Iain wasn't just rough around the edges-he was uncivilized, despite all the elegant trappings and expensive suits. And Brynn wanted more of it. She wanted Iain in full-on barbarian mode.
She wanted to be taken.
Filthy rich British bad boy Iain Chapman made a name for himself as a ruthless businessman, but if he can secure an investment from Vegas powerhouse Trevor Blake, Iain could take his business to the next level. Solution? Hire beautifully timid corporate trainer-and Trevor's sister-in-law-Brynn Campbell and seduce his way to success.
Brynn's everything Iain is not: kind, delicate, decent. But she's also got a taste for something a little beastly, and it doesn't take long for Iain to break through her every inhibition. Brynn was supposed to be his pawn, but as Iain gets closer to his goal, he begins to realize he's not ready to let her go, not now, not ever-even if it costs him everything.
Beauty and the Brit:
His Every Need
To Be His (companion novella)
His Kind of Trouble
His to Keep
Praise for books by Terri L. Austin:
"Austin infuses her characters with relatable problems and hot chemistry that will keep readers turning pages."-Publishers Weekly on His Every Need
"The writing sizzles...a book that's a little off the beaten path and loaded with heat."-Long and Short Reviews on His Every Need
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His to Keep
By Terri L. Austin
Sourcebooks, Inc.Copyright © 2016 Terri L. Austin
All rights reserved.
Which is worse — a status report meeting or bra shopping? Brynn Campbell's gaze remained fixed on her boss as she feigned interest and nibbled at her pen, considering the question.
These meetings always took forever. Brynn and office manager Paige Adams played the Which Would You Rather? game every Monday morning, A) to entertain themselves and B) as a way to remain conscious.
Brynn glanced at the question again. Tough call. By the end of every status meeting, she walked out of the room a little dumber than when she'd entered. But since her boobs were the size of two clementines, bra shopping was its own particular form of hell.
Cassandra Delaney held court at the front of the room, and in the last thirty minutes, she'd wandered off topic no less than five times — mostly with stories about her Persian cat's wicked bladder infection.
Brynn wrote: Definitely bra shopping. Members of the Itty Bitty Titty Committee unite! Fight the big boob power! She covertly scanned the room to make sure no one was watching her — not likely, since she'd parked in the back row. Given a choice, Brynn would always cling to the fringes of a group rather than take center stage. She preferred the comfort of flying under the radar.
Brynn refolded the note and lobbed it to Paige, who began to shake with laughter as soon as she read the answer. Covering up the giggle with a pseudo cough, her hacking drew attention from everyone — even Cass stopped talking. With one hand over her mouth, Paige stood, brushed off looks of concern, and left the conference room.
That brilliant bitch. She was going to skip out on the rest of the meeting, leaving Brynn to fend for herself.
For the next forty-five minutes, Brynn half listened as members of the sales team gave their reports for the week, plus any new leads they'd picked up. But the boss didn't ask Brynn for an update on her current projects, and that could only mean one thing — Cassandra had another assignment for her.
Brynn often referred to the head of the Delaney Training Center (TDTC) as "scattered." In reality, Cassandra was a neurotic mess. Prone to bouts of high drama, wherever she went, chaos followed. She was perpetually in the middle of multiple crises, both personal and professional — usually of her own making. However, those same traits also meant Cass was easily distracted. If Brynn laid low for a few hours, stayed out of the boss's crosshairs, she could concentrate on the tasks already filling her inbox. By noon, Cass might forget all about this latest job.
Though normally Brynn had the stealth of a ninja and was a master at hiding in plain sight — strategies she'd honed over the years — Cass still had a knack for finding Brynn, no matter where she was. She'd even cornered Brynn in a bathroom stall once and trapped her there for twenty minutes. While Cass rambled on about her latest boyfriend and his inability to come in under an hour — "retarded ejaculation," she called it — Brynn had wished that Cass would read just one of the many manuals she'd written on a hostile work environment. Despite owning a corporate training company, Cass was a walking, talking lawsuit in the making. Drown myself in the toilet or listen to Cass complain about a sore vadge? Her boss's sex complaints won by a nose, but it was neck and neck for a while. In the end, Brynn had swallowed her discomfort, given Cass a big hug, and suggested numbing lube. That was Brynn to a T — ever the helper.
After another thirty minutes of rambling, Cass wrapped up the meeting, and immediately, her dark brown eyes scanned the room, searching. Brynn knew that look too well. It meant there was a target on her forehead. Hunching a little lower in her chair, she purposely dropped her pen. Bending over to retrieve it, she ducked behind Ted Benson, the burliest salesman on the team. When he stood, Brynn did too, with her nose practically glued to his back. At twice her size, Ted made great camouflage.
Did Brynn feel like a coward for going to such lengths? Yes. Would that stop her? Not even. At TDTC, Brynn wore many hats: artistic director (animator of rudimentary cartoon films), curriculum developer (writer of corporate educational materials), and all-around troubleshooter (taking on the shit no one else would). She couldn't add one more thing to her agenda. There were only twenty-four hours in a day.
When Ted walked toward the door, Brynn stayed right behind him. When he slowed to speak to Lori, office receptionist and his unrequited crush, Brynn slowed too. Then he was on the move again. Finally, her exit was only five feet away. So close to freedom. But Ted halted abruptly, causing Brynn to plow her forehead into his shoulder blade.
He turned and glanced down. "Hey there, Brynn, you all right? Didn't see you back there."
"I'm fine." She rubbed the spot between her eyes.
From the doorway, Cass spied her. "Brynn, I've been looking for you. Grab a cup of coffee and meet me in my office. Oh God, this day. You would not believe." She turned and marched out of the conference room. That's when Brynn noticed a run creeping up Cass's pantyhose and a few baby-fine, ash-blond curls drooping from her lopsided bun. Cass looked less put together than usual. There was a story there, and Brynn would be forced to hear every harrowing detail.
"Hey," Ted said, "I've been meaning to ask you something."
All of Brynn's conversations usually started this way. When people sought her out, it was because they needed a favor, not because they wanted to chitchat or invite her to lunch. She tried not to let it bother her. "Do you have time to put together a proposal for me? It's for a statewide savings and loan. Could mean multiple contracts. You do such a great job of pitching it on paper."
Brynn opened her mouth to say, "I don't have time." But then she gazed up into Ted's round face — the hopeful half smile, the desperate eyes. She smiled back. "Sure, shoot me an email."
"Thanks, Brynn. I owe you one. This could make my salary for the quarter." He clapped her on the shoulder. "You're the best."
No, she wasn't the best. She was just a pushover. But what was one more proposal? It would probably take ten minutes, and Ted was a good guy. If she could help him out, why not?
With a sigh, Brynn headed to the break room, grabbed a cup of coffee, and then wended her way through the office to knock on Cassandra's door.
Refraining from a serious eye roll, Brynn walked in. As usual, Cass's desk was a mound of folders, papers, and blue stress balls bearing the TDTC logo. There was no room for a mug, so Brynn waited while Cass kicked off her shoes and wriggled out of the ripped hose. She dropped them on her cluttered desk before accepting the cup from Brynn. "Thanks. I was up with Nef all night. She's in misery, my poor angel."
"That's sad. Well, it looks like you're swamped, so I'll let you get back to it." Brynn retreated to the doorway. It wasn't that she didn't have sympathy for the cat, but Brynn couldn't stand one more tale of feline incontinence.
"No, sit." Cass waved to the chair by her desk. "Just put all that stuff on the floor. I'll get to it later."
Not likely. There was months' worth of paperwork filling the room. Brynn couldn't see how anyone functioned in this kind of disorganization.
From the chair, Brynn hoisted an armful of binders, placed them neatly on the floor, then watched as they tumbled over like dominoes. Brynn ignored the impulse to stack them all over again and sat. "What's up?"
Cass blew across the surface of the coffee. "Blue Moon Corp. contacted me last night. The company needs effective management training ASAP. All of my regular facilitators are busy."
"All of them? How is that possible?" Facilitators — corporate speak for teacher. Educator or team leader — those worked, too.
"I called a few I keep in reserve," Cass said with a shrug, "but everyone's booked. Lots of conventions this week, I guess."
Brynn settled more comfortably in her chair. She could be here awhile. Cassandra and her litany of complaints wasn't a pleasant way to spend an hour, but it was all part of the job. Root canal or Cassandra griping about the lack of staff support? Listening to Cass was far less painful, but on the other hand, no nitrous. Choices, choices.
"Which is why I need you to do it."
Brynn nodded, made eye contact, and gave every appearance that she'd been actively listening. She hadn't been. "What now?"
"You're going to have to facilitate." Cass placed the mug on a precarious stack of papers and began searching. "Where's my phone? Have you seen it?"
"Cass, I don't teach. That's not one of my jobs." Brynn was the ultimate team player. Whatever Cass threw her way, Brynn took on without a peep — well, not an outward peep. She peeped plenty on the inside. But this? No way. Even though Brynn had taken numerous seminars on the subject of public speaking, she hadn't been able to put the principles into practice. Just the thought of standing in front of a group of people, being the center of attention, gave her a case of flop sweat.
Cassandra froze and batted her big brown eyes. "You'll have to, Brynn. There's no one else."
Panic made Brynn's hands clammy. "Why can't you do it?"
Cass's thin, plucked brows rose halfway up her forehead. "Do you see all this paperwork? I'm up to my neck. Besides, I make you sit through those seminars so that I can network. I'm not up-to-date on the latest information, and you are."
In the two years Brynn had worked here, she'd been perfectly content to sit in her converted supply closet office and write manuals. Facilitating? Out of the question. "You didn't hire me to educate, Cass. You hired me to write curriculum." And somehow, Brynn had managed to add a pile of other duties to her job description without ever seeing a pay raise. But that was a conversation for a different day. Right now, she needed to find a way out of this. In an effort to control the anxiety flooding her system, Brynn breathed deeply from her diaphragm and counted to six. Then she exhaled in a whoosh. She repeated the process — breathe, whoosh, breathe, whoosh. It didn't help.
"Calm down," Cass said. "You'll be fine. Besides, there's no one else. Tag — you're it."
Brynn's mouth went dry. Her eyes dashed around the room as she gripped the nubby, padded armrests. Clearing her throat, she stood. "Cassandra." Maybe she could get her point across using the "I phrase" technique. "While I understand your predicament, I don't feel I'm the right person for this job. I simply lack the skill set."
Cass tilted her head to the side. "Brynn, you wrote the manual, for crying out loud. No one knows the material better than you." Then she slipped to her knees and disappeared under the desk. "Where is that damned phone? Call it for me?"
"Yes, but I'm not the right person to teach it." Brynn tugged her own phone from her pocket and dialed Cass's number. Ringing sounded from the trash can.
Cassandra popped out from beneath the desk and knee-walked to the wastebasket, upending it on the floor. "How did it get in there? Anyway, you'll be fine with this. From what I understand, it's not even a group. It's a one-on-one training session. Get the details from Lori. I emailed her all the particulars."
Brynn tucked her phone away. "Cass, I have mounds of work to do. I finished evaluating the dry cleaning chain, but I need to plan their antitheft awareness program." A hey employees, quit cribbing shit from customers' pockets program might be a more accurate description. But the corporate training world wasn't about accurate. It was about diplomacy and covering an employer's ass. "There must be someone else who can do this. Anyone. Ted's really personable." She glanced down at her jeans and sandals. "I'm not even dressed to meet a client."
"You look great. A little, you know, hippy dippy, but cute. I know this isn't your thing, that you're happier staying in the background, but you, Brynn Campbell, are my most reliable employee. You know the standard course backward and forward. It'll take two days, tops. If you do this for me, I'll consider hiring you an assistant. Please, Brynn. I really need you."
Pressing her fingers to her eyes, Brynn nodded, giving in way too easily. She always did. How hard was one little word? Brynn practiced saying "no" over and over, but it never came out when she needed it to. And maybe a one-on-one situation wouldn't be so bad. At least she wouldn't have to face a crowd of people. "Okay, I'll do it."
Cass hopped up. "You're a lifesaver. In fact" — she bent over, reached into a cardboard box on the floor, and pulled out a roll of candy, thrusting it into Brynn's hand — "our latest promo item — Lifesavers with the TDTC logo. Cute?" Then Cass looked down at her bare feet. "I guess I should put on a new pair of hose. I have some in my purse, which is ... where?" She glanced at her desk and began shuffling things around, which knocked over the full mug of coffee. Brown liquid trailed over reams of paper and onto the floor. "Damn it."
Brynn quickly wheeled around and sped through the door before Cass asked her to mop it up, because like the jellyfish she was, Brynn would have probably done that, too.
* * *
Iain Chapman listened as his lawyer explained about the new economic regulations, zoning details, and ecological classifications that had just been enacted. But as Stan droned on, Iain became more agitated. "For fuck's sake, Stan, cut to the chase and tell me how all this is going to impact the land we want to develop. Preferably in English." Iain couldn't take one more acronym — NEDA, CDBG, SBA, USGS. It was giving him a bloody headache, it was. In his right hand, he rubbed a pair of red dice back and forth. It was a habit Iain had acquired over the years, one he couldn't seem to shake.
Stan Daniels sighed deeply. He seemed to do that a lot around Iain — who had probably paid for the three-thousand-dollar suit the prat was wearing. So he could save his sighs for other clients, because Iain wasn't having it.
"Cut the drama, mate. Just give me the highlights already."
"Let the man talk, Iain. It's why we're paying him, innit?" From the window overlooking the busy street, Marcus Atwell turned to face them, all the while stroking his chin — a sure sign he was worried. But that was nothing new. It was when Marc started playing with his floppy hair that Iain knew real trouble was brewing.
"What this means," Stan said, "is you'll pay more in taxes, shell out more for inspections, and have to jump through more governmental regulation hoops. Get used to it."
"How much more are we talking about here?" Iain asked.
"A couple million, give or take."
Iain pushed back his chair and stood, pocketing the dice as he walked across the room. "That sounds like pocket change to you, does it?" Stan came from money and had gone to a fancy Ivy League school — probably grew up using hundred-dollar bills to wipe his privileged ass.
"Do we really have to do this today?" Stan asked. "It's pocket change to you too, Iain. You have a multimillion-dollar project you want to implement. This is a drop in the bucket."
"He's right, Iain," Marc said. "We're not the poor lads from Manchester anymore. It's all a matter of perspective."
At the credenza in the corner, Iain poured coffee from an antique silver pot. Drinking from the delicate china cups always made him feel faintly ridiculous, but it added to the traditional British decor. No sense in having four-thousand-dollar Chippendale chairs only to drink from a cheap ceramic mug. Presentation was important. And two million really wasn't much in the bigger scheme of things, but he didn't take any of it for granted, not a bloody penny.
"Send us copies detailing the changes, and cc my project manager, yeah?" Iain sipped his coffee — strong, black, bitter. He glanced over at Stan. "Was there something else? I'm getting billed for every moment you stand there looking like a twat."
The bald man smiled. "I don't charge for looking like a twat. That one's on the house." He bent to pick up his briefcase. "Always a pleasure, Iain."
"Nice seeing you, too." Stan nodded at both men and left the room.
Once he was gone, Marc paced the floor. "She's coming this morning?"
"Yeah. Should be here in a few."
"We don't need to do this," Marc said. "There are other investors. We could develop the properties slowly, take our time."
"And we may have to," Iain said with a shrug, "if this doesn't pan out."
Excerpted from His to Keep by Terri L. Austin. Copyright © 2016 Terri L. Austin. Excerpted by permission of Sourcebooks, Inc..
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.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Storyline wad well thought out, characters were complex, robust, real-life individuals that I could relate to. Dialogue was authentic and natural. Made me laugh out loud at times. Made me feel warm and fuzzy and smile at times. Made me cry at times. Really well written story and I can't wait to read more from this author. Love her point of view and really enjoyed how she nailed the British lingo. I could totally hear it as I was reading. A true testament to a great story is when you are sad to leave the characters and their world behind and that's how I feel saying goodbye to Iain and Brynn. Oh, and the intimacies were handled with such mastery! Scorching hot sex scenes that fit the storyline and were brilliantly placed to help tell Iain and Brynn's story. Well done!
Plot line was lacking
Read from March 20 to 21, 2016 3.5 Stars Iain Chapman is a fighter. Born into very poor circumstances, he scrapped his way to fortune and has his eye on more. To get to the next level, he needs an opportunity to convince one of the most successful businessmen in Vegas to invest in his venture and he'll go as far as seducing a family member to get an introduction. I had my eye on this book from the first time I read the blurb and I was looking forward to a very enjoyable experience reading it. Well, it wasn't exactly what I expected but I learned one thing: I have a terminal aversion to passive, weak characters who let people walk all over them and Brynn Campbell is by far the worst of them. My issue isn't that she actually had a mild personality, it's that she never stood up for herself and even in her internal monologues, she talked down to herself. Iain on the other hand, is the alpha male you always look forward to reading about. Barely contained, quite crude in spite of the high end suits and very ruthless in business. In the bedroom, he's very untamed and absolutely dominant. With a woman who is strong enough to go toe to toe with him, it would have been a combustible combination. Sadly, Brynn was not that woman. In fact their every encounter made me think of a big cat playing with prey before going in for the kill and way he steamrolled over her all the time was so annoying, I found myself throwing my tablet to the side a few times. The only place Iain and Brynn were a perfect match was sexually because it was where they completely let go with each other. Surprisingly, in spite of my dislike of the characters, the story was actually enjoyable and Ms. Austin's writing was really good. The changes in Iain were obvious because he went from uncaring and brusque with his employees to a more likable and friendly version of himself. Even personally, it was obvious that he had mellowed quite a bit so maybe Brynn wasn't so bad after all. And she finally grew a spine, very late in the game. If you are not a fan of wimpy females, I'll suggest you pass on this. If you prefer you alpha males to be civilized, cultured and polished, then you may not enjoy this book. And if you don't enjoy explicit sex scenes, then this is not the book for you. If however any of the above flips your buttons, then this is the book for you. Disclaimer: I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Ian Chapman is your typical arrogant billionaire that has found the next target in business. He needs to convince Trevor Blake to invest in a property he owns. Ian hires and tries to seduce Trevor's sister-in-law Brynn Campbell as a way to earn an introduction. Brynn is a wallflower, who ironically works as an assertiveness trainer. His plan works and Brynn succumbs to his charms. Will their relationship survive when Brynn learns of Ian's deception? I am always a sucker for a sexy retelling of Beauty and the Beast, and this story is a great example of an erotic fairy tale. Ms. Austin writes Ian as the perfect modern beast- an alpha business that is wrapped up in himself and Brynn is a great Beauty, who is able to rescue the Beast by helping him to form relationships. This book balances sex and story very well! I was given a free copy for an honest review.
HIS TO KEEP is the third full length installment in Terri L. Austin’s contemporary, adult BEAUTY AND THE BRIT erotic romance series. This is billionaire businessman/ British ex-pat Iain Chapman, and corporate trainer Brynn Campbell’s story line. HIS TO KEEP can be read as a stand alone without any difficulty. Some of the characters from the previous story lines play secondary and supporting roles. Any important information from previous installments is revealed where necessary. Told from dual third person perspectives (Iain and Brynn) HIS TO KEEP continues on the theme of the Campbell sisters falling in love with British businessmen. Las Vegas is all about appearances but Brynn is a woman who is content to hide in the shadows, playing the yes-woman to her boss’s demands-a bit of a doormat when it comes to saying no. When Brynn is forced into working with wealthy British billionaire Iain Chapman, all bets are off when Iain vows that one day she will be his. What ensues is the building relationship between Brynn and Iain, and the length Iain must go to, to hide his original intent. Iain is looking for investors, and Brynn’s brother-in -law Trevor is the perfect man to help with Iain’s investments. The relationship between Brynn and Iain is one of immediate attraction but Brynn is not the usual type of woman Iain has by his side. Brynn is a woman who has written a book about office and business protocol, and Iain refuses to abide by any of Brynn’s suggestions and demands. Brynn is a woman whose sense of taste and style is a throwback to another time, and Iain finds himself ‘charmed’ but her nuances and little idiosyncrasies. Iain is a self made man; a billionaire who makes demands and doesn’t care who gets hurt in the fall out. While Iain continues to push all of Brynn’s buttons, Brynn finds herself falling for a man who is determined to keep himself apart from everyone he knows. The $ex scenes are erotic, intense, provocative and seductive. There is some very light bondage and discipline play-Iain likes control both in and out of the boardroom. The secondary and supporting players include Brynn’s sisters and their husbands: Trevor and Allie Blake (His Every Need #1); Cal and Monica Hughes (His Kind of Trouble #2); as well as Iain’s best friend and business partner Marcus (Marc) Atwell who is having some woman troubles of his own; and Brynn’s hopeless neighbor Natasha. We are also introduced to Brynn’s boss Cassandra, and Brynn’s co-worker Paige. The world building focuses on Iain and Marc’s business ventures, and Iain’s inability to acknowledge the people who work for him –every day. There is an abundance of British terminology and slang that is interspersed throughout the story. HIS TO KEEP is a fun read; sexy look at a billionaire businessman who loses his heart and his soul to an American wall flower who runs at the first sign of trouble. The premise is entertaining and enjoyable; the characters are charismatic and charming; the romance is an erotic path to a happily ever after.
I had such a fantastic time with this book. Book one, His Every Need, was good and book two, His Kind of Trouble was better. But this one had me by turns giggling and swooning. I don't tend to read much in the whole "Billionaire Romance" genre. They just don't do it for me, but this series has been an exception, especially this book. This is the youngest Campbell sister's story. Brynn has always been the shy type, playing peace maker between her two strong willed older sisters. Not much has changed, even though she's all grown up. She is still playing the peacemaker and hiding in the shadows of life. That is until Iain Chapman shows up and yanks her into the light. She kicks and fusses a bit, but with Iain's influence, Brynn eventually finds her spine and her voice. Iain, oh Iain. I couldn't help but adore Iain. He's brash, bold and speaks his mind. He doesn't pull any punches and simply delighted me. His speech patterns and accent had me longing to hear this in audio format. Brynn describes the scent of his aftershave as including bergamot. Recalling my last cup of Earl Gray, totally helped to bring Iain to life in my head. And he was glorious. Let's just say that I would totally fight Brynn for him. ;) I haven't been able to find out if there will be more to come in the Beauty and the Brit series, now that the Campbell sisters are all Britted up. But if there is another book, count me in. This was my favorite book in the series so far, earning 5 stars. Thanks to Netgalley and Sourcebooks Casablanca for the opportunity to read and review the book.
Let me start by saying this is definitely a sizzling read. Iain knows his way around a woman’s body and Austin makes sure you know it too so you need to be OK with that bedroom door being wide open, showcasing his every dominant moment. It’s hot and sexy but won’t be for everyone. Outside of the bedroom, the story showcases the growth of Iain and Brynn – both individually and as a couple. Iain is ruthless and doesn’t really spend a lot of time thinking of others, having no issue using people to get what he needs. And that includes Brynn. But it doesn’t take long for her to get under his skin, making him change how he treats people. As for Brynn, she has issues saying no and domineering, arrogant Iain threatens her safe, comfortable world. But the more time she spends with him, the more of his take charge attitude rubs off on her and she starts to stand up for herself. I really like how these two help each other, changing and working their way closer to something in the middle for both of them. Of course the biggest issue is the fact that Iain started their relationship to get to her brother-in-law and it wouldn’t be a romance if that didn’t get out at the wrong time, causing trouble. I don’t usually like romances that are based on lies but Austin does a good job of having all of it – the way it happens and the aftermath – fit with their personalities. It’s not pretty but it definitely works and I appreciate that while Iain put everything in motion he decided pretty early on to not go through with it but he didn’t know how to fix it. And once it all goes upside down, I have to appreciate his attempt to set it to rights and win Brynn back. It’s not for everyone – some aren’t going to like the way that Iain uses her (it is kinda old school romance, but that doesn’t stop it from being enjoyable) and others aren’t going to like the steamy sex scenes - but if you give it a go you are going to get a hot, enjoyable read with growth, heartache, and a fun HEA ending. (This is the 3rd book in this series and while there were little things that I didn’t totally understand about Brynn’s siblings it didn’t impact anything – this one can definitely stand on its own) Complimentary copy provided in exchange for an honest review
Iain could be brutal. He was manipulative and ruthless. Once he set his mind to it he was going to conquer whatever was in his way. No boundaries. Brynn is easily lead. She just cannot say no, regardless of how much she wants to. Ms. Austin knew what she was about. Iain was hard to like but impossible to forget. Brynn was more of a sweetie. That quality made her hard to resist and more of a sympathetic and a character that was easy to relate to. His to Keep by Terri L. Austin is a modern twist on a familiar story. The theme is commonplace but voiced in a way that is expressive and fresh. Received an ARC via NetGalley and Sourcebooks in exchange for an honest review.
Lighthearted and A Bit Humorous Iain Chapman, arrogant and self-assured businessman wants Trevor Blake as a major investor in his real estate development project. What better way to get an introduction to Mr. Blake than to hire his sister-in-law, Brynn Campbell. From his first sighting of Brynn shyly blending into the background of a party, he knew there was something special about her. He’s British, and oh, so handsome, everything about him screams wealth and sophistication, but his rough and no-nonsense exterior is what’s got him to the top of Las Vegas big business. Brynn Campbell is the youngest of the Campbell sisters, and her story is book 3 in the Beauty and Brit series. Since her mom’s illness and death, Brynn has shied away from anything dealing with the center of attention, she’s okay with being the wallflower. It’s affected her personal and work behavior, always putting other people before her needs. Brynn’s goodhearted nature is what endears her to friends and family, but it is also why others take advantage. Iain sees this as an opportunity when he underhandedly hires her in attempt to lure Trevor Blake as an investor. He can’t resist Brynn, and Ian wants her. But will Iain break her heart to get to the investor he needs for his project? His To Keep is my first book by Terri Austin. This story is lighthearted and entertaining with some laugh-out-loud moments. Just love how Brynn keeps giving herself pep talks whenever she’s in self-doubt mode. How she calls herself “jellyfish” and very much aware she’s a pushover. Thank goodness she grew a spine by the end of the story, I wanted to virtually finger-pop her on the head. But she lived up to the strong heroine I knew she could be. And Iain, finally tuned down the testosterone enough to righteously claim his woman. Their “tacky” Las Vegas style wedding was so outrageous, funny and romantic. It was definitely high up on the swoon-worthy scale.Though I consider this a sweet romance, there is plenty of sex scenes that ratchet up the heat scale. My only complaint is the pace is a bit slow in the beginning and I struggled to keep my attention focused, but it picks up towards the end. Clocking in at 448 pages, it’s quite long but I enjoyed the the romantic ending and epilogue to help round out this story. Copy provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. My rating: 4
His to Keep, Terri Austin Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews Genre: Romance, I’ve read all of this series so far, and each have been five star reads for me. This one lives up to the others though the first book is still my favourite – time for a reread I think! Anyway, three sisters and how they met their man. Its youngest sister Brynn’s turn now. I really liked Brynn, understood her so well. I’m a people pleaser too – I hate to say no when I'm asked to do something. I even went to adult ed assertiveness classes for a few weeks but it didn’t help. I hate role playing and every time I had to say no I felt I needed to apologise much to the frustration of the tutor! It means I can really empathise with Brynn, with the way she allows herself to take on more and more, and has to work so much longer to just keep up. Then there’s Iain, rich, rude and ruthless sums him up really. Yet when he saw Brynn some months ago he was attracted in a way he’s never been before and can’t seem to get her out of his mind. When he and his partner Marc need investors for his latest project and he targets Brynn’s brother in law Trevor it seems a good idea to use Brynn to get to him. Kill two birds with one stone so to speak. Of course we can see its not a good idea, and his partner cautions him, but Iain’s always very single minded and determined to make it work. He gets a surprise though at just how strong his feelings for Brynn are, how it pleases him that he and Brynn fit so well together, that she likes her sex a little out of the ordinary, that while he likes to dominate she loves to submit – it works for them both. Its not in a heavy BDSM way, just a little stronger than other people would like. What I really love about Terri’s stories are the characters, they all feel so real, like people I could know, and the situations they’re in are realistic. I need that in a story, that things could happen that way. Its got some terrific drama too when things go wrong. We can take a good guess at what’s going to happen, but not when and how, and when it does happen its heart-breaking, and played out for some time, not over in two pages or so. Just the sort of dramatics that make a read special for me! Stars: Five. a great read and terrific addition to the series. ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers
I cannot get over this guy's name. It ruins it for me.