Note: This ARC was provided by Entangled Publishing in exchange for an honest review.
His Heart's Revenge is the fourth and latest book in author Jenny Holiday's 49th Floor series, with this being the first M/M romance story. If you're familiar with the series, you'll remember thirty-five-year-old investment and financial consultant and business owner Cary Bell of Bell Capital from the previous book, The Engagement Game, where he was introduced as the cousin of Marcus Rosemann and brains behind his uncle's investment firm, a job that he quit at the end of book three. Cary's story is a second chance romance he shares with Alexander Evangelista, the thirty-six-year-old CEO of Dominion, a private financial institution. The two were friends as young teenagers and saw each other every summer until that summer twenty years ago, where they shared their first kiss, which should have been the hopeful beginning of something more but became the ending of a friendship and life as either one of them knew it.
Cary Bell's company may be an upstart but he's got loyal clients with new ones making their way to help him get an even better footing in the industry and become even more established with his new business. He's set to win over one of the world's wealthiest men but he's up against none other than Alex Evangelista, his first crush and the boy he betrayed two decades while at summer camp. Alex is no longer the nerdy, impoverished boy he once was. In his place is a cold and calculated banker, one who has made it clear with his regular snubbing and avoidance of Cary at functions they were both attending and invited to that he had no interest in rekindling their friendship. Cary knows he needs to apologize for what happened twenty years ago, but he also needs to prove that Bell Capital is the better choice for the client that both he and Alex are after. His being even more drawn to Alex now that they were adults is another complication.
Alexander Evangelista doesn't appreciate the familiarity that comes with Cary's calling him by his old nickname. He's worked too long and too hard to get to the point where he's at now. He has more than a substantial amount of money, has more than his fair share of worldly possessions, and is able to give his beloved mother the kind of comfortable life she deserves. All it took was one particular turning point to lead him down this path. Learning that Cary is his main competition for a much coveted new client has Alex craving vengeance and he has no qualms about doing whatever he thinks is necessary to get his revenge on the boy who broke his heart twenty years prior. But the adult version of Cary Bell becomes both a temptation and distraction, with Alex trying to battle his attraction and affection for him. The new client will further their careers. Both sides have declared war. Sadly, not all is always fair in love and war.
Prior to reading this fourth book, the first one, Saving the CEO, was my favorite, but Cary and Alex's second chance romance has overtaken it. I loved the tension between these two, a tension that was palpable. That tension wasn't limited to the sexual kind either, and with the former friends now becoming professional adversaries, their competitiveness is at a high. We get to see that last summer they spent together two decades ago, comprising of flashbacks that show how their friendship evolved into a summers-long and very mutual secret crush, but then ended with more than hearts broken. Both Cary and Alex struggled with being around one another, but I liked how the journey to rebuilding that broken trust was a surprising one, with the author not going for quick fixes via sexual interactions. Through the ups and downs, Cary and Alex's story was one that I thoroughly adored. I'm giving His Heart's Revenge five stars. ♥
Read my reviews for the 49th Floor series:
Saving the CEO (book one) - 4.5 stars - My Review
Sleeping with Her Enemy (book two) - four stars - My Review
The Engagement Game (book three) - four stars - My Review
His Heart's Revenge (book four) - five stars - My Review (posted above)
Date Read: 01 July 2016
Learn more about Jenny Holiday.