Her mother’s illness left Kizzy Dean alone and surrounded by bills and vicious moneylenders. Being swept away to the sun-baked Greek Isle of Rhodes may sound like the makings of a fantasy, but for the desperate and penniless Kizzy, it’s anything but. The brooding billionaire who now owns the restaurant she works and lives in is demolishing her only source of income and the only security she has left. She has no real choice but to go wherever he commands and agree to whatever arrangement he proposes.
Greek billionaire Andreas Lazarides is intrigued and mesmerized by the spirited and yet guileless Kizzy. Guilt and sorrow have been his only companions since his sister’s death, but Kizzy stirs up something inside him. He’s unaccustomed to the word “no” and unwilling to reveal his closely guarded heart, so he makes her an offer—a position as his very personal assistant.
As desperate as Kizzy is, she won’t be any man’s mistress. But it’s only a matter of time before she’s forced to decide whether she wants to strangle or ravage her infuriatingly tempting boss.
About the Author
Rachel now writes full-time when her children are at school, but is still proud of her law degree and accountancy qualifications. She has worked in the space industry, pharmaceuticals, insurance, a supermarket, a bus station, a railway depot, and a lingerie department.
She lives with her daughter, son and The Exec in Fareham, Hampshire, on the south coast of England and can sometimes smell the sea from her back garden. When not working, her hobbies include rummaging through antique shops, talking to her chocolate brown Rex rabbit and popping into Sainsbury's. She also has a fondness for wine and expensive lipstick.
Rachel loves to hear from readers.
Read an Excerpt
"Damn this place!"
Andreas Lazarides stared up through the Bentley's dark-tinted windows into a dull London sky. His driver was parked illegally, his delegates were late and he was in danger of forgetting how much he stood to gain by courting this parliamentary lobbying group.
He hated it when people were late.
As he sat there, waiting, Andreas realized with disbelief that this was his second no-show in the capital that morning.
He made a grab for his briefcase as a police officer indicated they should move immediately. His chauffeur turned the key in the ignition and waited expectantly.
"Okay, I'll get out here and call when I need you back."
Andreas glared as the car's red taillights disappeared into traffic. His hand tightened into a fist; his cell phone was still on the back seat of the Bentley. He inhaled savagely as he pictured his already tight schedule being squeezed. And none of this was his fault.
"Bloody politicians," he muttered as he glanced across the river to Big Ben. His annoyance intensified into volcanic exasperation as the first warm, heavy drops of a summer storm began to spatter the shoulders of his Canali suit.
Stalking across the gritty pavement, Andreas Lazarides cursed every atom on earth that had brought him to this particular place and time.
The secretary was immaculately dressed and coiffured, and her huge white reception desk was equally intimidating. "I'm sorry to disappoint you, Miss Dean, but the senior partner left the building some time ago."
Kizzy Dean felt her stomach churn with panic. There had to be some mistake. "But I have an appointment, a longstanding one. It's taken me over two months to get a meeting, in fact, I —"
"You're late," the other woman snapped. She returned the passport Kizzy had been instructed to bring along as ID. Her long, red nails reflected the cold neon strip light overhead. "Ten minutes late, to be precise."
Kizzy felt heat flood her cheeks as their eyes locked in a silent impasse. Clearly, it would be a waste of breath to try to explain that her train journey had taken four hours instead of two due to a bomb scare. Her obsessive forward planning had failed spectacularly and she was, as had been so sharply pointed out, a full ten minutes late.
And she was never, ever late.
Kizzy's eyes fell helplessly to the secretary's gilt nameplate on the desk. Nervously, she fingered the envelope in her hand. Things were starting to go terribly wrong. It felt as though she were slipping off the edge of a cliff; she needed to take action to save herself. And fast.
"Listen, Mrs. Hoppenwilde, Isabella, this really isn't my fault and in the light of this letter it's imperative that I speak with him immediately." Kizzy battled inwardly with her pride; she hated having to beg. But what choice did she have? "Please. Is there anything you can do to help me?"
"I'm afraid not. By my calculations, he'll be on his first glass of champagne one hundred meters up on the London Eye, and he's due to leave London immediately after that engagement." Isabella Hoppenwilde regarded her frostily. Her thin smile verged on the sadistic. "Looks like you've had it."
Kizzy fought to steady her breathing and palmed the weave of her skirt, willing it down another discreet inch or two to cover the snag her hosiery had sustained on the London Underground.
She was still struggling with what she had read in the dark oak-paneled offices of Heliades International Inc., the chilling words that had made her chase like a lunatic across London toward the river Thames. The words that meant she had no choice in the drastic step she was about to take, because she had nothing left in the world to lose.
Her frantic bolt to the London Eye — where she now stood, staring up at the wheel — had left her feeling disheveled and clammy, her heavy woolen suit an instrument of torture. The tweedy garment was the only suitable business attire she owned and the last of her funds had been sunk into the new stilettos she was wearing.
And now those new stilettos really hurt.
Kizzy glanced down at her pointy toes and wondered if she dared slip her heels off for a moment, but she forgot her discomfort when she noticed once more the large white envelope protruding from her bag. Its forbidding, formal whiteness made her heart flood with dread.
Tearing her eyes away, she looked determinedly up at the colossal ring of glass and steel that held her future, a future for which she intended to fight tooth and nail.
Oh, how she wished she were somewhere else right now.
Kizzy tottered backward as a large raindrop landed forcefully just beneath her eye, stinging her skin. As her eye began to water, she scrubbed at it angrily in case it ushered along a flood of real tears.
"Here," came a deep male voice from beside her. A blue, folded silk handkerchief was thrust into her hand. "Same thing just happened to me."
"Please don't worry." She instinctively went to push away the offering. "It's very kind, but —"
The breath stalled in her lungs as her eyes focused on the striking physical embodiment of That Voice. His tall body was all angles, a mass of square and triangular planes of masculinity, which shifted powerfully beneath the fabric of what was obviously a very expensive suit.
As she slowly dared to look up farther, his face was close enough for her to take in every detail.
Her knees went as weak as a newborn lamb's.
A shock of jet-black hair stroked his smooth caramel-lacquer brow above a pair of assertive eyebrows tapering elegantly over dark onyx eyes that shimmered with tiny flecks of gold, pewter and slate. Briefly, trying not to stare like a schoolgirl, Kizzy's gaze slid to his aristocratic, almost Roman nose and the terse line of his mouth below it, a mouth that made her tingle with sudden and acute female awareness. Before she could stop herself, her lips parted to exhale a soft, involuntary breath of excitement.
"It's not contaminated." He pressed forward the triangle of navy blue silk again and nodded with satisfaction as she took it from him. "You look harassed. Not here for pleasure, then?"
She must look a mess, Kizzy realized with horror, and hurriedly swept the handkerchief across her face. She did her best to ignore the trace of male scent within its fibers, though it was difficult.
"I'm trying to find my boss actually; it's a matter of urgency."
"Not an MP, is he?" the businessman drawled sardonically. A look of wry amusement briefly softened the harsh perspective of his face as he looked absently around him.
"No." She handed back the crumpled handkerchief. "He's a complete and utter bastard."
A dark eyebrow rose. "Is that so?"
"Sorry — I'm not usually so insulting about people, but this man is different." Kizzy felt annoyance as the stranger shrugged and rocked back on his heels, clearly unconvinced. "If you must know, this man intends to take my job, my home and my entire future from me. And he hasn't even got the guts to do it to my face."
The Suit looked over his shoulder and then at his watch. "He must have his reasons."
"I doubt if Andreas Lazarides gives a damn about anyone or anything." She glared angrily up at the gigantic tubular wheel spokes splayed across the sky. "But I'm not giving in without a fight."
Kizzy glanced across at him as the man squinted into the distance. He must be a big shot in the city, she thought. Smart and gorgeous, but undoubtedly a workaholic judging by the way he seemed to be constantly thinking, analyzing, speculating.
His dark eyes unexpectedly found hers again. "Andreas Lazarides. A Greek bastard, then?"
Kizzy nodded and shot him a crooked smile; his accent was quite compelling.
His own mouth remained stern. "So what's your name? Miss ...?"
She paused for a moment and tried not to be drawn further into the deep mocha swirl of his eyes. His tone had suddenly become a little harsh and her stomach clenched for a second. She needed to be careful. After all, he was a complete stranger.
He could be anyone.
"Isabella," she murmured, before she could stop herself.
She held out a hand and suppressed a tremor of awareness as his large, warm hand captured hers and held it for a second longer than was absolutely necessary. The sensation rocketed straight to the middle of her chest and seemed to double her heart rate.
"Isabella Hoppenwilde," she continued, lying instinctively.
The air hung still for a moment and Kizzy was aware of nothing but the way this city Adonis was staring at her, sucking her into the dangerous depths of his eyes, almost undressing her with his unwavering scrutiny.
Perhaps he was waiting for her to ask his name in return?
It would be the polite thing to do. Not that she was feeling particularly polite today, of all days.
"So how are you planning to find him? There are hundreds of people around." He released her hand. "Unless, of course, he stands out from the crowd in some way."
"I'm just going to watch while everyone comes off," Kizzy said feebly, realizing that she had no idea what her quarry looked like. They had never even spoken on the phone, let alone met.
"Well, let me help you spot him," he offered, much to her surprise. "What does he look like, this Andreas Lazarides?"
"He's balding and generally surrounded by security staff," she heard herself bluff shamelessly, not daring to hesitate in case he guessed she was lying. "And he'll head straight for one of those ostentatious blacked-out vehicles that will be circling the area, a Mercedes or something. Oh yes, and he always struts about in a very pompous, self-important way — his method of compensating for being so short."
She smiled with satisfaction at the image she had just created. He sounded quite revolting, her Andreas Lazarides.
"Sounds like he may be doing a couple of circuits of the wheel — especially if it's a boozy corporate ado," the Suit replied and looked coldly skyward as heavy raindrops began to fall faster and closer together. "In which case, you could be standing out in this for an hour. I've got a better idea. My party seems to have let me down, and as you will discover," he gestured toward the embarkation pier where a guide stood next to a silver-wheeled metal case, "the Eye waits for no one."
She was hit by a rush of adrenaline as he grabbed her hand and pulled her along behind him. Her high heels clattered on the grooved metal plating underfoot as they shot along a roped-off "fast track" route to the front of the queue, netting curious stares and a number of speculative camera flashes as they went.
"No, I can't!" Kizzy was quickly trying to work out a dignified exit route, a means of escape from a situation that was beginning to feel increasingly dangerous. "My boss —"
"I intend to help you find him." He broke off briefly to speak into the waiting guide's ear. "Join me for thirty minutes on the Eye and we'll spot him while we're up there. There can't be too many stack-heeled bastards with receding hairlines per capsule and his henchmen are going to make it obvious where he is."
"Really ... I don't want to put you out."
Kizzy was frantically trying to decline his invitation without making a fool of herself. She was going to look completely nuts if she confessed she'd never even met her boss in the flesh.
"It's moving so slowly, I could lose him if he gets off before us, so —"
She rubbed her brow without even realizing she was doing it, inadvertently revealing her unease.
"That won't happen." He tugged her sharply toward an empty capsule. "Now jump!"
The guide swiftly loaded the silver-wheeled box into the capsule and all Kizzy could do was watch the door slide closed as if in a horrible dream.
There was an eerie quietness as the rattle of London life was muffled into submission. Then the crowd outside gradually shrank from view as the Eye continued its relentless journey. Her attention was jolted back from the sight of the world disappearing beneath her feet by the sound of a popping champagne cork. It hit the ceiling and then rolled toward the soles of her uncomfortably shod feet.
"Let's celebrate," the dark stranger announced smoothly, handing her a champagne flute, "our chance meeting. Like two planets colliding. The chances of it happening? Slim. The results? Earth-shattering."
Kizzy felt color warm her cheeks and couldn't be sure if it was panic because she was alone with — practically kidnapped by, in fact — this incredibly sexy man, or shame at allowing her body to respond to his domineering smile in a way that was most unladylike.
"Thank you," she murmured. Her fingers curled tightly around the slender champagne flute. "You're incredibly generous, especially considering I'm a complete stranger."
"A most beautiful stranger," he corrected and smiled with obvious satisfaction at the deepening flush of color that accompanied the lowering of her eyelashes. "But, you know, it's odd. Somehow it feels as if we have known each other for rather longer than five minutes."
Kizzy's heart was pounding hard enough to hike up her blood pressure until she felt sick.
She was not enjoying this enforced captivity one bit.
"I should have asked," he continued blandly as he gestured toward the now-elevated view over the city. "Have you ever been up on the Eye before?"
"No, never," she replied and took a nervous sip of her icy champagne. "This view over London is quite spectacular."
"It is," he agreed, and another taut smile briefly dressed his lips. "And we're now too far off the ground for you to evade me."
Kizzy's heart plunged to her feet and her entire body stiffened. She felt her eyes widen with alarm. "Evade you? Look, this capsule is transparent. You'll never get away with —"
He laughed harshly.
"With what? Taking gross advantage of you? Please." The gorgeous stranger snapped his gaze away from her and gestured toward the rapidly shrinking Houses of Parliament. "Look at that view. A hotbed of corruption and deceit these days, I gather."
Kizzy stared at his sharp features and cowered against the curved glass wall until his eyes rounded on her.
"So ... Isabella ..." His eyes were blacker than anything she had ever seen. "I am very keen to know your secret."
"Mmm, like how you managed to totally transform yourself in the space of an hour." He exhaled slowly and the curl of his lips exuded disgust. "Just how did you get all that scarlet nail polish off?"
"I don't understand."
"Then you're not very good at this, are you?" He took a sip of his champagne and swallowed hard. "I assume you are the unbelievably persistent and annoying Kizzy Dean? The pint-pulling, napkin-folding thorn in my side that's been badgering my offices over the past two months?"
Kizzy's legs trembled with the appalling realization of what was happening, of how stupid she must look.
It was him!
Lazarides had been handed to her on a plate, she finally had his full attention, but ... She almost choked when she began to remember the things she'd said about him down on the ground. Her entire world seemed to be shriveling to nothing beneath his looming shadow.
"There's no need to be so rude," she whispered, even as her mind raced around the fact that there was no way out of this awkward situation.
"I don't think we'll get on to rude, Kizzy, do you? I don't recall ever being called a bastard to my face — not even by a woman scorned. And there have been a few."
Kizzy felt her cheeks blaze with humiliation. "Look, this is horrifically embarrassing —"
"Big of you to admit it."
Kizzy's voice shook. "I've dealt with this very badly and I can't apologize enough for my remarks earlier, but I was — am — convinced that Timi's Taverna can still work. I've brought my business plan —"
"Forget it, the restaurant is finished." He frowned at the way her violet blue eyes seemed to exude innocence and he disliked the strange feeling it caused inside him. He deliberately sharpened his tone, suddenly aware that the lush shape and color of her mouth had been distracting him. "It's no reflection on your abilities or efforts since the Antonides family left you as manager, but the whole mess is now beyond making economic sense."
Excerpted from "Kidnapped by the Greek Billionaire"
Copyright © 2012 Rachel Lyndhurst.
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.
When I was asked to review a book I was so excited to find out it was by Rachel Lyndhurst I waited so impatiently and the day she gave me Kidnapped by the Greek Billionaire I was thrilled. For her first book she has done a fantastic job. I have to admit I did find the sex scenes very steamy and no way would I read in public (fanning myself at the thought). I have to give Kidnapped by the Greek Billionaire 5 stars, the characters work well together, the sex scenes are... well don't listen to me, go out and buy the book and find out for yourself ;o) Can not wait for the next book. Well done Rachel and good luck with future books
Great Romance book. I enjoyed every minute reading it.
Kizzy Dean, the absolutely adorable button that she is, sets up the perfect opposition for dark, smoldering, Andreas. Granted, in the beginning, the billionaire is a bit hard to handle. What with all his egomania I had to resist the urge to kick him in his Dolmades and send him packing. Underneath the cold exterior is a man with good reason to protect his heart. Keep reading and you are sure to find him and fall madly in love. The sex is scintillating. So hot, that there were parts I had to gloss over for fear of self igniting. (I went back and read them later, of course). This is Ms. Lyndhurst's first novel and she deserves a standing ovation. Her writing style swept me off my feet from page one. Her descriptions make me want to pack my bags and move to Lindos, so I can run barefoot through the cobblestone streets and take a daily dip in the Agean!
I really enjoyed this ebook. I look forward to reading morevnovels by this author.
The only down side to this book was that there wasn't more of it! Arrogant and brooding Andreas was the perfect Alpha male and frail yet determined Kizzy was an excellent companion. Apart from the obvious absolute lust fest in certain chapters, what really drew me into the book was Rachel's description of Rhodes, the Greek customs and the way she captured the ambience of the island so brilliantly. I love a book that makes me feel I'm actually there, a voyeur on a sun terrace a swimming pool length away, and this is what Kidnapped by the Greek Billionaire does. A great novel which should grace many a Nook on the beach!
Sexy, emotional read set in evocative Rhodes.
Very boring. I couldn't get into either character. I stopped reading several times and finally just finished it disappointed
Based on the reviews I thought this would be a fun read. Not so. The story begins in London, then ends up in Greece... only we aren't told how the Andreas talked Kizzy into going with him - which would have been interesting. And how stupid is this woman to go out of the country with a man she's never met before - and she has no money and he has her phone and passport? I honestly couldn't get though the story because I just didn't like these characters.
Loved this book!!!
Great story, any woman would love this story to happen to them!
If you love romance you will love this! I enjoyed it and was surprised now by the bad reviews it got. They must not be romantics!! Lol :-)
This was a fairly good book but I hated the ending! The author just sort of dropped us off of a cliff, after all the emotion she put into the story I felt cheated.
From the Westminster Bridge to the Greek Isles...and then! What a fantastic novel of love, trust, and redemption. I adored Andreas, with all his aloof charm, and Kizzy really made me root for her. I can't imagine two characters more suited to each other (although they got off to a rather rocky start--literally!). This one's a keeper.
I did not want it to end!
Reviewed BY~Desere Review Copy Provided BY~Publisher This was one of the most enjoyable and delicious Greek books I have read in a long time. I loved the way the author incorporated history and art into the book. Not to mention that there was not one scene that I found too overwritten or in the least boring. I also loved that Andreas's character was the strong, dominating and ruthless kind of hero who falls to his knees at the hands of a very interesting female character. The passion between the two main characters was so stunningly written and gorgeously blended with the rich history of Greece, better than I have ever seen done in any book featuring a Greek hero. I also truly liked how the author spiced up the book with some very memorable characters like the luscious Liz and her Australian beau. That I really hope Rachel blesses us with Liz's story.
My Review: The Kidnapping: after months of harassing Andreas about a business decision that will leave Kizzy without a home or job, she finally tracks him down at the London Eye and ambushes him. He's afraid that she's going to spill the beans about his plans to demolish her beloved restaurant, so he "kidnaps" (i.e. insists she accompany him) to Greece. She has no time to pack, plan, or anything. Then when they arrive, somehow he keeps her passport and since she's there with no planning, she's stuck with him. It was a strange scenario which left me questioning several things, so I think the start threw me off this book from the very beginning. Unfortunately, this is not a book that I connected with. I didn't understand these characters or why they acted the way they did. At times it was frustrating to me because they didn't act consistently or even with basic common sense. I just didn't understand why they did what they were doing over and over again. I was constantly shaking my head in wonder. I can only assume that I just didn't understand these characters because it seemed to me they were acting one way one minute and then turning around and acting the complete opposite the next. There was absolutely nothing wrong with the writing or the scene set-ups. For me, the issues that I found difficult in this book were entirely through the character development. Maybe this was an issue brought on by the fact that the characters were ones that I personally didn't connect to? I don't know. I just know that their actions were distracting to me and hurt my overall enjoyment of the story. But it wasn't all bad. The writing style was engaging and the author knew how to paint a picture with words. Most of the book takes place in Greece and was beautiful the way the scenes were written. I could picture every scene perfectly and was entranced by the beauty of it. I didn't connect with the characters, but that doesn't mean that you won't.
This book was painful to finish. There were no secondary characters except the maid who said about two sentences. Both the main characters played "woe me and my life." Guy: I grew up with no love from my parents. Girl: I grew up with no parents. Guy: I had to scavenge food from the kitchen. Girl: I used to sit on the stairwell so I could smell the food from the neighbors kitchen. Guy: My dad used to sleep around. Girl: My mom used to sleep around for money. Guy: My sister died because of me. Girl: My sister died because of me too, well actually my dad. Guy: Nobody loves me. Girl: Nobody loves me and the loan sharks are after me because mom borrowed money....This book irritated me. I have never read other works from this author so I may just have purchased the wrong book for my tastes...
Not always the best writing but the story concept was great. A little silly at times but the romance was still hot
I found this book to be predictable and lacking depth. While reading this it seemed to skip round. I found it distracting and hard to follow. There was not much depth in the main characters and I think this ebook could have been so much more.
I thought this was a very good book. I enjoyed it very much. Now if I can just find more like it. :)
Great book! I will read more from this author!