With a client list hotter than the Zubran desert, wedding planner Avery Scott shouldn't be surprised that her latest client is Crown Prince Malik of Zubran—the man who once lit her body on fire before steamrollering over her heart.Determined to ignore Malik's lethal charm, Avery makes a very personal not-to-do list:
1. Not being Malik's intended, our relationship must remain 100 percent professional.
2. His arranged bride might have run away, but I mustn't distract him—for the kings of Zubran, duty always comes first.
3. However luxurious the Bedouin tent—and smoldering the tension—pride dictates the touch I crave stays strictly forbidden.
I kind of can't believe I'm saying this, but Sarah Morgan made a really ridiculous premise work for me. Who, in all seriousness, goes out into the dessert with the man they still love to chase down their wayward fiance? I'm going to go out on a limb here and say no one, but somehow Avery Scott decides this is the best thing to do since her telling the other woman to face her fears now apparently makes her responsible for every subsequent dumb decision she makes.
Still, even with a wild set up like this, the dual viewpoints Morgan writes from, putting us in Mal's and Avery's heads, means that each person is more than just a caricature. Harlequin Presents as a series is renowned for starring Alpha-holes and even though Mal's actions seem to be heading in that direction, his pain and emotional turmoil made me sympathetic since so many of his decisions were impacted by circumstances outside his control.
In the end, while I didn't feel like Avery's big reveal was worth the all the build up, I could understand how her mother's cold upbringing would make her shy away from commitment. Ultimately the HEA between the two was both satisfying and heartfelt, which I think is how the best romances should be.
Overall Feeling - A
Series - None
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