BEAUTY AND THE BACHELOR by Naima Simone is a sassy, steamy,
heartfelt romance that left me wanting more from this talented
author. Sydney is a compelling character who is soft yet
strong, vulnerable yet a fighter. At times I wanted to cry as
she struggles with the guilt she feels over her past, but it
was a joy to watch her come into her own and realise how
fabulous she truly is. Lucas is a powerful character who
sucks the reader in and confuses us. Bitter, angry and
determined to use Sydney to seek revenge, we should hate him.
We can't because the author weaves us into his story, and
as Lucas struggles with his deep feelings for Sydney, we fall
in love with him all over again. With plenty of secrets,
misconceptions, and passion that will take the roof off,
BEAUTY AND THE BACHELOR by Naima Simone has got it all, and I
highly recommend it.
She may be the highest bidder, but this bachelorâ€™s
price is blackmail and passionâ€¦
Billionaire Lucas Oliver is hell bent on revenge. And his
plan begins when Sydney Blake-the
stunning daughter of his enemy-is tricked into bidding on
Lucas at a bachelor auction. Then
he serves up a little blackmailâ€¦followed by a marriage
proposal Sydney has no choice but to
Sydney has been controlled by her family her
whole life. When Lucas threatens to
reveal her fatherâ€™s shady business, she is once again
forced to do her duty for her family. But
worse-oh so much worse-is the rush of lust that Lucas
ignites in her blood.
determined to make Sydney suffer, but itâ€™s tough when he
canâ€™t keep from touching her-or
thinking about touching her-all the time. Sheâ€™s not
fairing much better since sheâ€™s engaged
to a darkly handsome beast intent on destroying her
entire familyâ€¦along with her heart.
â€śRegrets already, Sydney?â€ť Lucas asked, the question a
low ripple in the silent room.
â€śNo.â€ť Once more Sydney studied him. The piercing green-
blue eyes that had blazed with scorching heat less than
an hour ago but were now shuddered, impassive. The almost
lush, sensual curve of his mouth that contrasted with the
sharply hewn planes of his face. The hard, strong line of
his jaw. The harsh imperfection of the scar that was
perfect on him.
Confusion commingled, mated with the blush of arousal.
Questions and concernsâ€”she had dozens of those. But
â€śDoes it bother you?â€ť He plucked up a slice of chicken
and popped it into his mouth. God, it wasnâ€™t fair that he
made eating with his fingers sexy, too.
She blinked, refocusing on their conversation. But
couldnâ€™t follow. Heâ€™d lost her.
She frowned. â€śThat we had sex?â€ť
â€śNo. The scar. You were staring at it. Does it bother
you?â€ť No emotion or inflection in the question, just a
flat monotone that he couldâ€™ve used to ask the time of
Like the first time heâ€™d asked that question three weeks
agoâ€”God, had it only been three weeks since heâ€™d exploded
into her life?â€”the quick â€śNot at allâ€ť rose to her tongue,
hovered there. But at the last instant, she didnâ€™t utter
the three words. Because they would be a lie.
â€śYes,â€ť she murmured. Something flared in his gazeâ€”
something old and dark before it became as opaque as
before. â€śBut not for the reasons you probably think.â€ť She
turned more fully toward him, tucking her foot under her
thigh. â€śWhen I first met you, of course I noticed the
scar. But I wasnâ€™t repulsed. I ached for you. For the
pain you mustâ€™ve endured. It bothered me that you
suffered.â€ť A scowl started to crease his brow, and she
shot up her hand, palm out. â€śI donâ€™t pity you. No one who
looks at you could ever feel sorry for you. Youâ€™re tooâ€¦
dangerous for that.â€ť She huffed out a short bark of
laughter. â€śI remember thinking you resembled a panther.
Dark. Stunning. But predatory. The mark isnâ€™t a sign of
your weakness but your strength. Your power to fight and
survive. I find itâ€¦â€ť She paused, weighed the judgment of
revealing this particular truth.
He watched her like the animal sheâ€™d mentioned, his
scrutiny steady, unblinking, as if searching her for any
hint of a lie. Sighing, she rose from the bed, careful
not to jostle the tray. She approached him, moved between
his legs, and cupped his face.
â€śI find it beautiful,â€ť she whispered. Then laid a gentle
kiss to the ridged flesh beneath his right eye before
placing another on the twin scar that bisected his
eyebrow. â€śI find you beautiful,â€ť she confessed against
His hands clutched her waist. Other than the tiny flexing
of his fingers, he remained as still as a statue. No,
that wasnâ€™t true. His eyes blazed with a fire that burned