The Billionaire’s Legacy by Reese Ryan. Harlequin Desire. 2018.
(Note: This review discusses a difficult pregnancy and a hero that is somewhat controlling.)
This contemporary category m/f romance hit the spot on a hard day. This romance has best friend’s brother, surprise baby and billionaire romance tropes, with a bit of a second chance romance and a childhood crush thrown in for good measure. It was tropey in all the right ways, well paced, and engaging, and I enjoyed it quite a bit.
I want to take a moment to appreciate the cover, because it was part of what sold me on this book. I’m not usually drawn to romances with babies on the cover, but this is an exception to that. It captures something that made me fall for the hero: how much he adores his kids.
The childhood crush resolving to love arc was rather sweet, and I liked seeing them first come together as adults after years apart, and have a one night stand. The surprise baby drama was really engaging, and I enjoyed watching that unfold into them figuring out what to do about the babies. I also liked seeing them connect with family over the babies, especially the way the heroine’s family is impacted by the babies in their life.
This romance especially delivered on what a wealth fantasy might look like if it involved a heroine with crushing debt, a difficult pregnancy and infant twins. Wealth fantasies rarely work for me, but using wealth to help with managing a hard pregnancy, bedrest, and two infants actually worked quite well for me as a reader.
It also complicated things by having a heroine who was reluctant to be dependent on and indebted to the billionaire hero, and the hero’s family thinking she was a gold digger. The bits about his family felt a bit thinly drawn; it was there that I missed having not read the related series, Bourbon Brothers, because I think it might have helped with context. Other than that, this felt like it did fine as a stand-alone.
The billionaire hero did act a bit controlling, throw his money at things to resolve them and seem kind of clueless about the ways that his wealth was an issue of power in the relationship. I liked that the heroine called him on it, and that it was a source of conflict between them.
I liked that the MCs recognized the issues in their relationship and worked to resolve the conflicts that were under their control, by the end. It made for a satsfyingly realistic happy ending. I especially enjoyed all the family and parenting details, and seeing them fumble with each other and figure things out. And the moments when they risk being vulnerable with each other were just lovely.
- Black MCs
- Black woman author
Content Warnings (in white, highlight to read)
Heroine is pregnant for most of the story, and there are a couple scares about potential early labor, she’s put on bedrest. Hero is a bit controlling and tries to maneuver her into marrying him, seems unaware of the power his money gives him in the relationship. Family estrangement is a big part of the plot. Brief diet talk, fat antagonism. Sex on the page.
- Source of the book: ARC from the publisher via Netgalley
- I have had no contact with the author
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