek saves the day by bring it to her office just in time, but not leaving quick enough leaves them in a bind. Her manipulative boss sees them together and forces them to pretend like they are engaged to show the investor that this is a family company. They go along with it so she can keep her job. But along the way the fake attraction turns very real. I really enjoyed this book. Both of them have their own issues that they are working on and I love the fact that both of them change for the better for each other. Derek isn't your typical hero in a book, I love that he doesn't know how to express himself and that she brings out the true him that has been shoved down by his father. I wish Diane would have went into more details about his "Daddy issues". But even without them I fell in love with both characters. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
JannaShay More than 1 year ago
Faking It is a fun, enjoyable and sexy love story. Diane Alberts takes the fake fiancé scenario and turns it into a lively, entertaining read with sexual tension, sizzling chemistry, and humor. Her talent with words is evident by the way she’s able to take a well-used story line, mix in male chauvinism, an independent woman, a hero with repressed feelings, a meddling brother, and transform it into a witty, lively love story complete with a happily ever after.  The heroine, Stephanie, who has lived in the protective shadow of three older brothers most of her life, is trying to succeed without the help of anyone. She’s strong, determined and finds herself pitted against a male chauvinistic boss who manipulates her into a fake engagement with her brother’s best friend, Derek. Derek, a passionate man with repressed emotions, finds himself falling for Stephanie despite the numerous excuses he uses for not developing their relationship. The chemistry between them heats up, and it isn’t long before they realize there is more to their relationship than just a fake engagement. Faking It is a delightful, sexy romance that will have you smiling and chuckling as you turn the pages. It grabbed my attention from the very beginning and held it until the very end. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves romance. I received a copy of the book from Entangled Publishing in exchange for my honest review. Janna Shay Author of Fair Play 
slinkydennis More than 1 year ago
This was a fun book, full of snarky and repressed feelings. I love those books. They drawn me in and get me emotionally invested. This was definitely one of those books. The chemistry between these two was steaming. I love the fact that her brother was the one who told them both to wake the hell up.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Diane Alberts never failed to tell a great story. And this one was the perfect mix of male ineptitude followed by dramatic redemption. I highly recommend this book.
HarlequinJunkie_ More than 1 year ago
Stephanie is out to prove herself.  She has a temp job at a major firm and her hopes to become a permanent staff member and senior investment manager there all hinge on her luring in a big investor for a project.  The day she is to present her proposal to the investor is also the day she meets Derek, one of her brother's best friends.  Having dashed out to meet her brother for lunch, she's forgotten her umbrella, got soaked to the skin, and Derek unwittingly comes to her rescue with his umbrella.  Stephanie is at first mortified when she realizes who he is...then more so when she realizes her brother has to leave town again and wants her to play tour guide to Derek!   When Derek shows up at Stephanie's office after lunch with her forgotten purse, her slimy boss spots him and convinces them that in order to secure the investor, who is 'big on family', Derek and Stephanie need to fake an engagement.  Stephanie is unsure of this at first, but Derek is willing to go along with it if it means helping Stephanie.  Yes, he's just met her, but she is his friend's sister, and from teh moment he spotted her he was dazzled by her.  Neither of them are looking for a relationship, but they can do a fake engagement!   Or so they think...as they go through the motions of being a couple, somewhere the line starts to get blurred.  Derek is tender and loving towards Stephanie and wants to take care of her and make things easier for her.  Stephanie feels shaken after just kissing Derek, she will not let this illusion get personal.  There is too much at stake for her...her career, her independance.  Derek is domineering, wanting to be in charge and take over...in her personal life and her business!  But soon their relationship is much more than a fake engagement.  Derek is falling for Stephanie and her love of life, her charm, even her clumsiness.  Stephanie finds herself falling for Derek, wanting him to open up to her and to be the man he really is, not the cold person he is on the outside.   Derek and Stephanie are complete opposites that attract.  They live in different cities and have different outlooks on life.  Is there any hope at all that there can be a future together?  Or will their differences and power struggles drive them apart permanently?   Faking It is not a really original story line, but Diane manages to mix it up a bit by bringing Stephanie's work in to the picture.  The beginning of Faking It was somewhat confusing, and it took me a while to figure out exactly what Stephanie did.  I felt that this could have been a lot clearer, making the entry into the book a lot easier to do.    Stephanie was also quite immature.  She is on the brink of being evicted, is broke, has no permanent job, but is adament she will not accept the help that can be available for her.  I understand she wants to stand on her own two feet, but it's ok to accept that people who care for you want to help you, like she wants to help Derek.  Stephanie can be funny and loving, but she's also extremely stubborn!  Derek I just wanted to hug!  He had a horrible childhood after his mother died, and has been raised by his father to believe that there is no place for emotion.  But Stephanie makes him see that he isn't the cold, business driven shell of a man he thinks he is.  She forces him to dig deep inside of himself for who he really is, but will it be too late when he finds himself?  Both Derek and Stephanie were believable characters.  I also really liked Stephanie's brother.  He's had some tragedy in his life...I don't know where he is in dealing with that, but he is also hilarious!!   Faking It is a quick, romantic read with some real steamy scenes!