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Publisher's Summary

Adair MacLaine was sunshine and the storm. Emerald-green eyes and attitude, I fell for her the moment we met and hated her just as quickly. Five years ago, tragedy brought her to my door and sparked a love that consumed us like wildfire - hot, unpredictable, and impossible to control. We raged together until her father made her choose between me and the family name.

I left. She stayed.

I'm no longer the poor kid that lost her. I've made myself into a man that won't be ignored.

Now, her father is dead, the MacLaine empire is crumbling, and Adair's inheritance depends on the company's largest investor: me.

*

My whole life changed the night I met Sterling Ford. Brilliant and intense, he came to Valmont with nothing but a scholarship and a chip on his shoulder. He was a grenade, and I wanted to pull the pin.

We were doomed from the first kiss.

I've waited for my chance to seize my freedom, and now, it's finally in reach - until the last person I ever wanted to see again walks into my father's funeral: him.

From New York Times best-selling author Geneva Lee comes the first chapter in an emotional, breathtaking love story that will leave you obsessed and begging for more.

©2020 Geneva Lee (P)2021 Insatiable Press

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  • JP
  • 04-20-21

Sterling and Adair

*****Spoiler Alert*****

Audible review. Dual POV. Book 1 of 3 in the Rivals series. I didn't enjoy either of the narrators but the female was the least enjoyable voice. Jennifer Aquino's voice was nasally and she did several weird voice inflections that I assume she thought were accents. Her main character is Southern and she completely failed that accent. Then the main character's best friend is British and she made no attempt to conquer that accent. Oliver Clarke read a character that is from NY with no hint of an accent. As far as audiobooks this one was a FAIL, IMO. Trigger warnings: Adair's parents died 5 years apart; Sterling was raised in foster care after his mom died & his dad was incarcerated; Adair was drugged at a party; assassinations are alluded to; time in the military alluded to; CLIFFHANGERS through out the book.

This is so far my least liked book by Geneva Lee. I gave this story a 1 star rating because usually her work is very steamy full of alpha males but this one barely earned a PG-13 rating (1 fingering/BJ scene within the last 20% of the book & 1 actual sex scene in the last chapter) and the hero is practically a beta with alpha Wanda be tendencies; the story constantly jumped back and forth between current and 5 years in the past to Adair and Sterling in college; this was really more of a prequel than an actual book since there were so many topics that were brought up but no details were given. Geneva Lee certainly likes her cliffhangers but this book is one big cliffhanger.

Sterling is a poor scholarship kid from NY who grew up in foster care and was separated from his sister after his mom died and his dad was incarcerated. Apparently he is quite smart, his last foster mom held him to a high standard when it came to grades, and he tested really well earning him a scholarship to an upscale college in TN. Abuse by his biological parents was brought up but no detail was given. He served in the Marines and other than the his relationship with Jack and Luca no details were provided. Adair is a wealthy girl Sterling met on his first day in his dorm room. She's a friend of Cyrus, his roommate [there's apparently been something between Adair and Cyrus behind Poppy's, Adair's best friend, back (no details yet on this either)]. That night they go to a party, she gets mad/storms out, her friends chase her to tell her her parents were in an accident, since Sterling is the only sober one he takes Adair to the hospital where they eventually learn her mom died. Sterling goes to her house after the funeral and again Adair is a b/tch to him. Eventually the two become friends (I have no idea why because Adair is horrible to Sterling for absolutely no reason), Adair tells Sterling she's a virgin (again I have no idea why because he was taking things extremely slow), they share their hobbies (they both like to read and Adair likes to ride horses), she takes him for a ride and picnic where they share their first intimate moment (which was boring). For some reason they go their separate ways (I'm assuming her dad had something to do with it because Sterling continued to be her friend after he heard her saying disparaging things about Sterling with her friends before whatever happened to send them in opposite directions), Adair went to Cambridge and Sterling to the Marines. Adair has stretch marks on her stomach (So was there a pregnancy? Again who knows because the author gave no details). Sterling apparently disappeared from her life for 5 years even though Cyrus confirmed giving him her letter and became a millionaire with his two friends Jack and Luca. Sterling returns to town for Adair's dad's funeral immediately stirring up trouble with Adair's older brother [who is cheating on his wife and he & his wife are terrible parents to their toddler daughter who inherits the house they're all living in to be protected by Felix, the butler, until she's 25 (again there's a mystery behind the stipulations surrounding the little firl's inheritance only Fekix is privy to that no details are revealed in the story)]. Sterling's on a mission to exact revenge on the people on his "blacklist" (yes, he knows it should be "black list"). His list includes Adair's dad, a hotel manager, Adair, and several of Adair's friends (again no details given as to what they did with the exception of Oliver who drugged women). He and his two friends now own 49% of Adair's family's company but Adair's brother only knows about Sterling not that the other two investors are Sterling's friends. Sterling offers to marry Adair to keep the shares in their family, her brother considers it without even knowing who Sterling is because he's running for political office. Adair decides to thwart both men by agreeing to a fake relationship with Sterling. After an argument with her brother Adair shows up at Sterling's penthouse where they're intimate, Sterling gives Adair the code to his phone so she can order food while he walks Zeus, the dog he bought/that Adair adores at a charity gala, and she reads a text message from a woman (who could've been the sister he was separated from when they went into foster care or a set up to make her mad because why would he give her his phone when her phone was just in the other room?), of course Adair gets mad tears a page out of a book, rips it to shreds, leaves it on his pillow and leaves...... JP

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great for a slowly converting audio book listener!

Quick caveat- I am not an audio book fan....yet!
I’ve always found it hard to engage in an audio book in the past- but I love Geneva Lee’s writing and I have to say I made it through the entire book and enjoyed it thoroughly.

Both narrators were great - both voices were pleasing to my ear- and Jennifer Aquino was wonderful as Adair!

I hope the same narrators do the rest of the series!

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Can’t wait for the next one!!

What a great storyline and characters! Adair and Sterling’s on and off again love story is captivating. I’m on pins and needles waiting to see what’s going to happen next!

Jennifer Aquino is wonderful as Adair- I don’t know how she can keep all those characters in her head :). And Oliver Clarke’s deep bassy voice is also a good match for Sterling.

I’m looking forward to the next book in the series - love Geneva Lee!

1 person found this helpful