Love Inc #3
Release Date: February 12, 2014
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Source: Purchased on Kindle
Rating: 4 Bookworms
Challenges: #ShelfLove, #TakeControl, #TravelingtotheTerminus
Marchant Radcliffe, owner of the exclusive Love Inc. brothel, is no stranger to darkness. He lost his parents in a plane crash and since college has harbored a secret almost too terrible to bear. He keeps his head above water by pouring his energy into his business - and he's thrived, despite the dark blot on his soul.
Then, after ten years of good fortune, Marchant's skeletons start to peek out of the closet, tossing him down a trail of ruin that begins with arson and could end with murder. Because he's kept his struggles private, he has no one to pull him back from the brink.
After a breakup with her longtime fiance, Suri Dalton, daughter of one of Silicon Valley's tech tycoons, has nowhere to go except her BFF's new penthouse in Las Vegas. The last thing Suri is looking for is a man, but after drowning her woes in wine on the flight over, she stumbles into a torrid make out session with a beautiful stranger - who just so happens to be Marchant Radcliffe, playboy and literal pimp.
Despite an immediate attraction, Suri writes Marchant off as exactly the sort of guy she should avoid. Until Love Inc. goes up in flames, Marchant winds up at the bottom of a swimming pool, and Suri is the only one around to pull him out.
What happens when what you see isn't what you get? What do you do when destiny is too alluring to resist and too dangerous to survive?
Marchant is an interesting character - one who's been difficult to get a read on - so I was eager for his story. I'd met him, or more accurately seen him, in the previous installments but he's sort of an enigma. I'd also met Suri previously and when I realized she was going to play a role in Marchant's story I was excited. If anyone needed some happy in their life, it's Suri. Fortunately, or unfortunately, she got Marchant - or they got each other. The result? A compelling read.
Marchant is action erratically when the story begins. He's drinking and smoking pot and gambling...all seemingly in an effort to deal with an anniversary of some sort. It remained difficult to get into his head - to understand him - for quite awhile but what I did understand is that he carries a lot of guilt for several events and feels unworthy of love. But Marchant is just broken. He's fixable and definitely lovable. He only needs someone to get through to him.
Suri is one of those people who want normal and thrives on taking care of people. She's shown that with Lizzy and with Cross. She's even aimed at getting her normal while also taking care of her alcoholic fiance. When she realizes normal isn't going to happen with him - that maybe normal doesn't even really exist - she dumps her fiance and heads to Las Vegas where Lizzy and Cross are...and meets Marchant.
I found Marchant and Suri's story riveting. Not only do they deal with Marchant's behavior but also the tragedy at Love Inc, the brothel Marchant owns, and the fallout as well as the danger coming from an unknown source. is it the gambler whom Marchant owes money? Or someone from Marchant's past? We don't know. And unfortunately I didn't find out as EJames left me hanging. And equally as unfortunate, the final chapter in Marchant and Suri's story isn't available. :(
Unmaking Marchant was fascinating and suspenseful. EJames did well in dealing with a few touchy topics (I'm being purposefully vague here), the ramifications of dealing with these topics on all those involved. I don't typically mind a cliffie but I went into this story thinking this was the final chapter in these characters' lives (it was the final book in the Love Inc boxset I purchased), so it was disappointing that it wasn't. However, I think Unmaking Marchant is my favorite in the series despite the cliffie because Marchant and Suri are so well developed. And so I'll anxiously await the rest of their story...