A Virgin for His Prize by Lucy Monroe
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I was surprised how much I liked this one. I had been disappointed with the other book in this duology, An Heiress for His Empire. This book, it hit all the right notes.
I really liked the discussions that Romi and Maxwell had. It was clear that they were actually friends in addition to lovers. I am 1000% over playboy/womanizer heroes, but I think this worked for me because Maxwell did have some vulnerability. He may have seemed like he was holding all the cards, but Romi was someone he really wanted and needed in his life, despite his fear of falling in love and his belief that love didn't exist. Romi is nicely independent and straightforward.
I did think the whole, "I'm tired of being a twenty-four year old virgin" comment was a bit eye-rolling. That really is not that old to be a virgin. If you're a virgin, it's probably for a reason. Just be honest and admit that you really want to be with Maxwell, no qualifications on it. The way that writers play virginity is either like it's a burden or some kind of special status. It's neither. It's just a state of identity that a person has or doesn't have. Yes, losing one's virginity is a momentous occasion, so treat it that way and move on.
I really liked Maxwell's Russianness (big surprise). Even though he had lived in America most of his life, it was clear this an important part of his culture. He reflects many of the values that Russian men value highly. He felt more Russian to me than Viktor in the first book. I liked him better as a person, other than his slamhound tendencies. I don't think I would have been as sanguine as Romi was about staying in his apartment where he brought all his conquests, even if they didn't share his bed (he used the guestroom).
This feels like more of a modern romance than some HPs, with a heroine who is very millennial (Not in a bad way though), and that did appeal. The wedding was really sweet and how devoted and adoring Maxwell becomes towards the end of the book really worked for me. I like that they do understand each other and accept each other as they are. The marriage between this couple feels strong, like it will last for many years.
The love scenes are steamy and descriptive, but Monroe is a bit coy about the BDSM, with Maxwell having dominant tendencies and Romi being somewhat sexually submissive. I did like that she wasn't willing to be tied up until she felt like she could trust him again. That made a lot of sense to me.
The strong bond of friendship between Romi and Madison (from the other book) is a prominent aspect of this book, which I also liked. Romi and Madison both feel like women I might have known or interacted with in my real life. It's cute that SBC (sisters-by-choice) married friends/business rivals.
So, I was pretty satisfied with this book.
View all my reviews