[note color=”#FFCC00″]I have received a copy of this book from the author through NetGalley and Ellora’s Cave and Reading Addiction Virtual Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.[/note]
I wasn’t particularly sure if I was going to like Avery Aster’s The Manhattanites series because I thought it sounded too good to be true. A book that has rich, beautiful people having lots of fun, lots of sex while having a career and solving crazy life problems? It smelled a lot like Gossip Girl and I had a love/hate relationship with that show, so I was hesitant.
But not anymore. In fact, I loved Unscrupulous. It’s a story about two very successful people meeting each other at right time in their lives but under the wrong circumstances. Also, Taddy Brill. I thought Taddy was phenomenal. More on that after the summary!
Steam: (this is a 7/5)
[note color=”#DD96BC”]At thirty-three Warner Truman is one of the richest men on the planet, a spa mogul who buys and sells resorts at will. He holds powerful executive’s careers in his well-groomed hands. Nothing is beyond Warner’s reach…until he meets her.
Stunning, tantalizing, and perverse, Taddy Brill captivates Warner’s carnal desire like no woman he’s ever met. A self-made millionaire, Taddy is tougher than steel, more brilliant than diamonds and, at twenty-seven, she’s never depended on a man for anything…until she meets him.
The more Taddy plays with Warner’s affections, driving him to erotic heights, the more she is confronted by a dark past. But before she can love him, Taddy must meet her worst fears head-on or risk losing it all, including herself.[/note]
What I Liked:
Taddy Brill, aka Tabitha Adelaide Brillford, is definitely one of my favourite characters. She is ruthless, a bit crude, driven, and the one friend you and I deserve to have in our lives. Unscrupulous is a prequel to Undressed, and while you don’t need to read Undressed to understand this story, I think it explained a lot as to why Taddy invested her life’s savings on Lex’s Easton Essentials. Sure Taddy may have grown up rich and privileged, but she had a pretty shitty childhood. Thanks to spectacularly selfish adults masquerading as parents, Taddy was forced to grow up quickly in order to become self-reliant and self-sufficient to reach success. It’s a surprise that Taddy didn’t grow up cold and distant, and we probably have Lex and the Manhattanites to thank for that. Seriously, as crude as she was at times (but really, how many of us are polite around our intimate circle of friends ;)), I thought she was the most generous, most loving and most loyal person ever. You can see this not only through her relationship with Lex, but also with her Mormon assistant, Kiki.
As a downside of being a self-made millionare who had to practically raise herself, Taddy is a bit too self-reliant. She doesn’t mind people needing her, but it’s her needing someone that definitely scares the vajazzles out of her. It’s a good thing Warner Truman is determined to be with the dazzling Taddy Brill.
Warner Truman, is just… may I please have one like him? He’s a sensual, passionate and definitely a go-getter kind of man who built his empire from the ground up when he was 18 together with his first wife. And whew, you should definitely read those flashback scenes with his first wife because just wow. *fans self* He’s definitely determined and throughout the book when he and Taddy finally got together, he’s her constant support. He lets her know that it’s okay to let go and depend on him because he’s going to be there to catch her when she falls. Seriously, a hot, attractive man who’s also reliable and caring, that’s what Warner Truman is.
What I loved most about Unscrupulous is that it is a story about two very successful people who have their own lives and their own careers. Taddy and Warner understand that their own businesses are important but they also understand how important they are to each other and they make it work despite their crazy schedules. I think that’s pretty damn remarkable because who says you can’t be successful and in a deeply romantic relationship right? And the power exchange between these two? No one is more dominant over the other — they are both equals in their relationship (since they’re both pretty alpha) and that’s fabulous.
I think I forgot to mention the sex between Taddy and Warner aka Big Daddy. I don’t know how, but Ms. Aster has managed to not only make those scenes scorching but she also managed to put in some characterization. We get to know how much Taddy hates feeling vulnerable and we get to see how much Warner wants her to be a part of his life permanently. Go, go get this book, now!
What I Didn’t Like:
As much as I loved Unscrupulous there are a couple of things I’d like to point out that kind of made me pause while I was reading.
1. If you have severe issues with your body image or your self-esteem, especially concerning your breast size, there might be some triggering parts in this book. Read with caution. And if you really want to read it, have some support around you.
2. The ending. It just fades off. I don’t know, I guess there were too many things happening that I just thought there’d be more when it ended? It wasn’t an abrupt end and it definitely isn’t a cliffhanger, but I was left wanting for more? Or maybe I’m just a big fan of epilogues? I don’t know, but I definitely want more Taddy and Warner, please.
Avery Aster’s second installment for her The Manhattanites series, Unscrupulous, is a very engaging and very steamy read that doesn’t skip on the emotion and the romance. If you’re a fan of having strong characters looking for someone to depend on when they’re emotionally tired, or want to read about two gorgeous, independent people coming together (heh), or if you’re looking for a steamy read but want some romance to go with it, I highly suggest you pick this up! Pick up Undressed too! I swear, you’ll have the most fun time reading both books.
I can’t wait for more from Avery Aster!