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Publisher's Summary

It's only pretend...

And it's only three months.

I'm in the midst of scrawling "I quit!" onto his fancy cardstock letterhead when my boss corners me. He needs a favor, he says. And then he asks how well I can act...

Hudson Rutherford needs a fiancée.

With his old-moneyed parents forcing him to marry some bratty hotel heiress and his hedonistic, playboy lifestyle at stake, the only way to get them to back off is to make them think he's truly, madly, deeply in love...with me - his third personal assistant this year.

But I can hardly stand working for him as it is.

Hudson is crazy hot and well-aware. He's arrogant, spoiled, and silver-spooned. He checks me out when he thinks I'm not looking, and his life is a revolving door of beautiful women. Plus, he can't even pronounce my name correctly - how's he going to convince his family he's in love with me?!

I'm seconds from giving him a resounding "no" when he flashes his signature dimpled smirk and gives me a number that happens to contain a whole mess of zeroes...

On second thought, I think I can swallow my pride.

But, oh baby, there's one thing I haven't told him, one teensy-tiny thing that could make this just a hair complicated....

Here's hoping this entire thing doesn't explode in our faces.

©2017 Winter Renshaw (P)2017 Audible, Inc.

What listeners say about The Perfect Illusion

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

suprised

I thought this was another tried and bought book about boss being dom , cranky and having a submissive secretary. Gah
I was enthusiasticly suprised when I realized this book held much much more. no crazy sub sex scenes. just plain ole' good love with some twists along the way!
well done!

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

EXCELLENT BOOK, WELL WRITTEN

The book was well written. Its story was unique and very believable. At the end of the book we are totally in love with both Characters. Maribel changes Hudson and brings the good side of him out....no bad characters only good ppl. I loved the ending alot. This book will go down as one of my favorites.

6 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

The Perfect Illusion

Fun book to read, narration was good and writing just as much. It is one of those books that gives you a break from heavy reading.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Cute Light Entertaining

I am struggling with this one. The story is so cute and funny. The female narrator is great, but the guy? Omg, I just can’t. The character is described as so sexy, then the voice of the narrator sounds like the kid in the front row of class who raises his hand and corrects the teacher with “ACH-SHUally...” It is the most unsexy, nerdy voice ever. Plus it is quite feminine. It’s Sheldon Cooper which makes it hard to picture anyone but Sheldon Cooper.
When the female narrator does the guy voice he sounds, well, like a sexy man. But the male narrator makes it really difficult for me to get into this story.

The story itself is very charming. And maybe if I thought Sheldon Cooper was hot I could get into the narration.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Wonderful and fun

This story was sweet and sexy. The characters real and full bodied. You feel the pain and happiness of all of them, even the ones you want to hate. Great summer or weekend read.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Middle of the Road

I wish I could have liked this more. I saw that it was recommended by Laurelin Paige and I like her books but this books was pretty mediocre for me. The writing was good and the narration was solid I just had story issues. First of all, Hudson was a real a-hole for most of the first half of the book. I just don't find that level of arrogance and disregard for people's feelings sexy. I had real problems with suspension of disbelief overall. It made no sense to me how Mari thought she could keep her secret to herself for any length of time, much less the 3 months that she needed to pretend to be Hudson's fiancee and then be his fake wife for an extended period of time afterwards. Overall, there was a decided lack of sizzle to the story and that's what I look for in my romance novels.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Hudson & Mari’s Fake Marriage Arrangement!

Hudson & Mari’s Fake Marriage Arrangement Is Threatened By The Secrets They Keep, And A Pregnancy Forces Some Hard Choices For Both. Their Story Is About Family Values.


Maribel Collins, twenty-five, is giving her two weeks’ notice. Effective May twenty-sixth, she will walk away from Rutherford Architectural with a big sigh of relief. She may be patient, but working as the personal assistant for Mr. Rutherford is akin to signing up to be an indentured servant. The man is the devil. The timing couldn’t be worse, however, as she just realized days ago that she is pregnant. She hadn’t been with a man is ages, and had finally given in a month ago and arranged a single hookup to scratch an itch and move one. Luck would have that her one hookup resulted in pregnancy despite taking precautions, and worse, the man’s number is no longer in service. She might need to ask her parents for help and move back home to Nebraska if she cannot find a good job fast. But one thing is for certain: anything is better than working for Mr. Rutherford.

Hudson Rutherford, twenty-nine, is on this third PA since January. He heads Rutherford Architectural and works like a horse, expecting his employees to do the same without complaint. That might explain the high turnover rate. Many words describe him: demanding, rude, arrogant, insufferable, unforgiving, micromanager, and control freak to name a few. He knows full well that he is difficult to work for but doesn’t mind. He likes to ensure his employees don’t’ get too comfortable around him. He particularly enjoys riling up his PA’s by messing up their names. He keeps a secret Rolodex handy for when he has the urge for a no-strings liaison, which is the only thing he has to offer a woman. He had one relationship in college, but has no interest in another. He spent his youth away from home at boarding school, so his relationship with his family is a little different.

Every summer without fail, Hudson is expected to spend four weeks at the family home in Montauk. But as he is about to turn thirty, it is a custom he would rather avoid this year. Summer is the wedding season, and an understanding exists between his family and the Sheffield family that he and their daughter would marry if still single by age thirty. He happens to have a plan, and when Mari turns in her resignation he jumps at the opportunity to implement it.

Hudson and Mari enter into a fake marriage arrangement in order to get his family off his back. Mari hates him, which makes her the perfect wife. She won’t want anything from him but the five million he agrees to pay her, and he doesn’t mind being generous. There is also the matter of her driving him crazy, but her ability to talk back to him without cowering makes her uniquely qualified for the job of his wife. Mari has misgivings, but Hudson always gets what he wants. He doesn’t know about her pregnancy, which is a serious complication, but she should be able to hide it until after the wedding at the end of the summer, after which time they go their separate ways. It seems like a win-win.

Hudson and Mari get to know one another in earnest as they prepare to spend time in Montauk. Feelings gets confusing as reality blurs with their ruse. They each have a story to tell, and it is surprising to see how well they get along. But it is all fake, as evidenced by the secrets they both continue to keep. They each have a past that threatens to surface and unravel whatever happiness they might have found.

Hudson and Mari’s story is a sweet enemies to lovers, fake marriage story. There are some angsty moments as the story moves to Montauk, testing the couple. The story shifts and becomes much more serious in tone later, and there are a few teary moments. It is about issues of family and raising children. There are also issues of self-esteem and revenge. The story relies heavily on coincidence, but it works. The HEA is not typical. It is, however, a modern and realistic happy ending.

Hudson and Mari’s fake marriage arrangement is threatened by the secrets they keep, and a pregnancy forces some hard choices for both. Their story is about family values. It is nicely written and plot-driven. The characters are nicely developed. It is written in first person. The POV alternates between Hudson and Mari. I rate this book four stars.

As for the Audio: it is well-performed and consistent with the book.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Really good

Sweet story that is a little different than the normal love story.
Narrators were great!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting twist

Mari just delivered her satisfying "I quit" letter and speech to her boss, but Hudson has other plans for his assistant.
In a cross between revenge and keeping secrets, their faux relationship blur the established lines and cross over boundaries through plot twists and revealed truths.
I read both the positive and negative reviews and still chose to read it. I'm certainly glad I did. While this is not my favorite story from the writer, it was an intriguing and enjoyable book nonetheless. She was able to take a common storyline with fairly commonly written characters and add a few surprising elements to add enough new elements to keep it interesting.
The audiobook and its narrators Holly Chandler and Matthew Holland were a great pair. their respective POV narrations were spot on for the characters they portrayed.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good Story.

I enjoyed this book, but I’m not sure if I would listen again. It all felt rushed to me. & I hated how they’re was no real build it. I do a lot of books. This one wasn’t bad. Just not top 50