After reading the first three works in Jennifer Probst’s Marriage to a Billionaire series, I was excited to see how Probst was going to finish out this intriguing storyline. Considering I had just finished book number three, The Marriage Mistake, and dubbed it my favorite of the series thus far, I figured that the series on a whole might be on an upswing. So, with that in mind, I dove in.
Her sisters have found wedded bliss with their wealthy,wonderful dream men, but not Julietta Conte. She’s stayed on terra firma as top executive of the family’s corporation, La Dolce Famiglia bakery. Work is her passion, and her trendy Milan apartment her sanctuary . . . until Sawyer Wells, a masculine masterpiece in a suit, lures her out of hiding with an irresistible offer: an exclusive partnership with his international chain of boutique hotels.
Julietta’s been burned before—and trusting her brother-in-law’s friend, whose powerful gaze alone has her rethinking the best use of a conference room, is the riskiest proposition. But with a once-in-a-career chance to take the bakery global, will she mix stone-cold business with red-hot seduction?
I went into reading The Marriage Merger thinking I’d like it as much as I did the others in the series. Sadly, I was disappointed and annoyed with it. My main reason for disliking the book can be attributed to my dislike/non-connection with the characters. Sawyer, our male lead, comes off as a domineering jerk for a majority of the book. He’s opinionated, arrogant, and an overall ass. I think that the trope of using such a character to masquerade as a dominant and thus attract a submissive is well represented in this work, and it lacks originality. I know that there are certain fans of this idea, a strong and powerful man taking a woman with reckless abandon, but I couldn’t get past how arrogant and unlikable Sawyer was. The idea of trying to make these characteristics into something sexy and what a woman should want is unappealing. It’s Fifty Shades all over again.
On the other hand, I did enjoy the return of Mamma Conte. She was entertaining and brought some life to this otherwise one-dimensional story. Additionally, the couples from the first three books make an appearance, which does tie the series together. It is therefore regrettable that Probst had to end the series on a low note, but if you’re like me and can’t leave series unfinished, give the first 50 pages a try before setting it down.
2 out of 5 StarsThe Marriage Merger by Jennifer Probst Gallery Books (2013) eBook: 400 pages ISBN: 9781476744964
Special thanks to Gallery Books for my review copy via Netgalley!