Crave

Monica Murphy
Crave
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Publisher
Avon Impulse
Release Date
August 2013
ISBN
9780062289353
Series
Book 1 of The Billionaire Bachelors Club
Genre
Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance

SUMMARY
Billionaire Archer Bancroft always gets what he wants—and he's wanted Ivy Emerson, his best friend's sister, for far too long. Being forbidden and untouchable only makes her more tempting. When a million-dollar bet with his friends throws down a challenge—last bachelor standing takes all—Archer knows he can win. That is, until one enchanted evening with Ivy takes his heart for a ride. Ivy knows Archer is nothing but bad news: infuriating, arrogant . . . and completely intoxicating. But despite her best efforts, she can't seem to keep away. When a stolen kiss leads to a night of heated passion, Ivy realizes she's in trouble and in head over heels. But in the light of day, everything seems clearer, and Archer's not so sure a one-night stand is all he wants. Concocting a plan to keep Ivy by his side, Archer might just be willing to lose this bet . . . and win the jackpot instead.

Book Review by Bridget (reviewer)
Nov 13, 2013   [ OFFICIAL REVIEW ]
93 people found the following review helpful
Monica Murphy's sultry new Billionaire Bachelors Club series is a fascinating peek into a world of decadence, indulgence and ruthless acquisitions. But what makes it special is the fierce emotionality and genuine passion that simmers under the surface of every aspect of this world, and it makes for a series that is sure to have fans and new readers alike desperate for more.

When it comes to getting exactly what he wants, Archer Bancroft isn't used to taking ‘no' for an answer. A phenomenally successful hotel magnate, Archer has worked tirelessly to make his name and his fortune—and he's done it all alone. There's only one woman that Archer has ever truly wanted, but Ivy is his best friend's sister, and as such, is one of the only people in the world he can't have. So when his friend proposes a million-dollar bet for the last bachelor standing, Archer knows he will win the prize easily.

Knowing that Archer is nothing but trouble hasn't been enough to keep Ivy Emerson away from him. But wanting him also hasn't stopped her from fearing that he will only ever see her as "just Ivy", the same girl he's known for years. So when a simple conversation at a party leads to a shockingly steamy interlude, Ivy is stunned to realize that Archer might want her just as much as she wants him. Their chemistry is intense and only grows stronger with each stolen moment together, and Archer is ready to do anything to keep Ivy by his side. Until she finds out about the bet and forces Archer to choose between the life he's always wanted and the woman he's always craved.

Monica Murphy has a wonderful talent for taking familiar romantic tropes and crafting them into compelling, erotic and emotional stories that feel refreshing and surprising. The cold, aloof billionaire may be a familiar character, but the way she manages to get under Archer's skin and into his head makes him into a character that is instantly fascinating. I loved reading about how he saw Ivy and all that she meant to him, and his honesty with her was startling—and made the final conflict of this story work well despite its predictability. I do have to say that, though we hear repeatedly how damaged Archer is, that damage isn't really evident in this story, but the tangle of his relationship with Ivy was so charged and engaging that it didn't take away too much of the enjoyment of the story for me.

Ivy herself is a consistently surprising character. Though perhaps not quite as unpredictable or as detailed a character as Archer, she is remarkably daring and unafraid of seizing the moment—and her man—when the opportunity arises. Her individuality and business sense were evident throughout, and it was fun to see her and Archer working together, side by side, as well as watch their love affair progress.

Though the alternating first-person narration took a few pages to get used to completely, by the book's end, I realized I had enjoyed it immensely. Ms Murphy allows readers to see into both character's heads and hearts, and the result is a deeply passionate little story of lust and love and all the complications that they both can cause.

I'm eager to meet the rest of the Billionaire Bachelors in the course of this series, as it seems they all have captivating stories to tell. The small insights that were provided into their pasts and their businesses promise much in the books to come, and if this series opener is any indication, these books will all be heady, fiery successes.
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