Arousal by Simone Sowood

“Fake Girlfriend, Real Arousal

A woman I’ve never seen before just told her father I’m her boyfriend.
I walked into the restaurant to grab dinner between important meetings and there she was, red cheeked and fury in her electric blue eyes.
I figure I’ll help her out with whatever she has going on with her father, so I kiss her.
If she wants to be what’s on my menu, that’s fine by me.
As she melts into my arms, the taste of her lips and the fire in her eyes hits me in the gut.
She’s mine.
This might be a game to her, but I’m playing for real. And trust me when I say I never lose.
I’m going to use my vast wealth and power to get her exactly where I want her.
Who knows, I might even tell her who I really am.”

-Synopsis from Goodreads

Arousal written by Simone Sowood. Add it on Goodreads!

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I want to start of this review by saying I was BEYOND excited for this book release. Like beyond EXCITED! I subscribe to Simone Sowood’s newsletter and woke up one morning to a glorious email and ever since have been anxiously waiting for the release. Side note without a question subscribe to your favorite authors newsletters. It’s a no-brainer really. You get glimpses into brand new books and sometimes chances to get additional epilogues of previous books. As well as the chance to be entered in drawings for giveaways and sometimes if you’re lucky chances to be able to get a free ARC. So the blurb she gave on the book in that newsletter – which back then was with no title and no cover – stopped me from what I was doing and captivated my soul. I needed this book, I would have given my first born to read this book sooner. Now before you call me dramatic just know that I only can say that because I won’t be having kids. So anywho, I was drawn in from the beginning. I LOVE books with the plot of a fake relationship. It’s tied with my passion for reading a good book about office romances. With all that, I am really hoping that this book does not let me down, which I highly doubt it will considering I fancied another book of this authors – Lip Service.

Darcy Knight works for her aggressive father. No matter what she does, it is never good enough for him. So she makes up a fake relationship on the spot during dinner one night. In walks drop dead gorgeous Liam “Jones” who is willing to be her fake boyfriend for the night. Except sexual tension instantly runs high and he wants more than just one night.

Liam “Jones” has secrets. Even his last name is a secret. Unfortunately that means keeping secrets from Darcy. As the more time they spend with each other they more he lets her in on some of the secrets. Like for example he has a private jet and owns a few companies that she might of heard of from time to time.  So to keep Darcy coming back, he makes a deal. He will go to a wedding for her cousin as her “boyfriend” and she will go to an event for him as his date. Except the more time they spend with each other the more Liam realizes she might be more than just his normal type of women.

Just remember sooner or later those secrets come out, and sooner or later those high in the cloud feelings just might fall, leaving thunderstorms and tears in the way.

I do wish this book was more based on the fake relationships aspects. Mostly because as I have said before I LOVE those type of novels. I was kind of disappointed that this book was not really based upon that. That it wasn’t really fake for too long. I still did enjoy this book, just probably not as much if it was more like the first few chapters. It was a short and quick read, that lead me having many questions that THANKFULLY were answered.

 

Check out my review on Goodreads. Or take a look at my longer review below with all the spoilers 🙂

Book Review (3)
LONG REVIEW with Spoilers. SO SPOILER ALERT!!!

 

Darcy Knight’s family for the last 15 years has had a strict tradition. One that wouldn’t seem to be normal in some eyes. They go to The Fat Kok in New York every year on April 3rd, to celebrate the day her father divorced her mom. Normally her brother came to this wonderful occasion as well, but he’s off being a safari guide in Africa. So now it’s just her and her father doing this, even though she spends almost everyday with him working beside him at his global events Business. One day the company will be handed over to her, although her father treats her as if she’s 18 and not a 27 year old Columbia MBA graduate. He also always gets on her about being single. Saying that he can’t pass down the business without a heir or some bullshit. Darcy barely pays attention anymore.

So when a guy walks into the restaurant by himself she checks to make sure he doesn’t have a ring and then tells her dad that this is her boyfriend. She wanted to surprise him. She wasn’t thinking, and she gave the gorgeous man pleading eyes to play along. And my does he play along. He pulls her in for a wonderful kiss that turns into a long make out session that doesn’t stop even as her dad clears he throat many times. She can’t help but be drawn into his heavenly scent, the way he kisses and holds her. She is going to have to remember this experience by every detail as she puts her vibrator to good use later tonight.

Liam introduces himself to her father and they talk business. He is actually going to play along and stay for dinner. Darcy just derailed his night and made someone far out of her league became her fake boyfriend and he is actual going to go along with this devious plan of hers. Holy shit.

The book goes back and forth between both characters stand points and views. Which makes me like the book even more.

At first Liam was taken back by Darcy’s beauty and that’s originally why he had not problem playing along. He quickly did a search of the business and found Darcy’s name. While waiting for the food her asshole of a father talked business as if he barely knew what he was talking about. Liam was very distant about what type of work he did. Mentioning business. All Liam wanted to do was take Darcy back to his place and show her how excited he was that she picked him to be her fake boyfriend. Except time got away from him as he steps out to take a call, realizing he was late for an important meeting. He flags down a cab, not even mentioning he needed to go to Darcy and her father Timothy.

When Liam rushes off to his meeting, we get bland answers of what he really does. If anything even more questions arise. He owns many companies, and yet gives fake names to each. Only giving the same fake name to companies that could entwine. He wants to keep his identity secret. What the hell does this man really do and also why does he need to hide his name??

Darcy does her best sleuthing skills to find Liam online but has no luck (hmm I wonder if it’s because he uses fake names for everything. DANGER DANGER) but thankfully he calls her. With a proposition of course. He needs a date to an event and her father mentioned her cousins wedding soon. So they will both help each other out, win win.

The met up at a coffee shop before the wedding and Liam is trying his darnedest to not touch her. They get to the wedding which is at a fancy golf club.. that Liam mentions in his head that the place was a good investment.

The wedding sucks, her dad’s a douche. Liam and Darcy leave as soon as they can. With no plans for the night, Liam asks Darcy to trust him. They end up at the airport where Liam if flying them off to Austin in his private Jet. During the first time they met at the Chinese restaurant she mentioned that she would not originally be going to her cousins wedding because she wanted to go to a chocolate festival in Austin.

During the flight Darcy asks Liam who he really is. He admits that he owns many companies and the golf course that they were at. That he also has a lot of money, but lies about his last name and Darcy knows that.

Since it’s late they head to a hotel when they get to Texas and both are radiating with need for each other. Soon after entering the suite they start making out and Liam fingers her. He desperately wants her, craves her but he told himself if he ever found THE ONE he would not fuck her like he has done with the rest, he would be patient. He just never thought he would every find the one, and never cared to look. He liked his one night stands, but now he really likes being around Darcy. So after her orgasm, he sends her to bed and he takes a cold shower.

Liam wakes in the morning and try to patiently wait for Darcy to awake from her own room. After a while he ends up going to wake her. Except she isn’t in there and her bed is still made… He calls – there is no answer. He texts – no response. He almost texts he misses her and realizes it and erases it. Finally she responds that she is a grown woman and can take care of herself, that she also took the first flight out back to New York. Liam flies home immediately and goes to his apartment to hit the gym and work out the pent up stress, anger and other emotional stuff. He asks his assistant to look up everything that they can about Darcy and her fathers company.

We get Darcy’s side of things and hear why she freaked out and left. She realized that she liked Liam, a little too much. He controlled her emotions and had her hanging on a string and she knew that if she was there the next morning when he woke up her heart would break. She doesn’t give much details to her best friend but the friend Kirsten tells her to give him another chance, even if he is mysterious. Plus she realized even more that she hates working for her father, even if she is supposed to own it sooner or later. So she sends out her resumes and then almost – almost is ready to contact Liam to see him again.

Thank goodness Liam figures out that Darcy is THE ONE and calls her to tell her she still needs to hold up to their deal. Not that he had to push her to go anyways. She may of been hesitant but she went along with it. Saturday night he was going to invite her into his home, tell her EVERYTHING and be open about anything she might have questions about. His assistant give him the details of Darcy’s life and he ends up making a 10 million dollar donation to her charity she also helps with and her best friend Kirsten runs.

Darcy enters Liam’s home and is breathless. Not by his extravagant apartment but from Liam. The go to the roof which is the terrace and have a dinner for two. The even that Liam wanted Darcy to be in attendance with was a private date. The more time went by the more Darcy became nervous and wanting to bolt back home. Liam is explaining that he wanted to make sure that she meant something to him, that’s why he didn’t sleep with her. Darcy keeps quiet about how she is afraid of relationships and feelings. Except the feelings press on her too hard and she gets up to leave.

Liam distracts her with truffles he handmade. Which thankfully turns into a very erotic scene with chocolate basically everywhere you could think of. The moment turns into something more and Darcy opens up her heart without really telling him, and her legs also. They have amazing sex and once again another lead male character has a MONSTER dick. I still have yet to read a book that has an average guy with an average size. Not that I am complaining too much, just authors need to set woman up for reality.

They take a shower, because like I said chocolate everywhere and Liam tells Darcy that he knows why she is distant about being serious. She was engaged once before, he had died from a heart attack. So young. She is understandably afraid of opening up again only to lose again. Liam understands whole heartily and wants to be there for her. Letting her know it’s okay to love two men, he would want her to be happy.

So Liam AKA William Bannerman have sex again. No condom and it’s not the sex you would think. During their fucking, he admits who he is and she pauses for a while. In shock. She is currently banging one of the worlds largest billionaire. He is a legend that no one has found, or at least she thinks. Liam tells us in his chapter that he will know need to have a body guard on Darcy at all times. He does not want someone to blackmail her or try to take something of his. Whether that be his money or Darcy, because she is his now. We get more questions with what happened before that has made him so anxious about people know who he really is.

A month passes, Darcy and Liam are doing wonderful. Her father is still an ass, even though she is flying out to Paris with Liam to get a new deal. He fought with her in the beginning to have a boyfriend, now he is telling her she is letting the family business go down and under because she is too busy with her boyfriend. She can never win with her father, and she still thinks about leaving the company. Her friend encourages her to work with her and the charity. But to work at a charity that helps find medication and research to prevent young people from having heart attacks would be too close to he heart with her previously dead fiance Tanner. So Liam, Darcy and her bodyguard Chase head off to Paris.

Darcy and Liam spend their time in Paris, well. They eat amazing food and even get a quicky on top of the Eiffel Tower, after they paid off some guards. The whole time he is speaking french, and it is turning her on more and more. Because what women does not love a man who can speak a different language and also whisper his love for here when she has no idea. Which he does, and then tells her that he loves her, and she returns the 3 words as well. This is the first time Liam has ever told anyone those words. During dinner Darcy got a call from a competitive company telling her they would like to interview her for the CEO position since their’s will be retiring soon. She is back and forth about leaving her father because as much as he verbal abuses her, she does want a relationship with him. And leaving to go to their number 1 competitor would be way more than just a slap in the face. Liam definitely thinks she should leave, and Darcy is starting to agree as well.

After a few weeks of interviews and Liam’s support. Darcy is officially the CEO of Elite Designs. When she gives her dad the letter that she is resigning he flips out on her. Basically telling her she is not the daughter he raised and is heartless. She is no longer a daughter at all, and he will never speak to her again. Especially after Elite Design purchases the exact thing they went to Paris for when she was working on her fathers company. Which Darcy had no clue…

Things start to click… and in a very bad way. Darcy realizes that Liam owns Elite and that’s why she got the job. That’s why Elite bought the chocolate expo they were supposed to go to in Austin, and now the one in Paris. Elite is her father’s biggest competitor… Darcy feels like Liam has been using her since the night they met and that’s why he agreed to be her “fake” boyfriend in the beginning. He was trying to ruin her father’s company from the beginning. So even when Liam tells her that was not his plan, she was not his plan. That he loved her more than anything and will do anything to prove it to her, she still leaves at first without Chase the bodyguard. Darcy is fuming with rage and just wants out as soon as possible, and no connections with Liam but Liam feels otherwise, at least about Chase. He finally answers some questions… or at least the questions that I had like why the actual fuck does she need a bodyguard in the first place? Well looks like his mentor had some really bad luck. Someone asked for loads of money, and they ended up kidnapping the mentors father, cutting off his pinkie finger and mailing it to him – Liam was actually the one that opened the letter. Than after the mentor gave them money to get his father back, they asked for more while they video tapped them beating his father up near to death. He gave more so they would take him to the hospital. The mentor ended up killing himself soon after because of the shame he had of what happened. So after all of that, Darcy agrees that Chase can come.

The next few days are all the same. Liam gets drunk and tries to contact Darcy, but she barely responds and when she does is things like “I can not trust you”. Which is totally understandable. I mean a company that Liam owns coincidentally purchased two things that her and her father planned on buying. The two things that Liam knew about. Kirsten her best friend thinks she should see him, talk to him and hopefully forgive him. She can barely talk without crying, how could she ever see him again.

A few days later after turning off her phone, her best friend and Chase come pounding on the door. Demanding she watches Good Morning America… Liam has outed himself to the world to show that he has no more secrets. He is doing this for Darcy. Doing the one thing he never said he would do because he wanted to prove to her that he has nothing left to hide. I’m going to be 100% honest and say I feel like this is a dumb idea. He just told Darcy what really happened with his mentor. Now he is putting his safety and Darcy’s safety on the line… more than ever.

Which surprise surprise, guess what happens next.. Liam is kidnapped not even an hour after he leaves the TV studio. Liam is able to hit the guy who shoved him into the car, and also the driver. Unfortunately it sends the car into other cars and him flying from the backseat into an airbag.

Darcy and Chase are rushing to find Liam since his phone keeps going to voicemail. On their way to his apartment they get wind that there was an accident and Liam was involved. Darcy hooves it a few blocks and screams for Liam. He’s still there and embraces her in a hug. They also make out in front of a bunch of people yelling that she is the mystery girl. They rush off to his apartment, where Liam tells her she can never leave again… which sounds more controlling then what he really means.

In the epilogue we read that after a week of hiding out in Liam’s apartment they had another live interview. Promising the show that they would release who the mystery woman is. Except surprise! They got married on live tv then rushed off to their honeymoon at a very very private island.

Darcy finally talked to her father, he informed her that he has been sending messages to apologize. Even before Liam told the world who he was. So after 2 months they flew her father to the island and they talked. Turns out that he was sorry. Also his wife was pregnant and he wants to do things right this time. Which also works out because now they might have another child to run the company when her father retires. Which is now not really her fathers company. Well 49% is. The other 51%? Well that’s Darcy and Liams. They merged the two companies and everyone is happy. Especially Liam and Darcy since they live on the island now and vacation other places. They only work 24 hours a week and they do it together, everyone else is hired to do their work. They’re also expecting their first child.

So that is the end UNLESS you subscribed to Simone Sowood’s newsletters where you would get an EXTEND EPILOGUE!!

This is 15 years later. Liam can not keep his hands off of her still. Even with everyone in the other room waiting on them to bring out the cake. Her father has been great, especially with her stepsister Phoenix. Darcy and Liam have two kids of their own a boy and a girl, but are celebrating her best friends son turning 13. Which just so happens to be Liam’s ex-employee. Chase. Looks like Kirsten and Chase got to know each other pretty well, and kept it under wraps up until she got pregnant. They got married and are very happy. Chase ended up leaving Liam and opening his own security team. Other than that the epilogue is about Liam and Darcy fucking and still being widely happy.

 

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